Charter services from Cathay Pacific and China Southern are expected to bring about 1,800 visitors to the Gold Coast over the Chinese New Year period, the city’s airport says.
China Southern’s charter flight from Shenzhen arrived on February 15, while Cathay is operating five charter services from its Hong Kong hub between February 16-28.
China Southern has returned for a second year of charters, while it is the third year in a row Cathay has flown charter services to the South East Queensland gateway filled with Chinese visitors wanting to bring in the year of the goat on the Gold Coast.
While Gold Coast Airport currently had no direct service to China, chief operating officer David Collins said there have been an increasing number of travellers from China coming to South East Queensland via connecting services on Scoot or AirAsia X, or on domestic flights from other Australian ports.
Collins said thee airport had Chinese liaison officers and was continuing to work on securing a direct flight to China.
“Whilst our end goal remains securing a regular service between the Gold Coast and China, passenger numbers are not suffering due to the lack of direct connectivity,” Collins said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Over recent years we have observed a significant increase in the number of Chinese passengers travelling through Gold Coast Airport and we are hopeful this will continue to grow into the future.
“These charter flights are a real show of confidence by the airlines in the Gold Coast and Southeast Queensland.”