Virgin Australia is looking to expand its regional services and the push is already on to have them - and other Australian air carriers - spread their wings further into Mackay and the Whitsundays.
Moves are afoot to have Mackay and Whitsunday Coast / Proserpine Airports included in Virgin's expansion plans as stakeholders push to get direct flights to and from cities such as Melbourne, Sydney, and the Gold Coast.
Virgin Australia has announced that a push into regional markets and new international routes from Australia's north as part of a plan to further challenge its competitors and bring down the price of regional airfares.
The Whitsunday Coast Airport is busy trying to convince carriers, including Virgin, to bring additional services to the airport, with the ongoing upgrade to the airport facilities hopefully attracting the return of direct services from and to Sydney and Melbourne.
In a major milestone for the Whitsunday Coast / Proserpine Airport redevelopment, the new passenger check-in and gate waiting areas were recently opened.
As shown above, all check-in desks are now located in one section of the terminal, while the new gate waiting area features a huge glass-fronted sitting area with views over the airport apron, as well as a new and improved kiosk/snack bar.
Meanwhile, direct flights to Melbourne and Sydney were also on the agenda for Mackay Airport, as well as services to the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, and Cairns.
Mackay Airport's $18 million makeover reached another milestone last week, with the completion of an extension to its long-term car park.
A Mackay Airport spokesperson said demand for long-term parking at the airport had increased rapidly during the past few years, in line with the boom in the resources sector. The extension provides a further 383 fully sealed car park spaces in addition to the 255 existing long-term car park spaces.