Brisbane Airport breaks passenger records

Continued passenger growth at Brisbane Airport has produced a flurry of records in recent months, including the highest monthly total at both the Domestic and International Terminals and the highest ever combined annual total of over 19 million passengers.

In October 2010, domestic passenger numbers exceeded the monthly record set only three months earlier by 3.2%, with 1.43 million passing through the terminal. Year-on-year, domestic traffic increased by 6.3%.

A new monthly international traffic record was set in July, the first time more than 400,000 passengers passed through the newly expanded facility. October traffic was also very healthy at over 375,000 passengers.

This financial year, growth is tracking at 6.9% (domestic up 7.2%, international up 5.9%).

According to the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics, Brisbane Airport has seen average annual growth of 6% in the last 10 years, and even stronger average annual 8.2% growth over a 20 year period.

Brisbane Airport Corporation CEO and Managing Director Julieanne Alroe said the high passenger growth was important for Queensland’s health as a tourism and business destination and reflected the airport’s cost and operational advantages for airlines.

She said Queensland’s strong resources sector continued to drive regional aviation growth, which was also reflected in the record Domestic Terminal numbers, which would continue to perform in coming months.

“Brisbane is coming into a summer of major sporting and cultural events, including the Ashes and Australia’s most exciting new tennis event, the Brisbane International. With the city’s growing reputation for art, music, theatre and food, and its role as the gateway to tourism drawcards such as the Gold and Sunshine Coasts, Brisbane is becoming an important destination in its own right,” Ms Alroe said.

Ms Alroe said while the strong Australian dollar was not conducive for international tourism in Australia, the domestic market was looking healthier as existing and new airlines steadily increased capacity and services.

“It is pleasing to note more airlines coming to Brisbane Airport due to our 24 hour operations, highly competitive pricing, well-connected terminals and proximity to the CBD and of course the coastal holiday playgrounds.

“Internationally, the successful commencement of China Southern services is, we hope, the first of many new markets for Brisbane, which would provide a boost to Queensland’s international tourism.

"Brisbane Airport is committed to the future of Queensland tourism and recognises the importance of an efficient, airline-friendly and passenger-friendly airport.“That is why we continue to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in critical aviation infrastructure, including the Domestic Terminal and the $1.4 billion New Parallel Runway, which is due for operation around 2020.

“Over the next five years Brisbane Airport will invest more than $2 billion in capital works projects to cater for the rapidly growing for Brisbane and Queensland market and remain ahead of demand,” Ms Alroe said.