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After the cutbacks, Bonza adds Gold Coast base plus 11 new routes

Business

After cutting back a host of routes only a few weeks ago, discount airline Bonza said it would set up its third base at the Gold Coast Airport and operate two aircraft from there to 11 destinations.

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The airline, which recently cut back some routes, said the routes from the Gold Coast would include Albury, Bundaberg, Gladstone, Mackay, Melbourne (Avalon) and Melbourne (Tullamarine), Rockhampton, Townsville and the Whitsunday coast.

Bonza currently has a base on the Sunshine Coast and in Melbourne. The new flights from the Gold Coast would initially be done through a wet lease to enable it to meet the summer demand. A wet lease is when an airline hires a plane and a crew.

Chief executive Tim Jordan said the route expansion, which was still subject to regulatory approval, was about creating depth by connecting existing destinations with the Gold Coast and northern NSW.

“New routes from the Gold Coast also mean locals from South Brisbane down to Northern NSW regions, like Ballina and Byron Bay, have the chance to explore their own backyard with low-cost flights to regional locations like Mildura, Bundy and Townsville to name a few,” Jordan said.

He said further routes from the Gold Coast would be announced in the future.

This next phase of Bonza’s growth would mean 70 new flights a week and almost 700,000 additional passenger seats a year into and out of Gold Coast Airport.

An extra 100 direct jobs would be created.

Queensland Airports Limited CEO Amelia Evans said the new routes would deliver more than $100 million in economic benefit to the region each year.

“Many of these routes are new to our network and they’re also very competitively priced which is great news for our customers and for visitors to our region,” she said.

Bonza only recently cut back the Sunshine Coast to Coffs Harbour route, the Sunshine Coast to Port Macquarie, Sunshine Coast to Tamworth, Cairns to Mackay, and Toowoomba to the Whitsunday Coast.

 

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