Following the March announcement of Emirates Airlines' non-stop flights from Orlando to Dubai, Orlando International Airport is taking an extra step to accommodate passengers – especially those of the Muslim faith.
A new “Reflection Room” is being added to Terminal B because of the increase of passengers coming from the Middle East. It's a place where they can pray.
“These rooms provide travelers an opportunity to pray in their own way and have peace before they take on a long flight,” said Imam Muhammad Musri, president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida.
Many larger airports that connect to Middle Eastern countries have prayer rooms and Orlando will soon join that list.
Nada Ensherbiny is visiting Orlando with her family from Egypt. Nada and her family pray five times daily, something that can be tough to do when traveling.
“It saves time to search for places and you just go and pray at the exact time as you want. It’s a very good idea,” said Ensherbiny.
Airport officials said although the room is for international travelers regardless of their faiths, but keeping in mind the practices of the Muslim community.
“So they aren’t having to, if it is the case, kneel on bathroom floors or in corners so they have the reflective time,” said Carolyn Fennell, airport director of public affairs.
Orlando International Airport already has a chapel in Terminal A that was created in 1981. It has plans to open an interdenominational chapel in the main terminal in the near future.
The new “Reflection Room” in Terminal B is part of a new 4,000-square-foot International Lounge which is scheduled to be completed by the time the new Orlando–Dubai flights begin on Sept. 1.