Record passenger year for Auckland Airport
Auckland International Airport had record passenger numbers last year.
The airport had more than 7.5 million international passengers in 2013, up from 7.2 million in 2012.
It said the gains were mainly from the United States, Australia and China, although monthly totals for Chinese arrivals were down for the final three months of last year.
Chinese arrivals were down 11 per cent to 17,000 last month.
The tourism industry puts the decline down to a Chinese Government crackdown on visas for budget-shopping tour groups travelling here.
Statistics New Zealand figures show the drop has been partly offset by a 2200 rise in Chinese visitors staying 11 days or more.
The December 2013 passenger total was the highest for a single month. The 745,000 total was 25,000 more than the previous record in January last year and 4.1 per cent higher than in December 2012.
Auckland Airport chief financial officer Simon Robertson said the record year showed the business strategy to boost travel markets was a success.
He said 2013 "saw strong growth in seat capacity across a number of routes".
"Auckland Airport was proud to play its part in encouraging international airlines to develop their Auckland services," he said.
Airlines that added capacity in and out of Auckland included Air New Zealand, Emirates, Jetstar, Qantas, Malaysia Airlines, China Southern Airlines, China Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines.
The only inbound tourist market to decline last year was Britain, which was down 1 per cent.
Auckland Airport has a 25 per cent share in Queenstown Airport, which also had a record year for international arrivals, which were up 30.9 per cent.
- © Fairfax NZ News