Matt O'Sullivan

Matt O'Sullivan

Matt O'Sullivan is a Business Reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.

AirAsia warns sky-high airport charges will deter tourists

Matt O'Sullivan AirAsia chief executive Tony Fernandes has lashed out at airport charges in Australia as some of the highest in the world and warned that ‘‘tourists won’t come forever because there...

Malaysia Airlines' long road to recovery begins as demand slowly rises


Matt O'Sullivan A year after the disappearance of MH370, demand for Malaysia Airlines flights to and from Australia has yet to return to levels before what has become the world's greatest aviation mystery.

Virgin boss John Borghetti expects delay before weaker dollar lures overseas tourists

Virgin Australia chief executive John Borghetti arrives at Tamworth on Thursday to announce an expansion of the airline's network.

Matt O'Sullivan The full impact of a lower Australian dollar on the number of tourists arriving in Australia won't be felt until the second half of the year, Virgin chief John Borghetti says.

Indonesia AirAsia X finally wins approval to fly Melbourne-Bali

AirAsia Indonesia X has finally gained clearance from Australian regulators.

Matt O'Sullivan Indonesia AirAsia X, a long-haul offshoot of the Malaysia airline group that goes by the same name, has finally gained clearance to begin flights between Melbourne and Bali's Denpasar later this...

Qantas flies back into profitability, fuelled by deep cost cutting and end to capacity war


Matt O'Sullivan Qantas is flying towards its best annual profit result in seven years as it targets greater benefits from cost cutting, significant fuel savings and subdued competition on domestic and international...

Qantas argument against opening up international routes rejected: Productivity Commission

Qantas contends that government's policy of permitting capacity on international routes to increase ahead of demand has cost the national economy.

Matt O'Sullivan The Productivity Commission has challenged Qantas's view that relaxing the rules governing air routes to Australia will encourage more Australians to fly overseas instead of enticing foreigners to...

Jetstar returns to profitability on strong domestic performance

Jetstar has swung to an underlying profit from a year-earlier loss as its domestic performance improved.

Matt O'Sullivan Jetstar has returned to profitability after a strong performance in the domestic market against Tigerair and Virgin Australia, and a narrowing of losses from its Asian joint ventures.

Helloworld narrows loss but highlights weak consumer sentiment

The travel company posted a net loss of $736,000 for the six months to December, compared with a $4.7 million loss in the prior period.

Matt O'Sullivan Helloworld, the travel company part-owned by Qantas, narrowed its loss in the first half due largely to a reduction in the cost of attempting to turn around its poor financial performance.

Regional Express uncertain about passenger demand in second half

Regional Express shares have soared 43 per cent since July.

Matt O'Sullivan Regional Express says it's uncertain about whether passenger demand will rebound in the second half of this financial year after a weak performance in January.

Wotif raises commission rates in wake of Expedia takeover

Wotif is raising the commissions it charges hotels and other accommodation operators from 12 to 15 per cent.

Matt O'Sullivan Four years ago Wotif boasted that the success of its booking site ensured hotels, motels and bed-and-breakfast owners are ‘‘not forced to pay commissions at levels dictated by...

Etihad joins push to lift cap on flights to Australia in defiance of Qantas

Etihad has made its pitch for a loosening of the rules governing air routes to Australia.

Matt O'Sullivan Etihad's desire for a further liberalisation of access to the Australian market puts it at odds with Qantas.

Virgin's pursuit of Qantas entering crucial stretch

Matt O'Sullivan Virgin Australia chief executive John Borghetti might want to disappear overseas next week when his counterpart at Qantas, Alan Joyce, delivers a turnaround result for the first half.

Virgin Australia flies higher in domestic market but faces challenges overseas

Virgin Australia chief executive John Borghetti.

Matt O'Sullivan Virgin Australia's key domestic business has delivered a stronger performance in the first half as its benefits from cost cutting and a truce in its battle with Qantas, helping offset a widening in...


Jetstar pilot strike averted as pay deal nears settlement


Matt O'Sullivan The finalisation of an in-principle agreement with unions for Jetstar's Australian-based pilots removes the threat of strike action over the busy Easter holidays.


Virgin Australia flies back into profit

Virgin recorded a pre-tax profit in the second quarter, which includes the busy Christmas holiday travel period.

Matt O'Sullivan Virgin Australia has posted a $55 million pre-tax profit in the second quarter of this financial year as it benefits from a truce in its battle with Qantas in the domestic air-travel market and keeps...


Virgin Australia crew lose pillow fight over allowances at LA hotels

Virgin Australia said it narrowed its first-half statutory net loss.

Matt O'Sullivan Virgin Australia flight attendants have lost their long-running pillow fight over allowances, which started when management switched swanky hotels in Los Angeles for their overnight stays.


Qantas expands Sydney-Vancouver flights to meet holiday demand

The airline decided to put on more direct flights between Sydney and Vancouver after strong demand from customers last month.

Matt O'Sullivan Qantas will expand its seasonal flying to Vancouver this year after a strong response from customers to the introduction of direct services to the Canadian city during the northern winter holiday...


Pilots worried about slack security checks on people with access to aircraft secure areas

Operating expenses for security at airports in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth rose almost three-fold to more than $160 million in the 10 years to 2012-13.

Matt O'Sullivan Commercial airline pilots have warned that there are "little or at best desultory" checks on staff who have access to what should be secure areas at airports such as parking spots for aircraft.


Clearer skies ahead for airlines

High fuel fees: The Australian Competition and Consumer Association (ACCC) will investigate passenger surcharges set by airlines such as Qantas, Emirates and Virgin Australia.

Matt O'Sullivan After one of the most bruising battles in years, Qantas and Virgin Australia have left investors hoping this year they will finally benefit from clearer skies.


Etihad raises stake in Virgin

Etihad's latest buying comes just two months after it last tightened its grip on Virgin.

Matt O'Sullivan Etihad has tightened its hold on Virgin Australia by increasing its stake to 24.2 per cent, just shy of the Australian airline’s largest shareholder, Air New Zealand.