Vancouver International Airport wins World Routes 2017 Marketing Awards

Vancouver International Airport was announced the overall winner of the World Routes 2017 Marketing Awards at a ceremony this evening (25 September) in Barcelona.

The World Routes Marketing Awards are one of most prestigious events in the aviation industry. They are voted for by airline professionals who nominate the airports and destinations that provide outstanding support during the launch of new air routes or the development of existing services.

Vancouver is North America’s fastest-growing international airport, increasing at nearly twice the average rate. Last year passenger numbers increased by 9.7% to 22.3 million, putting the airport on track to meet its goal of 25 million passengers by 2020. Eight new routes were launched and 10 new airlines were gained in existing markets.

Anne Murray, Vancouver International Airport’s vice president of marketing & Communications said: "We are deeply honoured with this recognition. This all comes down to team – our exceptional team at YVR, our outstanding airline partners and our community and tourism organizations who all work together to support the increase of traffic to Vancouver.”

Air Canada’s Bonnie Walker, director of sales for Western Canada, explained the airline’s relationship with Vancouver International Airport (YVR): “We truly are partners. They will work with you to bring customers and agencies to YVR to show what an amazing experience it is connecting through this airport. And I’d like to say thank you to YVR for that.”

In addition to the overall winner, the airport and destination awards are judged in five categories. Vancouver was also honoured in the ’20-50 Million Passengers’ category, while Nuremberg Airport won ‘Under 4 Million Passengers’; Prague Airport won ‘4 Million-20 Million Passengers’; Singapore Changi Airport won ‘Over 50 Million Passengers’ and Canary Islands Tourist Board won the ‘Destination’ award.

This year a new category was introduced to celebrate the individuals who make an outstanding contribution to route development. Léon Verhallen, Brussels Airport’s head of aviation development, scooped the award for helping to secure six new airlines and 17 new destinations in the last year, including routes to Shanghai (Hainan Airlines) and Hong Kong (Cathay Pacific).

Léon said: “This is a very special award for me. It’s my 30th year working in aviation, but this has only been possible because of the teams I have worked with. I spent many years in Amsterdam and the past 13 years in the Brussels team. I am proud to have worked with such amazing people.

“I was at the birth of the aviation marketing and since then the industry has come such a long way; you only have to look at the quality of people in the room here tonight.”

 Steven Small, brand director of Routes, presented the awards. He said: “Congratulations to all of our winners who have impressed the judges with their achievements. The awards evening has been a brilliant way to bring the aviation industry together to celebrate success.”

The Government of Catalonia and Barcelona City Council have been hosting World Routes 2017 for 2,600 delegates from the global aviation industry. The awards ceremony took place at the Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona.

More information is available at



Notes to Editors:

Full list of winners:

Individual Award for Outstanding Contribution to Route Development

 Léon Verhallen, Brussels Airport (winner)

Under 4 Million Passengers Award

Nuremberg Airport (winner)

Shannon Airport (highly commended)

4-20 Million Passengers Award

Prague Airport (winner)

Naples International Airport (highly commended)

20-50 Million Passengers Award

Vancouver International Airport (winner)

Munich Airport (highly commended)

Over 50 Million Passengers Award

Singapore Changi Airport (winner)

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (highly commended)

Destination Award

 Canary Islands Tourist Board (winner)

Tenerife Tourism Corporation (highly commended)

 Senior airline executives judged the airport and destination categories. A panel of executives from the wider aviation industry reviewed the award for individuals.

Routes events are unique forums dedicated to the development of new air services. They revolve around pre-scheduled meetings, an exhibition and a conference. Four ‘regional’ route development forums are held in the Americas, Asia, Europe and Africa, with the flagship World Routes event taking place in September.

Routes events are organised by UBM plc. UBM is the largest B2B event organiser in the world. Our 3,750+ people, based in more than 20 countries, serve more than 50 different sectors. Our deep knowledge and passion for these sectors allow us to create valuable experiences which enable our customers to succeed. Please visit for the latest news and information about UBM. 

For more information contact:

Karen O’Neill

Communications & Content Marketing Manager

Routes, UBM EMEA

T: +44 (0)161 234 2721

M: +44 (0)796 6405 105


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