Hobart Airport

Hobart Airport
Hobart Airport logo.svg
Hobart Airport from Above.jpg
Airport typePublic
OwnerQueensland Investment Corporation (35%)[1]
Schiphol Group (35%)
Tasplan (30%)
OperatorHobart Airport Pty Ltd
LocationCambridge, Tasmania
Opened1956 (1956)
Elevation AMSL13 ft / 4 m
Coordinates42°50′12″S 147°30′36″E / 42.83667°S 147.51000°E / -42.83667; 147.51000Coordinates: 42°50′12″S 147°30′36″E / 42.83667°S 147.51000°E / -42.83667; 147.51000
HBA is located in Tasmania
HBA is located in Australia
Direction Length Surface
m ft
12/30 2,727 8,947 Asphalt
Statistics (2016–2017)
Aircraft operations27,120
Source: AIP[2]
passengers from the Department of Infrastructure and Transport
Operations from Airservices Australia[3][4]
Main terminal

Hobart Airport (IATA: HBA, ICAO: YMHB) is an international airport located in Cambridge, 17 km (11 mi) north-east of Hobart. It is the major and fastest growing passenger airport in Tasmania.[5]

The Federal government owned airport is operated by the Tasmanian Gateway Consortium under a 99-year lease.[6][7]

The airport maintains a conjoined international and domestic terminal. The major airlines servicing the airport are Qantas, Jetstar and Virgin Australia operating domestic flights predominantly to Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.[5] International flights to Auckland (New Zealand) operate twice to three times weekly with Air New Zealand.

Due to the airport's southern location, Skytraders operates regular flights to Antarctica on behalf of the Australian Antarctic Division using an Airbus A319.[7][8]

Hobart International Airport was opened in 1956 and privatised in 1988.[9] Occupying approximately 565 ha (1,400 acres) of land,[7] the airport is situated on a narrow peninsula. Take-offs and landings are inevitably directed over bodies of water regardless of approach or departure direction. The region immediately surrounding the airport remains largely unpopulated, which enables the airport to operate curfew-free services.[7]

In the 2018–19 financial year, the airport handled 2.6m passenger movements, making it the ninth busiest airport in Australia.[5]


Prior to the existence of the airport, the region was served by Cambridge Airport,[7] a small airport located close to the existing site. As air travel became more frequent and the number of flights increased, it was clear that Cambridge airport was only suitable for light aircraft. In June 1948, Prime Minister Ben Chifley announced the construction of a new AU£760,000 airport at Llanherne.[10] With Australia's continual interest in Antarctica, it was believed the southernmost airport of Australia would serve as an ideal base for heavy aircraft serving the region.[10] Hobart Airport was commissioned in 1956 as the primary regular public transport airport.[11] It was initially named Llanherne Airport, after the property on which it was built, but the name has since fallen into disuse. In its first full year of operation, the airport processed 120,086 passengers and 11,724 tonnes of freight, ranking fifth in Australia.[12]

By 1957, the airport's infrastructure comprised a small terminal building which remains at the south-eastern end of the current terminal, two freight hangars, a fuel depot, a timber weather station, and the airport administration office and works compound.[11] In 1964, the Federal Government upgraded and lengthened the runway to cater for jet aircraft. The runway was extended again in 1985[11] to cater for large aircraft such as the Boeing 747 and Antonov 124 (albeit to a limited operating range).[11] The current domestic terminal building was officially opened on 28 July 1976[13] and the international terminal building in 1986.[11][14] The Federal Government corporatised the airport in January 1988 with the creation of the Federal Airports Corporation.[15]


Virgin Blue and Jetstar jets on the taxiway

On 11 June 1998, Hobart airport was privatised, with a 99-year lease purchased by Hobart International Airport Pty Ltd, a Tasmanian Government-owned company operated by the Hobart Ports Corporation.[16][11][17] In 2004, the domestic terminal was redeveloped for the first time in its 30-year history. This development involved modernising the terminal, moving the retail shops to within the security screening area, realignment of the car park and moving the car rental facilities to a new building in the car park. In 2005, Hobart Airport experienced record annual passenger numbers[12] and it was decided to bring forward plans to upgrade the seating capacity of the airport. This work expanded the domestic terminal building over the tarmac by three metres to provide more departure lounge space.

