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Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane Airports report drop in domestic passenger numbers for January

written by australianaviation.com.au | February 20, 2015

Australia's domestic carriers at Sydney Airport. (Seth Jaworski)
Australia’s domestic carriers at Sydney Airport. (Seth Jaworski)

While international traffic in to and out of Australia continues to grow, the nation’s three major eastern states airports all posted declines in the number of domestic air travellers in January.

Brisbane, Melbourne Tullamarine and Sydney airports all had fewer domestic passengers in January compared with the same month a year earlier.

Domestic travellers fell 1.7 per cent at Sydney Airport in January, its first monthly decline since March 2014.

“The domestic market continues to see capacity discipline as airlines focused on yield,” Sydney Airport chief executive Kerrie Mather said in a statement on Friday.

Meanwhile, Melbourne Airport domestic passengers fell 0.3 per cent in January and were down 2.7 per cent at Brisbane Airport.


Virgin Australia chief executive John Borghetti said on Thursday the goings on in Canberra had played a role in keeping the consumer sentiment subdued and overall demand sluggish.

“The leisure part of the market is the difficult one,” Borghetti said at Virgin’s first half results presentation on Thursday.

“Certainly some of the issues that are around Canberra play a part in that.

“You can throw that in where you like – well it’s government stability, or you can say well, you know it’s the Senate or it’s the independents but it doesn’t really matter because in the end it affects sentiment.”

The story was better on the international front, with the three airports increasing the number of passengers travelling into and out of Australia.

Sydney Airport said extra capacity and growing load factors helped push the number of international travellers through the airport up 1.4 per cent in January.

Melbourne Airport reported a 5.1 increase in international passengers, while Brisbane Airport posted 8.1 per cent international growth in the month.

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Comments (2)

  • Dante Giacomin


    What about Perth’s data? There is a major airport in the western part of the country and the state is still growing.

  • dave


    The Perth Airport website is showing:
    International Pax Jan 15 419,062 compared to Jan 14 433,704
    Domestic Pax Jan 15 808,784 compared to Jan 14 839, 455

    Not sure that comparing January to January means much tho, as its not a normal month. Many people on holidays and its hard to measure the impact of changing economic conditions in WA in a holiday month.
    Looking at the month by month stats for 2014 and 2015, seems like Perth continues to increase passenger numbers.

    I heard that although the construction period for mines in WA is winding down, passenger numbers may actually still increase. This is because operational workers tend to have higher intensity swings (ie fly up and back more often) than construction workers. I’m not sure to what extent that may be true though.

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