Virgin Group Chairman, Richard Branson last night joined his Virgin Blue team in celebrating the low fare carrier`s second birthday at the airline’s home base in Brisbane.
For the second year in a row, a hangar party was held with more than 2,000 people turning out to mark the birthday milestone, partying and dancing the night away with Richard, Virgin Blue CEO Brett Godfrey and friends.
Before the celebrations got rowdy, Richard seized the moment to announce that Virgin Blue will add yet another Queensland destination to its route network with direct flights from Sydney to Maroochydore from October 17th.
Richard also took it upon himself to announce a special launch fare of $89* one-way.
The special $89* one-way launch fare will be on sale until 8th September (or until sold out) and is available on all flights for travel between 17th October and 30th November.
Virgin Blue everyday Sydney-Maroochydore fares will start from $109* one-way, with a Fully Flexible fare of $279* one-way, some 39% lower than Qantas’s Fully Flexible fare of $455 one-way. Convenient connections will also be available from Melbourne and Adelaide via Sydney to the Sunshine Coast.
The decision was made due to the huge demand from Virgin Blue Guests for a direct Maroochydore option, with thousands driving to and from the Sunshine Coast to Brisbane to take advantage of Virgin Blue’s low fares.
Richard Branson said, “We also noticed the carriers currently flying to the Sunshine Coast weren’t offering too many of the cheap seats on the Sydney-Maroochydore service, especially compared to fares on the routes Virgin Blue does fly such as Brisbane and the Gold Coast. It’s unfortunate that people have to pay more because of a monopoly but we hope to change that by offering another airline choice.”
The Sunshine Coast hosted the first ever Virgin Blue celebrity mystery launch flight prior to the official start up of the airline two years ago and Virgin Blue is looking forward to returning to Maroochydore on a daily basis.
Richard added, “The lure of Queensland and the Sunshine Coast as a tourist destination is huge and it’s great to be back again. We are delighted to be providing low fare access to one of Australia’s most popular holiday destinations, allowing easier access to lovely spots like Maroochy and Noosa. It will also provide a great opportunity for business people to travel to Sydney and beyond more regularly without blowing their travel budget.”
For Sunshine Coast locals it means affordable access to the harbour city, while Sydney-siders can head direct to the Sunshine Coast for a weekend getaway.
Virgin Blue will operate one of its brand new Next Generation 737-700 aircraft on the Maroochydore route meaning more than an extra 1000 seats a week in each direction. The airline will consider increasing services according to demand.
“We’ve always said that if you support us, we’ll support you and we have every intention of becoming the airline of choice for people wanting affordable, fun flights to the Sunshine Coast”, finished Richard.
* All fares include the passenger ticket levy, airport charges and the global security charge and are for flights booked on the Internet. $10 more by phone.