Passenger Numbers at YXS Soar
Prince George, B.C. – The Prince George Airport didn’t expect 2016’s passenger numbers to be great, after all, the airport was coming off the 2015 numbers that reflected the impact of visitors during the Canada Winter Games. But the totals are in, and they are very good.
Last year, the Airport saw just over 462 thousand passengers get on and off flights. “We really didn’t expect those kind of numbers” says YXS President and CEO John Gibson “Especially coming off a big year like 2015 with the Canada Winter Games and a slowdown in the economy.”
Gibson says it was November last year which saw the greatest increase in traffic when compared to the same month in 2015. There was an 8% increase in November 2016 passenger numbers compared to November 2015 . “We have no real reason for the increase that month” says Gibson who adds there may have been increased conference activity which helped bump up the numbers. June was also a very good month with a 5% increase in traffic over the same month in the previous year.
“Prince George Tourism, the City, everyone is really doing a great job at marketing Prince George” says Gibson.
Other good news is the recent addition of a five times a week Central Mountain Air flight between Prince George and Dawson Creek, and Gibson says YXS continues to talk with Air Canada, West Jet and charter carriers about other services. “The Puerto Vallarta flight does very well, and we think we could add another sun destination without diluting the Puerto Vallarta flight.” One of the destinations on the radar is Las Vegas “There are a lot of people who go because you can make a three or 4 day trip without taking off a whole week and giving yourself a break.”
There are still some projects at the airport which need to be dealt with, such as Phases 2 and 3 of the repaving program, an upgrade to some customer services (including better access from the lower level parking lot to the terminal) and the replacement of the Emergency Response Vehicle. Gibson says which projects move forward will all depend on the dollars being made available from the Federal Government.
While the passenger numbers continue to climb, Gibson says there is one factor that will remain in a holding pattern “The Airport Improvement Fee is NOT going up.”
Good news for both the airport and PG means more people are using the aircraft whether to fly in or out but it’s good to see the numbers up. Plus with the addition of flights and the prognosis is good that more flights will be added is even better.
“The Airport Improvement Fee is NOT going up.” What a joke of a statement. At $25 per passenger it is the highest in Canada. Would be great if any of the previous AIF were spent on passenger items but so much has been spent on the long runway and supporting that. AIF can’t be used for maintenance on the runway, so that comes out of operating funds.
My complaints with the airport is the lack of handicapped parking without having to go up stairs, stairs from the parking lot making it difficult to get luggage up and down, lack of food services for the later flights, the whole parking system ( how often do both of the ticket payment systems inside actually work ? ).
The passengers are being treated as a cash cow, not as a customer and something they value and want to make the best experience.
For the money spent on the runway they could have built a covered parking lot ( saves money on snow clearing, easier for people to get in / out of the building. Put some solar panels on top of it and generate electricity).
So very narrow focused planning going on at the airport.
Because of the Winter Games, 2015 was an anomaly. The actual increase if we use 2014 figures and compare them to 2016 we would get roughly a 3.5% increase.
it says people getting on and getting off… How many of those are just returning home from a day down south or elsewhere
and you point is???
This is an airport, not an airline. The number of air movements are important to them, not the distance flow or the direction they are going.
As far as bringing business to PG, that is also not the airport’s concern. That is the concern of tourism PG as well as the City’s economic development office, the restaurants, the hotels, etc.
And once again, no flights over the Rockies…
They were tried at least two separate times. I took them when they were offered. Much quicker to get to Ottawa, for instance. I doubt they were stopped just to punish us.
The Calgary PG route was viable and passenger load averaged 81% according to Westjet however a business desicion was made to shut down the route due to the collapse of the Alberta oil business however Westjet will be restarting the route this year the Vegas route they offered was not well advertised and was a last minute addition and was doomed to fail from the get go however again Westjet is looking at restarting a seasonal route this year
CMA did the Calgary route but due to bad timing and cheaper prices Westjet offered the route shut down after a couple of months
Both Westjet and Scare Canada are looking at expanding flights to and from Prince George with announcements due this spring
Also both German and Japanese charter carriers have expressed interest in seasonal weekly summer flights to PG
Things are certainly moving whether or not they happen is another story
The increase in passengers was over 18% between 2016 and 2016. That exceeded the population increase/decrease by about 18%.
The airport is doing better than City Hall …. :-)
What I did not know the airport is only used by people from Prince George.
ohhh that’s good… gopg2015 has all the answers tonight
Comments for this article are closed.