Qantas flights between Bundaberg and Brisbane are returning to pre-COVID levels with the airline increasing flights per day this week.
On Monday Qantas increased Bundaberg Airport flights to three per day each way, except Saturdays which remains at one flight to and from Bundaberg per day.
While the flight numbers have not quite returned to pre-COVID levels there are now more seats available, as the airline is exclusively flying the Dash 8 Q400 from Bundaberg Airport.
The Q400 has 74 seats, making it about 50 per cent bigger than its little brother the Dash 8 Q300.
The result is that there are now up to 444 Qantas seats available per day in and out of Bundaberg.
Prior to March last year Qantas was offering slightly more flights per day on the smaller Q300 which equated to 400 seats per day.
The jump in passenger seat availability reflects the steady increase in passenger numbers through the Bundaberg Airport as the state recovers from the COVID pandemic and interstate borders reopen.
To help drive domestic tourism, Qantas also announced greater booking flexibility earlier this month, allowing unlimited flight date changes until at least January 2022.
Qantas Group Chief Customer Officer, Stephanie Tully, said with international borders closed, the best way to drive tourism is by making it even easier for Australians to explore their own backyard.
“Customers have told us that sudden changes to border restrictions by state governments are giving them second thoughts about going on holidays or taking a business trip,” Ms Tully said.
“To help manage the uncertainty, we’ve introduced the highest level of flexibility in the market so people can plan their next trip with confidence.
“As the national carrier, we have an important role to play in helping the industry recover from COVID-19, and we know that given the right opportunity, people are keen to travel.
“By giving customers unlimited flight date changes for almost a year, we think it will encourage more people to book, helping to boost tourism which is so vital to local economies and businesses around the country.”
The updated “Fly Flexible” policy applies to all new domestic flight bookings for Qantas and QantasLink and Trans-Tasman services booked until at least the end of April.
The flight date can be changed to any available for sale at the time (up to 355 days in advance). Qantas will waive the change fee (a fare difference may apply).
Customers could previously make one flight change, for travel until the end of June.