A direct flight from Canberra to Hobart took off from Canberra Airport this morning for the first time in seven years.
The Link Airways flights took off at 9.30am, marking the commencement of four return services weekly with the carrier.
Canberra Airport’s head of aviation, Michael Thomson, welcomed the service, which is another step in restarting the aviation industry post COVID-19.
“We are delighted to see the steady return of aviation with flights consistently increasing each week as border restrictions ease across Australia and, with more flights and more destinations on offer like Hobart, we are confident that this will continue,” Mr Thomson said.
The new route was announced four weeks ago, with the original take-off date of 3 December moved forward to today following the reopening of the Tasmanian borders to ACT residents from 26 October.
The flight route has proven popular since it was first announced, with the first four flights selling out. As a result, Link Airways is increasing the number of services until the end of the year.
Link Airways CEO, Andrew Major, said he was pleased to see the partnership with Canberra Airport form coming out of COVID-19.
“As borders reopen, we’re delighted to be a part of reconnecting loved ones who have been separated due to COVID, as well as supporting the local tourist economies of Canberra and Hobart,” he said.
“The demand for this route has been there from the beginning, so we’re particularly pleased to now facilitate the route.
“The new partnership between Link Airways and Canberra Airport – two Canberra-based companies – has come at just the right time and we’re excited to see what the future holds.”
The flight route is expected to increase to 11 return flights per week during 2021, on the 34-passenger seat Saab 340B Plus aircraft.
Link Airways has also announced a new direct flight route between Canberra and Newcastle, commencing from Friday 20 November.