Footy fans and holidaymakers rejoice as regional air travel bypasses cities saving time and money

Australia’s newest low cost carrier is today leaving its home base on the Sunshine Coast and is heading for Townsville marking the start of regular flights between two of Queensland’s favourite holiday destinations.

By Sunshine Coast Airport

22 February 2023

MEDIA RELEASE

FOOTY FANS AND HOLIDAYMAKERS REJOICE AS REGIONAL AIR TRAVEL BYPASSES CITIES SAVING TIME AND MONEY

In another industry first Australia’s newest low cost carrier is today leaving its home base on the Sunshine Coast and is heading for Townsville marking the start of regular flights between two of Queensland’s favourite holiday destinations.

Today’s flight will be the first inaugural flight between the Sunshine Coast and Townsville and is one of 13 destinations Bonza will service from their home base on the Sunshine Coast.

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This direct route is a first between the two regions and is a major milestone with more than 80,000 seats between the two destinations.

Sunshine Coast Airport CEO, Andrew Brodie said today’s flight will have a major impact on local regions, making air travel affordable and accessible and increasing the passenger numbers arriving into the Sunshine Coast.

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“The Sunshine Coast is a highly sought after holiday destination from people all over Australia and this service will mean travellers can enjoy a trip directly here from Townsville without the added cost or travel time of having to go to Brisbane first.

bonza-sunshine-coast-townsville-launch-cake

“We are getting lots of positive feedback from travellers who have already experienced the new direct Bonza flights saying the ability to travel directly from their Sunshine Coast backyard, is a game changer for them saving so much time in travel and giving them the chance to explore more regions than ever before.

“The fact Bonza will operate four flights per week between their home base on the Sunshine Coast and Townsville will make it very easy for people from the greater Sunshine Coast to enjoy a trip north to explore the reef or watch their beloved footy team, and is going to make a lot of people very happy,” Mr Brodie said.

Echoing Mr Brodie’s sentiments, Bonza CEO, Tim Jordan, who flew with customers today said, “The introduction of the Sunshine Coast to Townsville route comes at a time where demand is at an all time high for Aussies to explore their own backyard. Our team of legends are humbled to play a role in connecting more Aussies with low cost flights.”

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With Bonza anticipated to bring an additional 772,000 seats to the Sunshine Coast and generate an estimated $86million in domestic visitor spend in the first 12 months, bringing the Airport Master Plan 2040 to life is a priority for Mr Brodie.

“We are embarking on a period of significant growth and change which will benefit all of SE Qld and we are only just getting started. The first stage was completed in June 2020 when we opened the new longer and wider runway and over the coming years our domestic terminal will double in size, there will be an expansion of the Aerospace Precinct and our Southern Gateway will start to take shape.

“In fact we will be investing up to $1B in infrastructure which will have a significant impact on the regional economy. We will create jobs, attract investment and support the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games. We are building a legacy for generations to come and the Sunshine Coast Airport will play a pivotal role in firmly putting the Sunshine Coast on the map as a destination for business and pleasure.

“Our partnership with Bonza is an important milestone in our long term plans for Sunshine Coast Airport which will see us welcome greater volumes of travellers, opening up opportunities not previously available.

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“We cannot wait to welcome visitors from across Australia traveling on these brand new routes,” Mr Brodie said.

About Sunshine Coast Airport

Forecast to welcome 1.5 million passengers in 2022/23, Sunshine Coast Airport is one of the fastest growing and is also the first and only airport in Australia to hold Level 3+ Carbon Neutrality status. When the airport is fully developed, total direct employment at the Airport is expected to grow from 530 to 1300 direct jobs. The Airport will also support up to 5,500 jobs and inject up to $396 million annually to Queensland’s GSP in the tourism and supply chain industries once development is completed.

Sunshine Coast Airport Pty Ltd operates and manages Sunshine Coast Airport, the gateway to the Sunshine Coast and Noosa regions, under a 99-year lease from Sunshine Coast Council which commenced in December 2017.

Sunshine Coast Airport will service 16 destinations including Adelaide, Albury, Auckland, Avalon, Cairns, Coffs Harbour, Mackay, Melbourne, Mildura, Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Rockhampton, Sydney, Tamworth, Townsville and Whitsunday Coast.

ENDS

For further information:

Contact: Sunshine Coast Airport Corporate Communications

[email protected]

(07) 5373 1901

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