Jetstar launching two new routes to Queensland

File photo
File photo
Jetstar is increasing capacity on domestic services and introducing two new trans-Tasman routes.

The expansion is set to provide more than 240,000 new low-fare seats every year.

The first stage includes the launch of new flights between Christchurch and Cairns, and Auckland and the Sunshine Coast (Maroochydore), for which tickets go on sale today.

Capacity will also increase on flights between Auckland and Christchurch, and Auckland and Wellington, with the airline planning to grow its domestic operations further in the next 12 months

Flight times to Melbourne are also being adjusted, to improve connectivity to Jetstar's long-haul international network.

The airline hopes this will provide better access to its flights between Melbourne and Asia, including Ho Chi Minh City, Phuket, Singapore and Bangkok, and enhance inbound tourism to the South Island.

Jetstar Group chief executive Stephanie Tully said this was the biggest boost to Jetstar's operations in more than a decade.

"This month, we're celebrating our 15th birthday in New Zealand, and as we mark this milestone, we're really excited to be entering such a significant period of growth."

Tully also announced an additional airplane will be based in Christchurch from December, bringing its New Zealand fleet to eight Airbus A320 aircraft.

It is the first time Jetstar has expanded its fleet in New Zealand in more than 10 years.

"Having another aircraft based in Christchurch, as well as the launch of new flights and capacity, will help establish the city as a major gateway for Jetstar in New Zealand, providing more choice and great low fares for South Island residents," Tully said.

With the expansion in operations, more jobs would be on offer, but the full number of vacancies was still being figured out, she said.

The expansion would bring the airline back up to pre-Covid levels, she said.

Air New Zealand fares

The announcement comes as Air New Zealand put its fares up for all domestic routes in April.

The national carrier also stopped providing food services that passengers can buy in June, now offering a light snack instead.

Air New Zealand chief executive Greg Foran previously told Checkpoint domestic fares would increase to help the airline deal with rising costs.