LONDON – Last week, Virgin Australia touched down on New Zealand soil for the first time in nearly 1,000 days, with a huge celebration to mark the airline’s resumption of Queenstown flights.
The flights from Brisbane and Sydney will arrive at Queenstown International Airport on New Zealand’s south island, creating a new gateway of travel between Australia and New Zealand, ready for adventure seekers and returning friends and family, ahead of the summer holiday season.
Excited guests on the first flight from Brisbane were surprised with mini ‘Peace Pavlovas’ ahead of departure – a not-so-subtle nod to the ongoing friendly rift between the countries on the dessert’s origin.
Virgin Australia direct Queenstown, New Zealand flight schedule
- Sydney: Daily return flights between Sydney and Queenstown from 2 November 2022.
- Brisbane: Daily return flights between Brisbane and Queenstown from 2 November 2022.
- Melbourne: Return fights between Melbourne and Queenstown four times weekly from 3 November 2022, increasing to daily during the peak Christmas holiday period (12 December 2022 – 29 January 2023).
Virgin Australia commentary
Virgin Australia Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said today’s announcement marks an exciting day for Virgin Australia and its guests as the airline’s network expansion continues.
“Today is a significant day for Virgin Australia with our first New Zealand flight in over two years,” said Ms Hrdlicka.
“Australians and New Zealanders have a close bond and we are proud to be creating a new gateway between the countries for friends and family to visit each other, businesses to flourish and holiday-makers to seek adventure with more choice and great value airfares.”
“To celebrate this wonderful milestone, we have launched 15,000 Economy sale fares from as low as $409 return until midnight this Sunday, and we encourage everyone thinking about visiting Queenstown to get in quick before the sale ends.
“Value, choice and great service are at the heart of Virgin Australia, and we look forward to bringing these values to Queenstown with our expanded network.
“We are proud to continue growing the Virgin Australia international network which now offers over 500 destinations around the world. We have the most exceptional international airline partners and they help us deliver the very best and most easily reached global destinations,” she said.
Virgin Australia Group Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer, Alistair Hartley said the demand for Virgin Australia Queenstown services is strong.
“Travellers have missed the wonderful Virgin Australia hospitality and we are thrilled to be welcoming them back onboard with more choice and great value when flying to Queenstown,” said Mr Hartley.
“We are seeing strong demand across our international network over the Christmas school holiday period. Our flights to Queenstown will increase to 21 per week between 12 December and 29 January, with a daily service operating from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, to help meet the demand.”
“We are excited to be back on the arrivals board in Queenstown and we look forward to providing travellers more choice,” he said.
‘Bring on Wonderful’ marketing campaign
The resumption of Virgin Australia Queenstown services follows the launch of the airline’s Bring on Wonderful campaign and Middle Seat Lottery for domestic services, which has received global attention since being announced last week.
Virgin Australia has continued to expand its international network over recent months, with the recommencement of services to Bali (including the announcement of a new direct services from the Gold Coast), Fiji and New Zealand, and the announcement of direct services to Vanuatu and Samoa.
Strategic airline partnerships with Qatar Airways and United Airlines have been added to existing strong partnerships with Singapore Airlines, ANA, and Hawaiian Airlines.
Virgin Australia guests are now connected to more than 500 destinations around the world via Virgin Australia and its airline partners.