Traditionally dressed Japanese hosts and musicians will bring a taste of Japan to Brisbane Airport tomorrow as celebrations kick off for the launch of Qantas’ inaugural flight from Brisbane to Tokyo (Narita) at 11am.
In honour of the first direct, full-service flight to Japan from BNE since 2010, Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) has created a Japanese inspired area featuring a traditional Zen garden with Torri gate entrance, a wishing wall, origami table, temple statues, lanterns and bamboo screening for travellers to enjoy.
The daily services will provide 62,000 seats per year (both directions), creating a critical connection between Queensland and Japan.
Julieanne Alroe, BAC CEO and Managing Director, praised Qantas for the new service saying it will help to reinvigorate a long and valuable relationship between the two countries.
“Japan and Queensland have an incredibly strong tie; sharing excellent and well established tourism and business relationships. Japan is Queensland’s second biggest trading partner and Queensland remains the highest aspirational Australian destination for Japanese travellers.
“The return of a full service carrier direct to Japan is a win for travellers, for business, for Queensland and for the economy.
“I’d like to congratulate Qantas on this significant launch and thank the team for their ongoing commitment to Brisbane and Queensland, along with support received from the Australian and Japanese Business Chamber of Commerce and other industry partners.
“We look forward to seeing the success of this service leading to more international destinations from Brisbane by Qantas,” Ms Alroe said.
Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said Qantas’ new direct service from Tokyo to Brisbane would further boost the relationship between Brisbane and Japan.
“Brisbane is already a key business and tourism destination for Japanese travellers and this new direct flight route will help to attract an additional 100,000 travellers to our State every year,” Cr Quirk said.
“We are a significant player in the Asia Pacific, including being the custodian of the Asia Pacific Cities Summit and the Asia Pacific Screen Awards and this new flight route will further boost Brisbane’s standing in the Asia Pacific.
“This week it was announced that Brisbane celebrated its one millionth annual visitor for the first time in the year to March 2015, which demonstrates that Brisbane’s position on the world stage is firmly in place.
“I look forward to welcoming the first travellers and I congratulate Qantas on this significant achievement.”
Japan has extensive interests in a number of Queensland industries and BNE will act as a hub with connections to more than 42 domestic destinations across Queensland and the rest of Australia.
Despite having no direct flights since 2010, the number of Australians travelling to Japan via BNE increased 55 per cent in 2014, with Japan set to overtake Bali as the most visited country for international Australian travellers.
The addition of Tokyo brings BNE’s international network to 28 destinations around the globe.
Qantas will operate its Airbus A330 aircraft on the route, among those being progressively refurbished and introduced on flights to Asia, featuring its latest on-board business class product.