In December 2007, the Tasmanian Government sold the Tasmanian Ports Corporation-owned subsidiary for A$350 million to the Tasmanian Gateway Consortium, a private consortium made up of Macquarie Capital (one of Macquarie Group's infrastructure funds) and Tasmania's public sector superannuation fund, the Tasplan.[7] The sale was in line with other state capital airport sell-offs, and Hobart airport was the last capital city airport remaining under government control. In October 2019, Macquarie Capital sold its stake to Queensland Investment Corporation and Schiphol Group.[18][19]


The security checkpoint for departures

Hobart Airport has two passenger terminals. In 2007 the two terminals were connected in a $15 million[20] development to meet new Commonwealth legislation that requires all checked luggage to be X-rayed.[21] In 2008, the airport received a commendation for public architecture at the Tasmanian Chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects, for the new terminal upgrade.[22] The airport currently maintains a combined international, domestic and general aviation apron. Provisions have been made to create a dedicated general aviation apron to the south of the one currently in use.[7] The 2022 draft masterplan confirms that the terminal building will be increasing in size from the current 12,000sqm to around 23,000sqm in the medium term.

Domestic terminal

The current domestic terminal was opened in 1976 and has been expanded several times since.[7] All airlines share the same check in and departure area towards the south-eastern end of the building. A Qantas Club is located airside within the departures area, with provision for an expanded lounge for both Qantas and Virgin Australia in the master plan. The arrivals hall for all airlines is located at the north-western end of the building and contains two baggage carousels. The easternmost of the baggage carousels can be secured for use by international arrivals.[7] The domestic apron has four parking bays for narrow-body (Boeing 737/Airbus A320-sized) aircraft, overlaid by two positions for small wide-body (Boeing 767-sized) aircraft.[7]

International terminal

The international terminal was opened in 1983 to facilitate Trans-Tasman air traffic.[7][11] In 1985 the terminal was upgraded, along with the runway, to provide limited 747 operations.[7][11] Between 1998 and 2020, no regular international flights serviced by the airport[16] after Air New Zealand suspended their operations from Christchurch.[7] Direct international flights recommenced in April, 2021 with Air New Zealand to Auckland operating twice weekly in winter and thrice weekly over summer. The terminal is also used by Skytraders for flights to Antarctica and occasional charter airline flights.[7][23] The terminal's apron has a single wide-body parking bay overlapping two narrow-body bays. This bay is able to accommodate large wide-body aircraft up to and including Boeing 747-400 and 777–200.[7] The international terminal's apron is used primarily for domestic operations and Skytraders' seasonal Antarctic flights as well as the Air New Zealand flights to Auckland.[7]


Terminal cafe

There are two domestic freight areas operating at the airport, catering for Qantas, Toll Air and Virgin Australia.[7] The facility includes two buildings on a total area of approximately 10,000 m2 (110,000 sq ft), including the freight apron area. Qantas uses dedicated jet freight aircraft.[7] In January 2007, Virgin Blue (now Virgin Australia) and Toll Air opened a 1,000 m2 (11,000 sq ft) dedicated freight facility to the north of the international terminal. This new freight area has no dedicated apron of its own, but rather makes use of the cargo holds of the passenger aircraft already serving the airport.[7]

General aviation

Skytraders Airbus A319LR at Hobart

The majority of Hobart's general aviation traffic makes use of the nearby Cambridge Aerodrome, which was sold in 1992 on the condition that it remain an airport until 2004.[7] Since that date, Hobart Airport has made plans for a large expansion catering for general aviation should the owners of Cambridge Aerodrome decide to use the land for other purposes.[7] This expansion would include a new runway and a general aviation apron located south of the existing Domestic Terminal.[7]


A Qantas Boeing 767–300 at Hobart Airport

Hobart Airport has one runway, 12/30, which is aligned north–west to south–east and is 2,727 by 45 m (8,947 by 148 ft).[7] The runway was extended in 2017 by 500 metres comprising a 350-metre extension at the southern end, a 150-metre lengthening to the northern end, and the relocation of the approach lights. The high strength flexible runway is constructed with an asphaltic concrete surface[11] and is suitable for all Code E aircraft operations up to and including Boeing 777/747 aircraft.[11] The current runway length is adequate for unrestricted operations on a Boeing 787-9 to China and Japan. The runway conforms to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority's standards.

In 2009, Hobart International Airport Pty Ltd announced detailed plans for the airport with a new 20-year master plan.[7][24] Currently aircraft have to taxi along the runway and proceed to the parking apron via taxiways in the middle of the runway.[7] This has both capacity and safety implications for the airport, as the runway cannot be used whilst an aircraft is taxiing.[7] The plans provide for a parallel taxiway to the full length of runway.[7] When complete, aircraft landing on the runway would proceed to the end of the runway and exit via the parallel taxiway. This would allow for greater utilisation of the existing runway.[7]

The airport purchased land from the Tasmanian Government in the southern part of the airport for future development of operational facilities.[16][11] This additional area would allow for a short runway for general aviation aircraft, either parallel to the main runway along the southern end of the eastern boundary of the airport, or a cross runway[16] towards the southern end of the main runway. The alternative second runway would provide an opportunity to improve the operational management of the lighter categories of aircraft. However, the second runway is not likely to be developed any time soon, because the existing runway is under-utilised.[11]

Other facilities


In December 2005, prominent Hobart developer Ali Sultan proposed a four star, 60-room hotel/motel for the airport.[25] The hotel, named the Quality Hotel Hobart Airport, was opened on 1 December 2008. The hotel comprises 78 rooms, a restaurant/café and a number of conference and meeting spaces.[26] The hotel employs 25 people.

