In today’s world of uncertain, unprecedented, uncomfortable (insert latest cliché) times, it’s essential we all stay positive and focus on the small wins. Here’s my rundown of five things that have given us all at Karryon some fresh hope and optimism this week. Hopefully, they have for you too.
It’s almost the end of September (daylight savings starts next weekend woohoo!) and Victoria is leading the way in the optimism stakes as the situation keeps on improving and the spring buds of hope and more easing restrictions begin to shoot.
This week has felt like a big one when it comes to positive advances in travel, with a number of good news stories to mention.
So here we go with this weeks five notable moments. Have a fantastic weekend.
1. Hello again South Australia, hello Radelaide!
Thursday saw South Australia’s border reopen to New South Wales with Qantas’s first flight back from Sydney to Adelaide arriving to great fanfare, tears and joy.
Aside from the obvious economic benefits of reopening the border for both states, it was simply beautiful to see families and loved ones emotionally reunite again after so long apart.
Hats off to South Australia and to Qantas who did a brilliant job of sharing the story and the pics we all needed to see.
Here’s hoping we can reunite all of Australia as quickly as possible now… And then, the world.
2. Oh, and Queensland is coming back too! (sort of)
Next Thursday, 1 October will see Queensland extend its bubble with Northern New South Wales.
Residents of Byron Bay, Ballina, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Glen Innes will be allowed to enter the entire sunshine state with Queenslanders also allowed to venture south without having to quarantine on their return.
This is great news for tourism businesses either side of the border including Gold Coast Airport and another step forward for a complete QLD/NSW border reopening.
3. I flew for the first time in 7 months and it was a thumbs up from me
I went on a flight this week. It was my first in seven months and also my first trip to Sydney so I wasn’t sure what to expect.
I flew from Ballina to Sydney on Jetstar and despite the ticket costing an eye-watering $500 return, everything went smoothly and I found the whole COVID-flight experience far easier and more relaxed than I was expecting.
Both flights were full with around 20% wearing face masks on the way down to Sydney and around 50% wearing them on the way north to Ballina. For the record, I wore one in both directions.
While there were only minimal departures from Sydney Airport on the day I left (Wednesday), the airport still felt to me like an airport should. A lot more stores and cafés were open than I’d seen in travellers photos over the last couple of months and overall, the mood felt positive and stress-free.
All great signs that we are moving past the fear of flying and indeed travelling in general as more domestic borders begin to reopen.
4. Did you grab a Qantas 747 bar cart?
Yesterday, Qantas sold off more pieces of history to gushing avgeeeks and hosts and hostesses with the most by offering 1000 of their ‘fully stocked’ Jumbo 747 galley bar carts.
All of the 747 bar carts came stocked with a range of items from champagne and Australian red and white wine to Tim Tams, PJs and an exclusive-to-Qantas First Class Sheridan throw.
Priced at $974.70 for a half bar cart including delivery (or 169,000 Qantas Points) or $1474.70 (or 256,000 Qantas Points) for a full-size cart with double the items, the carts were always going to sell faster than you could say ‘prepare for take-off’.
And indeed they did, with all the carts sold just hours after going on sale.
Sure, this story isn’t going to change the world, but it’s a nice reminder of the memories and nostalgia travel creates in all of us.
5. Footsteps For Food: James McAlloon completes his 3460 km walk for charity at Uluru
After a gruelling 81 days and 3460 km on foot (mostly solo btw), James McAlloon from Chimu Adventures completed his epic footsteps-for-food quest on Saturday 19th September as he took his final steps to the base of Uluru, after setting out from The Sunshine Coast at the end of June.
James is now en-route to his home in the Sunshine Coast for a very well deserved rest, having raised an incredible $36,000 for communities in South America who are struggling through the loss of income from tourists due to COVID-19, this equates to food for over 900 families.
“We accomplished more than I ever could have hope for, both personally and in the number of funds we were able to raise. It just goes to show that if you keep moving, accept the reality and innovate as you go, the end result could be better than you ever imagined. It was for me.”
James McAlloon, Relationship Manager, Chimu Adventures QLD
Congratulations James on completing such an incredible, selfless mission for good. I hope that your feet are now getting a good rest and soak in that warm ocean on the Sunshine Coast!
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