Melbourne Airport has welcomed China Southern’s announcement to double its Melbourne services by introducing twice-daily flights between Guangzhou and Melbourne from October 2011.
Melbourne Airport CEO Chris Woodruff said China Southern’s additional services would further increase the number of visitors from China to Melbourne and Victoria, as well provide more opportunities for Australians travelling to China.
“China is our number one long haul market and as Victoria’s international aviation gateway, we are pleased to be able to support the strengthening of Victoria’s tourism, education and business relationship with China,” Mr Woodruff said.
There were 386,118 passengers with Chinese passports who travelled through Melbourne Airport in 2010/11, which was a 26.2 per cent increase on the previous year.
The introduction of ‘double daily’ services comes just one year after China Southern introduced daily flights from three flights per week, underscoring the significant growth in the China market. The move also extends China Southern’s international network through their SkyTeam alliance.
“The new double daily service means that Victorians now have improved connections to the biggest domestic network in China as well as improved connections to favourite global destinations.”
Mr Woodruff said the decision by China Southern to increase flights to Melbourne reaffirmed the value of Melbourne Airport’s strategy to make Melbourne a more welcoming destination for Chinese visitors who are responsible for the highest level of expenditure of all international visitor markets for Victoria.
“Our Chinese visitor program aims to make our Chinese visitors feel respected and welcome as they arrive at Melbourne Airport, including Chinese signage and announcements. We also provide cultural training to our staff.”
“This announcement also reflects the success of our ‘Team Melbourne’ partnership approach with State Government and other key partners. We thank everyone who works with us on growing air services to Melbourne.”
“Melbourne Airport also offers our airline customers competitive operational benefits, including low aeronautical charges and high service levels. Our curfew-free, single terminal precinct also provides passengers and airlines with greater convenience and flexibility between transfers,” Mr Woodruff said.
We thank China Southern for their investment in Melbourne and support of the Melbourne-China market, and look forward to working with China Southern in making Melbourne their number one destination in Australia.”