Sydney Airport’s domestic passenger traffic almost doubled in July, due to a brief window when there was unrestricted travel between NSW, Victoria and Queensland.
The business said in a statement to the ASX that the increase from 140,000 in June to 276,000 in July proved there was a “pent up demand” for interstate travel.
The business said in a statement to the ASX that total passenger traffic, including international, was 317,000 for the month of July, which still equates to a drop of 92 per cent on the same month last year.
The news comes days after Australian Aviation reported that Sydney Airport is planning to ask shareholders to tip in $2 billion through equity raising in a bid to reduce its $9 billion debt and increase its liquidity.
The business said the “further decisive action” will help it “meet the challenges presented by an uncertain COVID-19 operating environment”. The announcement led to a trading halt on the ASX on Tuesday morning.
Sydney Airport also revealed a half-year loss of $54 million – with passenger numbers down 96.6 per cent in the second half of 2020.
The facility is already using the shortest of its three runways to store grounded aircraft – the east-way runway has doubled its capacity to accommodate 50 planes.
Chief executive Geoff Culbert said, “Six months into the pandemic, there remains uncertainty as to how long it will take for aviation markets to return to pre-COVID-19 levels.”