Qantas Group to Increase Seats to Cairns with Jetstar's New Flights

SYDNEY, 15 October 2004

The Qantas Group has announced new Sydney-Cairns and Melbourne-Cairns schedules, offering more than 350 additional seats per week into Cairns on these routes from January 2005.

The Executive General Manager of Qantas, John Borghetti, said Qantas Domestic would continue to operate a non-stop daily return Cairns-Melbourne service with a morning departure from Melbourne.

"In addition to the two-class full-service Qantas flight, customers travelling to and from Cairns will have the option of a new, second non-stop Cairns-Melbourne service, operated by Jetstar every afternoon," Mr Borghetti said.

He said Qantas Domestic would continue to operate three return flights a day between Sydney and Cairns timed to suit business traffic, with Jetstar taking over the airline's current fourth daily service, again operating in the afternoon. "This new schedule allows the Qantas Group to offer a greater range of fares than ever before on these key leisure routes, while still providing customers with the choice of two-class full-service Qantas flights," Mr Borghetti said. Jetstar Chief Executive, Alan Joyce, said the new schedules for Sydney and Melbourne to Cairns followed Jetstar's recent announcement of 100 new flights a week across its network.

"We are delighted to be flying our brand new A320 aircraft into Cairns for the first time on these new routes and to be able to extend our low fares to more travellers. We will also continue to operate up to four daily Boeing 717 Brisbane-Cairns flights, which have been very successful.

"Cairns is one of the most popular holiday destinations for people in Sydney and Melbourne, so extending our services to these routes is a logical and exciting move, which we believe will benefit North Queensland tourism," Mr Joyce said.

All four flying businesses in the Qantas Group - Qantas, Jetstar, QantasLink and Australian Airlines - operate to and from Cairns, offering around 200 domestic and 40 international return services each week.

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (3167)