Alliance Airlines has hit new highs in 2020. Determined not to be grounded by COVID-19, the Brisbane-based carrier has sought new opportunities to service regional routes and increase their charter services.
Three new Queensland scheduled services commenced in August, including Brisbane to Whitsunday Coast, Sunshine Coast to Cairns and Brisbane to Moranbah. In October, two more new will take off – Canberra to Sunshine Coast and Canberra to Cairns (via Sunshine Coast).
There is also a new jewel in the Alliance crown, with the purchase of a Fokker 70 VIP jet from the Dutch royal family. This acquisition has strengthened the airline’s status as Australia’s largest air charter operator and offers a new level of luxury, freedom and flexibility.
CBT was eager to experience the VIP service and Jordan Treagust was happy to take one for the team. We quizzed Jordan about what it was really like to fly like a royal?
Q: What was it like to fly on a private jet?
A: “Very luxurious, but quite strange. It felt more like a handful of people sitting in a nice room, until it started taking off. The ascent was also very fast and steep due to the lack of weight onboard. There was also a glass or two of bubbly onboard!”
Q: How long was your flight and where did you go?
A: “The flight lasted 20-25 minutes. We cruised at around 5,000 feet throughout, which was nice as it flew over the areas of Brisbane I’ve lived in for 20 years. I even saw my house from the plane.”
On take off we headed south past Wynnum and Capalaba, turned east over Mount Cotton and headed out into Moreton Bay where we turned north along the Stradbroke Island Coast and came back towards Brisbane Airport from there.
Q: How was your Alliance experience?
A: “They provided a really good overview of their operations and explained their point of difference between themselves and other airlines. This includes more focus on charters and servicing smaller airports, such as Sunshine Coast to Cairns. Alliance do not want to compete with Virgin or Qantas. They are happy to operate more of their regional routes, as well as their FIFO routes and private charters.”
Q: Is the Fokker 70 comfortable?
A: “Considering that it’s fitted with 24 large leather seats, where another similar aircraft would have around 80 economy seats, it was the most comfortable I’ve ever been on a plane. The front cabin has 12 comfortably spaced seats and tables. These seats can recline, pivot and move forwards and backwards. Plus, they have plenty of table space and these can convert to beds if needed. A second cabin at the rear has 12 seats with three rows in a 2-2 configuration.”
Q: Who do you think will benefit most from using the private jet service?
A: “Anyone, depending on their budget. This private VIP Jet is the same cost as their other Fokker 70, however it has the luxury of 24-seat configuration.”
“It would be good for a group of VIP’s travelling together, especially as they can be socially distant on board. It’s set up well for corporate executives who want to make the most of their in-flight time. It has also been used for touring bands and I can imagine it would suit sporting groups as well. It’s ideal for anyone who needs to travel to unusual places or have a flexible travel option.”
If you have any questions about Alliance Airlines charters or scheduled services, please don’t hesitate to contact your CBT team for assistance.