Troubled Phuket airline changes name

21 Nov 2011

Australian low cost carrier Strategic Airlines has changed its name to Air Australia. The airline flies from Brisbane and Melbourne to Phuket.

In June this year, Strategic Airlines hit the headlines when it cancelled a number of return flights from Phuket and left passengers stranded in Thailand. The cancellations were attributed to aviation complications and were allegedly the result of non-payment of ground maintenance fees.

Last Tuesday the airline was rebranded as Air Australia and its old signature red, white and blue aircraft livery and staff uniforms will gradually be replaced with a new look for a new airline. To mark the rebranding, Air Australia is running a promotion offering flights to Phuket for A$329 (10,160 Baht).

The airline currently has twice weekly flights to Phuket from Brisbane and Melbourne. Air Australia’s chief executive Michael James said that with the rebranding, the airline was affirming its aim of providing great service in transporting passengers to their required destinations at prices that most could afford.  

He added that in today’s consumer market there was a niche for an airline that could offer real value that would inspire passenger loyalty. He said that Air Australia was a small carrier and therefore was able to avoid the massive operating overheads of larger airlines.

Air Australia will take over all of Strategic’s existing routes and hopes to take up concessions for services to the US and China. The carrier operates an Airbus fleet and will be taking delivery of a new A330 next month. 

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