Regional Express (Rex) today officially launched its Armidale to Sydney services in a ceremony held at Armidale Airport.
On hand to witness the launch were guests and VIPs including the Member for Northern Tablelands Mr Adam Marshall MP and Armidale Dumaresq Councillor Andrew Murat, as well as representatives from the University of New England, and senior staff from local business, educational and community organisations.
Commenting on the new service Rex Deputy Chairman The Hon. John Sharp said, “As Australia’s most on-time regional airline* we are delighted to be bringing to Armidale a reliable and competitive air service that the entire New England region can count on. Rex looks forward to building a strong partnership with the Armidale community to ensure we can continue to provide a sustainable air service for the long-term benefit of the Armidale region.”
Rex’s commencement of services between Armidale and Sydney has been well-received by the local State and Federal Governments and local business community.
On behalf of Armidale Dumaresq Council, Councillor Andrew Murat welcomed the new service.
“We welcome Rex to Armidale and look forward to working together to deliver passenger growth and make the airport more sustainable.”
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall said the arrival of Rex will ensure more flights, greater choice and vigorous competition which will be welcome news for all passengers.
“The competition Rex brings to the route (36 weekly flights and 60,000 new seats per annum) will be hugely beneficial for everyone throughout the Northern Tablelands,” Mr Marshall said.
“Rex's re-entrance to the region is made in a climate where regional air services are under immense pressure – the recent collapse of Brindabella Airlines is evidence of this. We must remember that larger regional centres such as Tamworth, still have just the one airline, so it’s important that we don’t take this situation (two airlines) for granted.”
“I urge people across the Northern Tablelands to support both carriers to ensure this region can sustain competition on this route in the long term,” he said.
Regional Express (Rex) is Australia’s largest independent regional airline operating a fleet of more than 40 Saab 340 aircraft on some 1,300 weekly flights to 36 destinations throughout New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and Queensland. The Rex Group comprises Regional Express, air freight and charter operator Pel-Air Aviation and Dubbobased regional airline Air Link, as well as the pilot academy Australian Airline Pilot Academy.
*According to the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) Airline On-Time Departure statistics for calendar year 2013.