The Australian budget airline, Virgin Blue, is considering applying for rights to fly the trans-Pacific route between Australia and the United States.
Qantas and United Airlines are currently the only operators on the route which is the Australian airline's most profitable in the world.
Virgin Blue's chief executive, Brett Godfrey, is quoted as saying his company is paying close attention to potential opportunities although no decision has been made yet.
Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines is making a strong bid with the Australian government to be allowed to fly the Australia - United States route.
Singapore Airlines says air traffic is growing again after the Iraq War and the SARS outbreak and it is time to open up the trans-Pacific route to competition.