Virgin Australia has today announced quite a number of substantial changes which covers both international and domestic services. As you may have seen, Virgin will soon be starting services to Tokyo in partnership with their codeshare partner ANA who already services two cities in Australia – Sydney & Perth.
Virgin has operated services to Hong Kong from both Sydney and Melbourne for a couple of years, Still, unfortunately for them, the Melbourne route really hasn’t been a good profit maker and will often leave at least half empty which really does affect profitability over a period of time.
As a result of the lack of demand, Virgin has today stated that they will be discontinuing their Melbourne – Hong Kong route from February 11th 2020 and will instead focus on the Sydney services as well as the upcoming Tokyo service. The new Japan service is expected to be much more profitable and popular with passengers over the current Hong Kong – Melbourne service.
Per Virgin Australia CEO, Paul Scurrah:
“We maintain a strong network of destinations and it’s important that our schedule continues to reflect demand from our business and leisure customers. Some of today’s changes respond to shifting demand on some routes, and others are about refocussing Virgin Australia and Tigerair Australia on the destinations we feel they are best suited,”
“Demand for the Hong Kong route has declined in line with the political landscape and we feel this is now best serviced through a single daily Sydney-Hong Kong service,”
To see my review of the Hong Kong – Melbourne flight I took in business class, click the link here.
Below is the entire list of changes that the Virgin Australia group will be making and I’ve also included the routes Tiger will be adjusting for those interested:
Cancellations for both Virgin Australia and Tiger:
- Virgin will be ending Perth to Gold Coast services
- Virgin will be ending Perth to Canberra services
- Virgin will be ending Sydney to Christchurch services
- Tiger will be ending Brisbane to Adelaide services
- Tiger will be ending Brisbane to Darwin services
- Tiger will be ending Sydney to Proserpine services
New services to be introduced:
- Virgin will be starting Brisbane – Haneda services from the 29th of March 2020
- Virgin will be starting Melbourne – Denpasar from the 29th of March 2019
Services that will be reduced:
- Virgin will be reducing Sydney to Auckland services from 19x times weekly to 14x
- Virgin will be reducing Sydney to Tamworth services from 13x to 6x weekly
Services that will be increasing:
- Virgin will be increasing Brisbane to Adelaide services by 5x weekly to make up for the reduced Tiger services
- Virgin will be increasing Sydney to Port Macquarie services by 4x weekly
While it’s disappointing to see the removal of the Hong Kong – Melbourne route, it really is for the best as it wasn’t profitable when the loads were totally inconsistent. It’s also interesting to see the amount of smaller domestic and short-haul international services.