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Wellington hits 200,000 international visitor direct arrivals milestone

23 Oct 2015

Unprecedented global profile and new route development have seen international arrivals direct into Wellington Airport exceed 200,000 across a 12 month period for the first time.

Airport Runway 283x165

Latest Statistics New Zealand figures show that in the year to September 2015, there were 201,600 international visitor arrivals* to New Zealand via Wellington Airport. This is up 17,312, or 9.4% from the previous year (compared with 8.5% growth at the national level). 

Positively Wellington Tourism (PWT) Chief Executive David Perks says the milestone is the result of significant work across the industry to build awareness, demand and inbound capacity.

“A lot of work goes into ensuring Wellington is on the global media radar, with BBC and Rough Guides both including the ‘capital of cool’ in their ‘hot cities’ lists for 2015; but awareness is only part of the story.

“Wellington Airport’s fantastic work in attracting new routes, coupled with our work with international trade partners in developing their range of itinerary and pricing options, has enabled us to convert Wellington’s continuously growing profile into visitors on the ground.”

Wellington Airport Chief Executive Steve Sanderson says the expansion of direct international services into the city had been a huge area of focus and is testament to the market opportunity that Wellington presents.

“Over the last 12 months three new international routes have begun operating into Wellington, enhancing our connections with Asia via the eastern seaboard of Australia, but also with North America via Fiji. This has been great news for Wellingtonians looking to travel, as well as for our region’s economy."

PWT is one of five units brought together into the recently formed Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA).  The milestone provides an exciting platform from which to further build as the agency creates and executes its integrated plan, WREDA Chief Executive Chris Whelan says.

“International visitors contribute well over $400 million to Wellington’s economy each year, but there is still much potential for growth across tourism, education and business sectors.

Our long term partners Air New Zealand, Qantas, Virgin and our new partners Jetstar & Fiji Airways’ commitment to the region show confidence that Wellington is on the rise. We must further build on this momentum if we are to achieve our vision to become the most prosperous, liveable and vibrant region in Australasia by 2025.”

New international routes into Wellington:

  • 12 December 2014 - Jetstar launched its three weekly Wellington -Coolangatta service
  • 30 March 2015 - Jetstar launched its four weekly Wellington - Melbourne service
  • 25 June 2015 - Fiji Airways launched its two weekly Wellington – Nadi service
  • 3 December 2015 - Qantas to commence seasonal three weekly service Wellington – Brisbane

*This figure represents overseas passport holders entering the country via Wellington, and does not include New Zealanders returning from overseas, or international visitors who arrive via other New Zealand cities, then travel to Wellington.

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