From 23 March 2016, Virgin Australia services on three Bali routes will cease and be replaced by services operated by its low cost subsidiary Tigerair Australia. The routes are: Adelaide-Denpasar, Melbourne-Denpasar and Perth-Denpasar.
Tigerair Australia have previously only operated domestic routes in Australia. The services will be operated by operate Boeing 737-800 aircraft configured in an all economy cabin configuration.
According to Virgin, Tiger’s ‘launch in the short-haul international market with Denpasar (Bali) as its first international destination [enables] the Group to better cater to the changing dynamics in the region’. It’s worth noting that Virgin Australia will continue to operate to Denpasar (Bali) from Sydney, Brisbane and Port Hedland.
Virgin Australia will also withdraw from the Perth – Phuket route, with the route seeing its last flights on 31 January 2016.
Virgin will boost flights year round to Christchurch in New Zealand, as well as add services across its New Zealand and Pacific Island operations out of Brisbane.
Virgin Australia has already been deploying its Airbus A330 aircraft on the four hour flight from Sydney to Fiji on selected Saturdays from April 2015. It has reaffirmed its intentions to do so by including it again in this recent announcement.
Sydney-Nadi: upgrade of Saturday Boeing 737-800 services to Airbus A330 services from 20 June 2015 to 24 October 2015 and from 12 December 2015 to 23 January 2016. An additional Boeing 737-800 service will also operate on Saturday 26 December 2015 and Saturday 3 January 2016.
Virgin’s Airbus A330 business class cabin is a lot more comfortable than the Boeing 737 business class cabin so this is a win for those that fly to Fiji on a Saturday. The A330 fleet is being refurbished with an even more comfortable business class cabin, which we expect will be flying within the next few weeks.
For those interested, Virgin’s additional services are:
Sydney-Christchurch: two return services per week year-round from 25 October 2015
Melbourne-Christchurch: one return service per week year-round from 6 November 2015
Brisbane-Auckland: one return service per week between 26 October 2015 and 13 December 2015, two return services per week between 14 December 2015 and 24 January 2016, and one return service per week between 29 February 2016 and 27 March 2016
Brisbane-Dunedin: one service per week from 18 December 2015 to 22 January 2016
Brisbane-Wellington: one service per week from 14 December 2015 to 24 January 2016
Brisbane-Christchurch: one service per week from 14 December 2015 to 24 January
Brisbane-Apia: one service per week from 16 December 2015 to 13 January 2016
Brisbane-Honiara: one service per week from 22 June 2015 to 25 January 2016
Brisbane-Nadi: one service per week between 12 December 2015 and 23 January 2016