Travel into one of Australia’s favourite overseas regions is set to be turbocharged with Jetstar announcing several new routes will open within the next year.
The budget carrier will launch direct flights between Perth and Singapore, Bangkok and Phuket in late 2024, with the airline’s chief executive describing it as one of Jetstar’s “most significant network expansions” in recent times.
Southeast Asia was the most popular region for Australians heading on an international getaway last year, with site-seeing tourists tipping more than $4.5 billion into local economies.
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Bali was again hugely popular, with more than 400,000 customers alone flying Jetstar into the Island of the Gods.
Countries in Southeast Asia have taken notice, with Australia considered a “primary target” among tourism marketers thanks to its proximity and traveller spending habits.
The return flights back into Perth are expected to provide a big injection into Western Australia’s economy too.
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More than 83,000 travellers poured in from Singapore last financial year, making the city-state WA’s second biggest market for inbound visitors.
“We’re very excited to see Jetstar investing in Perth with these three new direct flights to Singapore, Bangkok and Phuket, creating even more opportunities for South East Asian travellers to come and visit our beautiful state,” WA’s Tourism Minister Rita Saffioti said.
Jetstar has also revealed it is boosting its WA footprint by opening a new Perth base that will house more than 60 pilots and four aircraft, including its newest plane — the Airbus A321neo LR.
The extra routes grow the carrier’s Asia network to 13 destinations and more will be announced in the coming months.
“This is a huge investment in our Perth operations,” Jetstar chief executive Stephanie Tully said.
“Having pilots and aircraft based in the west gives us the ability to add hundreds of thousands more low-cost seats to exciting new destinations across both our international and domestic network.
Jetstar will fly directly into Singapore within the next year, with the destination one of three new routes announced by the budget carrier. Credit: Allan Baxter/Getty Images
“We expect to see West Australian travel demand continue to grow as we add more flights, and we’re excited to share more details of our Perth network expansion soon.”
Visitor spending nudged $17 billion in the 2022-23 financial year and Saffioti said Jetstar’s announcement “shows how popular and lucrative” the WA tourism sector is.
“I am excited to see what additional routes come online when Jetstar’s Perth base is up and running,” she said.
Jetstar chief executive Stephanie Tully said the airline was undergoing one of its most significant network expansions in recent years, Credit: 7NEWS
“Direct flights form a really important part of our tourism strategy as they bring more visitors into our state, inject valuable tourism dollars into our local economy and of course, support local jobs and businesses.”
The announcement came as low-cost airline VietJet’s first direct flight from Ho Chi Minh City prepared to touch down at Perth Airport.
The carrier will run five return flights each week connecting Ho Chi Minh City to Perth and Adelaide.
It also follows news last month that Vietnam carrier Bamboo Airways was stripping back international flights, sparking mayhem for Sydney and Melbourne travellers where flights will no longer operate.
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