SYDNEY – The International Air Transport AssocIation (IATA) has called on the Australian Government to reconsider the economic damage being done by the Passenger Movement Charge (PMC), which is currently AUD55 per passenger. Tont Yler, Director-General and CEO of IATA, told an Aviation Press Club luncheon in Sydney that the PMC was originally designed to fund Australia’s border agencies, including customs and border protection, quarantine and immigration, but at $55 per passenger it exceeds the cost of funding these agencies. It is estimated that about AUD800 million will be collected in the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
JAKARTA – Garuda Indonesia has taken delivery of the first of 10 Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on order, and will launch its new First Class product , with a dedicated on-board chef, when the 777 goes into service from July 9 on the Jakarta-Jeddah route. Three more 777s will be delivered to Garuda this year, with six more aircraft scheduled in 2014 and 2015. Two of the 777s, offering First, Business and Economy classes, will go into service on the Sydney-Jakarta-London route from November 2013.
SYDNEY – Air China has introduced a national toll-free number for reservations and inquiries: 1800-860-999
SINGAPORE – Singapore Airlines has increased its frequency into Melbourne to four daily, with services into Adelaide lifted from 10 to 12 weekly. SIA now offers a total of 121flights weekly into Australia – to Adelaide, Brisbane, Darwin, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney – and remains Australia’s largest foreign carrier. Since linking with Virgin Australia in June 2011, SIA has increased its capacity into Australia by 20 per cent.
SYDNEY – To mark the introduction of A380 services between Guangzhou and Sydney from October 28, China Southern Airlines is offering return economy fares between Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane or Perth and Guangzhou, Shanghai or Beijing fromAUD720 (AUD380 plus taxes). Business Class fares start from AUD2,380 and First Class from AUD3,800. There are minor variations in the fares because of varying taxes applying in different cities. Business and First Class fares are available until June 1 for travel from October 28 to January 31, 2014.
SYDNEY - Australia’s cruise industry growth continues to lead the world, with passenger numbers surgeing 11% last year to a record high of 694,062. For a second consecutive year, growth in the Australian cruise passenger market surpassed other major cruise markets, with 11% in 2012 equalled only by Germany. North American passenger numbers grew just 2% in 2012, and the UK remained steady.