Low-cost airline Bonza has announced its intention to fly twice-weekly direct from Bundaberg to Melbourne Airport from mid-2022.
The historic partnership with Bundaberg Regional Airport is part of the largest announcement in Australia’s aviation history with a total of 25 new routes announced nationally, subject to regulatory approval.
Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey said local residents, the tourism industry and freezing southerners are all winners.
“It’s Bonza that Bundaberg is getting direct services to Melbourne, and I urge everyone to get on board, go purple and take to the skies to support them,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“I’ve been working for years to get new flights into Bundaberg, and this is great news.
“Local people can soon travel faster and cheaper to enjoy top-flight sports and cultural experiences and visit loved ones, while our tourism industry will have access to a massive new market.
“Bundaberg offers the quintessential Aussie experience from iconic beverages to bush heritage, turtles, pristine beaches and the southern Great Barrier Reef.
“As the home of AFL legend Emma Zielke and Melbourne Storm star Felise Kaufusi, we promise a warm Bundy welcome to all our southern visitors.
“Many Victorians have moved to Bundaberg for the lifestyle and to escape Covid lockdowns and cold weather.
“Many more can now get a taste of the incredible lifestyle we have to offer.”
Bundaberg Regional Council owns and operates Bundaberg Regional Airport.
In October last year, Bonza announced it was taking to Australian skies and promised not to fly the golden triangle between Australia’s three largest cities.
Sunshine Coast Airport has been named the Bonza home base with an initial two based aircraft and Bonza’s head office. Melbourne Airport is named the second airport base to welcome two of Bonza’s fleet of Boeing 737 8 Max, which can carry up to 210 passengers.
Today, Chief Commercial Officer Carly Povey said they delivered on that promise by giving more choice to people living in regional areas.
“With the new route directly connecting Bundaberg and Melbourne, we will be delivering on our promise to give Aussies more options for leisure travel,” Ms Povey said.
Bonza will also fly to Gladstone, Mackay, Rockhampton, Coffs Harbour, Albury, Newcastle, Toowoomba, Whitsundays , Cairns, Townsville, Mildura and Avalon
“Not only will the flights open up new markets for the region’s tourism industry, locals will have the opportunity to explore their own backyard with ultra-low fares.”
She also shared Bonza’s decision to go paperless with the launch of its own app saying its commitment to technology is part of a broader focus on customer experience and sustainability.
“We encourage everyone to download the new app to be the first in the know for flights going on sale, fare sales, destination news and travel tips.
“We’re also offering, via the app, the chance to win flights”.
Bonza said, once all functions are added to the app in the coming weeks, it will be where Aussies can plan, book and manage their bookings.
It’ll also be where travellers can check in and access their boarding passes – eliminating the need for paper passes at the airport.
Once onboard, the retail offering, travel information and much more will be available exclusively through the app.
Australians are encouraged to download the app “Fly Bonza” on the Apple App Store or Google Play now and keep an eye out for updates as new functions are added.
Flights are due to go on sale within the next eight weeks, pending regulatory approval.