• Tom Jordan

Australian Government to subsidise 200 weekly domestic flights

In order to stimulate the struggling economy and keep Australia’s major airlines in business, the Australian government today announced a plan to subsidise more than 200 weekly domestic flights throughout Australia beginning on the 17th April 2020. These flights will be jointly operated by Australia’s three major airlines; Qantas, Virgin Australia and Jetstar.

Qantas Boeing 737-800 departs Melbourne-Tullamarine. Photo by Duy Khang Tran | AeroNewsX

The new domestic flight subsidies bring some positivity to otherwise dark times for the airline industry employees as aircraft are now being pulled from storage and airline staff being phoned to return to work immediately.

The Australian Government has stated that it “remains committed to the viability of the airline industry” and that the subsidies will remain in place until the 7th June 2020. It was also noted that extensions of the subsidy would be considered depending on the circumstances facing the industry over the coming months.

Today Virgin Australia followed up on the government’s announcement by revealing its subsidised flight schedule effective from the 17th April to the 7th June 2020. The airline will operate 64 weekly return domestic services around Australia, adding a significant boost to the skeleton schedule of just six weekly services between Sydney and Melbourne it was previously operating.

The Qantas Group also quickly followed with a press release stating the group’s airlines Qantas, QantasLink and Jetstar would begin operating 164 weekly flights subsidised by the government effective tomorrow the 17th April 2020 and be fully rolled out by the 20th April 2020. Qantas also announced they would be reactivating a number of Airbus A320s and A330s, as well as Boeing 737s and Dash 8 aircraft to operate the increased number of flights.

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