Virgin Australia is finally gearing up to fling open the lounge doors at Sydney and Melbourne on December 15, two weeks after is Brisbane lounge reopened as well.

The move comes as the airline offers up thousands of new seats for travel between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane before Christmas, in light of Queensland’s state borders relaxing from today.

Both capital city and leisure routes will be restarted or bumped up, including:

Route (return)Frequency from nowFrequency by ChristmasOne-way lead-in fares
Melbourne-BrisbaneTwice dailySix times daily$199
Melbourne-Gold CoastThree times weeklyUp to five times daily (from 21 Dec)$155
Melbourne-Sunshine CoastThree times weeklyDaily (from 14 Dec)

Twice daily (from 21 Dec)
Melbourne-CairnsFive times weekly (from 14 Dec)Nine times weekly from 21 Dec$239
Sydney-BrisbaneThree times dailyNine times daily$165
Sydney-Gold CoastDailySix times daily$119
Sydney-Sunshine CoastFive times weeklyUp to twice daily (from 14 Dec)$139
Sydney-CairnsFour times weeklyDaily (from 21 Dec)

12 times weekly (from 4 Jan)
Sydney-Hamilton IslandFour times weekly (from 8 Dec)Daily$205
Sydney-Whitsunday CoastThree times weekly (from 17 Dec) No change$179
Newcastle-BrisbaneNine times weeklyTwice daily$135

As part of Virgin Australia’s Passenger Promise and for peace-of-mind, the airline is continuing to provide flexibility to change bookings up until 31 January 2021 alongside a range of health and wellbeing reassurances.

The additional services will be timed to provide choice and convenience for customers, while at the same time give travellers the opportunity to do business and reconnect with loved ones, families and friends ahead of the well-earned Christmas break.

We recognise our role as one of Queensland’s largest employers and so this is also a positive step forward for our people. With more borders open, we can put more aircraft in the sky, which means more work opportunities.

– Russell Shaw, Virgin Australia General Manager Network and Revenue Management

Since Monday 30 November, almost 100,000 seats to Queensland destinations have been booked with Virgin Australia, resulting in the largest day of sales since before COVID-19. More than 75% of flights booked is for travel during the Christmas period.

In related news, Western Australia will now allow people from New South Wales and Victoria to enter the state without quarantine from 8 December 2020 onwards. Flight schedules will be shortly updated if there is a high demand for transcontinental travel before Christmas.

The update to the launch of flights to Byron Bay (Ballina) and Hamilton Island is shown below.

[Old] Virgin resumes flights between Brisbane and Hamilton Island

With intra-state travel within Queensland continuing unimpeded, Virgin Australia has launched a new service between Brisbane and Hamilton Island commencing 4 August 2020.

The service will utilise a Boeing 737 aircraft and operate on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Domestic Business Class will be available on flights between Brisbane and Hamilton Island.

VA1497 will depart Brisbane at 12:45pm, with a capacity for 150 passengers. Fares will start from $155 one-way and will include baggage and seat selection. Operating three services a week will add a further 4,500 seats per month to the intra-Queensland market.

Virgin Australia Chief Commerical Officer, John MacLeod stated:

Queenslanders are supporting our flights to key Queensland leisure destinations and we’re really pleased to further ramp-up our schedule to include regular services to Hamilton Island

We know that giving travellers great fares to the Whitsundays, coupled with award-winning service, is what will help to recover the Queensland tourism industry while providing more jobs for our people and those who work in the region

Virgin also announced that by mid-September, the airline will look to operate seven intra-Queensland routes between Brisbane and:

  • Hamilton Island;
  • Cairns;
  • Proserpine;
  • Mount Isa;
  • Mackay;
  • Rockhampton; and
  • Townsville.
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[Old] Virgin launces Sydney-Byron Bay Ballina flights

Virgin Australia launched Sydney to Byron Bay (Ballina) flights on 7 July 2020, with flight VA1141 departing Sydney at 1:15pm en route to Ballina Byron Airport.

The operating flight’s arrival was celebrated with a traditional water cannon salute, while the crew were delivered famous Ballina Burgers as a ‘welcome back’ gesture.

Virgin Australia launches Sydney to Ballina Flights
New flights between Sydney and Byron Bay (Ballina) launched on 7 July, providing

These flights are in addition to the announcement by Virgin Australia on 2 July 2020 to add an additional 17 domestic routes to 30 local destinations by 4 August 2020 to Newcastle, Hobart, Launceston, Darwin, Alice Springs, Hamilton Island, Maroochydore, Ballina, Coffs Harbour, Proserpine, and Mount Isa.

Virgin Australia Group Chief Commercial Officer, John Macleod, stated

Travel is back on the agenda for many Australians and we’re happy to be able to resume flights to a number of holiday destinations in Queensland, Northern New South Wales and the Northern Territory. As borders begin to re-open, we also want to ensure we have great value flights available for guests to book their next trip.

Can I use Velocity Points to book these flights?

You are also able to redeem Velocity Points for these flights for both Economy and Business Class seats. Be aware though that both Economy and Business Class catering is severely cut back for now, with a relaunch expected in early 2021.

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Virgin Australia sets opening date for Sydney and Melbourne lounges was last modified: August 25th, 2023 by Daniel Sciberras