Bonza is set to become Australia’s first independent low-cost carrier. Unveiled in early October, the new airline has announced its decision to acquire an initial fleet of two to three Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft.
Backed by US investment firm 777 Partners, the airline has already expressed intentions to expand across Australia after its initial fleet is launched. The airline’s CEO has been announced as ex-Virgin Blue executive, Tim Jordan.
Australia’s First Airline to Roll out 737 MAX 8
Upon launch in early 2022, Bonza will become the first Australian airline to express intent to fly the Boeing 737 MAX for regular operations domestically.
The airline’s plans for the cabin configuration include 186 seats, all in economy class. Bonza hopes to acquire additional aircraft as travel demand continues to increase post-pandemic.
The 737 MAX has had its share of controversy over the years after facing trouble in 2019. Since its return to service in 2021, Virgin Australia is currently the only Australian airline with the aircraft on order.
Independent Low-cost Carrier
As an independent airline, Bonza is slated to offer point-to-point routes that are currently underserved in Australia. The airline promises low prices on domestic routes, competing with the likes of Qantas, Virgin Australia, Regional Express Holdings, and of course Jetstar (which is currently Australia’s only low-cost carrier, a subsidiary of Qantas and not an independent airline). Bonza believes there is a gap to fill in the market and plans to create a new market focused on leisure-driven routes within the country.
No Official Destinations Yet
While Bonza has not officially announced initial destinations, they have expressed intent to serve currently underserved Australian routes. Focus is expected to be on routes that are currently more difficult to travel to, as Bonza has stated on its website that it hopes to connect Australians across Australia. They are currently calling on the public to provide feedback to help decide on their initial routes. The airline has no plans to expand internationally at this point. The name Bonza comes from Australian slang, meaning “great”, according to 777 Partners’ website.