BBC: Qantas in 2019 to order planes to fly direct Sydney – London in 2022
Why is Alan Joyce talking about this now?
Alan Joyce, CEO at Qantas has revved up the engine of speculation in an interview with the BBC.
He has indicated that Qantas will make its decision, and order planes capable of the 20-hour flight between London and Sydney in 2019.
He has speculated that flights could commence as soon as 2022 if the right aircraft is available.
The usual speculation about bars, gym’s, creche’s and sleeping pods being included in the planes is also spouted in the BBC story on TV. Yawn!
So, what is this all about?
Well, I think its a gee-up to the aircraft manufacturers to compete to find a solution. Qantas states that there is nothing that is capable of what it wants quite yet, from either Boeing or Airbus. It does concede that it is considering Boeing’s 777-8 – the planned newest version of the 777, which is expected to be available in 2022.
What’s the average delay on new model planes from Boeing and Airbus again?
They are also considering the Airbus A350-1000, which entered service in Feburary 2018. But, Qantas think it will need modification to achieve the passenger capacity and range required.
Joyce also brags in the article, that Qantas, because of its base in Australia, and the distance to everywhere else in the world, would be buying a bunch of these planes, which sounds like an appeal to Boeing and Airbus’s wallets. Joyce is quoted in the article as saying:
“Qantas is unique because we can probably justify a large number of these long haul aircraft, given how far Australia is from the rest of the world,”
It is true, that at least initially, since March 2018, Qantas ‘direct’ flights to London from Melbourne – which actually have a stopover in Perth, using the Airbus 787 have been successful, with Joyce claiming flights are 92% full, with business class at 94%. The lack of award seats on these flights tends to support this.
It seems that passengers like this ‘direct’ service, and Qantas has already speculated about introducing it to destinations in north America. New York and Chicago have both been mentioned.
Image from www.flight-simulator-world.org