Jetstar will boost its presence in Adelaide but slash flights from Darwin as the low-cost airline rejigs its schedule in the face of "increased capacity and competition, particularly on international routes from foreign carriers", the airline says.
Adelaide will see a new route to Auckland along with non-stop flights to Bali this month, while four of Jetstar's Airbus A320 aircraft will be based in Adelaide from 31 March 2014.
The City of Churches will also get a new cabin crew and pilot base "to pave the way for additional services", according to Jetstar Australia and New Zealand CEO David Hall.
“Basing four aircraft at Adelaide will allow us to expand our schedule and add one extra daily flight between Melbourne and Adelaide and Sydney and Adelaide respectively."
However, with three of those A320s being relocated from darwin, the top end capital will see several services cut back or dropped altogether.
From 31 March 2014 Jetstar will axe its four times weekly service from Darwin to Manila and Tokyo, drop two Darwin-Brisbane flights per week (with the schedule going back to daily) and pull one weekly Darwin-Denpasar flight, with that route also going back to daily.
The Darwin-Singapore service will also be wound back from nine flights per week to one per day, with that flight being handed over to the Singapore-based Jetstar Asia.
The only upside is that flights between Darwin and Cairns will be bumped up from three per week to daily.
"Jetstar has been clear in the past that our flying from Darwin is among the most marginal on the network" Jetstar's Hall said. "These changes will ensure we maintain the highest productivity of our aircraft and reflect our strategy to deploy aircraft on routes to meet market demand."
Adelaide, on the other hand, has been a growth centre for Jetstar, Hall says.
"It makes sense to base aircraft where there is more network growth as it keeps our fares low and ensures we have the flexibility to optimise our network and adapt to changing market conditions... we believe the establishment of a dedicated crew base will provide a solid foundation to continue to grow low fares from the capital of South Australia."
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