Virgin sets up direct discount route to Tonga

Virgin Blue's international budget airline Pacific Blue will fly direct to Tonga from Auckland from October 31.

The new service will initially fly three times a week to the archipelago of 108,000 people -- the first time Tonga has been serviced by a low cost carrier.

The airline will also be flying from Sydney to Tonga.

"Including Tonga in our route network from both Australia and New Zealand is part of our gradual expansion in the South Pacific," Virgin Blue chief executive Brett Godfrey said.

The airline will be offering a promotional one-way fare of $179, plus taxes and charges.

- NZPA

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