Qantas will be soon reintroducing a route that they operated 15 years ago, Sydney – Ballina. The demand for travel to Byron Bay and surrounding towns has massively increased according to Qantas as the region has quickly been expanding and modernising with the introduction of many new hotels.
While Qantas has been absent from the Ballina area, their LCC Jetstar has been filling their place with services to both Sydney and Melbourne. There are usually 3-4 services daily to Sydney while 1 to Melbourne. Virgin Australia also operates one daily service to Sydney while Flypelican operates a regular service to Newcastle.
The new services from Sydney – Ballina is set to start on March 29th, 2020.
Qantas has announced that the service will run return daily, here are the flight details for the service:
QF2062 departs Sydney at 7:25 pm and arrives into Ballina airport at 9:05 pm.
QF2063 departs Ballina at 7:05 am and arrives into Sydney at 9:00 am.
Per Qantas Domestic CEO Andrew David,
“Byron Bay continues to be an incredibly popular destination for holidaymakers of all types. We’ve seen more and more luxury hotels established in recent years and we think it’s the right time for Qantas to again fly directly to Ballina,”
Per Minister of Tourism NSW, Stuart Ayres:
“NSW’s far north coast offers incredible beaches, world-class produce and seafood, and a lifestyle that is the envy of many, so it’s great that Qantas is making it even easier for visitors to explore Ballina and beyond,” Minister Ayres said.
“Now is the perfect time to escape the city and support regional NSW by staying local and buying local, giving the tourism industry in these communities a welcome boost.”
These services will be utilising Dash-8 Q300’s which I find a little odd considering their competitor operates a 737 and Jetstar with their A320. However, I guess there really wouldn’t be too many buying business class instead of one of the triangle routes which get a lot heavier premium demand.
The Dash Q300 is fitted out with a total of 50 seats in a 2-2 configuration with each of the seats featuring a pitch of 31-inches and a width of 17-inches.
Another thing I just wanted to point out quickly is the date of which this service will star. The 29th of March seems to be a massive day for services to either finish or end with Qantas adding their new Melbourne – Haneda service, Brisbane to Tamworth service & Mildura, Bendigo – Sydney route. Virgin will actually be axing it’s Melbourne – Hong Kong service that same day. I don’t if this is of any significance, but I found it pretty interesting nonetheless.
Overall I think this is a good move from Qantas, I found it odd they didn’t at least have one daily service, but I guess JQ was assisting with the majority of leisure travellers for the most part. I have been to Ballina personally a few times and quite enjoy the coastal town, Byron Bay is also only a 30-minute drive away, which is always an interesting place to visit.
Will you travel on the new Sydney – Ballina service?
Featured Image – Qantas