To say the least, the marketing and strategic planning efforts of Vancouver International Airport are on point.
Canada’s second largest airport’s passenger growth and ability to attract new routes and airlines over the last five years has been astounding to the extent that it is now North America’s fastest growing international airport.
Passenger numbers jumped by 9.7% to a new record of 22.3 million in 2016, and YVR is now expected to exceed its goal of reaching 25 million passengers by 2020. Its rate of growth is twice the average rate in the industry.
Last year alone, eight flight routes to new destinations were launched, and 10 existing destinations saw new services operated by new airlines.
And the international aviation industry has taken notice of the activity.
This was all acknowledged earlier this week at the annual World Routes Marketing Awards held in Barcelona where YVR won the most coveted award – the ‘Overall Winner’.
It also won another award for being the top airport organization in the ’20-50 million passengers’ category.
While YVR consistently ranks as one of the world’s best airports for passenger experience, namely the annual Skytrax rankings, both of these Marketing Awards are a first for the airport.
“I am very proud to see that YVR’s efforts have been recognized among our peers on the global stage,” said Craig Richmond, President & CEO of the Vancouver Airport Authority, in a statement.
“These awards are testament to our airport’s commitment to providing social and economic benefits to the region, our innovative programs such as ConnectYVR, which lowered airline rates to some of the lowest in North America, and the tireless work of our dedicated team—a team that truly understands our mission of connecting BC proudly to the world.”
The customer service the Airport Authority provides to its partner airlines is also said to be paramount to the mutual success of YVR and the airlines that operate at the airport.
“We truly are partners. They will work with you to bring customers and agencies to YVR to show what an amazing experience it is connecting through this airport. And I’d like to say thank you to YVR for that,” said Bonnie Walker, director of sales for Air Canada in Western Canada.
Air Canada is responsible for much of YVR’s recent growth following the airline’s decision to aggressively expand its services at YVR to turn it into a major Trans-Pacific hub.
The recent investments at YVR are a big step away from the national carrier’s longstanding approach of focusing only on its main hub at Toronto Pearson International Airport.