1,600 Ugandan pilgrims head to Mecca

A total of 1,600 pilgrims from Uganda are expected to travel to Mecca via Entebbe International Airport between June 1 and 7, 2024, according to the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA).

This figure is higher than the 1,300 pilgrims who traveled last year.

“While last year we facilitated 1,300 pilgrims, we have already confirmed more than 1,600 for the first week of June 2024,” said Vianney Luggya, director of Public Affairs at the UCAA, in an interview with the Monitor.

Due to the expected increase in traffic, departing passengers are advised to plan ahead to avoid missing their flights.

“In the past, pilgrims to Mecca were accompanied by many friends and family, causing congestion on the road to the airport. We advise passengers to allow more time to avoid delays,” Mr Luggya said.

UCAA has been working closely with the Uganda Haj Affairs Office to ensure a smooth experience for pilgrims.

A designated area in the car park has been reserved for pilgrims to gather and receive information before their departure. Drivers will also be guided about the flow of traffic.

In April 2024, Entebbe International Airport recorded a total of 164,705 international passengers, with an average of 5,313 passengers per day.

The departing pilgrims are expected to contribute significantly to the June and July traffic statistics.

“We warmly welcome the pilgrims, who annually contribute to increasing passenger traffic in Entebbe,” said Mr Luggya.

In terms of cargo, Entebbe International Airport recorded a total of 5,721 metric tonnes in April 2024, comprising 1,768 metric tonnes of imports and 3,953 metric tonnes of exports.

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