Passengers step down in Coffs Harbour after the arrival of the historic Qantas direct flight from Melbourne.
Passengers step down in Coffs Harbour after the arrival of the historic Qantas direct flight from Melbourne. Leigh Jensen

Qantas direct flight from Melbourne an economic game changer

QANTAS passengers arrived on time when the airline made its inaugural direct flight from Melbourne to Coffs Harbour on Saturday.

After departing the southern capital at 11.40am, the Boeing 737-800 touched down just under two hours later in Coffs Harbour at 1.35pm.

Before the landmark trip, customers travelling between the two cities would normally have to travel via Sydney but the direct services will shave over two hours off the trip.

Qantas Domestic CEO Lyell Strambi said direct flights will provide more competition for air services and boost for tourism to the area.

"The new route is another enhancement in our superior network, giving customers more choice for travel destinations," he said.

Coffs Harbour Mayor Denise Knight welcomed the new service.

"This is a red-letter day for the Coffs Coast and Coffs Harbour Regional Airport," Cr Knight said.

"Having Qantas begin this new route is a ringing endorsement for our city and region.

"It not only opens up new tourism and business possibilities in Melbourne but potentially, in the whole of Victoria."

The service will operate each Saturday, departing Melbourne at 11.40am and arriving into Coffs Harbour at 1.35pm.

The return service will depart Coffs Harbour at 2.15pm and arriving into Melbourne at 4.15pm.



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