Holidays in Australia are in crisis as the cost of domestic airfares jumped as much as 96 per cent, with locals finding it cheaper to fly overseas.
Qantas and other airline carriers have increased prices since May as tourism operators crippled by the Covid-19 pandemic try to recover.
Popular airline travel deals website Kayak revealed that the average return economy airfares in Australia reached approximately $409.
This July, a return flight from Brisbane to Alice Springs cost more than a ticket from Brisbane to Fiji.
Those heading to Central Australia paid an average of $1058 – a 29 per cent increase from May – compared to $950 to jet over to our Pacific neighbour.
Those heading to Sydney from Darwin are also reaching deep into their pockets this July with flight fares jumping up by 85 per cent.
The price hikes come as major airlines come under pressure, with cancellations, baggage losses and poor customer reviews.
Queensland Tourism Industry Council CEO Brett Fraser told the Daily Mail the problem was “not new.”
“Some of Queensland’s best experiences and wonders can only be found in our regions. It’s a challenge that they’re made less accessible due to relatively high flight costs,” he said.
“Our industry has done it tough the last three years and to bounce back effectively, we rely on both the international and domestic visitor markets performing.”