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February passenger numbers increase by a third at Whitsunday Coast Airport

By Mark Beale

Whitsunday Coast Airport has experienced a 31% increase in passenger numbers for February compared to the same month last year.

Whitsunday Regional Council Mayor Jenny Whitney said this is another positive achievement by our Whitsunday Coast Airport during what is traditionally known as our quietest tourism month.

“Last year, Whitsunday Coast Airport had 15,850 passengers pass through the terminal during February, this February we had 20,857 passengers, an additional 5,000 passengers that have positively affected our region’s tourism industry,” she said.

“These outstanding February figures can be attributed to three factors; direct Tiger Air flights from Sydney, favourable weather and the growth in event based tourism thanks to Chinese New Year activities held in partnership with the China Australia Entrepreneurs Association Incorporated, Whitsunday Marketing and Development Limited and Council.

“These passenger numbers are very much above what was forecast and places the airport in a position to be well in excess of the previously forecast 270 000–280 000 passengers for 2015.

“With the recent announcement of direct Jetstar flights from Melbourne commencing in June, Whitsunday Coast Airport is set for another record year.

“Council has directed our Chief Executive Officer Scott Waters to develop the airport and grow passenger numbers and this being achieved, it’s great to see our airport going from strength to strength and providing much needed passenger numbers for our tourism industry.

“As our region’s airport grows by way of passenger numbers and flights, the future direction of the airport, including achieving international status, is being addressed by Council.

“In addition, as the airport continues to grow it will be a candidate for new technologies and air services to be implemented including much needed firefighting and rescue services,” she said.

Whitsunday Coast Airport recent achievements:

• Announcement of direct Melbourne flights with Jetstar to commence June 2015

• 2014 top ten airport in Australia for on-time departures and arrivals

• Highest number of passengers on record for a calendar year 2014 – 264,505

• 13.7% overall increase in passenger numbers on the previous year – 2014

• Introduction of Tiger Air direct Sydney services in April 2014

• May 2014, the Airport achieved the best on time arrival and departure performance in Australia

• The Whitsunday Coast Airport International Export Hub Project progressed in-conjunction with the State Government to master plan the entire airport site and provide Priority Development Area status across the site

• Winning the Local Government Tourism and Business Award at the 2014 Whitsunday Tourism and Business Awards

• Achieving the best monthly passenger number result on record in October 2014 with more than 26,000 passengers

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