International aviation network to continue repatriation of Australians overseas

  • Joint media release
  • The Hon Michael McCormack MP, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Leader of The Nationals, Federal Member for Riverina
  • Senator the Hon Marise Payne, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister for Women, Senator for New South Wales
08 May 2020

The Australian Government has committed an additional $50 million to continue its network of international flights to London and Los Angeles to help Australians return over the next four weeks.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the continued hub network provides certainty for Australians who remain overseas, including adding additional flights from London.

“We have seen a strong demand for these flights with Australians overseas taking advantage of the links to get home and we have been working closely with Qantas and Virgin Australia groups to ensure there is a continuing international air connection to London and Los Angeles,” Mr McCormack said.

“These airports are strategic hubs to help meet the remaining demand for Australians wanting get home from these destinations and surrounding regions.

“The London flights have been particularly successful so we have taken the decision to increase those from one weekly service to two weekly services. We are also maintaining the commitment of two weekly services to Los Angeles.”

Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne said continuing the network complements the Government’s work in arranging targeted non-scheduled flights where no regular commercial options are available.

“We have played a significant role in facilitating flights from a wide range of countries, and will continue to explore options to facilitate flights from targeted destinations in the coming weeks to help more Australians return,” Minister Payne said.

“These flights from London and Los Angeles have the added benefit of providing ongoing freight capacity for Australian businesses to export and import goods and critical supplies.

“Our advice remains the same — Australians overseas who want to come home should waste no time in taking the opportunity to secure a flight.”

The Government is satisfied that the immediate demand from Hong Kong and Auckland has been met and therefore has agreed with Qantas that those scheduled flights will stop. Other airlines continue to operate commercial flights from these cities.

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