Brisbane will become the third Australian base for budget airline Tigerair Australia in 2014.

Tigerair will become the only budget carrier in Australia to have a dedicated base in Brisbane from March next year.

As part of the base announcement, the airline will commence three new routes from Brisbane Airport (to and from Darwin, Cairns and Adelaide) with flights on sale from midday today.

Two brand new Airbus A320 aircrafts will call Brisbane home, providing over 120 new jobs in Brisbane and adding approximately 800,000 additional visitor seats around Australia annually, significantly boosting domestic tourism.

Tigerair Australia CEO Rob Sharp says the move to make Brisbane a base for the carrier is a significant milestone for the airline, which is embarking on its future Australian expansion as planned.

“We are putting the customer and what they want at the forefront of our business. Our network decisions are a result of extensive analysis and are always based on consumer demand. We believe that our announcement today begins to address an undeserved budget market.

“From April 2014, Queensland will account for 59% of our total capacity (59% of all Tigerair seats will touch Queensland from April next year) and is a critically important market for Tigerair. I’m therefore delighted to be announcing the launch of our new base here in Brisbane today,” Sharp says.

Sharp also unveiled airport infrastructure innovations that will improve customer experience including automated bag drop technology and self-service kiosks.

Brisbane Airport Corporation CEO and Managing Director Julieanne Alroe applauded the decision by Tigerair to open a new base in Brisbane, saying the move is a huge win for travellers, the city and the state.

“Today’s announcement highlights Tigerair’s strong commitment to Queensland which will almost double the carrier’s seat capacity into Brisbane, generate over 120 new local jobs, provide more choice for travellers and help to stimulate tourism across the board,” she says.

Queensland Minister for Tourism, the Hon. Jann Stuckey says the importance of Queensland as an iconic tourism destination meant the new base was an obvious choice for the budget airline.

“As Australia’s premier tourism destinations, Queensland’s leisure destinations Mackay, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast have all featured on Tigerair Australia’s flight schedule since the airline commenced in Australia in 2007,” she says.

The three new routes run to and from Brisbane to Cairns, Darwin and Adelaide and are on sale from today and are expected to provide an additional 800,000 visitor seats annually to Queensland.

With Brisbane Airport set to expand to include a parallel runway, there may be more room for further expansions for Tigerair Australia and other budget airlines.

Have you flown with Tigerair before? What are your thoughts on budget carriers?