I did domestic flights in and out of Sydney a few years ago. We departed at teatime and the scenes were chaotic.
That part of the terminal was unpleasantly overcrowded and the check-in queues snaked all over the place.
We were using Jetstar (Qantas's low cost subsidiary) for a flight to Avalon in Victoria and all Jetstar passengers had to use one queue for various destinations. The end of the queue gave access to any number of check-in desks so you fanned out when you reached the end to go to the next available check-in desk/luggage drop.
The snag was it was taking about half an hour to get to the end of the queue and the departure board gave a time for each destination from which that check-in was open. Because of the length of the queue you had to judge when to join the beginning so that you didn't reach the end before your time.
Sydney Airport awarded Australian Airport of the Year
Sydney Airport recognised at Australian Airports Association’s (AAA) National Airport Industry Awards
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Kerrie Mather acknowledged for Outstanding Contribution to the Airport Industry
Sydney Airport continues its investment program to deliver a world-class airport experience
Sydney Airport has won the Australian Airports Association’s prestigious Airport of the Year Award. The AAA National Airport Industry Awards, held last night in Adelaide, celebrate and honour excellence within Australia’s airport industry.
“It’s a huge honour for Sydney Airport to be recognised as the Australian airport of the year by our industry peers,” Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Kerrie Mather said.
“I’d like to acknowledge my leadership team, staff and airport partners for their contribution to making Sydney Airport Australia’s premier airport.”
The airport also won the Airport Innovation and Excellence – Operations Award for its state-of-the-art Integrated Operations Centre.
Ms Mather was recognised at the event for her outstanding contribution to the airport industry, including her leadership role in driving aviation and tourism growth.
“I’m very grateful and humbled to receive the Outstanding Contribution to the Airport Industry Award, and I’m proud to be part of Australia’s dynamic and diverse aviation industry,” Ms Mather said.
“I’ve been privileged to spend most of my career in aviation and infrastructure, both internationally and locally, and I can honestly say that Australian airports are among the best in class airports in the world with the calibre of industry talent to match.
“During my time with Sydney Airport over the past 15 years, I’ve focused on improving the airport experience, enhancing operational efficiency and putting the customer at the heart of everything we do.
“I’ve very much enjoyed the collaborative relationships we’ve formed at Sydney Airport, working with our airline, government and industry partners to grow tourism for the benefit of Sydney, NSW and Australia.
“I’m supported by a strong team, whom I’m enormously proud of, and this award is testament to their hard work and dedication.”
AAA Chief Executive Officer Caroline Wilkie acknowledged Ms Mather’s significant contribution to the aviation industry.
“Kerrie’s been a transformative influence on the Australian aviation sector during a time of significant growth and change,” Ms Wilkie said.
“She’s not only led a significant investment program at Sydney Airport, she’s also forged strong partnerships with government, industry and the community to support economic growth and lead tourism development.
“Kerrie’s oversight of Australia’s busiest airport has been truly outstanding, with many in the industry also benefiting from her advice and mentorship over the course of their careers.”
Ms Mather has more than 20 years of international aviation sector experience, including as Sydney Airport’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer since 2011 and board member since 2002. She has led an investment program of more than $4 billion since 2002 across Sydney Airport’s airfield, terminals and roads.
Sydney Airport currently has over 200 improvement programs underway. Over the past year, the airport has:
Opened a state-of-the-art Integrated Operations Centre to improve operational resilience and efficiency;
Continued its T1 improvement program to deliver a step change in the customer experience;
Achieved Level Three Airport Carbon Accreditation for its reduction of carbon emissions and engagement of stakeholders to reduce their emissions;
Embraced new technology, including becoming the first organisation outside greater China to implement Baidu Maps;
Revitalised its retail and dining offering with Australian and airport first brands;
Opened the new Mantra Hotel at T2/T3;
Expanded its community investment program supporting charities, sporting clubs, the arts and community organisations; and
Neared completion of its $500 million ground transport improvement program in partnership with the NSW Government, one year ahead of schedule.
The improvements would be worthwhile if my experience of SYD a few years ago is typical. My wife and I flew from SYD to Melbourne Avalon (near Geelong) with Jetstar (Qantas low cost airline). The airline was fine but the domestic terminal at SYD then was chaotic with very few refreshment outlets for an airport of SYD's size and public seats in short supply. It was in the tea time rush but I expected better of SYD.