Airline alliance a boon for Queensland
PREMIER Anna Bligh has welcomed today's announcement by Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia to establish a long-term commercial alliance.
Under the alliance, the carriers will codeshare on each other's international and domestic flights, offer reciprocal frequent flyer benefits and lounge access, coordinate their schedules and provide seamless connections.
"The agreement is great news for Queensland and will provide strong connections into and through our State from many international destinations," said the Premier.
"If it is easier to get here more people will come and we want our visitors to get here in as much comfort and convenience as possible."
Tourism, Manufacturing and Small Business Minister Jan Jarratt also welcomed the news.
"Connecting Singapore Airlines' extensive international network with Virgin Australia's wide range of Australian and Pacific destinations will make it easier than ever for international visitors to have direct access to a range of Queensland destinations rather than having to transit through interstate airports," she said.
"That means when they get here they'll be relaxed and ready to enjoy all the wonderful experiences this state has to offer."
Currently, Singapore Airlines flies into Brisbane from Singapore with 19 weekly flights, or some 5,415 seats. Virgin Australia has 736 flights arriving into Queensland each week, or 105,152 seats.
The State's aviation, aerospace and defence industry contributes an estimated $6 billion to the Queensland economy, employing around 16,500 people and home to nearly a third of all Australian aviation and aerospace companies.
Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia are expected to lodge the alliance application with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission in the coming weeks.