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Turkish Airlines marks a significant milestone with its first flight to Melbourne

written by Newsdesk | March 5, 2024

Turkish Airlines marks a significant milestone with its first flight to Melbourne
A Turkish Airlines A330-300 depart Istanbul Ataturk (Source: Australian Aviation archives)

Turkish Airlines has achieved a landmark moment in its 90-year history by landing in Melbourne for the first time, establishing a direct route to Istanbul and providing access to Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. This new service positions Melbourne as Turkish Airlines’ 346th destination, marking the first Australian city to be included in its extensive network. With this addition, Melbourne Airport now hosts a record 39 international airlines.

The airline has initiated services between Istanbul and Melbourne, operating three times weekly via Singapore. Plans are underway to introduce non-stop flights upon the acquisition of new long-range aircraft. The inaugural flight was conducted using a Boeing 777, with plans to transition to Boeing 787 Dreamliners and Airbus A350 aircraft later this month.

Lorie Argus, CEO of Melbourne Airport, emphasized the significance of Turkish Airlines’ entry into the Australian market, highlighting the benefits for travelers and local exporters. “Turkish Airlines has an extensive network and flies to more countries than any other airline so this new competitor in the Australian market is fantastic news for consumers,” she stated. Argus also pointed out the efforts in collaboration with the Victorian State Government to secure Turkish Airlines’ services and the anticipated growth of these services in the future. She remarked on the expected popularity of these flights among the Turkish community in Melbourne, emphasizing the importance of increased competition in reducing prices and maintaining global connectivity for Victorians.

In addition, Natalie Hutchins, the Minister for Jobs and Industry, expressed her pride in welcoming direct flights between Türkiye and Australia for the first time, highlighting the positive impact on tourism, trade, and local employment. Minister for Small Business Natalie Suleyman also acknowledged the service’s contribution to tourism, job creation, and support for small businesses.

Turkish Airlines’ Chairman, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Bolat, described the Melbourne route inauguration as a monumental milestone for the airline, marking the achievement of a long-standing goal to expand its reach to Australia. He said, “This achievement follows meticulous planning and extensive infrastructure developments, symbolizing the successful bridging of Istanbul with a new and vibrant continent.” Bolat also underscored Turkish Airlines’ commitment to connecting different cultures and communities across the globe and its mission to provide a gateway to global exploration through its unparalleled network.


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