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メルボルン | &#51652
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Happy New Years Everyone ! May 2016 bring in a lot of new airlines and destinations ! ;) Here's what to look for this year, quite a lot of increases in capacity confirmed for this year already, so it will be quite interesting to see more capacity added throughout the year. Air North is our first confirmed new airline for 2016, so lets keep it rolling! :)

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Edit: Reflected changes as per info from judd77


NEW FLIGHTS + SCHEDULE CHANGES

Emirates Airline
Emirates will increase capacity on the MEL-SIN-DXB route by upgrading its current daily 77W service to A380, which includes an upgraded Business and First Class product, including a bar and shower for guests. The airline currently offers daily non-stop A380 services to DXB on flights EK406/407.

- EK404/405 MEL – SIN – DXB up-gauge to A380 from 77W commences 01MAR

Etihad Airways
Etihad Airways will increase capacity on the MEL-AUH route by upgrading one of its current daily 77W service to A380, which includes an upgraded Business and First Class product, including a bar and shower for guests. The changes also sees The Residence being introduced, currently the best product in the market.

- EY460/461 MEL – AUH up-gauge to A380 from 77W commences 01JUN

Qantas Airways
Qantas is making a push into the Asian market and is reacting to demand by increasing capacity and frequency on the core SIN and HKG routes. HKG will see x3 weekly services up-gauged to 744 flights with Premium Economy, whilst SIN will see an extra x3 weekly services added, making the route x10 weekly.

- QF37/38 MEL – SIN new x3 weekly A333 flights commences 29APR
- QF29/30 MEL – HKG x3 weekly up-gauge to 744 from A333 commences 29APR
- QF95/96 MEL – LAX schedule change and frequency change to x2 weekly effective 27JAN
- Supplementary services to AKL and WLG over summer
- Supplementary services to HBA and up-gauges over summer

Tigerair Australia
Tigerair Australia will be launching its first International services and will take over the current daily VA 738 service from March. The flights will be operated with VA crew, however with Tigerair flight attendants.

- TT01/02/08 MEL – DPS new x1 Daily 738 flights commences 23MAR

Singapore Airlines
Singapore Airlines is adjusting its aircraft into MEL, the airline will offer long-haul Business Class and First Class services on all services (SQ207/208 will not have First), however there will still be aircraft adjustments during the year. The A380 will make a comeback, operating x3 weekly from June to September; these flights will see the introduction of Premium Economy for the first time.

- SQ237/238 MEL – SIN aircraft change to 77W from 773 commences 27MAR
- SQ207/208 MEL – SIN aircraft change to 77E from A333 commences 27MAR
- SQ217/218 MEL – SIN aircraft change to A388 from 77W x3 weekly commences 24JUN to 04SEP

Jetstar Airways
Jetstar continues to increase and adjust its MEL schedule, the airline will increase its HKT services to x4 weekly from March, whilst with the opening of the new T4, JQ is now able to add extra flights and capacity into the domestic market. MEL is the airlines main Hub and busiest airport in the network.

- JQ17/18 MEL – HKT increases to x4 weekly from 31MAR, new Thursday flight
- Various increases across the domestic network mainly: OOL, CNS, SYD and Tasmania

Air North
Air North will be making its foray into the Southern Australia with the introduction of non-stop services from Toowoomba (Brisbane West Wellcamp) utilizing E170 jets. Air North will be MEL’s 8th domestic airline, the airline is currently seeking co-operation with domestic partner, Qantas.

- NL130/131/134/136 MEL – WTB new x7 weekly E170 flights commences 14MAR

Virgin Australia
Virgin Australia will increase services to AKL from July by adding an extra x2 weekly 738 services on the route, the airline will also add its first widebody service from MEL, by up-gauging seasonal NAN services.

- VA49/52/54 MEL – DPS to be taken over by Tigerair effective 22MAR
- VA151/148 MEL – AKL extra x2 weekly 738/H service commences 01JUL
- VA185/186 MEL – NAN seasonal x1 weekly aircraft change to A330 from 738 commences JUN-OCT
- Supplementary flights to AKL and CHC over summer

Qatar Airways
Qatar Airways will be changing its MEL-DOH schedule, the schedule change will see the carrier arriving and departing earlier however with a longer lay-over, this allows the airline to offer domestic transfers and better align with its other Australian operations. The new schedule actually commences at 28MAR, however the times shown below are AEST effective from 04APR.

