Qantas returns to the Sunshine Coast after a 10 year hiatus.
This follows on from the news that tourist numbers into the region are up 27 per cent, in contrast to the decrease in numbers experienced by the rest of the state.
After an absence of more than a decade, Qantas will recommence regular air services into Sunshine Coast Airport, with the airline announcing they would fly between Sydney and the Sunshine Coast six days a week from December 2015.
The 110 seat Boeing 717 will operate a leisure based schedule from December 21 to meet Christmas and school holiday leisure demand, then a regular business flight schedule will commence on February 8.
With over 68,000 seats available, the new Qantas service will play a significant role in building the region’s conference travel sector.
Sunshine Coast Destination Ltd (SCDL) CEO Simon Ambrose said,“The Qantas services will add a new dimension to Sunshine Coast’s tourism sector.
“Jetstar and Virgin have been great ambassadors for the Sunshine Coast in the domestic market and have consistently increased services from Sydney and Melbourne, and now Qantas will contribute significantly to growing business travel and conferences.
“Last year we attracted 9.2 per cent domestic growth, and with major infrastructure development happening throughout the region, as well as increases in conference and events capacity, the Qantas services will find an instant market, as well as encouraging more international travellers to connect to the Coast.
“Qantas’ international reach is very important, and by adding the Sunshine Coast to its network will allow us to market more strongly in Asia, Europe and America. Last year, we grew the international market by a record 15.7%, and with the new Qantas services as well as growth in Air New Zealand direct services, we believe we can grow the inbound market even further,” said Ambrose.