Tomorrow’s commencement of Qantas’s direct flight from Perth to London marks the beginning of a new era for Australian aviation and tourism.
Non-stop direct flights will not only make Australia more attractive as an international destination, but also transform the dynamics of Australian tourism, offering new opportunities for Perth and regional Western Australia.
Instead of breaking up their journey in the Middle East or Asia on their way Down Under, users of the non-stop flights will land in Perth. Many will take the opportunity to stop over in the West, providing huge opportunities for hotel owners and tourism operators.
It will also open a new international gateway to superb WA tourism attractions and regions including Broome, the Kimberley, the Pilbara, the Ningaloo Reef and the Margaret River region.
There is great optimism for these new opportunities in the tourism sector, both here and in the UK. I am extremely hopeful the new service will spark significant jobs growth.
I look forward to attending tonight’s pre-flight reception in Perth and tomorrow will join Tourism Minister Steven Ciobo, aboard the first direct Perth-London flight.
The journey will take 16 hours and 40 minutes.
Next week I attend meetings with UK aviation and tourism industry figures to promote the new service in the interests of maximising jobs growth that will be triggered by this important new service.