Australian no-frills carrier Jetstar Airways will start a daily,
one-stop service between Singapore and the southern Australian city
of Melbourne, the company's chief executive said yesterday.
Jetstar, a subsidiary of Qantas Airways Ltd, is also planning to
establish an Asian hub for its planned long-haul operations between
Australia and Europe, Alan Joyce said on the sidelines of an
aviation conference in Singapore.
"We are focused on developing it through one hub initially,"
Joyce said. "We hope that there will be multiple daily services by
the time this is finished."
The airline is deciding which of five Asian cities - Hong Kong,
Bangkok, Singapore, Ho Chi Minh City or Kuala Lumpur - it will use
as a transit point.
Joyce also said Jetstar's deliberations on its expansion into
Europe have been slowed by the recently announced delays in the
delivery of Boeing's new 787 plane.
Jetstar is looking at flying to Athens and Rome, Joyce said, but
is considering other factors as well in choosing destinations.
"We haven't made a decision on that, because economic conditions
could change a lot in the next year," he said. "Then we have to
make a judgment call depending on which markets look like they have
the potential when we get closer to it.
"And unfortunately, with the 787 delays, it just pushed that
decision back by a few months."
Jetstar now doesn't expect to get its first 787 until May 2009 -
delayed from August this year - so services to Europe aren't likely
to start until late next year or early 2010.
Boeing Co last week said the inaugural flight of the 787 will
face even further delays.
(Shanghai Daily January 24, 2008)