How to keep track of airfares from Gladstone
THE COST of airfares to and from Gladstone will be at residents’ fingertips with the creation of a new regional flight price tracker.
Developed by TransLink, the dashboard, which is supported by Gladstone Regional Council and the GADPL, will ensure locals are getting the best ticket prices, which can be checked in seconds.
Despite the impact to some regional routes due to COVID-19, GADPL chief executive Gus Stedman said the tourism body welcomed the news residents and tourists could keep their fingers on the price “pulse.”
“The Gladstone region has been well supported in the aviation space recently by Alliance Airlines who kept flying through the lockdown period,” he said.
“If we are to attract visitors to the region, fair and reasonable fares are essential, as we must compete with the bigger locations like Cairns who can offer very cheap flights.”
Mr Stedman said the GADPL was working with the Gladstone Airport Corporation to ensure the best deals possible and to attract tourists.
“GAPDL are working closely with Gladstone Airports Corporation to improve the travel experience and attract more visitors to the region,” he said.
“Any price tracking mechanism is ultimately a snapshot at any time as every fare has slight differences like dates, times and number of persons travelling etc.
“The best advice GAPDL can offer is to book well ahead and shop around for the best deals and days to travel.”
Gladstone Regional Council Mayor Matt Burnett said council supported measures to keep market pressure on regional airfares and services, as they were a key economic enabler for regional industry and tourism as well as for community wellbeing.
“Cheaper airfares will help to support the regional tourism recovery from COVID-19,” he said.
“Cheaper airfares would also support our economy in the visiting friends and relatives’ sector, would support business attraction and retention, as well as community wellbeing with reasonable priced access and timely access to specialist medical services.”
Cr Burnett said he would like to see competition in airfares that matched demand.
“Costs of regional flights is a perennial issue for regional communities and Gladstone Regional Council supports keeping downward pressure on regional airfares,” he said.
“Gladstone Regional Council would like to see competition in the sector that meets market demand and keeps prices at a reasonable level.”
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said regional flights had been boosted by a $54 million essential transport package, which helped key regional routes continue operating as part of our economic recovery plan.
“We know the price of regional airfares remains an issue, and that’s why TransLink is now developing and will maintain its own, internal cost-monitoring dashboard that will monitor historic trends on key routes across the state,” he said.
“Using the dashboard, TransLink will provide regular reports so the public can be better informed on regional airfares.”
The price tracking tool will include routes regulated by the Department of Transport and Main Roads, as well as key unregulated commercial routes.
It will build on the methodology used by the Federal Government’s Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics, which provides pricing data back to 2010.
The Observer will publish details of the flight price tracker when it is launched.