A Jetstar Facebook photo of its first 787-8

Jetstar’s big foray into Singapore-Beijing and Singapore-Osaka wide body flights is over, but it is launching or expanding them between Melbourne and Phuket and Honolulu.

In its timetable updates which begin to apply on 1 November and will be fully in place by mid December the Qantas subsidiary also drops a very strong hint that it will fly its new Dreamliner 787s to Honolulu and Phuket from the start of February.

This is the heart of the announcement.

Direct flights on the Melbourne to Phuket route will start from 14 December 2013 operating every Saturday and Sunday with a third weekly service to be introduced from March 2014*.

Jetstar Group Chief Commercial Officer David Koczkar said the launch of its newest long haul route delivered the first direct low fares flights for customers between the two destinations.

“We see a lot of customers booking flights to Phuket via Sydney or Singapore so we’ve decided to add a non-stop flight for Victorians,” Mr Koczkar said.

“We’re also very pleased to announce the introduction of an additional frequency between Melbourne and Honolulu over the busy peak season.”

From 19 December, Melbourne-Honolulu* will increase from three to four times a week while Melbourne-Singapore* will increase from five to six times a week as of 18 December. These services will be operated by Jetstar’s existing fleet of Airbus A330 aircraft until the end of January.

Mr Koczkar said the delivery of Jetstar’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner* later this month was also exciting news for travellers throughout the region.

“We pioneered low fares long haul travel when we launched our first flights into Asia seven years ago,” Mr Koczkar said.

“As we progressively transition our A330s to the more fuel efficient Boeing 787s, customers will continue to benefit from our low fares well into the future.”

Jetstar has 14 B787s on order, with three aircraft due to be delivered by the end of 2013. The aircraft features a carbon-composite fuselage which helps to reduce fuel burn by up to 20 per cent.

Earlier in the week, Jetstar announced its first international flights out of Adelaide would take off from 16 December with the introduction of a three times weekly service between Adelaide and Auckland*. Return services on the route will operate every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday in an Airbus A320.

To enable the new international services, Jetstar will suspend its four weekly services between Singapore and Osaka from 1 November and three weekly services between Singapore and Beijing from 30 November.

Jetstar will continue to serve Osaka from Singapore, operating up to 14 weekly flights via Taipei and four per week via Manila.

As preparations ramp up for the Boeing 787’s entry into service, Jetstar is looking at a range of destinations to deploy capacity on and further international announcements will follow.

* Subject to government and regulatory approval.

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