Queenstown Airport wins Major Airport of the Year

Team celebrating

6 November 2014

Queenstown Airport Corporation (QAC) Chief Executive Scott Paterson says his team is “absolutely thrilled” after being named AECOM Major Airport of the Year last night at the 2014 New Zealand Airports conference in Auckland.

The accolade recognises Queenstown Airport’s major achievement in winning approval from New Zealand’s Civil Aviation Authority and Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority for the foundation safety case for after-dark flights into the airport.

Mr Paterson, who was on hand to accept the award, says it reflects the success of the airport’s and industry’s commitment to working together to achieve a common goal.

“It’s fantastic to have this work recognised by our industry and it’s a real testament to the efforts of our QAC team and working group partners who were involved in researching and reviewing the safety case over the past two years.

“Safety always comes first and this has been a collaborative effort for us all to put aside our individual commercial interests to work together and prepare a comprehensive safety case which was ultimately accepted by Civil Aviation authorities on both sides of the Tasman.”

Mr Paterson says the airport’s ability to process after-dark flights, potentially by winter 2016, will be a potential game-changer for the region’s tourism industry and economy. 

“It will be a huge plus for travellers and for local businesses, particularly in the busy winter months.  It will give travellers more flexibility, provide better connectivity across airline networks, and improve their airport experience.” 

The extended operating window will more evenly distribute the peak load on the airport, which has seen passenger numbers grow by 30 per cent over the past three years.