Tourism records are set to tumble
China Southern Airlines has contributed to a South Island tourism boom with the travel options and connections it has brought to the global airline network.
According to Christchurch Airport, the South Island can expect to set new records this year by welcoming two million international visitors.
Christchurch Airport’s chief commercial officer aeronautical, Justin Watson, says the three southern airports – Christchurch, Queenstown and Dunedin – continue to see increasing visitor numbers.
He says 100,000 extra passengers are forecast through Christchurch, the acknowledged gateway to the South Island.
‘‘In the past year, Christchurch has welcomed 53 percent more Taiwanese residents, 40 per cent more Chinese, 34 per cent more from India and 26 per cent more from South Korea, with increases, too, in visitors from Australia, America, Germany, Singapore and Britain,’’ he says.
‘‘Our increase in Chinese residents, at 40 per cent, is well ahead of the national average of 27 per cent and we remain New Zealand’s fastest growing entry point for Chinese visitors.’’
Airline seats numbers through Christchurch Airport has grown 10 per cent in the last year, with 10 carriers operating 7.9 million seats.
They carried 6.3 million passengers, a record for the airport, beating the previous record of 6 million seats set in 2010.
The growth in airline capacity arriving in Christchurch is also providing new and exciting travel options for Kiwi business travellers and holidaymakers. China Southern Airlines’ Guangzhou hub is one of the world’s busiest airports, offering South Island customers connections to more than 200 cities across Asia, Europe and North America.