Sunshine Coast Airport begins makeover for NZ tourist flights
Australia’s Sunshine Coast Airport authorities have brought forward an anticipated upgrade to accommodate new tourism flights from New Zealand.
The million-dollar makeover had been scheduled to take place over the next two to three years, but has been accelerated due to a three-month summer season trial of flights from Auckland due to start on 1 July. A small extension will be constructed and changes to the departure lounge are planned.
The departure lounge we be restructured into two sections, one for international passengers and the other for domestic travellers, with a retractable glass wall screen making the entire area flexible according to the number and destination of passengers. An immigration area, customs checkpoints, a run for sniffer dogs and a larger baggage carousel are also part of the project.
According to the facility’s general manager, Peter Pallot, the cost of the upgrade will be money well spent, as the popular airport was fast outgrowing its passenger numbers. Flights from Auckland provided by an Air New Zealand Airbus A320 will arrive twice weekly for 12 weeks, after which time the trial’s success will be evaluated. Mr Pallot is hoping the trial will become an annual event, with other airlines encouraged to set up their own summer season flights.
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