24 November 2020; AUSTRALIA
Qantas and Jetstar will operate more than 1200 extra return flights into the Sunshine State from New South Wales and Victoria in the lead up to Christmas, following the decision by the Queensland Government to lift border restrictions.
From 1 December, the two airlines will operate more than 250 return flights per week across seven routes from Sydney. This compares with just 36 return flights per week currently.
Pending a final decision from the Queensland Government, Qantas and Jetstar will also operate more than 160 flights per week from Melbourne from 1 December. Jetstar will also operate four weekly services from Avalon to the Gold Coast from January.
The easing of border restrictions means both airlines will reinstate more than 10 routes which had been suspended providing more choice and a mix of premium and leisure travel.
The additional flights will return the Qantas Group’s flying schedule to around 60 per cent of pre-COVID levels by Christmas. Both airlines will continue to monitor demand closely and look to add more flying as required.
By early December, Qantas Frequent Flyers will have access to 30 of the 35 domestic and regional lounges across the airline’s network.
Comments from Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce:
“This is news that many families have been waiting so long to hear.
“On behalf of tourism operators across all three states, we thank the Queensland Government and Premier Palaszczuk.
“New South Wales and Victoria have done such a great job getting the virus under control that it makes complete sense to open the borders to Sydney and Melbourne.
“Based on the demand we’re seeing already, Queenslanders can expect to welcome a lot more visitors in the next few months.
“We can’t wait to see a repeat of the heartwarming scenes in Melbourne and Sydney this week with families reuniting after months apart, this time in Queensland.
“Australia as a whole needs certainty about state borders staying open, particularly when the testing and tracing framework is now so well established. We renew our calls for a consistent set of rules that apply nationwide.”
Source and photo: Qantas