Qantas Group to restart 84 Melbourne–Tasmania services

written by Adam Thorn | November 13, 2020
A Qantas 737 at Hobart Airport. The airline is to consolidate its Australian call centre operations to the Tasmanian capital. (Rob Finlayson)

Qantas and Jetstar will restart 84 weekly return services between Tasmania and Melbourne when the border between the two states opens on 27 November.

The announcement, which amounts to more than 12,000 weekly seats, will also allow Qantas to reopen its Club Lounge in Hobart and Regional Lounges in Devonport and Launceston from 2 December.

It follows Virgin also bringing forward the reintroduction of four-times-weekly services between Melbourne-Hobart and Melbourne-Launceston.

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From later this month, Jetstar will resume flights between Melbourne and Launceston with 19 weekly services, and increase frequencies between Melbourne and Hobart with 26 weekly services, up from just five in October.

Qantas, meanwhile, will resume flights on three routes, with 14 weekly services between Melbourne and Launceston, 13 between Melbourne and Hobart, and 12 between Melbourne and Devonport.

Jetstar Group CEO Gareth Evans said, “This will also provide a significant boost in tourism between the two states, as well as seeing more of our people back in the air.”

Earlier this week, Tasmania announced it plans to open its border to Victoria on 27 November.

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Premier Peter Gutwein also said that from Friday, 13 November, those travelling from the previously ‘high risk’ hotspot would be allowed to isolate at home, rather than a government-run hotel.

Within hours of the news being announced, Virgin brought forward the reintroduction of four-times-weekly services between Melbourne-Hobart and Melbourne-Launceston.

The services will commence on 27 November and move to operate daily from 14 December.

The airline also said it would reintroduce twice weekly services between Brisbane-Launceston from 23 November and increase these up to daily services throughout the peak Christmas and summer holiday period.

Tasmania opened up to NSW on 6 November and also opened to every other state, bar Victoria, on 26 October.

Australian Aviation also reported this week how flights between Tasmania and New Zealand would restart in January for the first time since 1996.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the deal on Saturday that will include 130 direct flights from Hobart each year, with three departing per week in warmer months, and two in winter.

It comes shortly after the government also announced plans to allow the state to introduce hotel quarantine and start accepting Australians stranded abroad.

“This has been an incredibly tough year for Australians, and particularly our tourism and hospitality sectors, but the deal will mean tourists from low-risk areas can come to sample Tasmania’s incredible experiences, sights and produce,” PM Morrison said.

The plan to restart travel between the two countries will reportedly cost the federal government $50 million, while state governments will contribute $10 million for structural upgrades. They will mark the first regular flights since 1996, when Air New Zealand pulled the route due to its viability.

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Qantas Group to restart 84 Melbourne–Tasmania services Comment

  • Peter

    says:

    Hey Adam. Heard it here first….

    QFLink are going to upgauge LST services from Q400’s to 717’s from early next year in response to strong demand. This also reintroduces business class into LST. Now the next question is where are the Q400’s being sent – over to you 😉

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