Qantas to commence year round Christchurch-Brisbane flights following stellar summer

23 February 2016

A record-breaking summer at Christchurch Airport and a stellar result from its seasonal service has prompted Qantas to expand the service to operate all year round.

From June 2016, Qantas will operate the direct Christchurch to Brisbane service three times a week, growing to four times a week over the busy summer months.

“In addition I have no doubt it will also help continue to boost visitor arrivals from Australia and Asia into Christchurch, which is the gateway to the South Island.”

Christchurch International Airport Chief Commercial Officer - Aeronautical, Justin Watson

Chief Commercial Officer - Aeronautical, Justin Watson, says the announcement represents a more than four-fold increase in seats by Qantas on the route and is a great vote of confidence in Christchurch and the South Island.

“The summer service between Christchurch and Brisbane has performed very well this summer, with flights averaging more than 90% full,” he says.

“That’s especially heartening because the number of seats available on this route has been down about 35% in the five years since the earthquakes.

“Qantas’ decision to bring the flights back last December was welcomed at the time, has been great for travellers in both directions and therefore paid off for the airline. We are delighted that has resulted in the airline now deciding to make the service year-round.”

Mr Watson says South Islanders wanting to warm up over the southern winter are likely to make good use of the Brisbane flight, either to Brisbane itself or as a connection to a number of ports in Asia.

“In addition I have no doubt it will also help continue to boost visitor arrivals from Australia and Asia into Christchurch, which is the gateway to the South Island.”

Mr Watson says Christchurch Airport is enjoying a record-breaking summer, with its busiest day ever scheduled within the next fortnight. A 16% increase in passenger numbers, as a result of increased and new services from existing and new airline partners, bringing about 50,000 more visitors and $150M new GDP into the South Island.