Turkish Airlines makes history with inaugural flight to Melbourne

Turkish Airlines has touched down in Melbourne for the first time, providing travellers with a direct link to Istanbul and beyond to Europe, the Middle East and Africa. 

Melbourne is Turkish Airlines’ 346th destination and today marks the first time in the carrier’s 90-year history that an Australian city has featured in its network. 

Turkish Airlines’ arrival means Melbourne Airport is now served by a record 39 international carriers. 

Services between Istanbul and Melbourne will initially operate three times a week via Singapore, with the airline planning to fly non-stop upon the arrival of new long-range aircraft. 

The inaugural flight was flown by a Boeing 777, with Boeing 787 Dreamliners and the flagship Airbus A350 aircraft to take over the service from later this month.  

Melbourne Airport CEO Lorie Argus said the airline’s entry into the Australian market provides new options for travellers and local exporters. 

"Turkish Airlines has an extensive network and flies to more countries than any other airline so this new competitor in the Australian market is fantastic news for consumers,” she said. 

“We’ve worked closely with the Victorian State Government to bring Turkish Airlines to Melbourne, and we now look forward to growing their services over the coming years. 

“Increased competition helps put downward pressure on prices, which will ensure Victorian residents and businesses can stay connected with family, friends and clients around the world. 

“Melbourne is proudly home to the largest Turkish population in Australia, so we expect these flights will prove particularly popular with people looking to visit friends and relatives.” 

Turkish Airlines Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Bolat said the day marked a monumental milestone for the carrier, as it celebrates the realisation of a long-held ambition—to extend its reach to the Australian continent.  

“This achievement follows meticulous planning and extensive infrastructure developments, symbolizing the successful bridging of Istanbul with a new and vibrant continent,” he said.  

“The inauguration of our Melbourne route is a testament to our growing influence in the Asia-Pacific region and underscores our unwavering commitment to fostering connections between diverse cultures and communities across the globe. 

“Through our unparalleled network, we are thrilled to offer our guests a gateway to global exploration, ensuring that our legacy of exceptional service quality continues to flourish in every corner of the world.”