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Virgin Australia set to return to the Red Centre in 2024 with two new routes

Direct flights from two Australian capitals to Uluru will kick off from next year just in time for the Territory’s peak tourism season.

Virgin Australia will restore Uluru to its domestic network next year.

Direct flights between both Melbourne and Brisbane to Uluru (Ayers Rock) will be added to Virgin Australia’s network next year in partnership with the Northern Territory Government and Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia.

Beginning from 6 June next year, four services per week will operate on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from Melbourne to Uluru, while three flights on Monday, Wednesday and Friday will take off from Brisbane, starting the following day.

The return of Virgin Australian to Uluru will see 62,000 seats added to the Central Australian city, with the services also marking the first time the carrier has flown to Uluru from the Queensland and Victorian capitals.

The launch of the new service has been timed to coincide with the Northern Territory’s peak tourism season from May to October.

Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said Uluru was a special place in Australia and a cultural landmark everyone should visit for its cultural significance.

“We look forward to once again connecting Australians and international tourists alike, to the spiritual heartland of Australia,” Hrdlicka said.

Wintjiri Wiru incorporates more than one thousand coordinated and choreographed drones timed to music and laser lights.

“We are also proud to be offering direct flights to Ulu?u from Melbourne and Brisbane for the first time. The forecast demand from these cities, coupled with excellent connectivity from our international airline partners, will provide a much-needed tourism boost to the region.

“Greater competition in the market and more seat capacity to Uluru will also provide travellers with more choice and value next time they fly to the Red Centre.”

Virgin Australia last flew to Uluru prior to the pandemic with regularly scheduled services from Sydney, with NSW travellers now needing to connect in Brisbane or Melbourne to reach the Red Centre.

Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia CEO, Matt Cameron-Smith, said the return of Virgin Australia represented significant progress for tourism to Central Australia.

“Demand to visit Uluru is incredibly strong – driven by a wealth of amazing cultural experiences including the world-first $10 million cultural drone and storytelling experience, Wintjiri Wiru – and we can’t wait to roll out the red carpet for Virgin Australia’s return to the Red Centre,” Cameron-Smith said.

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Written by: Matt Lennon
Published: 21 November 2023

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