Big box development

Early in 2006, the airport announced plans to build a Direct Factory Outlet, covering an area of 18,000 m2 (190,000 sq ft),[27][28] which would have made it the largest of its kind in Australia. Austexx, a Melbourne-based company was the main investor in the $100 million project.[29]

While the Tasmanian Government supported the project, believing the Direct Factory Outlet would drive retail trade growth, the Hobart City Council and a large amount of retail shop owners in the Hobart Central Business District expressed fears of losing business.[29] Concern was also expressed about the big box being built on commonwealth land and therefore escaping the state planning laws.[29] In 2008, plans for the project were submitted to the Federal Government for assessment. Federal Transport Minister Warren Truss gave approval on condition the outlet centre was cut by almost half to 10,000 m2 (110,000 sq ft),[27][30] prompting Austexx to walk away from the proposal.[27] In February 2008, Austexx' chief executive Geoff Porz confirmed the Direct Factory Outlet and Homemaker Hub project was back on,[31] however Austexx went into receivership in 2010,[32] and as of 2023 the site remains undeveloped.

Cold Storage & Warehousing

In December 2018 Link Logistics International started a Cold Storage & Warehousing Cold storage, at the Hobart Airport .The cool rooms have a height of 8 meters floor to ceiling, which is ideal for block stacking pallets. Since opening the cold store, Link Logistics International Pty Ltd has provided temperature-controlled storage solutions for customers wanting short-term seasonal storage to long term storage. Storage has been provided to the industry from various sectors, including Seafood, Viticulture, stone fruit, berries, Vegetable processors, craft beer, poultry, wine, ice cream, and restaurateurs wanting a larger storage alternative.[33]

Airlines and destinations


Routes flown from Hobart Airport as of April 2021. Colour coding is for the airline if only a single carrier flies the route: Qantas (red), Jetstar (orange), Air New Zealand (black), Sharp Airlines (blue), multiple airlines (grey).
Air New Zealand Auckland[34][35][36]
Jetstar Adelaide,[37] Brisbane, Gold Coast,[38] Melbourne, Sydney
Link Airways Canberra[39]
Qantas Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth,[39] Sydney
QantasLink Brisbane, Canberra,[40] Melbourne, Sydney
Seasonal: Adelaide[41]
Sharp Airlines Burnie, Flinders Island, King Island, Launceston
Skytraders Seasonal Charter: Wilkins Runway
Virgin Australia Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth,[42] Sydney
Seasonal: Adelaide[42]


Cathay Pacific Cargo Seasonal: Hong Kong,[43] Melbourne,[citation needed] Sydney[citation needed]
Qantas Freight Launceston,[citation needed] Melbourne[citation needed]
Pionair Australia Seasonal charter: Sydney[citation needed]

Traffic and statistics

Busiest domestic routes
(Year ending January 2019)[44]
Rank Airport Passengers
% change
1 Melbourne 1,657.7 Increase1.8
2 Sydney 706.0 Increase6.9
3 Brisbane 231.2 Increase6.5
Annual passenger statistics[5]
Year Passenger movements
2001–02 958,000
2002–03 1,010,000
2003–04 1,226,000
2004–05 1,523,000
2005–06 1,606,000
2006–07 1,629,000
2007–08 1,758,000
2008–09 1,869,000
2009–10 1,856,000
2010–11 1,903,000

Ground transport

Hobart Airport in relation to Hobart

Hobart Airport has a car park that caters for short, medium and long term parking. There is also a well-serviced taxi rank and limousine service operating at the airport. There are numerous car rental operators.

