SriLankan Airlines will be establishing its presence in Australia with daily non-stop services to Melbourne commencing from October 29, 2017. The non-stop services will also facilitate passengers from the Middle East and South Asia seeking onward connectivity via Colombo to/from Australia. The Airline will be operating Airbus 330-200 aircraft on the route, offering its passengers modern in-flight comforts.
SriLankan Airlines’ CEO, Captain Suren Ratwatte, said, “Our presence in Australia cements the long-standing relationship between the two countries. We recently celebrated the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our nations and the addition of Melbourne signifies our strategy of optimising the Airline’s network in line with our restructuring..”
SriLankan Airlines’ Chief Commercial Officer, Siva Ramachandran, said, “Despite the absence of direct connections, we have witnessed a steady increase in passengers travelling between Colombo and Melbourne via various Asian connecting points such as Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. With the launch of the new services, SriLankan Airlines’ passengers will also have the choice of flying to other Australian cities such as Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide as well as Auckland, New Zealand.”
Australia’s High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Bryce Hutchesson, said, “We congratulate SriLankan Airlines on the addition of a direct flight to Australia. Direct air connections between countries stimulate two-way tourism, business, trade and people-to-people exchange which are the core ingredients for a vibrant bilateral relationship. We are seeing a growing number of Australians looking to travel to Sri Lanka for tourism and business and to reconnect with family.”
These operations will further complement the existing double daily services offered by SriLankan Airlines between Sri Lanka and Australia via Singapore and Kuala Lumpur with its codeshare partners, Qantas and Malaysia Airlines.