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Brisbane readies for the return of quarantine free travel


Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) has welcomed today’s announcement that Queensland’s international borders will reopen without restrictions for international travellers from Saturday.

The news means that from Saturday, double-vaccinated international travellers will no longer have to undertake quarantine.

Commenting on the development, BAC CEO, Gert-Jan de Graaff, enthused: “This is an incredibly exciting day for everyone at Brisbane Airport, our airlines and everyone associated with international aviation and visitation. It takes us one step closer to re-uniting with the world.

Photos by Dan Peled

“Our team at Brisbane Airport is more than ready for Saturday morning. They have kept the lights on throughout the pandemic and have done a phenomenal job in adapting to the ever-changing requirements over the past two years.

“Rebuilding international travel into and out of Brisbane Airport will take many months, as we will need destinations for Australians and inbound market nations to reopen. We are not expecting to return to 2019 route and passenger levels until 2024.

“In the coming months, we hope to see some uptick in some passenger sectors coming into Queensland, especially with the return of international students for the commencement of university term. The State’s agricultural harvest is also under way and needing workers.

“Most importantly, there will be many families who will be greatly relieved that they can now reunite in Queensland as and when they need. We think the visiting friends and family sector will be the first to jump at this chance and hop on a plane to Queensland.”

BAC also saved special praise today for the airlines that have maintained services to BNE throughout the pandemic.

It noted that Singapore Airlines and Emirates “have been steadfast in maintaining a lifeline home to the world”, and that Qatar Airways started BNE flights during the pandemic and have proven to be a reliable pathway for passengers and Queensland export produce to markets across the globe.

Also the subject of special thanks from BAC were Air New Zealand, Air Niugini and its Taiwanese airlines, all of which it says “continued to operate at BNE uplifting passengers and Queensland exports”.

In addition BAC thanked “the many international carriers who maintained crucial links to Brisbane”, whilst admitting that the majority of other airlines wanting to return to BNE were waiting for “market conditions that make sense for their business to make a restart decision”.

De Graff added: “Although Queensland remains a world-famous destination and Brisbane remains a strong market for airlines to serve, airline businesses have suffered greatly from the pandemic, which means the competition amongst destinations for very scarce airline resources will be intense,

“We look forward to working co-operatively with airlines, the government and the entire travel industry, to recreate and support demand for Queensland and see visitor numbers rebuild.”

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