More than 86 million passengers flew domestically and internationally during 2012, marking another year of record passenger movements in Australia.
The 4.5 per cent increase over 2011’s figures was more than three times the growth rate of the US.
The number of international passengers grew 5.2 per cent in 2012, with three of the four fastest growing routes being to and from Asia. Passengers between China and Australia grew 15.6 per cent, Japan more than 11 per cent and Singapore more than nine per cent.
The number of passengers carried on domestic flights grew by in excess of two million, or 4.1 per cent on 2011. A number of routes to our regional centres also experienced rapid growth. Traffic between Melbourne and Perth was up 14.8 per cent, Cairns-Melbourne 15.3 per cent and Perth to Port Hedland more than 33.6 per cent.
Sydney-Melbourne and Sydney-Brisbane continue to be the two busiest domestic routes in the country, confirming Sydney’s standing as the hub of our aviation network.
Federal transport minister Anthony Albanese said the increases in travel in and out of Australian airports showed the strength of Australia’s economy.
Traffic at Australian airports grew correspondingly, with statistic released by BITRE showing a 4.3 per cent rise.
For January 2013 traffic has shown similar a trend, with an average 4.4 per cent growth in passenger numbers compared to January last year. Highest airport growth was recorded in Perth with 10.8 per cent, Karratha 9.3 per cent and Gold Coast 8.9 per cent.