Media Releases
Published on 1st September 2016

The first issue of the re-launched QantasLink Spirit magazine hits aircraft seat pockets today, showcasing the best of Australia’s regions for more than six million QantasLink passengers a year and an online audience which delivers one million page impressions each month.

With a focus on people, places and themes unique to regional Australia, the re-launched magazine forms part of Qantas’ commitment to boost domestic and international tourism across its network of almost 80 destinations.

The new Spirit will be published bi-monthly (the previous iteration was published quarterly) and loaded onto more than 2,000 QantasLink services per week operating to 58 destinations. Content from the magazine will be shared across Qantas’ Travel Insider website, the Qantas magazine mobile app, and Qantas’ social media platforms, taking stories on regional Australia to broader audiences.

Qantas’ Group Executive, Brand, Marketing and Corporate Affairs, Olivia Wirth, said the new Spirit reflected the national carrier’s unique role in supporting and connecting regional communities.

“We know that our passengers often make travel decisions based on the stories they read on board, so this is a great opportunity to put regional destinations in front of a massive inflight and online audience.

“Our goal was give our customers a beautifully designed magazine with first-rate stories, explore the amazing diversity of regional Australia, and inspire their next trip at the same time.”

Like Qantas’, monthly inflight magazine for its mainline operations re-launched last year – Spirit is published by Medium Rare Content Agency, with editor Sarah Maguire – who grew up in Alice Springs, Launceston and Ballarat – seeking out the best stories from every corner of regional Australia.

Each issue will reflect QantasLink’s diverse customer base, which ranges from tourists to business travellers, people visiting family and friends, and fly-in fly-out workers. Spirit will also continue to champion regional enterprise, providing valuable advertising space as well as features on local economies, companies and entrepreneurs.

“From house-boating pub pit stops along the Murray to ghosts and gold in historic Hill End, we have travelled across the country to uncover some of Australia’s hidden gems and lesser known stories,” said Ms Maguire.

“We also meet people passionate about their patch; the Driver family operating the 10,000 square kilometer Elkedra Station in the Northern Territory; Kris and Ray Jones who run the Jetty Café in Dennes Point on the northern tip of Bruny Island, and 78 year old John Kosovich, second generation wine maker from the Swan valley in WA.”


Life is isolated for the Driver family, who live on Elkedra Station in the Northern Territory. That’s why Amber Driver flies her own plane; the kids have to get to play dates somehow. The 36-year-old cattle producer and mother of two is also an emerging spokeswoman for the issues – roads, education, telecommunications – that affect her Central Australian community. We spend a weekend on Elkedra and find out why, according to those closest to her, Amber is a force to be reckoned with.

“Go back three years – it was almost a ghost town,” says Dorset Council mayor Greg Howard of the north-east Tasmanian town of Derby. Now, the former tin mining town is on the world map for mountain biking after spending $3.1 million on a network of trails through temperate rainforest. We tell Derby’s story in Then & Now, a regular feature that highlights regional Australia’s continual reinvention of itself.

Australia’s biggest inland city, Toowoomba, is getting hip in its old age. Once a quiet Queensland farming community with some well-heeled residents and numerous private schools, the region is embracing the arts, food and multiculturalism. From gardens and bushwalks to restaurants and a zoo, we’ve distilled the best of what’s on offer into a must-do two-day itinerary.

At the height of its gold rush, Hill End in NSW was home to 10,000 people and 28 hotels. Today, 120 people call this now one-pub town home. Some are from families who have lived there for generations; others are newcomers, many of them artists, drawn by the living history, the community and the all-Australian landscapes. This is a portrait of a hamlet many have never heard of and will, upon reading it, wonder why they haven’t.

If you’d like to interview Sarah Maguire about QantasLink Spirit or any of the stories featured in the September/October issue, or if you would like to access images from the magazine, please phone (02) 8114 8957 or email:

For more information on Medium Rare, go to

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