The new Jeddah International Airport opened Tuesday to operate a select number of flights as part of a soft-opening phase.
The first flight an Airbus A320 to Gurayat, a northern domestic airport in Saudi Arabia, departed the new Jeddah airport at 05:15 a.m. on Tuesday and arrived at 07:10 a.m. in Gurayat.
“Today is a highly momentous occasion for the nation, the airline, and for the 137 valued guests that flew to Gurayat on SV1291,” said Saudi Arabian Airlines Vice President Corporate Communications Eng. Abdulrahman Altayeb.
The airport’s “soft launch” will be completed in four phases to ensure it is fully functional and employees have fully trained ahead of the facility’s official opening early next year.
When it opens the airport will operate 46 gates, but during the soft launch, a limited number of flights will be managed through six gates.