- QR904 will arrive into MEL at 17:10, QR905 will depart MEL at 22:40 commences 04APR


NEW AIRLINE CODE-SHARES

Garuda Indonesia/KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
KL will start code-sharing on GA’s MEL – DPS service effective 17JAN


POSSIBLE NEW AIRLINES + ROUTES

Cebu Pacific Airlines
Cebu Pacific officials have said the MEL-MNL route is on track for a 2016 launch, the airline is currently getting final approval from local Philippine authorities and getting the relevant slot times at MNL in order to commence services.

- MEL – MNL new x4 weekly A330 service

Beijing Capital Airlines
Beijing Capital Airlines has applied to the CAAC to commence services to MEL from 01JUL, the route will be the first connection to Qingdao in Australia, a booming port city in China.

- MEL – TAO new x3 weekly A330 service commences 01JUL

Xiamen Airlines
At the recent launch of MF’s new SYD services, MF’s CEO stated that the airline was looking at launching the MEL-FOC route from 30JUN, the airline however has also applied to the CAAC for rights to operate the MEL-XMN route x3 weekly from JUN this year.

- MEL – XMN new x3 weekly 788 service commences JUN
- MEL – FOC new x3 weekly 788 service commences 30JUN

Japan Airlines
JL officials have been in discussions with local representatives regarding the possibilities of a new route from Tokyo to MEL, discussion have been on going for a couple of years now with the Victorian government also involved. The airline is said to be looking at a new Australian route utilizing 787’s from NRT.

All Nippon Airways
Both local and corporate officials has stated the intention of serving MEL in the future, if SYD flights are successful NH will consider flying to MEL. There are currently no firm plans.


SELECTED MARKETS SPOTLIGHT: CHINA, HONG KONG, THAILAND





 

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Virgin Australia
Virgin Australia will increase services to AKL from April by adding an extra x3 weekly 738
services on the route, the airline will also add its first widebody service from MEL, by up-gauging seasonal NAN services.

Just a small correction AKL increasing by 2 weekly and starts from 1st of July
VA151 2255 ....5.7 VA 148 0630 1....6.
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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EK has opened its new Lounge at MEL, rather an extension, making it one of the largest lounges at MEL.

Emirates opens new Melbourne Airport business, first class lounge
David Flynn | 04 January 2015


IN BRIEF | Qantas partner Emirates has opened a new lounge at Melbourne Airport for the airline's first class, business class and top-tier Skywards frequent flyers.

Located adjacent to the 'old' Emirates lounge, atop the escalators near Gate 10, it's substantially larger and sports a refreshed design, along with views across the runway.

Read More: http://www.ausbt.com.au/emirates-opens-new-melbourne-airport-business-first-class-lounge
 

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I picked up a friend from the new T4 the other week. I came up from the Tullamarine Freeway and missed the first exit after Mickelham Road. As such I accessed the airport via the normal exit and then turned left at the first set of lights to get to T4. It took me THREE drive arounds the airport to figure out how to get up onto the T4 on-ramp to access the pickup zone. I ended up having to illegally U-turn onto oncoming traffic on Airport Drive to get on the on-ramp. Once I picked my friend up, I ended up on the new Airport Drive Road through the Industrial area of Tullamarine, which i did not want to do. Once back home due to my utter confusion, I try googling maps of the new roads etc and yet there is nothing yet updated?

Does anyone have a map of the new T4 including the new on-ramps etc.? This also makes me wonder how people coming south from Sunbury will access T4, and how do they head back North from T4.
 

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Rabid Furry Skier
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Hrm... I am not too sure. I think the general gist it to follow the signs when in confusing places such as this one. While it may be confusing, best to just let the signs guide you in this situation. I went for the first time in October last year and faced a new road layout so had to discard my perception of location for the time being and make the most use of the signs that were provided. I didn't find the signs to be that bad except for one or two that were too close to the intersection.
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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I picked up a friend from the new T4 the other week. I came up from the Tullamarine Freeway and missed the first exit after Mickelham Road. As such I accessed the airport via the normal exit and then turned left at the first set of lights to get to T4. It took me THREE drive arounds the airport to figure out how to get up onto the T4 on-ramp to access the pickup zone. I ended up having to illegally U-turn onto oncoming traffic on Airport Drive to get on the on-ramp. Once I picked my friend up, I ended up on the new Airport Drive Road through the Industrial area of Tullamarine, which i did not want to do. Once back home due to my utter confusion, I try googling maps of the new roads etc and yet there is nothing yet updated?

