Qantas boss hints at flights on the flying kangaroo for as little as $19

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Airfares between Melbourne and Sydney could fall as low as $19, hinted Qantas chief Alan Joyce, adding that cheap flights would stimulate the domestic sector by satisfying Australians’ “pent-up demand” to travel once restrictions are lifted.

“Airfares could be half of what they are today,” he said.

“For example on Melbourne-Sydney you could see Jetstar fares of $39, you could see $19 airfares and we will still cover our cash costs.”

Existing domestic flight cancellations have been extended until the end of June. International services will remain grounded until the end of July. And there is no guarantee flights will resume in August.

Governments have already begun to ease COVID-19 restrictions and travel might be permitted again before the end of July. Qantas says it can ready to fly soon after the bans are lifted and is able to get domestic flights back in the air with just a week’s notice.

Mr Joyce said Qantas is surviving and is in a strong position, even though there is no way to predict when travel restrictions would end.

alan joyce

“Australia has done an amazing job of flattening the curve and we’re optimistic that domestic travel will start returning earlier than first thought, but we clearly won’t be back to pre-coronavirus levels anytime soon,” he said.

“With the possible exception of New Zealand, international travel demand could take years to return to what it was.”

While Qantas’ suggestion of $19 Sydney to Melbourne flights has been well-received but, according to DMARGE, many are asking: where’s the catch?

“There are three reasons these $19 flights are too good to be true,” writes James Booth.

“Firstly: you can’t fly anywhere right now, with Qantas having extended domestic flight cancellations on Tuesday to continue up until the end of June. Secondly: these prices won’t last (and even while they’re on offer, they’ll be hard to get). Thirdly, if such prices did last, we would see a ‘race to the bottom’ in Australia’s domestic aviation scene.”

Booth posits that, as Mr Joyce flagged in an open letter, flights would be $39, but $19 are a possibility, but similarly to how Ryanair releases a couple of 2 euro flights when they have spare seats and want to generate a bit of free publicity.

Do you think $19 flights are too good to be true? Where will you fly when travel bans are lifted? Will you take advantage of $19 flights?

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?

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19 Comments

Total Comments: 19
  1. 0
    0

    I think he said that they would be Jetstar fares, not Qantas, so maybe they could be $19 before all the add ons start piling on.

  2. 0
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    If airfares can be so cheap and the company still shows a profit then we must have been ripped off at previous high rates OR they will go into liquidation with all the money of pre paid tickets. Will any travel insurance company cover these refunds if the airline goes into liquidation? If not then don’t take the risk. Remember the old saying,” If it sounds too good to be true then ???????????

  3. 0
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    Mmm.. Jetstar so add extra costs for everything. And for that price we are guessing, we might be standing up. We don’t want to fly till Virgin are back in the air. Just hoping that’s possible.

    • 0
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      I agree, I used Qantas many years ago on a flight to the UK and was happy, but in recent tomes I have only used them once, I’ll stick with Virgin if possible for local flights, Singapore for long haul.
      And, in case anyone is wondering, I have no links with either airline.

    • 0
      0

      I agree, I used Qantas many years ago on a flight to the UK and was happy, but in recent tomes I have only used them once, I’ll stick with Virgin if possible for local flights, Singapore for long haul.
      And, in case anyone is wondering, I have no links with either airline.

  4. 0
    0

    If the airline could still make a profit by charging either $39.00 or $19.00 WHY are fares normally so expensive?
    Just a thought.

  5. 0
    0

    Is this Alan Joyce playing games with a possible restructuring of Virgin? By broadcasting the possibility of such low airfares he could interfere with the possibility of any organisation putting money into Virgin. No one will put money into Virgin if there is question about its viability and such low airfares would raise that doubt.
    Mr Joyce would then be in the box seat without any competition.

  6. 0
    0

    Is this Alan Joyce playing games with a possible restructuring of Virgin? By broadcasting the possibility of such low airfares he could interfere with the possibility of any organisation putting money into Virgin. No one will put money into Virgin if there is question about its viability and such low airfares would raise that doubt.
    Mr Joyce would then be in the box seat without any competition.

  7. 0
    0

    “There are three reasons these $19 flights are too good to be true,”

    Fourth reason; widely publicised while potential buyers of Virgin are doing the numbers.

    • 0
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      I reckon you are close to the Mark with your comment, much the same as the games that were being played by Qantas when Compass was trying to get a foothold in the market, for us that are old enough to remember those times.

  8. 0
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    What about Perth to Melbourne, there are millions of fares waiting there Mr Joyce, not for $19 DOLLARS BUT AT LEAST MUCH MUCH BETTER THAN EVEN THE DISCOUNTED FARES you can pick up if booking early?
    The passenger count would explode! Cheaper airfares would help massively , I mean cheaper airfares properly done, and not this $19 dollar once-off nonsense, that will never be, but air travel inside our own country would boost homegrown tourism and travel to family enormously.
    I ‘ve seen friends of mine fly to America cheaper than a return flight Perth to Melbourne!

    Well things are different now look to your own country, and make it do-able!!!!!!!!

  9. 0
    0

    No good if the change or cancellation fee I’d $100. I lived in a west QLD town, was over $400 to fly about 50 minutes. I would need to fly to capital city for medical treatment, often cancelled by doctor. Qantas would charge $99 to do the change, and remaining credit had to be used within 12 months.
    No choice, was one factor I moved back to big smoke.

    • 0
      0

      It is the same for me living in hervey bay charging queensland health over $300 dollars to fly for medical treatment. I am unable to go down on the rocky queensland train as due to a leg injury caused by a doctor in a brisbane hospital I am disabled need a wheelie walker and cannot reach the toilet. I have no one to take me by road.
      What would Joyce know about those people and the fact they are now prevented from receiving medical help as there are no flights,
      Joyce is a joke and yes I agree this is an anti virgin move. He is only interested in shareholders and when did he ever suffer with his salary even if he isn’t drawing one now.

    • 0
      0

      IIt’s all smoke and mirrors, outrageous that to change a booking can cost over $100, why so exhorbitant?

  10. 0
    0

    Even better than that, as a Jetstar cardholder, I was able to book flights from Melbourne to Sydney and Hobart for a mere one cent each way (two cents return) around 10 years ago!
    Jetstar offered one-way flights as low as $25 to Hobart, $29 to Sydney, $29 to the Gold Coast and $29 to Adelaide around a year ago. I’ve flown to NZ on Jetstar for as little as $166 return in recent years (excluding baggage).
    On a couple of occasions, I’ve had to cancel my Jetstar flight for medical reasons and they’ve given me a credit after I made an application on compassionate grounds.
    I can’t wait for flights to open and to grab some of these bargains.

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