Sharp rise in airport usage
GOLD Coast Airport has defied the global economic crisis to double its intake of international passengers in a year.
Queensland Airports Limited, which owns the Coolangatta airport, yesterday reported 63,131 passengers for September 2009, a 129.35 per cent increase compared to August 2008.
The domestic department saw 370,144 travel- lers, a 9.85 per cent growth in September 2009 from August last year.
Overall the Gold Coast Airport enjoyed an 18.87 per cent growth in the same time period.
QAL managing director Dennis Chant said they were pleased to see another month of aggregated growth.
“We are certainly pleased to continue to record an increase in passenger numbers at Gold Coast,” Mr Chant said.
“Gold Coast Airport continued to record exceptional growth in international passenger numbers, increasing by almost 130 per cent over this time last year.
“However, even more notable is the return to strong domestic growth of nearly 10 per cent after 12 months of little or negative monthly growth.”
Last month the airport welcomed provider Airnorth, with a new Gold Coast to Darwin via Mount Isa service.
Jetstar commenced five flights a week from Tokyo, Japan, into the Gold Coast in June last year.
In the last financial year, QAL, which also owns and operates Townsville and Mount Isa airports, recorded 6,334,406 passenger movements, 4,612,257 of which were from the Gold Coast Airport.
“We are hoping these passenger growth fig- ures across the group are a sign that the economy is improving, not only in Australia, but internationally,” Mr Chant said.