Does anyone have a map of the new T4 including the new on-ramps etc.? This also makes me wonder how people coming south from Sunbury will access T4, and how do they head back North from T4.
I used it today from Tullamarine, very easy if you keep a look out for the signs, though I think they need more of those temporary light/flash signs on the road to direct people to the drop off/pick up area located in the 'Transport Hub'. Its pretty simple, take the Mercer Dr exit then turn left at the roundabout onto Airport Drive. For those coming in from Sunbury Drive, they simply go down the existing Centre Rd, past the main terminals, though its abit of a loop around. All of this information is easily accessible from the Melbourne Airport website.

Here's a Tip!
If the passenger already checked-in online and have printed their boarding pass at home and only have hand luggage, just drop them off at the normal T3 drop off area, they are able to use Pier F's security check point to access T4.

Useful Link on how to get to T4 and the new Transport Hub:
http://melbourneairport.com.au/news-events/listing/overview/new-drop-off-pick-up-and-car-parking-for-t4.html

How to get to T4 Map:
http://melbourneairport.com.au/docs/melair_transport_hub_map_airlines_final.pdf

There's also a few videos!

 

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Singapore Airlines brings A380, premium economy, to Melbourne

Singapore Airlines is bringing its Airbus A380 back to Melbourne, with the superjumbo also sporting new premium economy seats.


Admittedly it's only a limited engagement – the A380 will run just three days a week as SQ217/218 from 24 June through to 3 September, with the other four days flown by a Boeing 777-300ER.

If you're keen to make sure your Melbourne-Singapore flights is on SQ's A380 – which also boasts luxe first class suites – then look to book SQ218 out of Melbourne on a Saturday, Sunday or Monday; the ex-Singapore SQ217 superjumbo flight will run on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Singapore flag-carrier will use the A380 to boost capacity during the mid-year holiday season, and will also represent just the second Australian appearance of the airline's premium economy outside of Sydney, where it's rostered onto selected A380 and Boeing 777-300ER flights.
The A380 is fitted with 36 premium economy seats on the lower deck, nestled between first class suites and economy in a 2-4-2 layout.


The leather-clad seats are 19.5 inches wide on the A380 with a pitch of 38 inches, compared to a 19 inch width and tighter 32 inch pitch in standard economy.
Each seat has a comfortable 8 inch recline with both a legrest and footrest, its own AC power socket (with a universal design that'll take all common plug types) plus a pair of USB sockets, one of which is a high-power jack capable of recharging tablets.

But perhaps the best part of the premium economy package is that passengers will also be treated to champagne and meals from Singapore Airlines' excellent 'Book the Cook' service.

Made famous in SQ's first class and business class cabins, Book the Cook lets you choose your inflight meals before you fly, with a wider range of dishes – and, generally speaking, of superior quality – to what you'd be offered onboard.
You'll typically be able to pre-order your main course for all meals served during the flight – breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner or supper: here's the Book the Cook selection available from Sydney to Singapore.

http://www.ausbt.com.au/singapore-airlines-brings-a380-premium-economy-to-melbourne?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=flipper&utm_campaign=home-flipper
 

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hmm makes sense now, although the loop around is a little bit silly. I think i'm pretty good with directions however i did find the signage quite confusing. I'm going back in February so hopefully second time round I will get it right ! lol
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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QF and AA are looking at adding more Nth American routes within the next 5 years, AJ has been quite vocal on the prospects of a MEL-DFW route, so lets hope that pans out! However thats a route that would be likely after 2017+ (which is next year!), other prospects could be MEL-SFO, MEL-YVR to consider. MEL has missed out on the recent round of Nth American flights, so lets hope that its our turn next! :)

I think it would be of great interest for both AA and QF to stop pax spilling onto the likes of NZ/DL/VA/UA, MEL's pax base is large enough to sustain more non-stop services and it acts as a defacto gateway for ADL, PER, HBA, having the most flights to those domestic destinations, so theres also that catchment to tap into.

Qantas and American Airlines to add trans-Pacific routes in new joint venture
Jamie Freed | January 6, 2016

Qantas and American Airlines plan to add at least two new trans-Pacific routes in the next five years if they get final regulatory approvals for their joint venture on flights between Australasia and mainland North America.

