Rex has announced plans to fly jet services on the Golden Triangle from March 2021. To do so, Rex is looking to obtain between 5 and 10 single-aisle jets, to operate services between Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane.
It is not just new jets that Rex is looking at. They have also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with ATR. Under this MOU, Rex will be considering options to replace its existing Saab fleet with ATR42 and ATR72 aircraft. These newer aircraft will provide lower costs to Rex, and help to drive additional revenue.
Under the proposal, Rex is suggesting that it will provide a hybrid style of service. Really, this just means somewhere between a Low-Cost Carrier, and a Full-Service Carrier. So, not a Jetstar, but nor a Qantas either. Having said that, they do say that they will have meals, a baggage allowance, and assigned seating included in the fares. So maybe pitched more toward the Qantas end of town, than the Jetstar end.
Ultimately, this will see an expanded Rex. It will have new aircraft for regional flights, and it will set off on a path offering domestic flights.
While it sounds like a big leap, Rex doesn’t see it that way. They characterize it as an ‘incremental extension’, and they hope to maintain their cost base. This they estimate at being 35% less than that of Virgin Australia.
Even so, taking on Qantas and Virgin Australia on the triangle will see a competitive environment we haven’t seen for a while.
Looking into replacing the Saab turboprops is also welcome. These aircraft were getting on a bit in years.
Interesting times ahead for Rex.