Virgin Australia is expanding its footprint through a codeshare agreement with Link Airways, adding 17 services and 90 flights a week to its network.
The partnership will expand the airline’s reach by around 45% in regional Australia by bringing the number of destinations available through its services up to 42 and a combined 365 daily flights between the two airlines.
Alistair Hartley, Virgin Australia’s chief strategy and transformation officer, said: “Today’s announcement in partnership with Link Airways underscores our commitment to delivering great value, flexibility and choice to Australians, and boosting connections for customers living in regional Australia.”
Hartley also highlighted the inclusion of destinations such as Inverell, Wollongong and Biloela, where Virgin will become the only major airline to fly to their airports, with all three to be served with routes to and from Brisbane.
The majority of new services in Virgin’s network will fly to and from the Queensland capital, along with two new routes from Sydney, three from Melbourne, and two from the country’s capital Canberra.
Link Airways CEO Andrew Major said: “Link Airways is very pleased to join Virgin Australia in announcing this codeshare agreement which will provide significant additional travel opportunities to passengers Australia-wide, particularly those in regional areas.”
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The codeshare agreement builds on the existing partnership between the two airlines, which began in 2022 when Link partnered with Virgin’s loyalty program Velocity Frequent Flyer to allow its customers to earn points and access the larger airline’s airport lounges.
Virgin Australia, which is owned by private equity firm Bain Capital despite operating under the Virgin brand, was set to begin its initial public offering last year but has yet to move ahead with the proposal, with CEO Jayne Hrdlicka saying the company was in “no rush” in July.