Gold Coast Airport to welcome back first international flight

OVERSEAS tourists will finally touch back down on the Gold Coast today, marking a significant step forward on the local tourism industry’s road to recovery.

Singapore-based airline Scoot will resume travel to the Gold Coast on Monday, with the first flight to touch down in Coolangatta around 7.00am.

It’s the first international flight to land on the Gold Coast in six months and the first outside of the Trans-Tasman bubble since March 23, 2020.


As it coincides with Valentines Day, Gold Coast Airport will celebrate the moment by handing ‘GCA loves Scoot’ lollipops to arrivals and free entry into the Valentine’s Day-themed koala enclosure at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, along with a photo with the much-loved animals.

“Valentine’s Day is the perfect day for this service to return. The tourism industry loves Scoot and the airline loves the Gold Coast and northern NSW,” Queensland Airports Limited CEO Chris Mills said.

It’s a huge moment for the struggling tourism and aviation sectors, who have been among those hit the hardest during the pandemic.

Before COVID-19, Scoot was bringing between 130,000 and 150,000 people into the Gold Coast every year.

It’s expected the route will deliver more than 52,000 seats into the Coast this year.

Mr Mills said while it would take time for international travel to recover – the restart of the Scoot service was an important next step.

“International travel has more complexity than domestic services and it will take time for the numbers to build back up,” he said.

“It will take a while to get back to the million international passengers a year that were travelling through Gold Coast Airport pre-COVID-19.”

Scoot CEO Campbell Wilson said with the upcoming reopening of Australia’s borders to the world, the resumption of this service could not have come at a better time.

“Since we launched this route a decade ago, over a million people have flown with us to experience the picturesque attractions of the Gold Coast, and the cosmopolitan bustle of Singapore,” he said.

“It is evident that the Gold Coast remains a much-loved destination, and commemorating our return here on Valentine’s Day makes it all the more special as we look forward to reuniting loved ones across borders and reigniting the love for travel.”

Destination Gold Coast CEO Patricia O’Callaghan said it represented a significant milestone for recovery.

“The tides are turning for tourism on the Gold Coast and we are thrilled to once again welcome Scoot back, which is the beginning of an exceptionally bright future ahead for international travel,” she said.