Delays in the opening of Doha’s critically important new Hamad International Airport (HIA) are almost as farcical as those of Berlin’s new Brandenburg International Airport, but the transition to full operations is now in its home stretch and we have a great preview of the stunning new terminal below.
According to Qatar transport minister Jassim Seif Ahmed Al Sulaiti a soft opening trial will begin this month from the chic new terminal involving ten carriers – Air Arabia, Air India Express, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Flydubai, Iran Air, Nepal Airlines, Pakistan International Airlines, RAK Airways, Syrian Air, and Yemen Airways.
Qatar Airways is now expected to transition its operations into its new home on April 1.
Doha International Airport is cripplingly overcapacity. Designed for an annual throughput of 12 million passengers a year, in 2013 the airport handled approximately 25 million people with 75% handled by Qatar Airways. After Dubai, it is now the second largest Middle East hub, and is now in the top 25 airports in the world measured by international passenger traffic.