China service plants the seed for NT international growth

Darwin International Airport officials are convinced the Northern Territory’s first scheduled service from mainland China will be the seed from which big things grow.

It gives Donghai a beachhead in Australia in an area boasting internationally renowned tourism drawcards such as Kakadu National Park that should prove attractive to independent Chinese travellers. In return, the NT gets a direct pipeline into China’s burgeoning tourism industry, a new trade link with a city of 14 million people and the ability to tap into the growth powering other Australian airports.

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Ground access solutions deliver passengers choice

Just as air travel has changed dramatically in recent years as more of us fly more often, getting to the airport has become an important part of passengers’ overall airport experience. With the route to many major airports contending with day-to-day metropolitan traffic, airports have been looking for new solutions to keep pace with changing passenger needs as a growing number of people visit their terminals each day.

For Australia’s largest airports, investing to provide a wider range of choice has been a key part of ensuring passengers’ journeys start with a good experience getting to the airport.

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New services deliver freight benefits at Australian airports

Air cargo is seeing a global renaissance, with international air freight trends looking good at Australia’s major east coast airports as they welcome more overseas carriers with passenger services and accompanying cargo space.

The latest figures from the International Air Transport Association show global freight demand grew by 6.8 per cent in February which, when adjusted for distortions caused by the Lunar New year, translated to a 7.7 per cent increase.

This was the strongest start to a year since 2015 and saw demand outstrip capacity for the 19th month in a row.

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New service agreements embrace the age of the customer

With more and more businesses embracing the age of the customer, airports are contending with a challenging proposition: enhancing the customer experience at the same time they must meet fast-growing demand for air travel.

Far from struggling to meet the needs of record growth, Sydney Airport has improved customer satisfaction scores in recent years, even as they have welcomed more passengers than ever before. Its success has been attributed in part to the airport’s new international Airline Service Agreements (ASAs), signed in 2015 and recognised by the industry as the way forward for airline agreements.

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“Transport cathedrals” critical to international growth

Tourism Australia boss John O’Sullivan believes the importance of airports to the tourism industry cannot be understated, labelling them the “transport cathedrals” of their home cities and towns. Airports are, he observes, the first and last touchpoints for international visitors and have a critical role in terms of the impression they make.

“From a Tourism Australia point of view, airports are incredibly important not just because of the supply they bring in in terms of aviation seats but from an experience point of view as well,’’ O’Sullivan says.

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Changing the future of airfield runways

Airfield pavements are not like ordinary roads, driveways or car parks. With some aircrafts weighing tens of thousands of kilograms, and airports facilitating millions of flights every year, airfield pavements are a crucial part of any airport’s infrastructure.

Runways, taxiways, apron and parking areas demand high maintenance to ensure the safe operation of the airport, and resurfacing is a costly procedure. The Australian Airport Association (AAA) supported Airport Pavement Research Program (APRP) at the University of the Sunshine Coast is working to address the long-term lack of research and development in Australian airport pavement technology and practice upkeep.

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First impressions count as Gold Coast Airport gets set for the games

The old adage ‘if it doesn’t rain it pours’ has taken on new meaning for management at Gold Coast Airport. Not only are athletes and spectators arriving for the Commonwealth Games ahead of their start on April 4, but this has coincided with an early Easter and the popular international music festival Bluesfest at Byron Bay.

The airport had a dress rehearsal of sorts on January 7 when a record day for passengers saw more than 25,000 travellers arrive and depart.

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Senate committee endorsement an important step for land use planning

As our cities become more populated, the safe and effective management of developments on and near airport land has become an increasingly important issue. While it’s an issue airports have managed effectively through extensive planning and legislative processes for many years, development just beyond the airport boundary operates in a different regulatory environment.

The Australian Airports Association (AAA) has long advocated for closer alignment between the guidelines for development on and near airports to ensure effective land use planning that delivers safe outcomes, meets community need and promotes a sustainable aviation industry.

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Australian Airports Association