Qantas is upping flights to Tasmania from November and beyond. On December 4th, the airline will also be launching a new route to Tasmania out of Sydney as border restrictions ease up.
A new Sydney to Launceston route
On December 4th, Qantas is adding three weekly flights using Boeing 717 aircraft in time for the Australian summer holidays. The next week, it will be increasing it to four return services a week until February 1st.
The route will operate alongside Jetstar, which flies Airbus A320 aircraft between Sydney Airport (SYD) and Launceston Airport (LST). In total, Qantas will be adding almost 900 seats on the route each week. Beyond the eight-week period, Qantas is considering adding more flights if there is demand. This is the first time Qantas will fly the route since 2004.
Qantas Domestic and International CEO Andrew David stated the following:
“As the national carrier, we’re delighted to add direct flights between Launceston and Sydney for the first time in 16 years. We know there is huge pent-up demand for domestic travel with Australians looking for new destinations to explore. These new services to Launceston will help more people discover Tasmania’s beautiful north and give locals more options to get to Sydney. We’ll keep a close eye on demand and if it proves successful we will look to extend the service. We’re delighted to be reconnecting Australia and these flights will help more of our people get back to work.”
Increasing frequencies to Tasmania
On November 6th, Qantas will restart flights between Hobart International Airport (HBA) and Sydney, operating 11 flights a week. Some flights will be on Boeing 717s, while others are scheduled to operate using Boeing 737s. Jetstar, Qantas’ low-cost arm, will be flying two new routes between Brisbane and Gold Coast to Hobart.
All-in-all, Qantas and Jetstar will be flying more than 125,000 seats between Tasmania and mainland Australia in December. This is equivalent to about 10% of Qantas’ domestic flight schedule for the month.
Qantas has new opportunities
Qantas is the flag carrier airline of Australia. As competitor Virgin Australia undergoes a restructuring and no formidable competitor built up yet, the airline sees an opportunity to target revenue where possible.
Qantas is not expecting to operate a robust international long-haul schedule, some of its most profitable routes, until 2021 and beyond. With Australia’s borders closed to international travel, more and more people who would previously consider a getaway abroad are now looking at opportunities in Australia.
Tasmania is a destination that does not always get a lot of international attention but has plenty of picturesque destinations worth a visit, ranging from mountains to coastal cliffs to beaches and quaint cities.
With more flights to Tasmania, this means more opportunities for people to take advantage of their summer holidays and hop down for a little winter getaway. With 10% of its summer network currently devoted to Tasmania, it shows that Qantas is betting there is pent up demand and will be profitable for the carrier.
Are you going to fly Qantas down to Tasmania? Let us know in the comments!