Thursday, 30 July 2020

Australia's Sunshine Coast gets new air service to Cairns

Early this month, the small Sunshine Coast Airport celebrated the launch of a new direct flight to Cairns from Alliance Airlines.

The new service operates three times a week and is designed to provide a key connection between two of Queensland’s most highly valued and popular tourist locations as well as facilitating easier connections for locals and be a boost for local businesses. Alliance will be operating Fokker 100s on the route.

Sunshine Coast Airport CEO Andrew Brodie welcomed the route:  “It’s a route that’s been long anticipated by local people and the strong passenger loads for the first flight certainly confirmed that.  - This service will also spare locals from making the long drive south to Brisbane to fly north, and will allow us to test the appetite for other regional routes on their wish list.

It’s anticipated this service will facilitate around 40,000 passengers every year and inject $2.8 million of tourism spend into our region, undoubtedly some welcome relief for local operators.” Mr Brodie added.

Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the route was a direct result of $15 million in funding from the Palaszczuk Government to secure direct flights to Queensland destinations and support the economic recovery of the tourism industry.  “Thanks to the way we’ve managed this health crisis, we can now start to focus on our economic recovery.  Tourism is crucial to rebuilding our economy and supporting local jobs. That’s why we’re backing new flights direct to the Sunshine Coast – to pump cash back into local businesses.

This brand-new service between the Sunshine Coast and Cairns will feature 300 seats each way per week, will generate more than $2 million for local businesses and support up to 20 jobs.  Already we’ve seen huge demand for this service which is a great sign for our tourism sector."

Since flights went on sale on June 18, Alliance has sold more than 3000 tickets and the route will be a major 'shot in the arm' for both regions and will support thousands of local tourism businesses. Alliance Airlines Chief Executive Officer Lee Schofield said the airline was proud to help provide another important link in its regional network.  “Alliance is a proud Queensland based-airline with close ties to regional Queensland since its inception. This new route linking two of Queensland’s most beautiful regions further cements these ties.  We also wish to acknowledge the support of the Queensland Government, Sunshine Coast and Cairns airports to help make these new services a reality.”

Alliance Airlines fares start at $125 one-way including taxes. All fares are inclusive of 20kg free checked baggage. To book, visit

Alliance Airlines is what one might call a hybrid of an airline,  it operates a mix of 'fly-in - fly out- services to more than 20 mining sites and projects, it also operates dozens of charter flights and performs regular passenger scheduled flights. It has an all Fokker fleet, composed of three different Fokker aircraft – 5 Fokker 50 turboprop aircraft, 11 Fokker 70 LR jets and 31+ Fokker 100 jets. The fleet has a strong reputation for being reliable and efficient aircraft with an extensive history of operating in remote and hot regions throughout Australia.

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