Australian airlines are taking their rivalry to Japan where Virgin Australia & Qantas are currently going head-to-head over a couple of new slots at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport.

Virgin Australia lodged an application this week with Australia’s International Air Services Commission (IASC) for one of two new slots available to Australian carriers.

The carrier told media that the slots at Haneda Airport were “extremely important” as they’d create competition and provide consumers with more options for travel to Japan.


Despite the good intentions, the move has left a few scratching their heads as it comes less than a month after the airline announced a network-wide review of flights intended to reduce costs and reverse the airline’s losses.

The carrier responded to concerns, saying that it is “investing in the right routes” that are “commercially profitable”.


Image: Koi Visuals/Unsplash

“Introducing Japan to its network will benefit the business, guests and the broader tourism industry.”

Virgin Australia

The initial application did not include information such as aircraft type, however, the final lodgement due on 24 September should include more details.

IASC hopes to announce its decision by 21 October 2019.