Airline wrap: Low-cost airline launches, Lufthansa’s new service, fresh links to Solomon Islands + more!

This airline wrap soars above last weeks, with loads of juicy announcements. And if that doesn’t interest you, there’s also some pretty pictures to brighten your Tuesday morning.

Lifestyle precinct opens as part of new T2 Domestic experience

Lifestyle precinct unveiled at Sydney Airport's T2 Domestic

Sydney Airport has unveiled a new lifestyle precinct at T2 Domestic featuring new brands and food and drink concepts hand-picked to create a fresh, relaxing pre- and post-flight experience.

Beginning at the recently revamped casual dining precinct and extending to the Jetstar and Tigerair gates, the precinct features a range of premiere airport brands including JB Hi-Fi, BONDS and the world’s most famous kids’ play brand, LEGO.

Second Qantas direct Sydney – Sunshine Coast service launches today offering seamless travel for travellers

Mooloolaba Beach 3

Sydney travellers, as well as international travellers flying into Sydney, will now be able to enjoy seamless travel to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast following the start today of Qantas’ second direct service between Sydney and the Sunshine Coast.

The new service is ideal for holidaymakers, departing Sydney at 10.30am, arriving Sunshine Coast at 12.05pm, well-timed for checking into hotels or having lunch by the water. The return flight is also conveniently timed, allowing travellers almost a full morning on the Sunshine Coast before leaving Sunshine Coast Airport at 12.45pm, arriving in Sydney at 2.30pm.

The new service complements an existing Qantas flight from Sydney which arrives on the Sunshine Coast in the evening and departs first thing in the morning.

The additional service has been launched in the wake of Sunshine Coast Airport being named the fastest growing airport in Australia, with 43 months of consecutive passenger growth, and year on year average growth of 9 per cent.

Singapore Airlines celebrates 35th anniversary in Brisbane with four Airbus A350-900s

Singapore Airlines announced that all four daily flights between Brisbane and Singapore will be operated by Airbus A350-900 aircraft from Wednesday, 1 May 2019.

The announcement comes as Singapore Airlines marks 35 years of service to the Queensland capital after operations began on Friday, 30 March 1984.

The announcement will also see Brisbane become the only destination in the Singapore Airlines global network to have multiple daily flights all operated by the A350 aircraft type.

Qantaslink resumes flights between Cairns and Port Moresby 

QantasLink Australia passenger airliner landing.

QantasLink is again making it easier for customers to travel between Cairns and Port Moresby with the return of daily flights between the two cities yesterday.

QantasLink has resumed the service after a resurgence in customer demand, offering around 1,000 seats per week on its 74-seat Q400 aircraft. The service, which QantasLink had operated until 2016, complements Qantas’ existing daily services between Brisbane and Port Moresby.

FlyArystan counts down to service launch


FlyArystan, the brand-new Eurasian low fare airline from award-winning Kazakh flag carrier, Air Astana, launched on 1st May 2019.

Inaugural domestic routes from Almaty International Airport to Taraz and Uralsk, with tickets now on sale at www.flyarystan.com with one-way fares from US$13 to Taraz and US$34 to Uralsk.

FlyArystan is flying Airbus A320 aircraft configured with 180 economy seats on both routes.  Operating daily, FlyArystan will offer more than 130,000 seats on each of the routes annually.

British Airways’ first early morning flight in 20 years takes off from Inverness

BA Heathrow Flight

The first British Airways early-morning flight between Inverness and London Heathrow for more than two decades took off from the Highland capital this morning.

British Airways customers were piped on board the aircraft by members of the Inverness Royal British Legion Pipe Band which, like the airline, is celebrating its centenary this year.

The service was operated by an Airbus 319 aircraft registration G-EUPJ, in the heritage livery of BEA, part of British Airways’ centenary celebrations.

The new Heathrow – Inverness schedule will see a 30 per cent increase in capacity on the route and brings the number of flights up to three return services on Saturdays and Sundays, with a double daily service Monday to Friday. From October British Airways will operate a double daily service between the two cities seven days a week.

This morning’s flight means that, for the first time since the route was reintroduced in 2016, British Airways customers will be able to travel between the two cities and return the same day, a major boost to the region’s business sector.

Munich-Osaka nonstop from the start of the summer timetable period


In time for the start of the summer timetable season, Lufthansa launched a new service from Munich to Osaka on March 31, 2019.

The German carrier has decided to extend this route from Frankfurt to Munich. Along with the established flights operated by Lufthansa and All Nippon Airways to Tokyo, Munich Airport is now offering a second Japanese destination for the first time. With three daily connections, Munich Airport now ranks fifth in Europe in terms of flights to and from Japan.

From Europe, Japan’s third-largest city can be reached non-stop only from Amsterdam, Helsinki, London-Heathrow, Paris Charles-de-Gaulle and now Munich. Japan is one of the most important destinations in Asia – as demonstrated by the rising passenger figures. In 2018 a total of 200,000 passengers travelled in each direction between Munich and Japan.

