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Dubai & Sharjah

Dnata opens improved special-handling
September 2010 1769

DNATA has opened a new dedicated lounge to further enhance the special-handling services it provides to thousands of passengers travelling through Dubai International Airport.

Operating 24 hours a day and located in Emirates Terminal 3, the lounge will cater for Emirates passengers who have reduced mobility and need additional assistance as they depart the terminal on flights to destinations worldwide.

Six specially-trained Dnata staff members will be based in the lounge and the spacious new facility has been equipped with televisions and has provision for hot and cold beverages.

To make access to other outlets easier, the lounge is positioned within close proximity of many of Terminal 3’s shopping and food outlets and a dedicated duty free is also planned.

Jon Conway, divisional senior vice president of Dnata airport operations said: “Dnata’s hard-working team typically provides assistance to more than 900 passengers with reduced mobility every single day. Some are transiting through the terminal en route to other destinations, some departing on international flights. Our current lounge seats just 40 customers for a daily throughput of around 250 passengers. We are delighted to open this superb new lounge, which has more than 11,500 sq ft of space and improved facilities.

“We will now be able to accommodate 250 passengers at any one time which also gives us room for the growth in passenger demand we anticipate in this sector over the next few years.”

The convenient location of the lounge – centrally placed between concourses one and two – will reduce transit times, a further added bonus of this location is that there is space to offer direct buggy access as well as a dedicated screening machine and Arch Metal Detector eliminating the waiting time at regular security screening points.

Bill Rushton, vice president - property, Dubai Airports said: “The comfort of all our customers is very important to us and therefore we welcome the opening of the new dedicated lounge for passengers with special needs. The facility complements our other initiatives for individuals with special needs such as special car parking spaces near entrances, alternative ramps for passengers who use wheelchairs, special toilets, dedicated immigration counters for individuals with reduced mobility and elevators with audio guidance and Braille labels. The new facility will go a long way in adding to customer experience across Dubai International.”

During 2009, Dnata provided special assistance to 245,070 passengers with reduced mobility and anticipates this increasing to more than 350,000 by the end of 2010. As well as lounge access - the special handling team provides assistance with checking in baggage, travelling through the terminal and help with boarding flights.

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