Media statement 1.8.16

A cracking summer forecast for Newcastle Airport
Monday, 1 August 2016

Travellers to and from the Hunter are set to be major winners this summer.

More than 85,000 extra seats have been added onto Newcastle services for the coming December to January period compared with the same period last year.

Every destination from Newcastle will have increased capacity for the summer period.

“Our passenger throughput last summer was our best on record in a number of years,” said Newcastle Airport CEO, Peter Cock. “We had just under 385,000 seats available last summer; summer 2016/17 will have 22% more than this, with almost 470,000 available seats.

“It’s evident from the upcoming increased capacity that the airlines have sat up and taken notice of our region and are responding to the market demand set last summer,” commented Peter.

The sunshine state is the primary winner, which is largely being driven by Jetstar. The airline has increased services to the Gold Coast by an additional 32,400 seats for the period; offering 14 return services a week, compared with last year’s nine. Brisbane services, led by Virgin Australia, will have an increase of almost 15,000 seats compared with summer last year.

Melbourne will have almost 20,000 extra seats, and Sydney almost 10,000 additional seats. Regional NSW is also a winner with Regional Express and FlyPelican both increasing their services this coming summer.

“In recent months we’ve been actively lobbying the airlines for additional services and new destinations.

“By adding this huge increase in seat capacity, the airlines show a commitment to grow their services from our region.

“We now need our region to respond to this commitment. We, the people of the Hunter, need to fill these extra seats, then the airlines will see the appetite we have for more choices in services.

“When the planes are full, it makes for a strong business case to the airlines to add more domestic services and for them seriously consider new destinations, including international services,” concluded Peter.

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