London deal opens door to SW tourism

Chloe FraserBusselton Dunsborough Times
Vasse MLA Libby Mettam and Busselton Jetty chief executive Lisa Shreeve say the non-stop flights will boost regional tourism.
Camera IconVasse MLA Libby Mettam and Busselton Jetty chief executive Lisa Shreeve say the non-stop flights will boost regional tourism. Credit: Chloe Fraser

Visits to Busselton and the broader South West are expected to rise, after Qantas earlier this week announced it would provide non-stop services between Perth and London.

The 14,498km service will be the first to link Australia with Europe directly using Perth as a hub for international flights.

Busselton Jetty chief executive Lisa Shreeve said the 17-hour direct flight between Perth and London opened the door to tourism in Busselton and would have a positive effect on attractions in the region.

“Flying from London to Sydney or Melbourne, then catching another four-hour flight to Perth before driving three hours to the South West is daunting, but a direct flight to Perth opens regional WA up to international visitors,” she said.

“Having clear turquoise water, good weather and great experiences attracts visitors from the UK and we can offer all of that and more.”

Ms Shreeve said the Busselton Jetty had attracted more than 408,462 visitors in the last financial year, with 12 per cent of visitors coming from the UK.

She said the jetty was the second most popular attraction in the State behind the Perth Zoo.

Vasse MLA Libby Mettam said the deal would involve 14 direct flights between Perth and London every week.

“This will come into effect in March 2018 and we expect the Busselton Airport expansion for Eastern States Flights later that year, so it clearly represents a significant boost and opportunity for this region,” she said.

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