Adelaide will be the home base of five Embraer E190 aircraft as Qantas continues to boost domestic flights in response to growing leisure and corporate travel demand.
The Embraer E190s are 94-seat jets with a five-hour range which are being deployed on Qantas’ network as part of a three-year deal with Alliance Airlines. Qantas owns a 20% stake in Alliance Airlines and the deal provides the national carrier with the capacity provided by up to 14 jet aircraft, depending on market conditions.
These aircrafts are the right fit to service capital cities with regional centres and South Australia regional market has plenty of growth opportunities.
Basing these five aircraft in Adelaide will bring an additional 200 jobs to the State, including pilots, cabin crew and engineers. As this is a wet lease deal the additional personnel will be recruited by Alliance and will be under Alliance payroll but will wear Qantas uniforms.
The aircraft will be painted in QantasLink livery and will help Qantas to grow its domestic capacity to 107 per cent of pre-COVID levels in 2022. Jetstar is expected to reach 120 per cent of its pre-COVID capacity as the only dedicated low-cost carrier in Australia and the uptick in local leisure demand.
As a result of the decision, Qantas will launch a new Adelaide-Gold Coast service during the winter school holidays.
South Australians will be able to fly direct to the Gold Coast with Qantas beginning on June 25th, with four return services per week increasing to daily during school holiday peaks. Qantas is celebrating the launch with special fares starting at $149 one-way*.
Several new routes from Adelaide will be announced in the coming weeks.
Qantas will also begin flying between Darwin and Canberra using E190 aircraft from 21 June.
The two new routes bring the total number of routes announced by Qantas and Jetstar since the start of the pandemic to 38, in response to the fact that more Australians are vacationing domestically.
Each year, the five E190 aircraft will carry nearly 1 million more passengers to and from Adelaide.
Qantas also announced today a number of capacity increases for South Australia, including an extra daily return flight from Adelaide to Sydney and Melbourne.
From July 1, the national carrier will more than double service between Adelaide and Mt Gambier, increasing it from five to twelve flights per week. The services are timed so that travellers can make same-day return trips in both directions.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said “Basing these aircraft in Adelaide means we can service South Australia better and help bring more visitors to the State,” Joyce said.
“The E190 is a great aircraft for the Adelaide market, with its size, range and economics opening up a number of new destinations that wouldn’t be viable with the larger 737 aircraft,” Joyce said.
“Instead of one or two flights a day with a larger aircraft, we can offer three or four flights a day on the E190, which gives customers a lot more choice about when they travel.
“We’re continuing to see really positive signs of sustained recovery, with strong travel demand and forward bookings expected to see our domestic capacity back above 100 per cent of pre-COVID levels in the coming months. That’s great progress when you consider we were as low as 20 per cent of our normal flying levels at the height of lockdown.
“The return to flying has huge flow-on benefits, helping to boost tourism which is so vital to local economies and businesses around the country,” added Joyce.
Alliance Airlines Managing Director Scott McMillian said: “Alliance is excited to be involved in further expansion of services from Adelaide.
“The increase in our wet-lease operations for Qantas will grow our existing Adelaide base and provide additional employment opportunities for new and existing South Australian staff.”
Qantas’ Fly Flexible policy offers customers who book flights before 31 July 2021 added flexibility with unlimited fee date changes when travelling before 28 February 2022. (A fare difference may apply).