Asian routes are the main source of growth in intercontinental traffic in the summer of 2019.

Lufthansa is also adding a daily connection to Bangkok starting in June 2019, complementing the existing service operated by Thai Airways. Moreover, Lufthansa is bumping up the frequency of its flights to Seoul from 6/7 to 7/7.

From June onward, Lufthansa will increase its service to Singapore from five flights a week to a daily connection. Passengers can now choose between two daily flights, either with Singapore Airlines or Lufthansa. In the summer of 2019, five airlines will depart 100 times per week to 10 destinations in seven countries in the Far East. This represents a 17 percent increase in the number of flights to that region over the previous year.

Solomon Airlines launches Brisbane-Munda direct flights 


Solomon Airlines launched a new international route on Saturday 30 March, when the airline’s first
flight took off from Brisbane flying directly to the reopened Munda Airport on the island of New Georgia in the Solomon Island’s Western Province.

The three hour 15 minute A320 flight was hosted by Solomon Airlines Chief Executive Officer Brett Gebers and farewelled at Brisbane International Airport by excited members of the Solomon Islands community, dancers and diving enthusiasts.

The airline’s commencement of a direct same-day service on the route, has been described as a major catalyst for increased international visitation to Munda, renowned as one of the world’s most desirable dive destinations.

The recently reopened Munda Airport underwent an extensive upgrade programme to accommodate international flights and now becomes the country’s second airport also serving as a backup to the Henderson International Airport at Honiara.

United Airlines Earns 100 Percent Score on Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Annual Scorecard on LGBTQ Workplace Equality

United Airlines today announced that for the eighth consecutive year, it has received a perfect score of 100 percent on the 2019 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a premier benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation.

Finnair introduces new business class amenities by Marimekko and L: A Bruket


With the launch of its new service between Helsinki and Los Angeles on March 31st, Finnair continues its longstanding partnership with Finnish design house Marimekko, and introduces a range of new amenities for business class passengers. The amenities will be rolled out for all trans-continental flights on Airbus A350 and Airbus A330 aircraft.

They are designed to complement the new sleep textiles in Finnair’s long-haul business class, which feature the classic Kaivo print in a dark blue tone on tone colourway. The Kaivo print was designed by Maija Isola, one of the most iconic Marimekko designers.

The amenity kits and eye shades feature four different Maija Isola designs from the 1960s – Rautasänky, Joonas, Jenkka and Pieni Melooni, with each pattern in two different colourways. A jacquard weave technique brings dark blue together with a second color in each of the eight combinations, for a premium look with a collectible feel. Finnair will introduce two new designs at a time, changing them for another two every six months.


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.


ACCC gives Virgin Australia’s cooperation plans with Virgin Atlantic a boost

This news couldn’t have come at a better time for Virgin Australia, given its current financial predicament.



Travel Agents

Agent wrap: Beyond Travel’s Sri Lanka commission deal, Magellan award winners revealed + MORE!

This week’s agent wrap is somewhat of a whopper, a “Big Bertha”, a “Goliath”. Meaning there’s lots of news.




Nearly half of all new cruise builds to rely on LNG fuel: CLIA

The cruise industry is making “unprecedented” progress in going green, according to CLIA. Find out exactly how it’s making cruising more sustainable here.




Young man snagged at Indian airport after impersonating 81-year-old to enter US

In all honesty, Travel Weekly thinks this man’s disguise was pretty convincing.




A&K reveals its 2020 ‘hot list’

Abercrombie & Kent has announced its ‘hot list’ for 2020. However, that’s not to suggest it’s made up of attractive people in the travel industry.




Maori groups threaten to boycott Air New Zealand over ‘kia ora’ trademark

The airline is seeking to trademark the masthead of its inflight magazine, Kia Ora, just in time for Maori language week.




Aussie travel bloggers detained in Iran over alleged drone activity

The pair were documenting an overland voyage from Australia to London when they were arrested for allegedly launching a drone near a military area.




Pilot’s coffee spillage causes plane carrying hundreds to divert

by Christian Fleetwood

According to the incident report, the pilot was using a single-use cup. Shame, shame, shame!



Road & Rail

Flight Centre drives away with Uber

Look, we were going to go with the headline “Flight Centre shifts up a gear with Uber”, but thought it was too lame.




Flavour of the Week: LATAM’s new CEO, RCL gets new agency, Uber Air appoints boss + MORE!

There has been an awful lot of movement in the travel industry recently, so we’ve prepared a mammoth wrap-up of all the latest appointments to give you some to toast to down at the pub later today.




Tourism Australia names new boss

Tourism Australia has appointed its new managing director, who also happens to be the organisation’s first-ever female head.



Travel Agents

“It’s a complete abrogation of responsibility”: Flight Centre urged to stop selling elephant riding

by Christian Fleetwood

Flight Centre has ruffled a few feathers over its stance on elephant riding. Get the lowdown here.