Australia-based full-service carrier Strategic Airlines plans to launch twice-weekly service between Melbourne and Phuket in Thailand on February 22, pending government approval.
The new service, which will operate on Tuesdays and Fridays, will represent Strategic Airlines’ entry to the Melbourne market and Strategic says it will be the only carrier to offer nonstop service between Australia’s second-largest city and Thailand’s top beach-tourism destination.
To mark its entry to the Melbourne market, Strategic Airlines is offering launch fares of A$598 round-trip, inclusive of all taxes and fees. The fares go on sale on November 24 at www.flystrategic.com and via participating travel agents. There is an extra A$25 fee for booking by phone. The fares are available for travel from Melbourne to Thailand from February 22, 2011.
Strategic Airlines will operate its Melbourne-Phuket flights with Airbus A330-200s outfitted with 274 seats in two-class configuration featuring a business class and an economy class.
“We are thrilled to be starting Melbourne operations and to be offering Victorians a brand-new airline choice,” says Damien Vasta, Strategic Airlines’ head of commercial. “We believe there is a strong traffic base between Victoria and Thailand and we look forward to working with partners in tourism and industry to build our services over time.We are pleased to be the only carrier in the market offering direct services between Melbourne and Phuket and we see this new route as an integral part of our international network expansion.”
The airline’s schedule for the Melbourne-Phuket route calls for its flight VC240 to depart Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport (MEL) at 11:00 a.m. and arrive at Phuket International Airport (HKT) at 3:50 p.m. local time. In the other direction, flight VC241 is timed to leave HKT at 6:50 p.m. and to land at MEL at 7:25 a.m. local time the following morning.
Strategic Airlines is a two-class, full-service carrier offering complimentary food, beverages and in-flight entertainment. The privately owned Australian airline was launched in September 2009 and is steadily expanding its network to include niche domestic and international routes. The airline already operates Perth-Derby-Denpasar and Brisbane-Port Hedland-Denpasar international services. Brisbane-Townsville-Denpasar services will begin on December 3, 2010.
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