Virgin increases trans-Tasman flights

  • 07/08/2015

Virgin Australia Group says it will increase flights to New Zealand from October and has signalled a return to profitability in the next financial year.

The increased flights across the Tasman and on Pacific routes, planned in conjunction with its alliance partner and largest shareholder Air New Zealand, represent more than 52,000 additional seats during the 2016 financial year, the company said in a statement.

The additional flights include two return services a week from Sydney to Christchurch and one return service a week from Melbourne to Christchurch.

As well a number of extra seasonal flights will be added mainly over the busy December/January period.

The airline confirmed today full-year underlying pretax loss of AU$49 million (NZ$54.93m) in the year ended of June 2015, an improvement of AU$162.7m on the previous financial year.

Today's Virgin result includes a significant improvement from its Tiger Air subsidiary which reported earnings before interest and tax growth of AU$42.7m and is also on track to profitability in the next financial year.

Virgin plans to launch the Tiger Australia brand in the short-haul international market with Denpasar in Bali, its first international destination.

From March next year Tiger Australia will use three Boeing 737-800 aircraft for daily and weekly return services from Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne to Denpasar.