12 May 2011

Jetstar Adds Dunedin to Its Domestic Destinations

Budget airline Jetstar has launched a new Dunedin-Auckland service in time to capitalise on the city's Rugby World Cup games. The new route is being launched today with $5 fares for the 180-seat A320 service and will begin scheduled flights on July 14. Jetstar Group chief executive Bruce Buchanan said the timing of the new route was important. "We really wanted to help the local economy by getting up and running before Rugby World Cup but this is a long-term move." Dunedin, as a community, was getting behind the service, he said. The airport was supportive and had great facilities, there was a market the company felt it could stimulate and that fitted well with the low-cost structure. The possibility of flights to Invercargill was not on the radar. Invercargill Airport general manager Chloe Scala said ishe had not been involved in any discussions with Jetstar regarding flights to Invercargill. "I don't forsee that happening in the near future but you'll be first to know if it happens," she said. Mr Buchanan said a big focus for Jetstar was efforts to simplify trans-Tasman border systems so flights to secondary airports were more economic. "The prime minister is currently championing that. That would have a direct impact on somewhere like Dunedin." There was still more room for growth in Queenstown, particularly in terms of night operations. "I think Invercargill and some other points in New Zealand are options for us in the longer run," he said. He was confident the company would make the new route a success, after already setting up in 17 countries. "We haven't got into any market and not made it work ...We often adjust schedules and respond to things – like the Christchurch earthquake." With passenger numbers through Christchurch Airport down 30 per cent South Island tourism was suffering and it was hoped the additional 1239 seats into Dunedin would provide a boost. Today between noon and 1pm the company is offering $5 one-way fares between Auckland and Dunedin at www.Jetstar.com. One-way fares for $49 will be available until midnight. Everyday fares will start from $99.

There is a nice picture of a Jetstar A320 at the source : http://www.stuff.co.nz/travel/new-zealand/4992390/Jetstar-to-fly-Dunedin-Auckland

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