CLONCURRY residents would pay $1 a kilometre if they wanted to buy an airfare to Townsville at short notice.
Yet Townsville residents would pay 10 cents a km if they wanted to fly to Brisbane the day they bought a ticket.
Other expensive Townsville airline routes cost 94 cents per km from Mackay, 71 cents per km from Mount Isa, and 53 cents from Cairns.
These figures were based on a search on app Skyscanner on Tuesday for the cheapest short-term return economy airfares on offer from Townsville.
These flights were direct, meaning there would be more expensive routes in the North West and Gulf regions not considered in these figures.
The airfares from Cloncurry, Mackay and Mount Isa were offered by Qantas, while the Townsville-Cairns route was offered by Rex.
Six other Townsville routes were checked, including Darwin, Perth, and Adelaide. The cheapest per km was the Brisbane route offered by Jetstar.
The second cheapest was Townsville to Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport at a cost around 12 cents a km.
A visit to Sydney and back would cost 14 cents a km. This airfare was offered by Jetstar.
It cost 15 cents a km to travel to Perth. This was offered by Virgin Australia.
The airfare price to Adelaide bought on the day of travel would cost 21 cents a km, which was another Virgin Australia flight.
It would cost 27 cents a km to travel from Darwin to Townsville. Qantas offered this flight.
These figures would not quite match those pictured, which came in a TripAdvisor email advertising ‘cheap flights from Townsville’.
The TripAdvisor airfare prices were first brought to the community’s attention by Marie Hall, who published them on a local social media group on Thursday, October 13.
These prices were cheaper than those found on Skyscanner but had not included Cloncurry and Perth flights.
The local social media community generally blasted the airfare prices and companies, although some believed the figures a “beat up”.
Facebook user Yvette Maree Martin said Qantas’s prices might be high due to charges set by the Mount Isa Airport, while Brian Morrison said prices were “freakin’ BS.”
“How is it cheaper to go from Adelaide to Townsville that is roughly 30 hours driving, compared to the trip to Mount Isa and back?”
Jodie Sturgeon wrote, “this needs to be put all over the news.
“Let the rest of Australia see what’s happening.
“The more noise we make, they might listen. Well, you could only hope.”