31 Jan 2014

Records fly at Auckland Airport

7:37 pm on 31 January 2014

Auckland International Airport has chalked up a number of milestones, including a record week for international passengers passing through it, a record month and a record year.

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The airport said the 2013 calendar year was a record for both international and domestic passengers, with more than 14.4 million going through it. That included a record 745,000 international passengers.

As well, a record number of international passengers in a week was recorded in the seven days to 22 December.

Chief financial officer Simon Robertson said the growth demonstrated the importance of the New Zealand Tourism Industry Association's strategy to increase air services.

"We've been working for many years now on trying to grow travel markets, speaking with global airlines and selling them the story of New Zealand as a destination, and then working together with other parties, Tourism New Zealand and others, to really try and promote New Zealand to consumers and those airlines," Mr Robertson said.

"We've seen success across a wide range of airlines over the last six months and over the summer peak season."

Some of the growth would have happened anyway but promoting New Zealand internationally contributed, he said.

"Our challenge as a country is that we're not always the first destination that comes to mind for either airlines when they're thinking about new routes or for consumers when they're thinking about destinations.

"So the work that we can do alongside others to promote New Zealand can benefit us all," Mr Robertson said.