Public transport has not been a high use alternative to private transport for those travelling to and from the airport.[7] There is a bus service that operates between the Hobart Central Business District and the airport for every departure. The shuttle departs outside the terminal every 30 minutes transferring passengers to the city. The operator for the bus service is SkyBus.[7]

See also


  1. ^ "Hobart Airport welcome new owners". 21 November 2019. Retrieved 14 July 2022.
  2. ^ YMHB – Hobart (PDF). AIP En Route Supplement from Airservices Australia, effective 2022-09-22
  3. ^ "Movements at Australian Airports" (PDF). Airservices Australia. June 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  4. ^ "Airport traffic data".
  5. ^ a b c d "Air passenger movements through capital and non-capital city airports to 2030–31" (PDF). Department of Infrastructure and Transport. 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 February 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  6. ^ "Hobart Airport sold". ABC News Online www.abc.net.au. 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad "2009 Hobart Airport Master Plan (draft)" (PDF). Hobart Airport. 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 October 2009. Retrieved 28 July 2009.
  8. ^ Creedy, Steve. "Garrett launches flights to Antarctic" Archived 11 January 2008 at the Wayback Machine The Australian (online version), 11 January 2008. Retrieved 20 January 2008.
  9. ^ "Our History". Hobart Airport. Archived from the original on 28 February 2015. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  10. ^ a b "Airport proposed for Hobart". The Canberra Times. 1948. Retrieved 7 March 2010.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "2004 Master Plan" (PDF). Hobart International Airport. 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 July 2008. Retrieved 22 June 2006.
  12. ^ a b "Annual report (2008)" (PDF). Hobart International Airport. 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 July 2009. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
  13. ^ The Architecture History Blog (2018). "Australian airport architecture then and now by architect in Hobart". Australian Architecture History.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  14. ^ Airlines Australian Transport October 1976 page 9
  15. ^ Anne Graham (2003). Managing Airports. Butterworth-Heinemann. pp. 31–34. ISBN 0-7506-5917-3. Retrieved 7 March 2010.
  16. ^ a b c d "Avline13" (PDF). Australian Government. December 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 October 2009. Retrieved 23 January 2010.
  17. ^ "Hobart Airport". International Airport Guide. 2004. Retrieved 23 January 2010.
  18. ^ Royal Schiphol Group acquires a stake in Hobart International Airport Schiphol Group 1 October 2019
  19. ^ Consortium acquires 70% interest in Hobart International Airport Infrastructure Magazine 2 October 2019
  20. ^ "$15m airport revamp security-driven". The Mercury.
  21. ^ "Redevelopment plan PDF" (PDF). Hobart International Airport. 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 July 2008. Retrieved 29 July 2006.
  22. ^ "Chinese Government Asks Nepal to Boost Security Screening at Tribhuvan International Airport". thehimalayantimes. 2014.
  23. ^ "Plane mystery solved: Hawaiians jet in to sample Tassie". The Mercury. 27 March 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014.
  24. ^ "Airport Set For Boom Travel". The Mercury. 2009. Retrieved 28 July 2009.
  25. ^ "$8m motel complex for airport". Brand Tasmania. 2006. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  26. ^ "Quality Hotel Hobart Airport". Quality Hotel Hobart Airport. 2010. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  27. ^ a b c "Unhappy developer pulls out of DFO". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  28. ^ "Development Plan" (PDF). Hobart International Airport. 2006. Retrieved 25 June 2006.[dead link]
  29. ^ a b c "Future of Controversial Big Box in Federal Hands". The Mercury.
  30. ^ "direct factory outrage". factory outlet shopping. 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  31. ^ "DFO to go ahead". ABC News Online. 2008. Retrieved 9 February 2010.
  32. ^ Bachelard, Michael (22 August 2010). "DFO carve-up to pay banks". The Age. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  33. ^ "Link Logistics International Pty Ltd". www.linklogistics.com.au. Retrieved 6 May 2022.
  34. ^ "Twice-weekly direct flights to begin between Auckland and Hobart for first time in two decades". ABC News. 20 March 2021. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  35. ^ "Trans-Tasman bubble: Air New Zealand launches flights to Hobart, Tasmania". 9 April 2021.
  36. ^ "Back To Business: Air New Zealand Reboots Its Trans-Tasman Network". 16 April 2022. Retrieved 17 June 2022.
  37. ^ "Jetstar announces new direct flights from Hobart to Adelaide". jetstar.com.au (Press release). Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  38. ^ "Jetstar to resume Gold Coast – Hobart service from Dec 2020 | Routes". Routesonline.com. Retrieved 23 March 2022.
  39. ^ a b "Subscribe to the Mercury".
  40. ^ "Qantas adds three new routes from Canberra". Qantas. Archived from the original on 6 November 2020. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
  42. ^ a b "Virgin Australia launches more Tasmanian Services with $49 mega flight sale". Virgin Australia Newsroom. 21 September 2021.
  43. ^ https://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/game-changer-to-get-fresh-tassie-produce-into-asia/news-story/ab42127115707569ea356e98366d1cb7[bare URL]
  44. ^ "Domestic Aviation activity January 2019" (PDF). The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE). March 2019. Retrieved 28 March 2019.

External links

  • Official site
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