China’s largest airline anticipated to boost Queensland international tourism recovery
With China’s largest airline - China Southern - having restarted direct flights to Brisbane from its Guangzhou aviation hub, the expectation is for a significant boost to Queensland’s visitor economy.
China Southern has touched down at Brisbane International Airport for the first time in almost four years with the non-stop flight from Guangzhou bringing the first two organised tour groups to Queensland since the Chinese Government’s relaxation of pandemic restrictions on group travel.
The return of China Southern was secured by the Queensland Government’s $200 million Attracting Aviation Investment Fund (AAIF), in partnership with Queensland’s international airports.
Initially, China Southern will fly direct to Brisbane four times a week ahead of daily services from mid-next month for the Chinese New Year peak travel season.
Over the next three years, China Southern services are predicted to bring up to 278,000 international visitors to Queensland, supporting 1,790 jobs and generating $440 million for the visitor economy.
Pre-pandemic, China accounted for almost one-in-five international visitors to Queensland and delivered $1.6 billion in overnight visitor spending.
Queensland Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe noted “China Southern reconnects Queensland with 169 cities in 39 countries who fly direct to Guangzhou’s international aviation hub, making this a strategic aviation service for recovery.
“It marks the official restart of organised travel groups from China, which is terrific news for Queensland’s world-class tourism operators from the border to the Cape.
“China Southern is an important driver for industry predictions of a resurgence of Chinese visitors enjoying Queensland’s great lifestyle and supporting thousands of good local jobs in 2024.”
China Southern Airlines Regional General Manager Australia & NZ, Jason Sun added “through strong collaboration, China Southern Airlines aims to further expand the ‘Canton Route’ and contribute to the influx of tourists from China as well as business and leisure travellers from other parts of the globe to Queensland.”
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