QantasLink Increases Capacity to Gladstone

Brisbane, 20 July 2006

The Qantas Group has increased capacity between Brisbane and Gladstone by more than 23 per cent, with the fifth of its Bombardier Q400 aircraft entering service over the weekend.

Qantas Group General Manager Regional Airlines, Mr Narendra Kumar, said the arrival of the fifth aircraft would see an additional 1,000 seats each week on the route.

"The Q400 will operate 61 of the total 83 services per week on this route alongside the 50-and 36-seat aircraft," he said.

"The new 72-seat Bombardier Q400, which is both larger and faster than the 50-seat Dash 8 aircraft, will enable the Qantas Group to provide more than 276,000 seats per annum on the route.

"By providing this extra capacity, particularly during peak demand periods, QantasLink will maintain the convenience of its high frequency schedule."

Mr Kumar said that QantasLink was the first airline in the Southern Hemisphere to offer customers the Bombardier Q400.

"We have invested $200 million in our regional airline operations with the acquisition of seven Q400 aircraft. The first Q400 aircraft entered service on the Gladstone route in February this year.

"With its new engine and propeller systems, the Q400 offers jet-like speeds as well as increased passenger comfort in the cabin and reduced flight times by up to 15 minutes on the Brisbane to Gladstone route," Mr Kumar said.

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (Q3450)