The Qantas Group today announced it will make some adjustments to flights servicing the Northern Territory.
The following changes will be made:
-Qantas will reduce services between Ayers Rock (Uluru) and Cairns from 14 return services per week to seven return services per week, effective 1 September 2012;
-Qantas will reduce services between Ayers Rock (Uluru) and Perth from four return services per week to two return services per week, effective 1 September. This service will then be suspended from 28 October 2012;
-Jetstar will reduce services between Darwin and Sydney from up to 11 return services per week to seven return services per week, effective 16 August 2012;
-Jetstar will reduce services between Darwin to Denpasar from up to 11 return services per week to eight return services per week, effective 16 August 2012.
Qantas Domestic CEO Mr Lyell Strambi said the performance on the affected Qantas routes has been poor for some time.
“We regret any impact these changes may have however despite various strategies these routes remain poor performers,” said Mr Strambi.
“The impact of the high Australian dollar on the inbound tourism market has also had a significant impact on the performance of these services.
“Qantas is committed to having the right aircraft on the right routes to make sure we have the flexibility to adapt to changing market conditions and to ensure the long term viability of services to the region.”
The aircraft released from these changes will be redeployed across the Qantas and Jetstar networks to meet market demand.
Jetstar Group Chief Commercial Officer David Koczkar said that the airline remained committed to the Northern Territory but needed to adjust its capacity in line with market forces.
“We’ve previously flagged that routes from our Darwin base are among our most marginal, and while we understand the local community will be disappointed, our continuing ability to offer low fares to the broader market depends on our need to balance market demands with operational costs,” Mr Koczkar said.
As part of its schedule changes, Jetstar will relocate one of four A320 from its Darwin base to the east coast of Australia.
Customers holding confirmed tickets on any cancelled services will be contacted by Qantas, Jetstar or their Travel Agent and provided with alternate travel options.
The Qantas Group remains committed to the Northern Territory and will continue to offer up to 47,900 seats per week to the region after these changes have been implemented.
Qantas will operate up to 121 return services to destinations including Alice Springs, Ayers Rock and Darwin. Jetstar will operate up to 37 return domestic services per week to Darwin from Melbourne, Brisbane and Cairns. Jetstar will also operate up to 21 return international services per week out of Darwin including nine to Singapore, eight to Denpasar and four to Manila-Narita.