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Daily air service lands

BUSSELTON and Margaret River residents now have access to a daily weekday air service from Perth.

Transport Minster Murray Criddle said there would be a flight every morning during the week as well as flights on Wednesday and Friday afternoons.

Mr Criddle said the decision to expand the service from three days a week came as a result of a 260 per cent increase in passenger numbers on existing flights since services to Margaret River were added in March 1999.

Funds from the Regional Airports Development Scheme will be used to widen the Margaret River runway and draw up comprehensive airport development plan in conjunction with the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River.

“The new daily service from Busselton and Margaret River to Perth has been developed to meet the demands of local business people and I believe it will provide a significant boost to the region,” he said.

Mr Criddle said the service was still not financially viable although many flights no longer required a subsidy.

“By providing funds to get this service off the ground, we will be able to then stand back and allow the airline to reap the rewards of a commercially viable service to this rapidly expanding region,” he said.

The new service was developed in partnership with Maroomba Airlines and Westralia Airports Corporation.

Seven-day advance purchase return tickets for adults cost $169 to Margaret River and $149 to Busselton.

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