Virgin Blue Goes Daily Between Melbourne & Maroochy08/08/2003
Popular Leisure Playground Lures Southerners To Sunshine
Virgin Blue has announced it will increase the number of flights between the Sunshine Coast and Melbourne from four a week to daily from 19 September going forward in time for the peak school holiday season, following consistently strong loads and ongoing demand for more capacity.
The low fare carrier only introduced the direct flight in May in response to huge demand from the tourism industry and travellers and the large number of people who were booking connecting flights from Melbourne to the Sunshine Coast via Sydney.
The decision to go daily is a direct result of steady support from both leisure and business travellers and reaffirms the ongoing love affair between the Victorian and Queensland destinations.
Head of Communication and Strategy, David Huttner said, “We’ve been closely monitoring our Maroochy-Melbourne flights and have seen heavy loads in both directions. Clearly, this a growing market, not just for tourism, but for people visiting friends and relatives.”
He continued, “We have always maintained that we will support the regions that support us and we are excited to be ramping up capacity on this key leisure route.”
The Melbourne-Maroochydore flight will depart Melbourne at 10.45am, arriving on the Sunshine Coast at 12.55pm in time for a lunch by the beach or relaxing at a Hastings St. Café.
The return flight leaves Maroochydore at 1.30pm and arrives in Melbourne at 4.00pm, allowing holidaymakers to return home in time for dinner.
For Sunshine Coast travellers it means direct daily access to Melbourne’s shopping and entertainment, a convenient opportunity to visit family and friends or an affordable time-efficient option to visit a client and do business in person.
David Huttner added, “This time last year we weren’t even flying into the Sunshine Coast and soon we will have two daily flights to two key cities, so it’s a shot in the arm for the Sunshine Coast tourism industry that has really got behind Virgin Blue and supported our quest to bring more people to the region. People are voting with their feet in favour of great service, on-time performance, choice and convenience.”
Maroochydore-Melbourne Mid-Week Mini-Fares start from $115* one-way on the net with a Fully Flexible ‘walk up’ Fare of $350*, which is 38% cheaper than Qantas’s walk up fare of $564 one way.
The new flight will be made possible by the arrival of more new aircraft to add to Virgin Blue’s existing modern 737 fleet.
* All fares include the passenger ticket levy, airport charges and the global security charge and are for flights booked on the Internet. $10 more by phone. Mid-week Mini-Fares are for travel on Tuesdays and Wednesdays only. Fares are subject to availability and may not be available on all flights or peak days.