Flights between Mount Isa, Darwin and the Gold Coast will be a reality from next month when the city welcomes a new airline partner.
Airnorth announced yesterday it would start weekly services between Mount Isa and the Gold Coast and Mount Isa and Darwin from October 8.
Mount Isa Airport’s chief operating officer Kevin Gill said the news was a boost for residents, the business community and the tourism industry.
“This new service will be extremely positive for business travellers going between Australia’s largest resource areas,” he said.
“This is also a fantastic opportunity for the region to link with other key iconic tourism destinations within Australia, combining our great Outback in Mount Isa with the beaches of the Gold Coast and the tropics of Darwin. It will also give them the opportunity in both Gold Coast and Darwin to connect on to a myriad of international destinations.”
Flights to Darwin will provide a direct link to destinations such as Singapore, Bali and Ho Chi Minh, along with regional centres such as Perth, Broome and Kununurra. The Gold Coast connects with overseas locations such as Tokyo, Auckland, Bangkok as well as a numerous cities throughout Australia.
Mount Isa Chamber of Commerce president Brett Peterson urged the community to support the new service.
“To see Mount Isa recognised as needing this service is outstanding,” he said.
“We can now show ourselves as an international tourism destination. Where in the past people would have flown right over the top of us, we’re now a hop, skip and a jump along the journey.”
“This is something we’ve been asking for for years. Now it’s here, let’s support it.”
Airnorth’s chief executive Michael Bridge said the route would be operated by one of the airline’s new generation E170 jets.
“We are launching these services following detailed discussions with representatives of the resources sector in Mount Isa,” he said. “This initiative provides a logical link between two of Australia’s largest resource areas, Western Queensland and the Top End.”
The flight time between Mount Isa and the Gold Coast will be about two hours with a departure time of 8.55am each Thursday. The flights to Darwin will leave at 3.10pm and take about 1hour 45 minutes.
Airfares will start from $204 to Darwin and $265 to the Gold Coast.