Rex has announced an expansion of its 737 services to Adelaide and the Gold Coast. The surprise announcement came as the airline commenced operations between Melbourne and Sydney.
The new routes will roll out in late March and early April. Rex has already begun selling the new flights, and the details are:
- Melbourne-Gold Coast begins 29 March, with economy fares from $79 and business class from $349
- Melbourne-Adelaide begins 31 March, with economy from $69 and business class from $299
- Sydney-Gold Coast begins 1 April, with economy from $69 and business class from $299.
As we have noted before, Rex is pursuing a mid-market strategy. In Economy, all tickets include 23 kg check-in luggage and 7 kg carry-on baggage. On board, refreshments are provided. Seat selection is available, however, there is an additional fee payable.
Up the front of the plane, in Business, you get lounge access, onboard wi-fi, a “meal box” and a range of beverages.
At this point, Rex does not have a frequent flyer program. However, their website hints that a new program is on the way.
The choice of the Gold Coast is interesting. Rex had previously indicated Brisbane for its next flights. I guess they see some advantage in operating to the Gold Coast rather than Brisbane.
On the other hand, Adelaide is not surprising. Rex already operates a number of flights out of Adelaide, and even has a lounge there.
Taken together, this adds quite a bit of competition to the new routes. We would expect that Virgin Australia and Qantas/Jetstar will respond in a competitive way.