The Sunshine Coast will be connected to the New Zealand market through year-round direct flights between Auckland and Sunshine Coast Airport, following support from the Queensland government.
Queensland Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said that the direct flights had been secured as part of the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan, and will take effect after the already-scheduled winter seasonal service – that begins on Monday 28 June – ends on 30 October.
Sunshine Coast Airport CEO Andrew Brodie said the announcement of a year-round service was a strong vote of confidence in the region.
“Today’s announcement delivers on a long-held ambition to secure Air New Zealand flights to Auckland year-round, and our new, internationally capable runway will allow the service to operate without weight restrictions,” he said.
Visit Sunshine Coast CEO Matt Stoeckel said prior to the pandemic, New Zealand was the region’s number one international market with 84,000 annual visitors.
“The recommencement of our Auckland service provides an incredible opportunity to grow our important Kiwi market,” he said.