dnata, one of the world’s largest air services providers, has achieved a special cargo milestone in Dubai. Since March last year, the company’s highly-trained teams have handled over 5,000 cargo-in-cabin flights, safely moving over 50,000 tons of shipments at Dubai International airport (DXB).
In response to the strong air cargo market demand for the rapid, reliable and efficient transportation of essential commodities, several airlines have introduced additional cargo capacity during the pandemic by using passenger aircraft with seats fully or partially removed from the cabin. To adapt to changing customer needs, dnata has enhanced services, improved processes and trained more than 500 employees to safely and efficiently handle passenger planes carrying cargo only.
dnata introduced effective procedures across a range of aircraft types. With no existing industry standards to refer to, the company built the necessary procedures from scratch in collaboration with key stakeholders, including IATA and several airline customers. To ensure the procedures were safe, trials were conducted at DXB using various loading and unloading methods across both narrow and wide-body aircraft. This allowed dnata to identify the best and safest procedures to serve cargo-in-cabin flights.
Paul Littlejohn, dnata’s Divisional Vice President for Airside Operations, said: “We are proud to reach this memorable milestone in such a short space of time.
“There was intense demand for airlines to recoup revenue through cargo-in-cabin operations and we needed to be in a position to provide safe and effective ground handling services quickly. Our teams delivered innovative, efficient solutions at great speed while never letting our safety standards drop.
“We continue to work hard to consistently provide the highest level of service and safety to all of our airline customers, every day.”
Although passenger flights have been significantly reduced globally during the pandemic, air cargo demand has remained stable and dnata has been working closely with government authorities, customers and suppliers to maintain global trade and the flow of essential goods.
Most recently, dnata has been focussed on enhancing its pharma handling capabilities. The company has been using the latest technologies and global best practices to ensure that every pharma and vaccine shipment is handled in compliance with the highest international standards. dnata‘s certified warehouses are capable of handling large volumes and can be further expanded to handle the COVID-19 vaccine when demand increases. The company recently announced that it joined forces with Dubai Airports and GMR Hyderabad International Airport to support them in creating a focussed COVID-19 vaccine distribution corridor.
dnata provides quality and reliable ground handling and cargo services at two airports, Dubai International (DXB) and Dubai World Central (DWC), in the UAE. In the financial year 2019-20, the dnata team handled over 188,000 flights and moved 700,000 tonnes of cargo in the country.
Besides its ground handling and cargo services, dnata also provides a comprehensive range of airport lounge, meet and greet and baggage delivery services through its airport hospitality brand, marhaba, ensuring a swift, smooth and safe journey for passengers through DXB and DWC.