The deal gives Middle East fliers greater access to Fiji, New Zealand and tourist hubs in Australia
Qatar Airways and Virgin Australia have announced a new codeshare agreement that will allow Qatar Airways passengers to travel to 35 destinations on Virgin Australia’s domestic network on a single booking, including destinations such as Cairns, Gold Coast, Alice Springs and Broome.
Passengers will also have access to Virgin Australia’s relaunched short-haul international markets including Fiji, South Pacific, and Queenstown, New Zealand.
Virgin Australia’s customers and members of the airline’s Velocity Frequent Flyer loyalty programme will have access to Qatar Airways’ network of more than 140 destinations, including the Middle East, Europe and Africa, via the airline’s hub in Doha.
Members of Qatar Airways Privilege Club will be able to earn and redeem Avios points and benefit from complimentary lounge access, extra baggage allowance and priority check-in when flying on Virgin Australia. Similar benefits will be offered to Velocity members when travelling on Qatar Airways.
Qatar Airways Group chief executive Akbar Al Baker said: “We have a strong, long-standing relationship with Australia and this agreement with Virgin Australia comes at a time when it is needed the most. This partnership will give Australian passengers access to the world that they have so acutely missed these past two years, to be able to reconnect with family and friends, and keep the wheels of trade moving.
“We hope many of them will stopover in Doha to enjoy the wonderful tourism industry that Qatar has to offer. For those travelling farther afield, they will benefit from the award-winning facilities of our hub, Hamad International Airport, enabling their onward journey. It also opens up the beautiful, cosmopolitan nation of Australia to our passengers flying in on Qatar Airways flights, after such a long, difficult time.”
Virgin Australia Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka added: “Today is more great news for Virgin Australia and Velocity Frequent Flyer members who are hungry to travel internationally. We are incredibly focused on creating great travel experiences and our new partnership with Qatar Airways will significantly expand Virgin Australia’s footprint into the Middle East, Europe and Africa, offering hundreds more ways our guests can seamlessly see the world.
“Virgin Australia and Qatar Airways are both known for their award-winning service and joining forces means that together we are able to provide an incredible experience when travelling between Australia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and beyond.
“Qatar Airways has been a very important partner to Australia during the pandemic, maintaining vital connectivity to the world in difficult circumstances. We are proud to have Qatar Airways join the Virgin Australia family and we look forward to welcoming their guests onboard Virgin Australia services mid-year.”