In a detailed submission filed with the United States Department of Transportation, the airlines said the new routes, which were not named, were already under consideration.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce has publicly raised the potential for Melbourne-Dallas flights once the airline begins receiving new Boeing 787-9 aircraft from 2017.

The documents said American Airlines, which began flying on the Sydney-Los Angeles route last month and will start services on the Auckland-Los Angeles route in June, was also considering more routes.

Read More: http://www.smh.com.au/business/aviation/qantas-and-american-airlines-to-add-transpacific-routes-in-new-joint-venture-20160105-gm02ey.html
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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^^ That's awesome news! :) No mention of FOC? Announcement should be imminent too?
 

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I thought it was going to be 3 x weekly, but this is a good start.

Another airline for the airport and opening up further connections with China.

On another note, I flew on a couple of QF flights in the last couple of weeks and it was noticeable the change the JQ flights moving to T4 have had. T1 security lines have reduced and the terminal area and the road network do appear to be handling things a bit better now than previously.

It amazes me though that the newer part of T1 did not make use of more natural light, Strange decision.
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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CX is eyeing a 4th daily service, whilst they are also looking at introducing 77W aircraft on the route, the later is more likely and I think if CX was looking at a 3rd 77W service into Australia, MEL is likely since SYD had already nabbed the first 2. It's also interesting to see the GM stating that MEL had a good mix of "premium passengers" highlighting the fact that MEL still continues to yield premium pax. A 4th daily flight would be welcomed but it's logical to upgauge and existing flight first, if the bi-laterals were changed I'm sure we will see CX add that 4th daily flight and also see HX debut in the market.

Cathay Pacific eyes Sydney, Melbourne for more Boeing 777s
David Flynn | 11 Jan 2016

More flights for Melbourne?

"Melbourne is a very interesting proposition" Chin says, adding that the airline could also launch a fourth daily flight to Hong Kong.

"There's always scope as to whether we need more flights into a city like Melbourne, where there's a good mix of premium passengers."

"We have three flights a day already, but given that Melbourne Airport has is no curfew, there is still room that you can fit another flight in."

However, as Cathay Pacific has hit the government-imposed limit of how many flights it can run out of Australia's 'big four' international airports – Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth – one more Melbourne flight would mean one less from elsewhere on the network.

"It could mean some balancing of capacity, which might mean an upgrade in some cities for more frequency in another port" Chin allows. "That’s a position we do need to seriously consider."

One alternative is to bring the airline's flagship Boeing 777-300ER to Melbourne in place of an A330 flight, allowing CX to stay under the total flights-per-week ceiling

Read More: http://www.ausbt.com.au/cathay-pacific-eyes-sydney-melbourne-for-more-boeing-777s
 

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Posted at 0400GMT 11JAN16

Xiamen Airlines last week has opened reservation for planned new Australia service, where it’ll launch Xiamen – Melbourne route on 30JUN16. This will be the airline’s second destination and third route in Australia. Boeing 787-8 aircraft will be operating this route twice a week.
MF803 XMN2230 – 1005+1MEL 788 47
MF804 MEL1205 – 1945XMN 788 15

http://airlineroute.net
 

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Posted at 0400GMT 11JAN16

Xiamen Airlines last week has opened reservation for planned new Australia service, where it’ll launch Xiamen – Melbourne route on 30JUN16. This will be the airline’s second destination and third route in Australia. Boeing 787-8 aircraft will be operating this route twice a week.
MF803 XMN2230 – 1005+1MEL 788 47
MF804 MEL1205 – 1945XMN 788

http://airlineroute.net
Different days than originally posted it seems. Good news though.

CX is eyeing a 4th daily service, whilst they are also looking at introducing 77W aircraft on the route, the later is more likely and I think if CX was looking at a 3rd 77W service into Australia, MEL is likely since SYD had already nabbed the first 2. It's also interesting to see the GM stating that MEL had a good mix of "premium passengers" highlighting the fact that MEL still continues to yield premium pax. A 4th daily flight would be welcomed but it's logical to upgauge and existing flight first, if the bi-laterals were changed I'm sure we will see CX add that 4th daily flight and also see HX debut in the market.
I would think moving to replace an existing frequency with a 77W would make more sense.

Good news though that they are considering this move though. Word was that they looked at doing this but added a 2nd daily 77W into SYD instead last time around, but with limited room to move this would make sense to do this now.
 
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