Budget airline Jetstar will establish a new cabin crew and pilot base in Adelaide after cutting back on services from Darwin.
The move reverses Jetstar’s decision in August 2008 to shut its Adelaide base.
The move will boost the company’s workforce in Adelaide from 40 to about 160 as they service four A320 aircraft to be based locally from March next year.
Three of those aircraft are being relocated from Darwin, in response to increased competition on international routes from overseas airlines.
Jetstar is suspending its services from Darwin to Manila and Tokyo, and decreasing flights from Darwin to Denpasar and Singapore.
The airline said it made sense to base aircraft where its network was growing, to keep fares low and ensure flexibility to adapt to changing market conditions.
Chief executive David Hall says the airline will begin direct services from Adelaide to Auckland and non-stop flights from Adelaide to Bali.
“Our presence in Adelaide has more than doubled in the past four years and we believe the establishment of a dedicated crew base will provide a solid foundation to continue to grow low fares from the capital of South Australia,” Hall said in a statement on Monday.
He said some of the 40 pilot, 70 cabin crew and about a dozen ground staff positions will be relocated from other states.
The decision brings the airline back to Adelaide after its 2008 decision to close its Adelaide base.
It followed a review by Qantas boss Alan Joyce.
“We had a look at the best ways that we could manage the reduction in aircraft numbers and we felt that the most efficient way was to close the Adelaide base and to do the flying out of other bases,” he said at the time.
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