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Singapore

Jetstar Asia plans to resume flights between Singapore and Darwin in December, pending travel corridor opening

SINGAPORE: Jetstar Asia plans to resume its flights between Singapore and Darwin in mid-December, pending a travel corridor opening between Singapore and Australia, the airline said on Tuesday (Sep 28).

The airline said that this start date was based on the timeline outlined by the Australian government, which indicated that Australia will resume international travel before the end of the year.

"In light of this, we need to plan ahead for what is a complex restart process to ensure we are ready as soon as borders are open," said a Jetstar Asia spokesperson.

"If circumstances change, we can of course update this plan but given Singapore’s successful roll-out of the vaccine, and Australia is well on the way to meet their 80 per cent target in the coming weeks, we are confident that this important addition to our network is well within reach."

More than 52 per cent of Australia's population aged 16 and above are "double vaccinated", according to Australia's Department of Health website. About 82 per cent of Singapore's population has completed their full vaccination regimen or received two doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

The three weekly services between Singapore and Darwin are available from Dec 20 and are subject to regulatory and government approval, said Jetstar Asia.

The announcement follows the Qantas Group’s international restart plan, which includes Jetstar Airways resuming services between Melbourne and Singapore from Dec 19, also pending government and regulatory approvals.

In August, Qantas said that from mid-December, flights would start from Australia to "COVID-safe destinations", which are likely to include Singapore, the US, Japan, the UK, and Canada. 

Travellers from Australia to Singapore must take a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test within 48 hours before departure. They must take a test also upon arrival and serve a seven-day stay-home notice. 

Another PCR test needs to be taken at the end of the stay-home notice.

Jetstar Asia CEO Bara Pasupathi said that there are additional Australian routes planned for 2022 after Darwin.

“With Singapore’s strong vaccination rate and Australia on track to see 80 per cent of the population vaccinated by the end of the year, we’re starting to plan the restart of our international flights between these COVID-safe destinations,” Mr Pasupathi said.

“We will remain flexible, but based on the pace of the vaccine roll-out, we want to make sure we’re ready to reconnect family and friends and provide our customers with more exciting destinations, such as the ever popular Top-End, as soon as possible."

Jetstar Asia said that customers who book on jetstar.com before Dec 31 for travel before Jun 30, 2023, will be given one "fee-free date change", although a fare difference may apply.

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Source: CNA/hm

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