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Extra flights announced for Hamilton Island

By Mark Beale

TRAVELLING to and from the Whitsundays became a little easier this week, following Qantas’ announcement of additional flights between Hamilton Island and Brisbane.

From August 31, QantasLink will add two return flights per week on Tuesday and Friday on its 74-seat Q400 aircraft and upgrade its Monday flight to a 125-seat Boeing 717 jet aircraft.

The move will add just under 400 seats a week between Brisbane and Hamilton Island, strengthening the airline’s commitment to drive tourism to the Whitsunday region.

The announcement ties in with the launch of a 3D Virtual Reality experience of the Great Barrier Reef and Hamilton Island, giving customers a unique experience of one of Australia’s most popular tourist destinations.

Qantas has partnered with Samsung and Rapid VR to produce a VR film which will give Qantas customers a 360-degree experience of the Great Barrier Reef and Hamilton Island.

The film will be available in select Qantas international lounges and flights from June 27.

Qantas Group executive for brand, marketing and corporate affairs, Olivia Wirth, said the Virtual Reality experience coupled with the additional flying underlined the airline’s commitment to promote the Whitsunday region as a must-see-and-do tourism destination.

“As one of the largest private investors in Australian tourism, we are constantly looking at different ways to showcase the wonderful destinations on our network,” Ms Wirth said.

Hamilton Island chief executive officer Glenn Bourke said recent Tourism Australia research shows Australia was now the highest-rated destination for “world class beauty” and natural environments, with the Great Barrier Reef rated as the most appealing attraction.

“As the ultimate Great Barrier Reef holiday destination, we welcome Qantas bringing more passengers from Brisbane, which is an important market for us,” Mr Bourke said.

“Certainly, we have seen a new level of interest in the Great Barrier Reef from our guests – domestic and international – in the past 12 months, and I’m sure the Great Barrier Reef virtual vision we’ve created with Qantas will inspire many more to visit.”

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