Melbourne, Australia – 30 January 2019 – Air Vanuatu, Vanuatu’s national carrier, today announced the launch of a new non-stop service between Melbourne and Port Vila, Vanuatu. Commencing 18 June 2019, the new flight will be the only direct service between the two cities, expanding the airline’s offering in Australia and providing greater access to Vanuatu.
With tickets now available to book, Air Vanuatu will operate three direct flights per week between Melbourne and the capital of Vanuatu, Port Vila, using the airline’s Boeing 737-800. Onward connections are available to 28 destinations across the country.
Derek Nice, Air Vanuatu’s Managing Director and CEO, said he is thrilled to be launching the only direct service between Melbourne and Vanuatu.
“The launch of this new route will be particularly exciting for people living in Melbourne who have already discovered the wonders of Vanuatu and can’t wait to go back. They can travel non-stop, on conveniently timed flights, giving them more time in our island paradise,” said Mr Nice.
“Subject to regulatory and government approval, we are also pleased to add code-sharing with Qantas on the new service,” he concluded.
When operations commence, Air Vanuatu flight NF7 will depart Melbourne (MEL) at 07.00 (local time) on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays arriving in Port Vila at 12.30 (local time), with a flight time of just over 4 hours. The return flight NF8 will depart Port Vila at 16.15 (local time) on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, arriving in Melbourne at 20.15 (local time), with a flight time of just over 5 hours. Flight schedules are subject to change.
Adela Issachar, CEO of the Vanuatu Tourism Office, welcomes the news and looks forward to welcoming even more Australian travellers to the island paradise.
“Like the people of Vanuatu, a holiday in Vanuatu is full of fun, inspired by the cheeky spirit delivered with a big Ni-Vanuatu smile,” said Ms Issachar.
“Adventure, in its many forms, is what Vanuatu does best. From the fire and fury of an active volcano to the vivid colours of tropical reefs; from vast swathes of untouched rainforest to incredible blue holes and the soothing sound of waves lapping on the shore. Now only 4 hours flight time from Melbourne, now is the time to get Vanuatu on your bucket list,” she concluded.
Melbourne Airport Chief of Aviation Simon Gandy said he was pleased to welcome Air Vanuatu to Melbourne, giving travellers easy access to a new holiday destination.
“We are delighted to welcome back Air Vanuatu to the Melbourne Airport family. This new direct service adds the exciting destination of Port Vila, Vanuatu, to our schedule allowing Melburnians to explore the capital city’s colourful mix of shops, restaurants, markets and beaches,” said Mr Gandy.
“Port Vila is also a hub for Air Vanuatu, which gives travellers the ability to fly to 28 destinations on the airline’s extensive domestic network.
“We know the South Pacific islands are popular with our travellers, so it’s great to introduce this non-stop flight on a full-service carrier, making the journey easier for people in both Melbourne and Port Vila.
To celebrate the launch of the new route, Air Vanuatu is offering a special fare starting from $325 one way for bookings made between now and 31 March 2019. Travel must take place between 18 June to 31 December 2019.