Airservices is Australia's air navigation service provider - we provide air traffic control, aviation rescue and fire fighting and air navigation services.

Change to flight paths at Gold Coast Airport

Airservices manages and controls the flight paths used by aircraft approaching and departing Gold Coast Airport.

Flight paths are not precise, defined paths like runways, but more like corridors that are often several kilometres wide.

A series of flight path changes came into effect at the Gold Coast Airport in August 2016. These changes are part of a nationwide Navigation Modernisation Program.

The changes are in response to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) and International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) requirements for increased runway alignment and for all aircraft operating under Instrument Flight Rules to be able to navigate using satellite-assisted means when flying in Australian airspace.

CASA and ICAO require Airservices to introduce these changes to ensure the highest levels of safety assurance is achieved in accordance with international practices and requirements.

What are the changes?

South of the Airport

Change to the VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) procedures
This flight path was previously offset from runway alignment by 9 degrees. The change reduces this offset to 5 degrees and moves the flight path slightly to the west. Aircraft noise is expected to fall within the existing corridor. The VOR and NDB approach procedure is used infrequently as it does not employ the most current technology and is retained as a contingency approach.

Map shows approach procedures VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) from the South pre August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.Map shows approach procedures VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) from the South post August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.

North of the Airport

Change to the VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) procedures 
This flight path was previously offset from runway alignment by 11 degrees. The change reduces this offset to 5 degrees. Aircraft will now cross the coast to fly over land between Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach, then continue south over Mermaid Beach before crossing the coast again and proceeding towards the airport over water. While tracking down the coast over water towards the airport, aircraft will now fly closer to land than previously. The VOR approach procedure is used infrequently as it does not employ the most current technology and is retained as a contingency approach.

Map shows approach procedures VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) from the North pre August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.Map shows approach procedures VHF Omni-Directional Range (VOR) and Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) from the North post August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.

Change to the area navigation RNAV approach
This flight path was previously offset from the runway by 12 degrees, producing a spread of aircraft traffic approaching the coast between Burleigh Heads and Currumbin to align with the runway. The new flight path will be runway aligned. Aircraft will now approach the coast at a more precise point at Palm Beach and fly closer to land than previously to align with the runway. Aircraft will remain over water until crossing the coast around Currumbin before landing.

Map shows the approach procedure area navigation (RNAV) from the North pre August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.Map shows the approach procedure area navigation (RNAV) from the North post August 2016 changes. Actual flight paths flown by aircraft may vary slightly.

For further information on Gold Coast flight paths please see WebTrak