Tag Archives: QANTAS Airways

QANTAS flight QF144 flies on one engine between Auckland and Sydney

QANTAS Airways flight QF144 from Auckland to Sydney on January 18 flying in the Tasman Sea was forced to shut down one of its engines. VH-XZB landed safely in Sydney.

QANTAS issued this short statement:

“Qantas Flight 144, a 737 flying from Auckland to Sydney, experienced an issue with one of its engines about an hour from its destination.”

Top Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 737-838 WL VH-XZB (msn 39360) (Wi-Fi) SYD (John Adlard). Image: 959902.

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QANTAS launches Sydney – Seoul flights

QANTAS Airways on Dece,ber 10 launched flights to another new international destination, with direct services between Sydney and Seoul taking off for the first time in nearly 15 years to meet growing demand.

Seoul is one of the 28 international ports that Qantas has resumed or launched new services to since Australia’s borders reopened.

Of the 28 international destinations, eight of the routes are to countries that weren’t part of Qantas’ pre-COVID network, including South Korea, Italy and India.

The 11-hour Qantas flights to Seoul will operate four days per week during the peak summer season with an Airbus A330 aircraft. Flights will operate three times a week between May and October.

The flights add to Jetstar’s Sydney-Seoul service, which commenced last month operating three days per week.

 

Qantas’ Sydney-Seoul schedule

Route Flight Dep Time Arr Time Days Aircraft
SYD-ICN QF 87 0935 1820 Tues, Thurs, Sat, Sun A330-300
ICN-SYD QF 88 1950 0815+1 Tues, Thurs, Sat, Sun A330-300

QANTAS launches the first flights from Melbourne to Dallas/Fort Worth

QANTAS Airways on December 3 operated the first ever direct flight between Melbourne and Dallas/Fort Worth.

The QANTAS flights are the first nonstop flights by any airline between the two cities and are in addition to the national carrier’s direct flights from Melbourne to Los Angeles, increasing seats between Victoria and the United States by more than 6,000 per month.

Melbourne-Dallas/Fort Worth is one of eight new international routes QANTAS has announced since borders reopened and the second new route from Melbourne, following the launch of Delhi flights last year.

Flights will operate three days per week – on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays – with Qantas’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft.

Qantas’ Melbourne – Dallas/Fort Worth schedule 

Route Flight Dep Time Arr Time Frequency Aircraft
MEL-DFW QF 21 1400 1245 Mon, Wed, Sat B789
DFW-MEL QF 22 1910 0545+2 Mon, Wed, Sat B789

Times above are local. From late March 2023, the flights will operate on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Top Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZNJ (msn 66074) (100 Centenary) LHR (Wingnut). Image: 959570.

QANTAS aircraft photo gallery:

QANTAS and Australia Post centenary flight takes off

QANTAS Airways made this announcement:

One hundred years after the first customer and bag of letters winged its way across the Queensland outback, Qantas and Australia Post will on November 2 follow the flightpath to recreate the historic airmail and passenger service from 1922.

To mark the historic occasion, family members of Qantas founders, top tier frequent flyers and guests with a connection to the early Queensland airmail services will travel on board QF6661 for celebratory events with the local communities who played a key role in the launch of the airline that is now the national carrier.

Qantas founders inaugurated the airline as a company in November 1920 and spent two years preparing for scheduled services by flying joyriders, raising funds, sourcing aircraft and planning the first air route.

Operated by a Bombardier Q400 turboprop, the centenary flight will follow the 882 kilometre route taken by Qantas co-founders and pilots Paul McGinness from Charleville to Longreach and by Hudson Fysh from Longreach to Cloncurry in an open cockpit FK8 biplane over two days on 2-3 November 1922.

A replica mailbag will fly 106 handwritten letters from schoolchildren in Charleville to kids in Longreach and Cloncurry.

The airline operates up to 16 dedicated Australia Post freighters and is preparing for a record Christmas period as online retail demand ramps up.

To meet growing demand, Qantas is converting one of its A330 widebody passenger aircraft into another dedicated Australia Post freighter.

The converted freighter will be able to carry around 42 tonnes of cargo each flight, approximately double the capacity of the A321 freighters currently operating for Australia Post. The A330 freighter is expected to start operating in 2023 and will support the permanent shift towards online shopping in Australia.

A further six Airbus A321P2Fs have been approved to join the Qantas Freight fleet from 2023. These aircraft will have 60 per cent more capacity than the Boeing 737s they’re replacing and up to 35 per cent more fuel efficient.

Australia Post has launched a commemorative My Stamps collection of 12 stamps featuring a range of historic images.

