May 24 2024  |  Airlines & Airports

New public opinion survey highlights Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport’s popularity

By Hibah Noor


Satisfaction among those using the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport has reached an all-time high of 98%

PortsToronto has released new public opinion research that highlights Torontonians’ overwhelmingly positive opinions of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.

According to the 2024 survey, conducted among more than 2,000 Toronto residents aged 18 years and older with an oversample of those living along Toronto’s Waterfront, 78% of respondents characterize their opinion of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport as favorable. Satisfaction among those who use the airport has reached an all-time high of 98%.

The survey, conducted by Viewpoints Research, included weighting to ensure responses reflect the actual distribution of the population by age, gender, and region using Statistics Canada Census 2021 data. Results are consistent with past surveys commissioned by PortsToronto that have been undertaken every two years, with the last survey taking place in 2022. Key findings of the 2024 survey include:

  • 77% of respondents agree that Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport is a valuable asset for Toronto and is an important gateway that supports business and tourism;
  • 78% of respondents agree that it makes sense for Toronto to have an airport downtown;
  • 72% of respondents agree that Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport is a good use of land;
  • 85% of respondents agree that Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport’s environmental sustainability initiatives are important
  • Nearly 80% of respondents support the addition of new destinations from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport across Canada and the United States
  • 68% of passengers travel through the airport for leisure; 24% for business; and 6% combine their business and leisure travel.

Only 2% of those surveyed had a negative opinion of the airport, citing reasons such as lack of direct public transit options, fewer destinations serviced than other airports, and noise.

Looking to the future, 83% of respondents agree that the airport’s governing agreement should be updated so that Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport can continue to provide the connectivity upon which Torontonians depend. 

RJ Steenstra, President and CEO of PortsToronto, owner and operator of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, said, “By virtue of its location in the heart of Canada’s largest city, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport offers a level of convenience and efficiency for travelers that is truly unique, and in so doing provides innumerable benefits including connectivity, convenience, access to healthcare and support for the economy by enabling tourism and trade.

“This survey confirms the data we’ve collected from previous surveys and the feedback we hear regularly confirming that the vast majority of Torontonians love their downtown airport, and they see its continued operation as a vital part of the city’s bright future.”

Neil Pakey, President and CEO of Nieuport Aviation, owner and operator of the passenger terminal at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, commented, “I extend my thanks to Torontonians for their strong support of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Recognition of the important role that the airport plays for the city, our community, and visitors is high among residents. Moreover, of those respondents who use Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, 98% rate their experience as positive—a strong indication that we’re providing passengers with the stellar travel experience they want and deserve.”

James Valcke, Director of Research and Strategy at Viewpoints, added, “As familiarity with Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport increases, it also continues to garner consistently high satisfaction ratings (98%), and this survey confirmed the highest level of awareness (81%) to date as compared to past surveys and the lowest level of dissatisfaction (2%). We also measured strong support for environmental initiatives, reflecting a community-wide preference toward modernization and sustainability.”

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