News Briefs

Christchurch Airport passenger traffic increase

Christchurch International Airport has announced passenger numbers up were up 3%, with traffic highlights for Nov-2016 as follows:


Passenger numbers: 554,606, +2.7% year-on-year;

  • Domestic: 415,238, +1.5%;
  • International: 139,368, +6.4%;


Aircraft movements: 8387, -1.6%;

  • Domestic: 7427, -2.8%;
  • International: 960, +8.5%.


Chinese inbound market could be worth AUD13 billion by 2020 says Minister

Australia‘s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo stated (05-Feb-2017) China has the potential to be worth more than AUD13 billion (USD10 billion) as a tourism market for Australia by 2020. In 2016, approximately 1.2 million Chinese nationals visited Australia, with 2017 designated as the ‘China-Australia Year of Tourism’ this number is anticipated to grow.



China Australia annual visitor numbers reach 2 million

China National Tourism Administration chairman Dr Li Jinzao said (05-Feb-2017) current two-way tourism flows between Australia and China are approximately two million visits p/a. To support further two-way tourism flows, the countries recently signed an open aviation market air services arrangement which removes all capacity restrictions for airlines of both countries. Australia is also improving its visa system by trialling a 10-year multiple entry visitor visa and enabling online visa lodgement applications in simplified Chinese.


Thai Airways to celebrate Valentines Day on board flights

Thai Airways has announced (13-Feb-2017) that it will offer passengers special Valentine desserts, prepared by the airline’s catering chefs, to mark Valentine’s Day on 14 February 2017.


Qantas announces fee increase for domestic services

Qantas announced (10-Feb-2017) an increase to Qantas Domestic and QantasLink flight/name change and cancellation fees, for tickets issued on or after 14-Mar-2017. The change fee increase is applicable to Qantas domestic and QantasLink ‘Red e-Deal’ and ‘Flex Fares’ from AUD88 to AUD99 (USD67.48 to USD75.91).


Canberra freight enquiries increase for Singapore Airlines 

Singapore Airlines media and communications representative Karl Schubert stated the carrier received, “A large number of enquiries” for airfreight services at Canberra Airport (Fairfax Media, 11-Feb-2017).

“While we are supportive of these enquiries and of growing the export opportunities for the ACT and surrounding region, there are a number of infrastructure and administrative constraints that will need to be addressed”.


Combined Australia Etihad tourism campaign in UK continues

Tourism Australia and Etihad Airways have announced they’re continuing (08-Feb-2017) their joint winter campaign promoting Australia as a holiday destination in the UK. The campaign kicked off on 25-Dec-2016 on TV and was followed by a cover wrap and 16 page supplement in The Times newspaper with tour operator Trailfinders.

Through Jan-2017 and Feb-2017, the campaign was extended with state specific promotions by Tourism WA and Destination NSW as well as a cover wrap with The Telegraph showcasing Australia’s food and wine.


Queensland continues to be popular as an incentive destination for Chinese

Tourism Tropical North Queensland has reported (01-Feb-2017) that Chinese corporation Bai Sheng Kang has selected Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef region as an incentive destination for client and employee reward and educational programmes.

The corporation is one of a growing number of international companies using the region for incentive travel. Other Asian firms that recently selected the region include Perfect China and Agilient Technologies. In addition to Asia, interest from US based companies “is at an all-time high” according to the tourism association.


Qantas and now Jetstar named as New Zealand government travel suppliers

Qantas Group welcomed (10-Feb-2017) the announcement by New Zealand‘s Government naming Jetstar Group and Qantas as contracted suppliers for government air travel, commencing 01-Mar-2017. The announcement is the first time Jetstar has been named as an official supplier under a 10 year All-of-Government (AoG) air travel contract.

Under the new contract Qantas will continue to be a supplier to the New Zealand Government for trans-Tasman and long-haul travel, as it has done since the first AoG contract in 2012.

Jetstar Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said the airline is now firmly established in New Zealand and able to provide the Government with a choice for domestic jet and regional travel to a range of destinations alongside Qantas’ services.


CASA partners with Drone app

CASA partnered (12-Feb-2017) with Drone Complier to develop “Can I Fly There?”, a new smartphone, tablet and web based app scheduled for launch in May-2017. The app allows drone operators to see “no drone zones” in both the surrounding vicinity and precise locations when planning a flight. The app will also update live, for no drone zones to enter effect where emergency services are operating.


Chinese / New Zealand joint operation to ensure quality control

Tourism New Zealand reported (10-Feb-2017) its China Market Development Unit took part in an annual joint operation with New Zealand Police, the New Zealand Transport Agency and the Department of Conservation.

Vehicle spot checks were conducted to ensure Approved Destination Status (ADS) tours are providing high quality experiences, as well as to offer an opportunity to educate international visitors on how to stay safe on New Zealand’s roads.

Tour operators and guides must adhere to a set of quality standards in order to receive ADS approval before they can run ADS tours in New Zealand.


Western Australia to increase tourism promotion ahead of election

Tourism Council WA announced (12-Feb-2017) it will initiate a major advertising campaign to promote the value of tourism to Western Australia in the lead up to the 2017 State election. The body is calling for consistent annual funding of AUD100 million (USD76.7 million) for destination marketing. Tourism Council WA’s ‘Election Tourism Priorities’ include:

  • An additional AUD22 million (USD16.9 million) p/a for marketing, events, aviation and international education;
  • AUD100 million (USD76.7 million) p/a ‘Royalties for Regions’ tourism development project fund;
  • AUD5 million (USD3.8 million) p/a for National Park visitor facilities;
  • An additional AUD3 million (USD2.3 million) p/a for destination development, visitor servicing, trails and Aboriginal tourism.


Gold Coast Airport faces further opposition to planned expansion

Gold Coast Airport’s development has faced further opposition from the Tweed Shire Council relating to the airports planned expansion (,10-Feb-2017). Queensland Airport Ltd’s proposed plan to increase passenger numbers from 6 million to 16 million annually has been described as ‘outrageous’ and ‘incomprehensible’ by Tweed Shire mayor Katie Milne. Australia‘s Federal Government is expected to make a determination on the airport’s master plan in late 2017. As previously reported by CAPA, Tweed Council voted against Gold Coast Airport’s runway expansion proposal due to concerns over aircraft noise.


Tourists return to Kaikoura after earthquake

Tourism New Zealand acting CEO Brighid Kelly said (10-Feb-2017) tourism in Kaikoura returned quickly following the Nov-2016 earthquake, with around 90% of tourism activity providers and more than 75% of accommodation providers in the region returning to operation.