Griffith zooms up the charts

Top 40 position just a matter of time

The most recent statistics published by BITRE shows growth in passenger numbers through Griffith Airport continues unabated.

As at April 2019, annual passenger movements through Griffith Airport increased by 12.1% to reach an all time record of 83,900 for the year. This places Griffith as the 42nd largest airport in Australia, leaping ahead of larger regional centres like Orange and Mount Gambier.

The new Melbourne service operated by Sharp Airlines will add somewhere from 8,000 to 10,000 passengers to those existing numbers, likely putting Griffith into the Top 40 of Australian airport rankings.

Sharp Airlines Metro 23 – to Melbourne in one hour

In reality, that ranking isn’t very important. What’s important is that Griffith is finally reconnected to Australia’s other major metropolis. Whether for culture or business, Melbourne continues to challenge the role of Sydney for supremacy, and is likely to pull ahead very soon.

The new flights direct to Melbourne are a strategic asset for Griffith. It’s vital that everyone gets behind Sharp Airlines and ensures that this new service succeeds.

And even more importantly, think of the time you’ll save.

Griffith – Melbourne flights start 15 July 2019

This week Sharp Airlines, in conjunction with its marketing partner EastWest, announced that they will start a Griffith to Melbourne service.

From Monday 15 July, the airline will run 12 flights a week between Griffith and the Victorian capital. The service will be provided using 19 passenger Fairchild Metroliner 23 aircraft. These fast turboprop airliners will complete the Melbourne flight in under an hour.

Sharp Airlines Metroliner 23

The airline will provide daily flights (except Saturday), with morning flights Monday to Thursday, and evening flights on Fridays and Sundays.

In addition to Griffith to Melbourne services, over coming months Sharp plans to offer through flights from Griffith to King and Flinders Islands in Tasmania opening up a range of coastal leisure, golfing and adventure opportunities for Riverina residents.

“Sharp Airlines will commence daily return flights between Griffith and Melbourne from Monday 15 July 2019” said Malcolm Sharp, Sharp Airlines Managing Director. “The Metroliner 23 aircraft seats 19 passengers in comfort, with a flight time of just one hour between Griffith and Melbourne. There is also potential and capacity to increase the frequency of flights if sufficient demand  for additional flights becomes evident.”

Malcolm Sharp, Sharp Airlines Managing Director

For more information, and for the schedule of Sharp Airlines flights operating between Griffith Regional Airport and Melbourne Essendon Airport, please visit or

Griffith Airport personalities – Bob Campbell

Airport co-ordinator at Griffith airport for the past decade, Bob Campbell first started his career a long way away from the world of airports and airlines.

Bob was born and grew up in Broken Hill NSW and began his varied career as an apprentice motor cycle mechanic. Later he left that job and worked underground as a miner in Broken Hill.

Bob’s next move was quite a dramatic change of direction- to Sydney where he joined the NSW Police Force, trained to be a detective and attained the rank of Sergeant. After a long career in criminal investigation Bob retired from the police force in 2007.

The following year saw Bob making another startling change in career – a move to Griffith and a move into airport management.

In the years since 2008, Bob’s work with Griffith City Council has seen Griffith Airport growing and evolving into one of NSW’s leading regional airports. Over the past decade of Bob’s tenure, Griffith Airport has seen the opening of a new terminal building and significant growth in passenger numbers from 60,000 when Bob took on the role to over 80,000 in 2018.

To top it off, Griffith Airport has even seen the start of a new airline service by Regional Express – to Bob’s old home town of Broken Hill.

Airport co-ordinator Bob Campbell shows Simon Croce around the newly resurfaced runway at Griffith Airport in 2016. Picture: Stephen Mudd.

Where next for Griffith Airport?

With the launch of this website for Griffith Airport, it’s an opportune time to consider what’s next for Griffith Airport.

The Sydney market has never been better serviced than now. Regional Express provides six return services on weekdays and three returns on Saturdays and Sundays. There’s even a daily service to Broken Hill.

Passenger demand continues to grow strongly. In 2018 passenger numbers through Griffith Airport increased by 8.4% to 80,000. This makes Griffith Airport the 45th busiest in Australia.

Where to next?

The question of a Melbourne service looms large. This is hampered by the negative perceptions stemming from previous failed attempts to service the route by REX and more recently Par Avion.

Meanwhile in Melbourne, the newly refurbished Essendon Fields airport terminal is about to open. New services from regional NSW centres such as Orange, Dubbo and Wollongong are already flying direct to Essendon.

Will Griffith be the next connection?