Virgin Australia boosts domestic flights

Virgin Australia is ramping up its existing flights and bringing other routes back online, with a range of new health measures.

By Chris Chamberlin, June 11 2020
Virgin Australia boosts domestic flights

As travel restrictions begin to ease, Virgin Australia is expanding its network of domestic flights – increasing services on existing routes, and bringing back many others that were recently paused.

Previously popular routes like Sydney-Perth, Brisbane-Perth, Brisbane-Canberra and Brisbane-Adelaide will all return to Virgin Australia’s schedule by early July.

Existing flights on the ‘golden triangle’ between Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane also get a boost.

“By early July, we will have gradually added approximately 30,000 seats across 320 flights per week to our schedule - more than doubling our capacity and providing more flexibility for guests,” says Virgin Australia Group Chief Commercial Officer John MacLeod.

“It’s early days but these services will be a welcomed boost to Australia’s tourism industry and help the nation’s economy and aviation sector to rebuild,” MacLeod adds.

Virgin Australia's domestic network

By July 6 2020, here's how Virgin Australia's domestic network will shape up:

Of course, not every route will be served every day. Here are the days you can expect to fly on the routes above:

City pair

Days of operation, by July 6

East coast

Sydney – Melbourne

Every day

Sydney – Brisbane

Every day

Sydney – Gold Coast

Monday to Friday

Melbourne – Brisbane

Every day

East-west

Sydney – Perth

Every day

Melbourne – Perth

Every day

Brisbane – Perth

Every day

Adelaide

Adelaide – Melbourne

Monday, Wednesday, Friday

Adelaide – Brisbane

Monday, Wednesday, Friday

Adelaide – Perth

Monday, Wednesday, Friday

Canberra

Canberra – Melbourne

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday

Canberra – Brisbane

Monday, Tuesday, Friday
(Monday, Thursday, Friday from Brisbane)

Intra WA

Perth – Broome

Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday

Perth – Kalgoorlie

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

Perth – Karratha

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

Perth – Kununurra

Friday

Perth – Newman

Wednesday and Thursday

Perth – Port Hedland

Tuesday and Thursday

Intra QLD

Brisbane – Cairns

Every day

Brisbane – Mackay

Every day

Brisbane – Rockhampton

Every day

Brisbane – Townsville

Every day

Routes marked "every day" may be a single daily return flight, or have multiple return services each day.

New health procedures in airports, on aircraft

Virgin Australia is also introducing a range of additional coronavirus safety measures, which will be rolled out onto all flights by June 12.

These include pre-departure questionnaires and health screening of passengers, contactless check-in, new boarding and disembarkation processes, more regular aircraft cleaning, and “expanded social distancing measures.”

However, that won’t extend to keeping middle seats blocked on every flight.

“Wherever possible, we will try to do our best to keep an empty seat between guests travelling alone, however this may not always be available,” explains Virgin Australia Group Medical Officer Dr Sara Souter. “Families and travelling companions will be able to sit together.”

Passengers are “encouraged”, but not required, to download and use the Australian Government’s COVIDsafe contact tracing app, available via the Apple App Store and Google Play for Android.

Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller, and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins not just with a single step, but also a strong latte, a theatre ticket, and later in the day, a good gin and tonic.

01 Aug 2019

Total posts 7

good to see more flights

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

I get the safety side of things at the moment but people also need to consider the financial impact as well, the current Brisbane terminal is like an old Eastern European border crossing with a line for people they like and other lines for people they dislike, and they don't even ask every person to self isolate.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 255

Really? How long has that been the case (i.e. an old Eastern European border crossing)? Has something changed or are you 'embellishing' to emphasise a point? I transited through BNE in December and don't recall seeing that sort of 'control'?

Thanks in advance,

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

Best way to describe it I feel at the current moment, friends laugh and agree.

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

Boeing-Tragic, at Brisbane Airport they have Police and the Army onsite, once you try and get out of the terminal you need to line up in several lines, with them moving people from line to line and this takes about an hour or two, on top of this they don't even ask people to self isolate.

11 Jun 2020

Total posts 2

Interestingly I'm in Cairns and there's definitely more air traffic today than I've noticed for quite a while. The city itself has been so quiet though again there does seem to be more people around this week compared to last. Notice there's one VA flight from Brisbane today.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Nov 2014

Total posts 349

Will their lounges be open like Qantas'?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

Great to see for Virgin. Looking forward to see more positive news for VA in coming months contrary to what some people were expecting.

AV
AV

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

16 Apr 2013

Total posts 45

Tassie gets left off the map, again.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 692

I know it's not really important at the moment given the Qld border is closed but it is weird that SYD-OOL doesn't run on weekends given it is a tourist route.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 752

You can't just enter Qld for a holiday from NSW at this point in time.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

16 Mar 2020

Total posts 8

Went to book MEL PER - July 12 (Sunday) 1 737 flight only, but from July 13 onwards looks like normal schedule is in the system with 6 direct flights including 2 x A330 fights...not sure you can have all these flights when the border is still closed and 2 week quarantine is imposed at the other end...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

27 Nov 2017

Total posts 20

They are leaving existing flights in the system for as long as they can to avoid airline initiated cancellations (which they are then obliged to fully refund to passengers). Passenger initiated cancelations result in a credit or paying a free for for the refund. My Perth to Melbourne flight with Qantas on 3 July was only cancelled yesterday, so I was finally able to request a full refund (although it will take 8-10 weeks to process!). Likewise, my Sydney to Singapore flight on BA (first leg to Europe) for July 7 was only cancelled last week, even though it would never have been on the cards.

