Newcastle Airport is continuing to build momentum, with the Hunter transport hub posting record traffic in October.
Management at the Williamtown airport announced that 116,000 people travelled into or out of the facility – up by almost two per cent from the previous record achieved in the same month last year.
More than one million passengers have used the airport in 2017, so far.
Newcastle Airport CEO Dr Peter Cock said events were “a great driver of activity” – with the start of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival and the Rugby League World Cup encouraging Hunter residents to travel in October.
“Our region also has a bustling business community and travel is key to connecting locally and globally with clients, customers and talent,” he said.
“Newcastle Airport is a gateway for opportunity for our local community and visitors alike.”
New figures also showed that the airport set a new record for its busiest day on November 24, with 4823 people using the facility on the first day of the Supercars event.
More than 21,000 people passed through the airport during race weekend.
“At one point we had every bay on the apron full, which is the first time this has happened in the history of Newcastle Airport,” Dr Cock said.
“The capacity and ability for increased services is certainly there, and we have proven that, given the right motivation, people will travel to the region.”
The news comes as the airport positions itself for the future, with a 20 year master plan in the works and increased dialogue with the region’s business and tourism sectors. The airport unveiled its $1.6 million international terminal facilities in August and management are in ongoing talks to attract airlines to establish services in and out of Newcastle.
Dr Cock and airport chairman Peter Gesling have also recently started a push for a partnership with a range of stakeholders to boost the tourism profile of the Hunter and Port Stephens.
“Synergies can be found in curious places,” Dr Cock said ahead of a business forum that the airport board organised on Friday.
“The rapid pace at which the Hunter’s economy is growing proves collaboration and cooperation across industries and communities has never been more important.”