Sat. Jun 15th, 2024
alert-–-bonza-ceo-reveals-why-he-chooses-to-take-a-train-rather-than-fly-as-ticket-prices-skyrocketAlert – Bonza CEO reveals why he chooses to take a train rather than fly as ticket prices skyrocket

A budget airline boss has resorted to taking the train rather than flying because of the exorbitant cost of airfares. 

Bonza CEO Tim Jordan decided to take an 8-hour train ride from Sydney to Coffs Harbour, in NSW, to attend meetings, rather than fork out $1,000 for flights. 

In a post shared to LinkedIn last week, Mr Jordan posted a screenshot of the flight costs and called out slot rules he argues that make it difficult for his airline to launch services out of Sydney. 

‘There is some significant irony that owing to the current cost of airfares (about $1,000 round trip for about 500km each way…) to Sydney I’m now catching a train for 8 hours+ each way for meetings,’ he wrote. 

Mr Jordan (pictured) has been critical of slot rules which he argues make it difficult for his airline to launch services out of Sydney

Tim Jordan, CEO of budget airline Bonza, decided to take an 8-hour train ride from Sydney to Coffs Harbour to attend meetings, rather than fork out $1000 for flights

‘One meeting is very ironically with Sydney Airport to talk about access for Bonza at Sydney so that we can potentially bring low-cost airfares to 2 million more regionally based Australians in about 16 regional locations across the country and, of course, nearly 6 million residents in the Sydney basin.’ 

The post comes amid criticism that the current rules for securing take-off times punish smaller airlines and allow the big carriers such as Qantas the ability to ‘hoard’ the most profitable periods.

‘That’s potentially 8 million Australians (nearly 1 in 3 of us) with potentially more access to low-cost airfares to/from Sydney and consequently hundreds of millions of dollars of additional annual economic benefit (plus the social and community benefits),’ Mr Jordan said. 

‘All that from Sydney slots that today go unused by incumbent operators (because they get cancelled, etc) and consequently produce zero/no benefit for anyone (excluding incumbents, of course).’

The current 80:20 rule means airlines need to use their take-off slots at least 80 per cent of the time in order to retain them indefinitely.

The slot rules are necessary because two aircraft cannot simultaneously take off on the same runway. 

Mr Jordan has been a long-time critic of the system, which he has previously called the ‘biggest single issue’ in domestic aviation.

In his post, Mr Jordan said Bonza had opened up seven new direct routes out of Melbourne’s Tullamarine that were not previously offered by any other airline. 

Mr Jordan said his airline Bonza had opened up seven new direct routes out of Melbourne’s Tullamarine that were not previously offered by any other airline

Mr Jordan shared an image of expensive flights between Sydney and Coffs Harbour 

He said the routes to Toowoomba, Port Macquarie, Bundaberg, Rocky, Tamworth, Gladstone and Mackay offered travellers ‘average savings of more than $400+’. 

‘These are very real and very significant savings when communities need them most, and we can do the same in Sydney in 2024 if only we could get access to limited peak slots required for SYD aircraft basing,’ he said.

‘Government certainly isn’t easy, but better utilising SYD slots surely must be one of the easier changes to make that will positively impact millions of us across many regions when Australians need it most.’

Last month, Transport Minister Catherine King released the government’s long-awaited green paper into Australian aviation to 2050, and stated Sydney Airport’s slot allocation scheme would be reformed ‘in due course’.

The green paper was released for industry consultation ahead of a formal white paper, which is due by the middle of 2024.

Sydney Airport, which has no say over the rules, also advocates for a change.

error: Content is protected !!