First stage of Ballina Byron Airport terminal expansion to commence in Aug-2017
Ballina Byron Airport manager Neil Weatherson announced the first stage of the AUD5.4 million (USD4.1 million) terminal precinct expansion project is expected to commence in Aug-2017, a month later than planned (Northern Star, 07-Mar-2017). As previously reported by CAPA, the project intends to double capacity of the existing terminal, triple the size of the departure lounge, introduce a new café, sports bar and three additional retail outlets and redevelop the ground transportation network around the airport. Works are scheduled to complete by early 2018.
Ballina Byron Airport seeks extra loan to conduct terminal expansion stage 1 and 2 simultaneously
Ballina Byron Airport manager Neil Weatherson said the airport will be seeking additional loans to conduct the second stage of the AUD5.4 million (USD4.1 million) terminal precinct expansion project concurrently with stage one to reduce cost (Northern Star, 07-Mar-2017). Mr Weatherson will meet with Ballina Shire Council on 16-Mar-2017 in hopes to secure an extra loan.
AAA CEO: Australia’s major airports increase aeronautical assets 7%-24% in FY2015/16
Australian Airports Association CEO Caroline Wilkie stated Australia’s four busiest airports increased aeronautical assets by 7%-24% during FY2015/16, following record levels of investment during FY2014/15. Ms Wilkie added: “It’s important to highlight that all of this investment is privately funded and enabled by sophisticated commercial agreements between airport operators and their customers”.
Jetstar and Virgin penalised for misleading online airfare advertising
Australia‘s Federal Court ordered (07-Mar-2017) Jetstar Airways and Virgin Australia to pay penalties for breaches to Australian consumer regulations. Penalties of AUD545,000 (USD414,000) were imposed on Jetstar for misleading representations about advertised airfares on its website in 2013 and its mobile site in 2014. An AUD200,000 (USD152,000) penalty was applied to Virgin due to misleading representations about advertised airfares on its mobile site in 2014. The penalty imposed on Virgin was ordered following joint submissions to the Court by Virgin and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). ACCC chairman Rod Sims said there was concern that Jetstar and Virgin’s “drip pricing” conduct led customers into the online purchase process without disclosing additional fees and charges that might apply.
FlyPelican enters partnership agreement with Velocity Frequent Flyer
FlyPelican entered (07-Mar-2017) a partnership with Velocity Frequent Flyer, the Virgin Australia loyalty programme. Velocity’s seven million members are able to earn ‘Velocity Points’ on selected FlyPelican airfares.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau investigating 112 aviation accidents/incidents
Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), via its official Twitter account, stated (07-Mar-2017) it is currently investigating 112 aviation accidents and incidents.
IOS Partners wins contract to develop Aviation Sector Strategy for Samoa and Vanuatu
Samoa and Vanuatu governments awarded (01-Mar-2017) IOS Partners the concession to provide consulting services and develop an Aviation Sector Strategy for Samoa Airports Authority and Vanuatu’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Management. The Aviation Sector Strategy should include thorough analysis of the impact and interrelations with other key sectors such as tourism, maritime and disaster responses as well as environmental/social impacts. IOS Partners will also be responsible of identifying areas where capacity development and additional investment are required. The assignment is expected to require approximately eight people to work over a 10 month period.
Air India tenders lounge services at Melbourne
Air India issued (07-Mar-2017) a tender for lounge services at Melbourne Tullamarine Airport. Bids are due by 28-Mar-2017. Air India’s present requirement is 15-20 premier/business class passengers on the day of operations. The carrier currently operates three times weekly to Melbourne.
ACCC to focus on consumer guarantee issues in the airline industry in 2017
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) stated (07-Mar-2017) it will focus on consumer guarantee issues in the airline industry in 2017. Jetstar Airways and Virgin Australia were recently penalised by the ACCC for breaching Australian consumer regulations with ‘drip pricing’ conduct. Jetstar and Virgin were penalised AUD545,000 and AUD200,000 (USD414,000 and USD152,000) respectively for using misleading online fare advertising strategies over 2013 and 2014