Auckland Airport passenger numbers bolstered by Chinese visitors
Auckland International Airport, the country’s major gateway, boosted international passenger movements in January on a surge in Chinese arrivals.
Total international passenger movements, stripping out transits, climbed 4.5 percent to 719,000 in January from the same month a year ago, led by 58 percent jump in the number of Chinese arrivals. Including transits, the Auckland gateway reported its busiest ever month with 77,120 international travellers processed.
“With Chinese New Year falling in January this year, instead of February, there may be some substitution of growth next month,” the airport said.
Domestic passenger movements gained 5.7 percent to 475,000 in January, with particularly strong growth on Jetstar flights.
Total international aircraft movements increased 4.5 percent to 4,032 in the month, though domestic plane movements extended its decline, falling 0.6 percent to 8,752.
Queenstown Airport, of which Auckland Airport owns a quarter-stake, boosted international passenger movements 4.3 percent to almost 19,000 and domestic travellers climbed by 19 percent to 84,000.
The Auckland airport operator also has stakes in Australia’s Cairns and Mackay airports. Cairns reported a 4.7 percent fall in foreign passenger movements to 54,000, and an 8.4 percent gain in domestic travellers to 274,000, while Mackay oversaw a 4.6 percent decline in local passengers to 86,000.
The airport operator’s shares rose 0.2 percent to $2.455 and have shed 3 percent this year.
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