Dubai International is clearly among the world’s busiest airports with its Duty Free registering yet another sales record. It announced sales in 2014 reached $1.917 billion (AED 6.99 billion), which represents a leap of over 7% over the previous year’s figures. However, Dubai Duty Free lags behind Seoul’s Incheon International, which hit all-time world record with sales of $1.989 billion in 2014.
Dubai Duty Free just announced its sales figures for 2014 – while with $1.8 billion, it became the largest single-airport retail operation of 2013, the increase of sales couldn’t keep the top position for long. With record sales of $1.917 billion, or AED 6.99 billion, representing a jump of 7.36% over 2013, Dubai Duty Free lost its first place to one of its biggest competitors – the duty free shop at Seoul Incheon International Airport. On Monday, the Moody Report revealed South Korea’s biggest duty free service broke all records in the 67-year history of airport duty free industry as it generated sales of $1.989 billion in 2014. The leading category, according to the Incheon International Airport Corporation Direcor Concession Team 1 Sang-Joon Ahn, was cosmetics and perfumes, which accounted for 38% of overall sales, followed by leather goods, liquor and tobacco, and fashion and accessories.
The best-selling categories at Dubai Duty Free weren’t much different – fragrances accounted for 17% of total sales, bringing revenue of $314 million. Liquor generated $286 million, while gold (particularly popular category for Dubai) followed with sales of $163.6 million. According to official figures, Dubai Duty Free had 26,995,367 sales transactions in 2014, or an average of 73,960 transactions per day, in both Dubai International and Al Maktoum International airports. Sales in Dubai Duty Free Departures accounted for 88% of the total sales, increasing 6% over the previous year, while sales in Arrivals posted an annual leap of 9%.
Last year, travel retail statistics company Generation Research named Dubai Duty Free the largest airport retailer in the world for 2013, but the increased Chinese and Japanese shopping raised Seoul at the top position for 2014. Although duty free operations in Seoul and Dubai are currently the best-performing in the world, official sales figures are yet to be announced for two other global leaders – London Heathrow and Singapore Changi.