Regional air services into Sydney Airport received a boost today with the inaugural flight by the revamped regional carrier, Regional Express.
The first Saab 340 regional aircraft painted in the new Rex livery left Sydney for Canberra at noon, farewelled with a rainbow of water from the airport`s fire fighting service before a phalanx of airline executives and media.
Regional Express will begin flying from Sydney to Canberra and 14 regional NSW ports from today.
Regional Express is the operational name for AustraliaWide Airlines which acquired the former regional carriers Hazelton and Kendell last week.
The Kendell operations of Regional Express will continue to operate from the former Ansett Terminal. However Hazelton Airlines operations will continue through the Domestic Express Terminal until Sunday, when all Rex flights will operate from the former Ansett Terminal.
Sydney Airports Corporation (SACL) Director Aviation, Greg Russell said the airport strongly supported regional airlines, noting the vital economic and social role of such operators.
“This is a great first breakthrough for travellers and especially for people from country NSW. We wholeheartedly support the commitment by Rex`s backers to expand air services to regional NSW communities,” Mr Russell said.
“We are working hard to complete negotiations with Regional Express so that Rex passengers can begin using the full facilities of the revamped former Ansett Terminal from 2 September,” he said.