Enjoying challenging myself to add to the WeekendNotes vast library.
Published August 28th 2021
Barrier reef city airport with picturesque backdrop
Townsville Airport (TSV) is an international standard airport serving as a gateway to the North Queensland Coast. I counted ten gates in the domestic section of the airport and was there super early to take a flight to Brisbane. It's got a sound combination of location for fairly cheap rideshare/taxi riding, a view of Castle Hill, spacious runways and is a bit bigger than let's say, nearby Proserpine because it's serving an entire quarter million population city rather than just a small tourism hub. There are indeed some critiques of the airport, and I think it would be nice to think about such critiques because I actually didn't mind the place, but saw it in a less high traffic time for the airport, hence it is hard to judge the place in that respect. A great way to judge airports is when they are busy, namely, how does such infrastructure stand up to an increased intensity of use?
The airport has a good presentation, especially the spacious runway and overall design, with some quirky features such as historical art displayed (possibly as a temporary promotion) but are not seen in photos. There is the main coffee shop also pictured below, a seldom-used two gate international section, a ten gate domestic area, where there are cafes and bars on a lower level, and then boarding on the ground done from there, but for larger planes, boarding is done on the upper level. There is a Qantas club lounge located at the airport as well.
The airport is very spacious and I compared it to Cairns Airport, and amazingly on Google reviews, they had similar overall star ratings and similar complaints about their functionality.
For both airports, they had ratings either very positive describing the smooth running of the airport or a lower star rating criticising the functioning of the facility yet a few described neither, but I got the idea. So in terms of functionality, I could see how the lineups are potentially high for all taxis in peak hours, but there is a subtle point there that it is not really all that big a deal to some people in this country; some of the consistent queuing up you see may seem like a hindrance to some people but many know it's part of living here.
My take on this is I just couldn't envisage a crowded airport but that helped me get heaps of photos, so I was limited in what information I could get in one visit, yet I must say I was there for four hours.That was because I had a night flight but wanted to see bits of Townsville as well as the airport by day, and it never really hurts to be early for a flight. I could see a great deal of the place and hence my conclusion is that any functionality problems aren't excessive and it becomes down to a matter of personal taste and experiences contributing to ratings such as Google reviews. The cafes seemed nicely reviewed as well, and I found the vending machines routinely priced while coffee was nicely made and the staff would try and be helpful about any additional requests - especially at the Captain's Lounge cafe. It has been busy this year though, with strong growth after COVID-19 but even so, I feel I wasn't there at a testing time, despite being on a near-full late-night plane journey home. I think the loss of Sydney traffic and ongoing international numbers is making the place look a bit more sparse, while the Melbourne flight I saw leave a few hours before mine seemed much less packed than my Brisbane flight and queues.
Visiting Townsville can be facilitated through its international airport. It's a spacious and nicely operating facility which processes flights at all times of the year and is reachable by taxi and shuttle bus yet quite close to central Townsville as well.