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Pacific Blue To Launch Flights Between Oz & Auckland

11/02/2005

Virgin Blue’s international carrier Pacific Blue recently notched up its first birthday and has marked the occasion by announcing plans to launch direct flights between Australia and Auckland on 12 May 2005.


The long anticipated announcement means that Pacific Blue will soon include one of the most popular NZ destinations in its route network, allowing Aussie travellers to take advantage of the low fares and great service that is synonymous with the low fare carrier.


The first services will take off between Brisbane - Auckland and Gold Coast - Auckland, in line with the airline’s strategy of connecting key destinations between Australia and New Zealand.


Pacific Blue CEO, Tony Marks, said, “Over the past 12 months, we have established ourselves as a serious Trans Tasman player offering great value and a unique service and we have never been shy about giving traditional carriers a run for their money on our current routes to and from Christchurch and Wellington.”


He continued, “Now we have carved out a successful position in these competitive markets, we are confident the time is right to turn our attention to answering the many calls we’ve had to launch Auckland services.”


To celebrate the new services Pacific Blue has announced a sale fare of $79* (plus taxes, fees and surcharges from $79) . The fare is available for both Brisbane - Auckland and Gold Coast - Auckland services and is on sale from now until 27 February 2005 for travel between 12 May and 30 June 2005.


The addition of the new flights is expected to be widely welcomed by the tourism industry as well as travellers and will provide opportunities for the travel trade to package up Pacific Blue holidays for Australians and New Zealanders.


Tourism Auckland Chief Executive, Graeme Osborne, said the news is great for Auckland, "We are delighted Pacific Blue has recognised Auckland  as New Zealand's most popular visitor destination.


“Nearly 40% of all international visitor nights in New Zealand are spent in the Auckland region and the average international visitor stay in Auckland is 10 nights - the longest of any region in the country.


"Tourism Auckland looks forward to working with Pacific Blue to ensure that even more visitors enjoy all that this region has to offer," he added.


Pacific Blue remains committed to being a long term player and will continue to consider other new routes domestically within New Zealand.


“I have little doubt that our competitors will respond to the Auckland announcement by increasing the number of services on key leisure routes in an attempt to maintain their stranglehold on the market. We will watch with amusement but will not be deterred from our mission to bring more competition across the Tasman,” Tony Marks added.


Fare Information For The Australia Originating Market


All fares are shown in AUD$ and exclude taxes, fees and surcharges


BRISBANE TO AUCKLAND


Fair fare (lead in price): AUD$149* (plus taxes, fees and surcharges from $89)


Fully flexible fare: AUD$349* (plus taxes, fees and surcharges from $89)


GOLD COAST TO AUCKLAND


Fair fare (lead in price): AUD$149* (plus taxes, fees and surcharges from $79)


Fully flexible fare: AUD$329* (plus taxes, fees and surcharges from $79)


* Fares are one way on the net, or $10 more by phone. A credit card surcharge of an additional $2 per person per one way flight is applicable. Taxes, fees and surcharges are correct as at 11 February 2005, and are subject to change. Fares are on sale from now until 27 February 2005 or until sold out if earlier, for travel between 12 May and 30 June 2005.