You’ll have to dig deeper into your pockets to fly in and out of Kelowna International Airport (YLW) as of Jan. 1.
Kelowna city councillors passed a motion on Monday, to increase at least four different fees at the airport.
Among the rising increases is the airport improvement fee from $20 to $25, a 2 per cent increase to terminal and landing fees, as well as there will be an increase in cost to charge an electrical vehicle at the airport.
The increased charges have been implemented to help cover a four-phased, ten-year $220 million project to expand the airport terminal, modify airport pathways, expand food and beverage options at the facility.
YLW finance officer Shayne Dyrdal said the upgrades to the airport are needed given that passenger numbers at the airport have increased by 38 per cent since 2013.
“The numbers resulted in current infrastructure reaching capacity,” Dyrdal said.
“The airport is moving into a time frame where certain aspects of its infrastructure will need significant rehabilitation.”
Dyrdal said 95 per cent of of airlines operating out of the airport voted in favour of the proposed upgrades during a consultation process.
Despite the price tag, Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran said the upgrades are needed at the airport.
“This project speaks to how well things run at the airport. I’m really excited to see this. It’s huge,” Basran said.
“It’s going to make a big difference in the user experience when it’s completed and it’s going to be one more reason to fly in and out of our community.”
Purchase of new snow equipment, airport lighting and a self-serve baggage drop are other upgrades that will be part of the project.