Northern Territory Government Newsroom

Virgin Australia brings new competition to Alice-Darwin route

The Territory Government is thrilled to confirm that Virgin Australia will fly between Darwin and Alice Springs three times a week from March next year.

“This is fantastic news for the Territory bringing competition to this important route for the first time in more than a decade,” Chief Minister Adam Giles said.

“For too long Central Australia has been reliant on a single carrier for flights from Darwin restricting business and tourist traffic."

The announcement follows a meeting between Mr Giles and Virgin Australia Chief Executive Officer, John Borghetti in Darwin yesterday.

“This is a key route connecting the Centre to the rest of Northern Australia and I am thrilled that Virgin has stepped up to offer passengers choice and put downward pressure on prices," Mr Giles said.

“I’d like to extend my personal thanks to John Borghetti for this vote of confidence in the Northern Territory. I look forward to working with Virgin Australia over the years ahead.”

Mr Borghetti said the new flights coincide with the opening of the new Virgin Australia Lounge at Darwin Airport in March.

“We recognise the importance of the Northern Territory as a key business and tourism destination in Australia,” Mr Borghetti said

“We will continue to expand our domestic network for the benefit of Australians and look forward to providing more choice to our customers on these key routes from early next year.”

Minister for Tourism Matt Conlan welcome today’s announcement as a huge boost for tourism in Central Australia.

“Virgin Australia's arrival to the Centre will be a huge boost for local business and tour operators and our plans to drive economic development in the town,” Mr Conlan said.

"This will now open up the Centre to the Star Alliance global network which will allow passengers to codeshare with Silk Air and Singapore airlines into Asia and Europe on just one ticket.

“Virgin Australia's announcement is a show of support for our Do the NT campaign which is encouraging more and more Australians and overseas visitors to visit the Territory.

“We have worked hard over the past 12 months to implement a range of new strategies to turn around years of declining visitor numbers.

“There is still much work to do but we are starting to see some positive signs and small, consistent increases in visitor numbers to the Territory.

“We will continue to work with all our airline partners to promote services to Central Australia and achieve our Tourism Vision 2020 goal of a $2.2 billion economy by 2020.”

Virgin Australia release attached below.

Media Contact: Danielle Parry 0413 081 801

Virgin Australia Announcement