Aviation Pioneers why Australians are Real Air Heads

I’ve just read a statistic which says that Australians, who number just over 21 million, make about 40 million domestic flights annually.  Given that, statistically at least, Australians make about two domestic flights each per year, it means that we are very Aussies are very keen travellers.

Of course, there are many Australians who don’t fly anywhere, and many who may fly internationally but who don’t fly much domestically.  However, Australia is unique in that a relatively large proportion of people fly to and from work, and that must surely increase the stats.

Thanks to the mining industry, and the large number of mines in very remote areas, we have, literally, tens of thousands of workers who fly to and from work.  That doesn’t mean that they fly for work, it means that they fly as commuters, and that must be a reasonable rare thing to do.

It’s not surprising that so many Australians fly, we live in such a large country that flying is the only logical way to cover such vast distances.  Australians were pioneers at flight.  Lawrence Hargrave was flying piloted box kites as early as 1894 just South of Sydney, he got the steering part right, but didn’t have the technical knowhow to build a suitable engine for powered flight. Bert Hinkler was the first to fly from England to Australia, and Sir Charles Kingsford Smith made the first flight from the United States to Australia in 1928.  Western Australia has had scheduled air services since 1921, the Rev. John Flynn established the world’s first flying doctor service and David Warren invented the black box recording system.

Today, flying is as common as catching a bus and the budget airlines have made it possible to fly long distances cheaper than you can on a bus.

Today, Australians just don’t have their heads in the clouds; they have everything else up there as well.

40 million domestic flights a year and still rising, who knows? One day flying may even become pleasant.

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