Korean Air will increase its nonstop Seoul Incheon-Brisbane service to daily from the end of October.
The schedule change, announced on Tuesday, represented an additional three flights a week as the Korean Air website showed the airline currently served the route four times a week with two-class Airbus A330-300s.
It will also bring Brisbane in line with Korean Air’s other Australian route from Seoul Incheon to Sydney, which runs daily with a mixture of A330-300, A380 and Boeing 747-8I equipment, depending on the time of the year.
Currently, Korean Air is the only airline offering year-round nonstop flights between Brisbane and Seoul Incheon.
The only other carrier flying between Australia and South Korea is Asiana, which has a daily service to Sydney. Meanwhile, South Korean LCC Jin Air has served Cairns with seasonal flights in recent years.
Korean Air’s daily schedule for Brisbane was due to begin on October 27, about six weeks before Qantas-owned low-cost carrier (LCC) Jetstar commences nonstop flights between the Gold Coast and Seoul Incheon.
The new Jetstar service kicks off on December 8 with three flights a week using Boeing 787-8s with 335 seats.
Brisbane was one of several route changes Korean Air announced on Tuesday in response what the airline described as decreasing demand on Japanese routes “due to Korea-Japan tensions”.
Three routes have been cut, with Busan-Osaka to end on September 16, while nonstop flights from Jeju to Tokyo Narita and Osaka Kansai were being withdrawn on November 1. Other routes will also be temporarily suspended or have frequencies reduced.
At the same time as those reductions, the airline was adding flights to markets in China, South East Asia and Oceania.
“Korean Air plans to strengthen its route competitiveness by focusing more on other markets, such as Southeast Asia, Oceania, and China in the winter season,” Tuesday’s statement said.
In addition to a frequency increase for Brisbane, there would be more flights to Chiang Mai and Denpasar.
There will also be new nonstop flights to three Chinese cities from Seoul Incheon – Zhangjiajie, Hangzhou and Nanjing – as well as a new nonstop service to Clark in the Philippines.