Virgin Australia cuts routes, retires planes
Virgin Australia is cutting two domestic services from Perth and two international services from east coast capitals to Hong Kong and Christchurch.
The airline will add two new international routes, however.
The airline announced the changes to shareholders today as part of a network-wide review, saying they reflect changing passenger demands.
The routes the airline will no longer service include: Canberra to Perth (from December 6 2019), Gold Coast to Perth (from 19 January 2020), Hong Kong to Melbourne (from 11 February 2020) and Sydney to Christchurch (from 29 April 2020).
The two new international routes to be added from March next year are Brisbane to Tokyo's Haneda airport and Melbourne to Denpasar, Bali.
Tigerair Australia, Virgin Group's low-cost airline, will also exit three domestic routes in 2020 including Brisbane to Darwin, Proserpine to Sydney and Adelaide to Brisbane.
"We maintain a strong network of destinations and it's important that our schedule continues to reflect demand from our business and leisure customers," Virgin Australia Group CEO Paul Scurrah said.
"Some of today's changes respond to shifting demand on some routes, and others are about refocussing Virgin Australia and Tigerair Australia on the destinations we feel they are best suited."
The removal of a direct Melbourne to Hong Kong route comes as continued riots mean fewer passengers are flying in to the Chinese territory.
"Demand for the Hong Kong route has declined in line with the political landscape and we feel this is now best serviced through a single daily Sydney-Hong Kong service," said Mr Scurrah.
"The Airbus A330 currently operating the Melbourne-Hong Kong services will be re-deployed onto our daily Brisbane-Haneda flights commencing in March 2020, where we expect strong demand."
The company also announced Virgin Australia will retire three Fokker 100 aircraft from its regional services by March 2020.
Tigerair Australia will also reduce its fleet by removing two Airbus A320 by mid-2020 as it focuses on a whole fleet of Boeing 737s.