11 Jun 2020

Total posts 2

Either an error or Virgin know something we don't about the WA border opening.

18 Jul 2018

Total posts 16

Strange that there's no Adelaide-Sydney flight. Is there really more demand to go from SA to QLD direct than to NSW and the largest city in Australia?

Pretty frustrating as VA ADL-SYD and return was a leg I was on almost twice a month for a long time before all this! :-(

Joe
Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 479

Poor Virgin still confused and trying so hard. On a road to nowhere as usual.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

Yes looks like they going south...and north, east and west.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 255

Enjoy your Qantas flights Joe, hopefully the cabin crew have learnt to smile (or at least fake it) during their 'unplanned sabbatical' - perhaps some QF cabin crew will now actually be grateful to have them and - God forbid - smile and be happy to be of service? Trusting you'll let us know?

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

Joe, I once asked if I could give a VA staff member a gift voucher due to her going out her way to help my mother, thats why I prefer VA mate. Customer Service, do I start stating the horror stories with QF. I'll let you enjoy that service.

Do they still have money? I thought their cash is going to run out in the next week or two. With new owners not onboard until mid or late August.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

I think these flights are subsidised by govt until Sept now.

23 Oct 2014

Total posts 181

The Administrator has said multiple times they have enough money to complete the sale and in fact their financial position has IMPROVED from the previous frequently quoted old “$100m” State back in May for a (June deadline), it's a line incorrectly repeated and not updated by the media and re posted like you have. It's not correct, or factual. AFR has had a few articulated explaining this.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

As a customer of Virgin who benefits greatly from the competition in Aus skies, I want to see the underdog pull through and turn around to become a great success story in the years to come.

The comment above is a great testament to the level of quality customer service at VA that the company thrives on. When the time is right again to fly, VA will have my continued support. Wish all its employees the best in future to come.

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

I think the government has stuffed the airline industry by not supporting Virgin, Alliance has reported not on this site that they are buying 20 new planes (has QLD done a deal with Alliance looks that way with Whitsundays), Rex is reported to be doing the triangle flights Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne. This will impact Qantas and Virgin's bottom line causing a snowball affect in another couple of years rather then getting all the bad credit out by July, August and things going back to normal.

23 Oct 2014

Total posts 181

How can anybody make any negative claims against Virgin when they are dealing with huge imbalances in Government assistance rendered to date during COVID and also government contracts awarded over years and years, they look like they are keep up the “air fair” fight, good on them I'll always support them. The published figures are jaw dropping the imbalance when comparing Virgins allocation to what Qantas (hundreds of millions) and even Rex (a company 10 times smaller) was allocated.

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 454

So True, Politicians are suppose to implement what the majority of the people who voted them in want, not their own beliefs or there own uses and this whole thing stinks.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 Dec 2014

Total posts 46

The obvious notable exceptions of flights to the NT and Tassie. Hopefully it goes well for them.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Oct 2018

Total posts 9

Tigerair will be back also as heard on the grapevine that crew are been rostered for training. Great news for the staff.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

So Ive heard that also - but it may only be short lived it depends on the new owners of Virgin and what they want to do.

10 Jan 2020

Total posts 2

As usual Darwin and the NT are the biggest losers with airlines flying domestically.

Joe
Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 479

Compass MkII, Ansett MkII, Virgin MkII........ notice the trend?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Aug 2013

Total posts 152

@Joe such a biased and non worthy comment - the director of compass in the 90s was actually convicted and jailed for theft and fraud within the business. ANSETT we all know the story - none of the airlines are on any sort of the same wavelength with how the business was run so you can't compare them. How about just let it run its course.

Whilst it is entertaining, I am genuinely interested to know what possess a person to be so caught up in wanting to see an airline fail and have the time to be on the offensive with very ignorant comments you mention throughout. Did you have a bad flight with Virgin once upon a time?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 255

I hope Virgin re-starts their regional air services soon. I usually book flights for my parents (85 and 84 year olds) on Virgin, but recently had to use Qantaslink and Rex (between them both, there's now only 4 flights/week to/from their 'regional city'. Aside from the added complexity of aircraft boarding and disembarkation (Virgin flights use aerobridges to piers), I asked Dad how his flight was. Very politely he replied something like "remember the bi-planes in those Biggles books I gave you?".

For the benefit of 'Joe' above, you too should soon try and take a flight on one of those aiucraft - it would be 'character building', to say the least.

04 Dec 2017

Total posts 54

Virgin are plastic cup lineage, they tried proper glass now it's back to plastic cups-I think they know that worked before and it can work again-we need two airlines.

10 Jul 2016

Total posts 2

TASSIE! But as Tas borders closed at July 6th.... I don't blame Virgin for not including TAS. #opentassiebordersasap

Rxm
Rxm

Jetstar Airways - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Jan 2017

Total posts 44

Interesting to see no Sydney Canberra route.


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