Australians could get more half-price flights if tickets sell out

Erin LyonsNCA NewsWire
VideoPrime Minister Scott Morrison has unveiled the Government's plan to discount 800,000 flights to promote travel in Australia.

Australians who miss out on the government’s 800,000 half-price flights may have another opportunity to snap up a discounted fare.

The deputy prime minister said if the remaining tickets sell out, the government remains open to extending the scheme and would “quite potentially” release more cheap tickets.

Only Broome was included among Western Australian destinations initially, and it’s unclear if more will be added in a second round of the scheme.

“When those 800,000 tickets are gone, I’m very happy to look at what we can do in the future,” Michael McCormack told Sky News on Thursday.

“We’ll look at Cairns, we’ll look at places like Darwin, Kangaroo Island.

“We’ll see if the program has worked successfully as we wanted it to and we’ll also see the economics of those regions.”

The Morrison government in March announced 800,000 half-price flight tickets would be up for grabs in a bid to boost tourism in regions struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The $1.2bn program also aimed to rejuvenate the nation’s crippled aviation sector.

Australians eager to snag a cheap holiday were told at the beginning of April to have their wallets ready as the first round of flights dropped.

Across Qantas and Jetstar alone, a whopping 100,000 customers bought a discounted fare during the first 11 hours tickets were on sale.

Camera IconMore half-price flights could be on the cards. NCA NewsWire/James Gourley Credit: News Corp Australia

At the time, the federal transport minister said Virgin had also sold “thousands upon thousands of tickets”.

A Qantas spokeswoman said it was great to see travellers returning to the skies.

Mr McCormack had a message for prospective travellers: “Get in early.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison earlier described the move as the “ticket to recovery”.

“Our tourism businesses don’t want to rely on government support forever. They want their tourists back,” Mr Morrison said.

“They don’t want to be living forever on taxpayer assistance. They don’t want to be sitting at home.

“They want to be mobilising tourists to their region. They want to be engaged in what they set their businesses up to do.

“They want to be able to run their businesses again, which is what they love doing more than anything else.”

Originally published as Australians could get more half-price flights if tickets sell out

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