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Virgin Blue Signs Long Term Adelaide Airport Lease

05/02/2004

More Low Fare Flights For South Australians

Virgin Blue Airlines today formally signed an agreement with Adelaide Airport, detailing its long term plans to operate out of its own dedicated domestic terminal and agreeing to collect the PFC (Passenger Facility Charge) to help fund the construction of the proposed new Multi User Integrated Terminal.


The low fare airline is the first to formally sign off on its entire suite of documents, following months of negotiating.


Virgin Blue Chief Executive, Brett Godfrey, joined Premier John Olsen and Adelaide Airport CEO, Phil Baker, in the official signing at Adelaide airport today.


"An agreement of this magnitude takes time, negotiation and careful consideration and we are satisfied that the outcome will allow for both the airport upgrade project to go ahead, while ensuring Virgin Blue is still able to maintain low air fares for the people of South Australia", said Brett Godfrey.


Under the agreement, Qantas and Ansett will operate out of the new facility, while Virgin Blue will shift from the current International terminal to the existing Qantas Domestic terminal.


The move will benefit Virgin Blue guests by providing increased space and enhanced facilities and will also provide Virgin Blue with more tarmac space to allow for increased flights.


Brett Godfrey continued, "Virgin Blue is looking forward to having its own facility at Adelaide which will allow us to operate an efficient hubbing operation and encourage growth in terms of frequencies and new services to further cater to the travelling needs of South Australian's.


Since Virgin Blue began operating almost 12 months ago, the number of people flying domestically has increased up to 70% on some routes. We appreciate the assistance of both Adelaide Airport and the SA Government in working with us to ensure an economically viable agreement for all parties involved", he finished.


Virgin Blue currently flies direct between Adelaide and Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne.


Virgin Blue operates the most modern, technologically advanced aircraft in Australia today, with an average age of less than 5 years, compared with Ansett's average fleet age of 11.7 years and Qantas with an average fleet age of 10.8 years. (Salomon Smith Barney 2001 Fleet handbook)