Sporting events drive travel trends

Brisbane Airport has recorded a 2.2 per cent increase in passenger numbers in September 2012 compared to last year, with more than 1.85 million travellers passing through the domestic and international terminals.

Major sporting events contributed to a noticeable trend in travel behaviour, with NRL and ARL grand finals in Sydney and Melbourne providing a boost to domestic traffic volumes through the airport in September.

This trend also extends to international visitors, with travellers from Argentina doubling last month due to attendance at the Castrol Edge Championship (Aust vs Argentina) on the Gold Coast on 15 September.

The location of major sporting events also affected Australian outbound travel patterns, with Brisbane Airport experiencing a 5 per cent decline in Aussie departures (compared to September 2011), with record departures last year due to the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.

The airport however recorded an 8.2 per cent increase in arrivals from New Zealand (compared to September 2011), with the Rugby World Cup having a ‘stay-at-home’ effect last year.

Other nationalities contributing to the strong growth in total visitors to Brisbane in September included China (+31.1 per cent), the USA (+20.6 per cent) and France (+25.7 percent).

While international seat capacity declined by 2.6 per cent, international passenger numbers remained steady with a minor increase of 0.1 per cent year-on-year.

Domestically, there was a 10.8 per cent increase in seat capacity across the network, with Tiger Airlines’ return on the SYD route providing a welcome boost to passenger numbers which rose 2.8 per cent year-on-year.