Queenstown Airport is located in Frankton, 6km away from Queenstown in South Island, New Zealand. The airport offers both domestic and international services and is operated by Queenstown Airport Corporation.
The airport is served by airlines such as Air New Zealand, Jet Star Airways, Qantas Airways and Virgin Australia. It also serves as helicopter and general aviation base. Based on passenger traffic, it is currently the fourth busiest airport in New Zealand. A total of 1.4 million passengers travelled through the airport in the financial year ending June 2015.
Queenstown Airport announced the expansion of new international terminal in October 2014. The project expanded the passenger capacity of the current terminal by one-third to effectively handle the current traffic and accommodate future growth.
International terminal expansion at Queenstown Airport
The expansion added 4,100m² of space at the south end of the international terminal building, with the aim of doubling the international operations at the airport.
Construction on the expansion started in October 2014 and is divided into three phases. The first phase involved the construction of new international arrival and departure lounges, a new passenger area, airside retail stores, baggage claim and handling areas, a covered walkway and office space.
The expanded terminal can handle 1,000 passengers an hour compared with the earlier 480 passengers an hour. It was opened to the passengers in June 2015.
Phase Two of the expansion involves special reconfiguration to improve the passenger flow between the customs area, baggage reclaim area and the bio-security check. Phase three will take place after a number of years and will include the development of gate lounges, air bridges and retail space on a new mezzanine floor.
The new terminal building was designed by CCM Architects to blend with the existing terminal design. The construction contract was awarded to Cook Brothers Construction, while RCP is the project manager. The exterior of the building was ready by June 2015.
New retail stores, cafés, a second airline lounge and a mini corporate jet terminal were added to the airport prior to the current expansion.
Additional major infrastructure projects planned for 2015-2017 include additional jet stands, evening flight infrastructure, check-in upgrade and the acquisition and development of LOT 6 land.
Queenstown Airport terminal features
The airport has a single terminal building with operations spread across ground and first floors. The terminal features check-in counters, departure and domestic / international arrival areas, security / custom checkpoints, emigration booths, baggage claim area, lost baggage complaint counter, Air New Zealand’s Koru lounge and airline service desks.
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Passenger services at the terminal include parenting room, currency exchange counter, storage lockers, ATMs, public phones, vehicle rentals, retail stores, duty-free shops, cafés and bars. An hour of free Wi-Fi is available every four hours within the terminal and passengers can access paid internet at the internet lounge located adjacent to the help desk.
Baggage handling facility at the airport
Anew state-of-art baggage handling facility and storage area was introduced in December 2010. Covering a 1,470m² area, the $4m facility increased the baggage handling capacity of the airport by threefold. A new baggage carousel and a screening unit for oversized bags were also added. The baggage system was installed by Glidepath.
Queenstown Airport runway upgrades
QAC started a $17m series of major runway infrastructure upgrades in November 2015 to revamp the current runway for handling evening flights by late 2016. The 1,890m-long and 30m-wide main runway will be widened by 15m and resurfaced with asphalt by April 2016.
Parking at the Queenstown Airport
Parking at the airport is located close to the terminal building. Different parking options are available including short-term public car parking, long-term car parking, disabled parking, coach parking, and commercial parking. Car parking pay machines are available at every parking.
The drop-off zone is located in front of the terminal and the pick-up zone is located in the main public car park, where the first 20min are free. The coach park is located near the check-in hall and is reserved for coaches that are more than 2.8m tall.
A variety of transport services are available from the airport terminal, including buses, shuttles, taxis and limos. Taxis and shuttles run from the front of the terminal and drop the passengers at their respective destinations, while public transport buses from Connectabus run every 15min to 20min and connect downtown Queenstown with Frankton.