Air Australia aims for Qantas and Virgin business passengers

By John Walton, November 15 2011

Air Australia -- formerly Strategic Airlines -- is looking to snap up the price-sensitive end of the business travel market with $499 business class fares between Melbourne and Brisbane next month.

Starting 15 December, Air Australia plans to offer "a full service Business Class product" on its flights, which will bracket the work day for passengers travelling from Melbourne to Brisbane.

During the week, flights will depart Melbourne at 0610 and 1330, with return flights from Brisbane leaving at 1120 and 1745.

During the weekend, Saturday flights will leave Melbourne at 0710 and return from Brisbane at 1120. Sunday flights will leave Melbourne at 1410 and return at 1830.

That schedule is nothing like the dozen or so flights that Qantas and Virgin Australia each offer, but at the price, it may be a bargain too good to pass up for some business travellers. 

Melbourne-Brisbane flights will use Air Australia's distinctive -- and freshly painted -- green, gold and silver Airbus A320 planes.

Jetstar and Tiger Airways also fly the Airbus A320 within Australia, while competitors Virgin Australia and Qantas mostly use the Boeing 737 or larger planes on Melbourne-Brisbane flights.

At the back of the plane, $69 economy class fares will be available, plus a "buy on board food, beverage and entertainment" offering.

For more on Air Australia's launch -- including the details so far on its frequent flyer program -- check out the rest of Australian Business Traveller's coverage of the newest name in Australia's skies:

John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.

Mitch

Mitch

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 19

What terminal will air Australia use in melbourne airport? 

Billichka

Billichka

13 Feb 2011

Total posts 31

Wil there be a lounge available in Brisbane?

am

am

15 Apr 2011

Total posts 586

I can't imagine many people using this service. No lounges (I'm guessing), no FF (yet), a single domestic route etc. The price sensitive end of the market will fly economy with QF or VA rather than fly with VC in business IMO. Good on them for being brave though...

AlG

AlG

04 Nov 2010

Total posts 674

'Brave' is certainly one word for it, always good to see competition but $500 from Melbourne to Brissie with no points, no lounges? No thanks.

AirportAddict

AirportAddict

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

05 Jan 2012

Total posts 335

The standard sounds a bit unattainable for an airline that doesnt even have lounges or a loyalty program!

Fire up and build a few lounges, a loyalty program and flights to sydney and we may consider flying with u, air australia!!!


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