Aussies keen for a cheap holiday should check their diaries and get their bank card ready: the Federal Government’s much-anticipated 800,000 half-price flights are dropping at midnight tonight (12am AEDT 1 April).
Tourism Minister Dan Tehan on Wednesday said it was Australians’ “patriotic duty” to take a holiday.
Here’s everything you need to know about the flights and where to get them.
When can I book the tickets?
The tickets will drop at midnight on Thursday 1 April.
It’s understood that the tickets will be released every week in batches until 31 July, unless tickets are sold out prior to that date.
Which airlines are selling half-price tickets?
Qantas and its more affordable subsidiary, Jetstar, and Virgin have been named as key airlines that are servicing most of the flights. Regional airline Rex will also cover some of the routes.
Qantas has said it will “offer up to 32,000 fares per week”, which will be spread out across Qantas, QantasLink and Jetstar.
Virgin will offer 260,000 half-price economy seats across 25 destinations, it said in a statement.
Where and how do I book?
Qantas, Jetstar: A statement from the airline said: “Special fares will be available via qantas.com and jetstar.com from 1 April 2021 for travel from 1 May 2021.” More details on Jetstar and Qantas’ routes and half-price fares are available .
Virgin: “Specially marked fares will be available for booking at virginaustralia.com from 12:01am on Thursday 1 April 2021,” the airline stated. Yahoo Finance understands the sale will be available here.
More details from Rex are forthcoming.
It’s understood that the airlines will clearly mark on their website which flights and routes are part of the Government’s half-price sale, with the discount to be applied at checkout.
When can I travel?
The travel period for these fares will begin from 1 May and will continue through to 30 September this year.
The international travel ban, which was meant to lift on 17 March, has been extended and is now set to lift on 17 June this year.
Where can you go?
Key Aussie holiday destinations are on the list, such as the Gold Coast, Whitsundays and Hamilton Island, and Alice Springs.
But that doesn’t mean you can head to those destinations for half price from anywhere in Australia; only certain routes are covered as part of the scheme.
Here’s the whole list so far:
Kangaroo Island (South Australia)
Adelaide – Kingscote
Gold Coast – Avalon
Sydney – Avalon
Merimbula (New South Wales)
Melbourne – Merimbula
Broome (Western Australia)
Darwin – Broome
Sydney – Broome
Melbourne – Broome
Lasseter and Alice Springs (Northern Territory)
Adelaide – Alice Springs
Sydney – Uluru
Brisbane – Alice Springs
Melbourne – Alice Springs
Perth – Alice Springs
Sydney – Alice Springs
Brisbane – Uluru
Melbourne – Uluru
Launceston, Devonport and Burnie (Tasmania)
Melbourne – Launceston
Sydney – Launceston
Brisbane – Launceston
Melbourne – Devonport
Melbourne – Burnie
Gold Coast (Queensland)
Adelaide – Gold Coast
Melbourne – Gold Coast
Sydney – Gold Coast
Canberra – Gold Coast
Avalon – Gold Coast
Tropical North Queensland (Queensland)
Melbourne – Cairns
Sydney – Cairns
Darwin – Cairns
Whitsundays and Mackay region (Queensland)
Sydney – Proserpine
Sydney – Hamilton Island
Sunshine Coast (Queensland)
Sydney – Maroochydore
Melbourne – Maroochydore
Adelaide – Maroochydore
And here’s a glimpse of some of the half-price fares available through Virgin:
This list may grow as more destinations are announced.
Yahoo Finance has reached out to Rex Airlines for further comment.