How seasonal variation affects your area
Aircraft usually take-off and land into the wind for safety and performance reasons. As the wind direction changes the runway in operation and the flight paths being used may also change.
This means that Melbourne’s seasonal wind patterns affect usage of the different runway directions. Specifically, Runway 16 tends to be used more frequently in the warmer months due to southerly winds whereas Runway 34 tends to be used more frequently in the cooler months when the predominant wind direction tends to be northerly. The pattern of use of Runway 27 tends to be less clear-cut as it can generally be used with either a northerly or southerly wind, provided the crosswind does not exceed the maximum allowed speed of 20 knots, including gusts.
Runways may be used in combination. For example, Runway 27 may be used for departures while Runways 27 and 34 are being used in combination for arrivals.
Learn more about how the runways are named and oriented on our Melbourne Airport Runways page.