News

Virgin Australia outlines domestic growth plans

22 May 2021 by Mark Caswell
Virgin Australia A320

Virgin Australia is to add over 700 weekly flights across its domestic network by October, including increased frequencies on the Sydney-Brisbane-Melbourne triangle “to support corporate and small to medium sized business travel”.

The carrier – which went into voluntary administration last year before being bought by Bain Capital – said five new routes would help benefit Northern Australia’s economy, namely Sydney-Darwin, Sydney-Townsville, Adelaide-Cairns, Melbourne-Townsville and Perth-Cairns.

There will also be a 40 per cent boost in in flight frequencies to key Queensland destinations Brisbane, the Whitsunday Coast, Hamilton Island, Cairns, Townsville, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, as well as 50 extra weekly flights to Launceston and Hobart in Tasmania.

By October Virgin Australia will offer an average of 100 flights per day on the Sydney-Brisbane-Melbourne triangle, an increase of 30 per cent on today. A full list of planned network changes can be seen below.

This week rival carrier Qantas said that domestic corporate travel was now at 75 per cent of pre-Covid levels, and forecast that its Qantas and Jetstar carriers will average 107 and 120 per cent of their pre-Covid domestic capacity in FY22.

Qantas: domestic corporate travel now at 75 per cent of pre-Covid levels

Meanwhile regional Australian carrier Rex recently announced plans to add new services from Melbourne and Sydney.

Commenting on the news Virgin Australia’s Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said:

“Growing confidence in the community, thanks to the vaccination rollout and domestic borders staying largely open, means the time is right for us to bring back jobs and put more aircraft in the skies.

“We are so pleased to have turned a corner from the worst of the pandemic and to soon welcome 250 new and highly skilled individuals into the Virgin Australia team.

“Importantly, Virgin Australia is supporting over 6,000 jobs, which is something we flagged in August last year as the baseline number of jobs we hoped to support as the domestic market recovered.

“And for our valued business customers, we are pleased to be offering more frequent services on our triangle routes between Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne and to key centres across Australia. Like them, we know that nothing beats in-person engagement with customers, suppliers and team members.”

virginaustralia.com

Virgin Australia network changes

New routes:

  • Sydney-Darwin – daily services (seasonal) from 14 July
  • Adelaide-Cairns – up to 4 flights per week from 10 August
  • Sydney-Townsville – 3 flights per week from 27 July
  • Melbourne-Townsville – 3 flights per week from 17 August
  • Cairns-Perth – up to 4 flights per week from 26 July

Expanded domestic frequencies on the “triangle” (Sydney-Brisbane-Melbourne):

  • Sydney-Melbourne (from 130 up to 163 return flights per week by October)
  • Sydney-Brisbane (from 76 up to 104 return flights per week by October)
  • Melbourne-Brisbane (from 61 up to 84 return flights per week by October)

Expanded domestic and leisure frequencies include:

  • Melbourne-Gold Coast (from 40 up to 57 return flights per week by October)
  • Sydney-Gold Coast (from 49 up to 72 return flights per week by October)
  • Adelaide-Gold Coast (from 7 up to 9 return flights per week across school holiday travel dates)
  • Melbourne-Sunshine Coast (from 13 up to 28 return flights per week by October)
  • Sydney-Sunshine Coast (from 11 up to 26 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Cairns (from 29 up to 31 return flights per week by October)
  • Melbourne-Cairns (from 8 up to 23 return flights per week by October)
  • Sydney-Cairns (from 10 up to 21 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Proserpine / Whitsunday Coast (from 7 up to 10 return flights per week by October)
  • Melbourne-Hamilton Island (up to 4 return flights per week by October)
  • Melbourne-Hobart (from 18 up to 31 return flights per week by October
  • Sydney-Hobart (from 10 up to 20 return flights per week by October)
  • Melbourne-Launceston (from 16 up to 21 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Mackay (from 20 up to 30 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Townsville (from 20 up to 31 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Perth (from 17 up to 24 return flights per week by October)
  • Brisbane-Canberra (from 18 up to 24 return flights per week by October)
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