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Rex grows capital city network with Adelaide–Sydney

written by Jake Nelson | June 29, 2023

Victor Pody shot this pair of Rex 737s.

Rex is expanding its capital city services with the launch of flights between Sydney and Adelaide.

The airline will fly daily between the two capitals using its fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft, with the first flight, ZL817, taking off from Sydney on Thursday aboard VH-RQG. According to Rex deputy chairman John Sharp, the route has already seen “strong demand from eager travellers”.

“What Rex brings to the market is choice and affordable fares with an excellent customer experience. We are not surprised that Adelaideans have shown great interest in flying with Rex to Sydney, just as they have embraced the Rex services between Adelaide and Melbourne which launched in 2021,” he said.

“When Rex launched domestic services, our primary goal was to enhance our regional network and expand our footprint. We continue to work as tirelessly as ever to keep Australians connected as Australia’s most reliable airline.”

Sydney–Adelaide is already served by Qantas, Virgin and Jetstar, with Rex’s entry adding more competition on what is Adelaide’s second most popular route.


Adelaide Airport managing director Brenton Cox said it will enable easier connections between regional NSW and Adelaide, as well as regional SA and Sydney.

“Rex has again demonstrated its strong support for the Adelaide market, having introduced the Adelaide-Melbourne route in 2021. Today’s launch also comes just in time for the July school holiday peak,” Mr Cox said.

“I congratulate Rex on recognising the growth opportunity in Adelaide, and for encouraging travel with their enticing launch fares. The airline has been a great supporter of the Adelaide market, including regional links, for many years.”

Rex also recently revealed a daily Melbourne-Hobart 737 service to begin on 17 August, adding to its existing Saab 340 regional services to Burnie, Devonport, and King Island.

The continued capital city push comes as Rex forecasts a surprise $35 million operational loss for FY23, blaming a global skills shortage as well as ongoing supply chain issues.

The announcement – which forced it to halt trading on the ASX – came after it reduced services on nine regional routes in May and following reports that almost a third of its Saab 340s are grounded.

From 1 May, nine routes served by Saab 340 turboprop aircraft in Victoria, NSW, South Australia and Queensland saw reduced services, with four more routes having their timings changed and the Mildura–Adelaide service being suspended altogether.

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