Doha Hamad International Airport (HIA) has been named “Best Airport in the World” at the prestigious Skytrax World Airport Awards 2021, moving up from third to first place in the global rankings. HIA has also been named the “Best Airport in the Middle East,” “Best Airport with 25 to 35 million Passengers,” “Best Airport Staff in the Middle East,” and “COVID-19 Airport Excellence.”
Engr. Badr Mohammed Al-Meer, Chief Operating Officer at Hamad International Airport, said: “It is with great pride that we announce that Qatar’s Hamad International Airport has been named the world`s best airport at the Skytrax 2021 World Airport Awards. This is not only a truly remarkable achievement for HIA and the State of Qatar but an endorsement from our travellers for our commitment to service excellence. As we look towards the future, HIA remains devoted to boosting our efforts in providing the best airport experience to all our passengers.”
Edward Plaisted of Skytrax said: “We are delighted to announce that Hamad International Airport has been voted the World’s Best Airport 2021. Inaugurated in 2014, Hamad International Airport has rapidly become a customer favourite and moved from No 3 in the world in 2020 to be ranked World’s Best Airport this year. Achieving this honour is very much a team effort, and our congratulations go to the Management, staff and stakeholders at Hamad International Airport that help make this happen. As travel hubs worldwide have been impacted by the pandemic, Hamad International Airport was undeterred by the global travel disruptions and continued with its expansion plans while introducing additional airport health and safety standards. As the Official Airport Partner for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, we wish Hamad International Airport every success in helping to host such a major event.”
By implementing advanced technological solutions, HIA recognised the magnitude of the global health crisis and accommodated changing traveller needs for increased sanitisation measures and contactless services. At key passenger touchpoints such as self-check-in, self-bag-drop, and terminal elevators, the airport retrofitted its existing services with touchless capabilities. It used its in-house automated facial detection system to ensure that all of its employees wore masks. To protect the airport, HIA employs Smart Screening Helmets for contactless temperature measurement and autonomous disinfectant robots that emit concentrated UV light in high passenger flow areas.
Qatar’s airport was also the first airport in the Middle East and Asia to achieve a 5-Star COVID-19 Airport Safety Rating by Skytrax in 2020. The audit assessed the effectiveness of HIA’s COVID-19 policies and measures in providing a safe environment for all and recognised the airport’s commitment to operational excellence and passenger well-being.
As Qatar prepares to welcome thousands of visitors for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM, HIA, the Official Airport Partner for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM, is ready to create unforgettable experiences for football fans around the world. The airport will host spectacular fan activations throughout its terminals while also ensuring seamless connectivity throughout the airport. HIA’s expansion, with the first phase aiming to increase capacity to 58 million passengers per year by the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM. The second phase will begin following the FIFA World Cup Qatar and will serve 60 million passengers per year.
By Joe Cusmano