More than 40-thousand extra seats will become available on
trans-Tasman services into
Christchurch next summer.
Christchurch Airport is welcoming Air New Zealand and Virgin
Australia highlighting its
commitment to Christchurch and the South Island with its just
announced 13 per
cent increase in capacity.
The airport's General Manager of Aeronautical Business
Development says the
airlines' announcement comes at a good time.
"The additional scheduled services across the Tasman from
Brisbane, Sydney and
Melbourne into Christchurch come at a time when capacity is
getting tight and
demand is now outstripping supply," says Matthew Findlay.
"International volumes to Christchurch returned to growth last
October. For the past six
months, our international passenger movements have grown
4.7% over the
previous year and over the same time, planes across the Tasman
have been their
fullest since 2010. Airlines are responding to the market and
capacity where demand most needs it."
Mr Findlay says the airport's analysis indicates Christchurch
Airport had the
highest load factors into New Zealand for the most recent six
October 2013 - March 2014.
He says the additional 43,000 seats over summer 2013/14 will
provide a boost to
the local, regional and national tourism industry.
"Research has shown that of all international arrivals to
Christchurch, 65% of arriving
passengers stay longer and spend more when they arrive in
arriving visitors tend to have a broader regional stay, so based
estimations and existing average spend, this new capacity could be
extra $10m for the visitor economy this coming summer.
That's great news
for the recovering tourism sector in Canterbury and the wider
sector in the
Mr Findlay says statistics show continued strength in passenger
Christchurch and international markets, with passenger counts up
on last year
across many different nationalities.
He says enhanced schedule spread to and from Sydney is great
news for travellers
"It means business travellers, and people wanting to connect
beyond Australia, now
will have increased choice. Increases in services between
Melbourne will also please many travellers, as does the return of
Christchurch-Perth next summer."