A complete guide to Abu Dhabi's Terminal A
Welcome to the future of travel in the capital…
When the wheels of the first suitcases hit the ground at Abu Dhabi International Airport’s Terminal A, also known as Midfield Terminal, they won’t belong to the first passengers. Despite only opening its doors on November 1, Abu Dhabi’s Midfield Terminal has already been seen by millions across the globe, thanks to its starring role in Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One, which landed in cinemas this summer. The terminal’s strikingly curvaceous roof, covering some 315 metres, provided the backdrop for one of the most exhilarating action scenes in the film. It saw 762 cast, crew and suppliers embark on seven days of intense filming production back in 2021, including lead protagonist, Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise). So, it was only fitting that back in June, the Hollywood icon arrive in Abu Dhabi on the very first flight to touchdown at the terminal.
Those following in his footsteps have plenty to look forward to. The new terminal covers some 742,000 square metres of built-up area, making it one of the world’s largest airport terminals. In total, some 28 airlines will transition into the airport over three phases this month, with regional carriers like Etihad, Wizz Air Abu Dhabi, Air Arabia Abu Dhabi, all flying from Terminal A. With all that extra space comes plenty of additional capacity to welcome visitors to the UAE capital. Once fully operational, it’s equipped to handle some 45 million passengers annually, operating 79 aircrafts at any given time – connecting even more of the world with Abu Dhabi.
Designed to make your airport experience as fuss-free as possible, Midfield Terminal leverages best-in-class technologies that feel like you’re boarding a flight to the future. Super smart interconnected biometric system will have passengers breezing through the airport formalities at Ethan-Hunt-dashing-across-the-roof speed. A digitized journey from self-service kiosks to streamlined security checkpoints and a state-of-the-art baggage handling system have passengers covered from airport arrival until the boarding gate. Which means ample time to enjoy the facilities now found within the new terminal.
On that front, the line-up is an all-box-ticking array of leisure, dining and wellness offerings that almost encourage you to miss your flight. Two health and beauty spas ensure travellers are blissfully pampered and in full vacation mode by the time they board, plus there’s a modern open-air lounge where guests can enjoy authentic Arabian hospitality. For travellers with a layover, a 138-room hotel will be a contemporary spot to rest your head. Then there’s the dining and shopping options – no less than 163 of them – that cover a full range of tastes, budgets and occasions. For luxury fashion fans, stores like Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent and Ferragamo are all making roots in terminal. Gor foodies, the options range from crowd-pleasers like Starbucks and McDonald’s to regional favourites like Jones The Grocer. In a world first, Todd English will debut his first airport restaurant in Abu Dhabi, which will offer a wide selection of cuisines from around the world.
But it’s not just style over substance at Midfield Terminal. In keeping with the capital’s sustainability targets, this epic beacon of aviation infrastructure has been developed with an eco-edge. Inside, you’ll find energy-efficient lighting, advanced heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. Even the building design, a modern and bright design that floods the interior with natural light, has incorporated sustainable materials in its construction.
As Abu Dhabi bolsters its impressive offering for both business and leisure travellers, the city is ensuring the wow-factor begins from the second you touch down.
Passports at the ready…