Bonza says its direct flights from Albury to the Sunshine Coast have been a raging success but wants to "earn the respect of Aussie travellers" before increasing the frequency of the route.
The fledgling airline began twice weekly flights between the destinations in early April and, in the wake of an ACCC report into domestic airline competition, said its focus was on bedding down its initial route map.
"Flights between Albury and the Sunshine Coast are busy with customers travelling to see loved ones and for holiday," Bonza chief executive officer Tim Jordan told The Border Mail.
"In fact, the route is one of Bonza's best performing so far.
"Right now, we are focusing on earning the respect of Aussie travellers and from there, we will look to increase our routes and destinations including possible changes to frequency of flights."
Mr Jordan said the airline's focus was on "earning the right to grow" before it launched into further expansion plans.
"Future growth will require additional aircraft which is all part of our plan but for now, the focus is on bedding down our initial route map and earning the right to grow."
The ACCC report released yesterday warned new competition provided by Bonza and Rex was "far from assured".
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"New airlines in the past and around the world have often struggled in response to aggressive competition from the incumbent airlines," the report said.
"In this regard, the ACCC will continue to watch how the incumbent airlines respond to Rex and Bonza and will investigate if there are concerns that the behaviour contravenes competition law.
"The ACCC investigated whether Qantas' entry and expansion on certain routes in competition with Rex in late 2020 and early 2021 was a misuse of market power in contravention of competition law."
The report said Bonza and Rex would need to expand significantly if they are to become more meaningful competitors to Qantas and Virgin.
The Bonza commitment to the new route compares favourably to Qantas which announced in October last year it was having all-year flights between Albury and Adelaide and then altered to them being seasonal.
The Flying Kangaroo now operates the route in school holidays and across the ski season.
It will resume on July 7 and run until September 29 and then return again from December 15 to January 28.
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