   

Image 1: Pilot Paul McGinness (right) and mechanic Jack Hazlett with passenger Ivy McLain who flew on the first flight from Cloncurry in 1922.

Image 2: Australia Post My Stamps collection

QANTAS launches the Sydney – Bengaluru route

QANTAS Airways made this announcement:

Qantas on September 14 launched a new route from Sydney to Bengaluru, establishing the first direct connection between Australia and Southern India by any airline.

QF67 will cut nearly three hours off the current fastest travel time between the two cities and significantly boost connectivity between India and New South Wales in time for the upcoming school holidays.

Qantas has recently launched the first phase of its codeshare partnership with IndiGo, India’s largest domestic carrier. There are currently 11 destinations available for connection on IndiGo from Bengaluru, including Mumbai, Goa, Kolkata and Chennai. The codeshare will continue to roll out over coming months, broadening access for Qantas customers travelling throughout India.

To celebrate the route, Qantas has added Indian inspired menu items to its inflight menu on the new Bengaluru services, such as lamb chettinad in Business and paneer makhani, cumin seed pilaf, green peas and beans masala in Economy. Fares between Sydney and Bengaluru start from $1,320 return.

Qantas will fly an A330 aircraft from Sydney to Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport four times per week on a Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Qantas flies Melbourne to Delhi on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

QANTAS Airways aircraft photo gallery:

QANTAS Group posts third major loss from pandemic, strong recovery underway

QANTAS Group has issued this financial report:

  • Underlying Loss Before Tax: $(1.86) billion.
  • Statutory Loss Before Tax: $(1.19) billion.
  • Underlying EBITDA: $281 million following a $526 million EBITDA performance in 2H.
  • Positive statutory operating cash flow: $2.67 billion.
  • Recovery plan on track for completion, with $1 billion in savings in FY23.
  • Net debt declined to $3.94 billion, below target range.
  • Investment of more than $400 million in customer loyalty and experience; new lounges and new routes.
  • On-market share buy-back of up to $400 million announced.
  • Significant improvement in operational performance; key measures expected to be largely back to pre-COVID standards in September this year.
  • Significant improvement in Staff Travel benefits for employees.

The Qantas Group has posted its third consecutive Statutory Loss Before Tax of more than $1 billion, reflecting the Delta and Omicron impacts as well as upfront costs from restarting the airline as lockdowns finally ended.

For the full 2022 financial year, the Group experienced an Underlying Loss Before Tax of $(1.86) billion and a Statutory Loss Before Tax of $(1.19) billion. The difference between these two measures largely reflects the $686 million net gain on sale of surplus land, which helped reduce COVID-related debt.

While the first three quarters of the year were defined by border closures and waves of uncertainty caused by COVID variants, the fourth quarter saw the highest sustained levels of travel demand since the start of the pandemic. Overall, the Group’s flying levels for the year averaged at 33 per cent of pre-pandemic levels but finished at 68 per cent.

Group Domestic operations were profitable at the Underlying EBIT level in 4Q22, while Qantas Freight posted another record annual performance and Qantas Loyalty accelerated its earnings growth to double digits in the second half.

The reopening of borders saw a huge increase in forward travel demand, which when combined with the Group’s recovery plan, has resulted in a significant improvement to the balance sheet. Net debt has fallen from a high of more than $6.4 billion to $3.9 billion at the end of FY22, putting it below the optimal target range of $4.2 billion to $5.2 billion.

With the existential crisis posed by the pandemic now over, the Group is focused on responding to current operational challenges. Key customer measures for Qantas including contact centre wait times, cancellation rates and mishandled bag rates are trending back towards pre-COVID standards during August 2022.

There has been a significant improvement in on-time performance, which lifted from 52 per cent in July to 66 per cent for August (to date). This is expected to reach 75 per cent in September and around 80 per cent in October 2022, pending external factors such as extreme weather.

CEO COMMENTS

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: “This result takes the Statutory Loss Before Tax impact of COVID on the Qantas Group to nearly $7 billion and our total revenue losses to $25 billion. These figures are staggering and getting through to the other side has obviously been tough.

“The past year has been challenging for everyone. We had to ramp down almost all flying once Delta hit and stay that way for several months before ramping back up through multiple Omicron waves as we all learned to live with COVID in the community.

“We always knew travel demand would recover strongly but the speed and scale of that recovery has been exceptional. Our teams have done an amazing job through the restart and our customers have been extremely patient as the whole industry has dealt with sick leave and labour shortages in the past few months.

“Safety remains number one, but our service isn’t at the level expected of the national carrier. There is a lot of work happening to bring us back to our best, including hiring more people, rolling out new technology and reducing domestic flying so we have more sick leave cover.

“We saw a big improvement in baggage handling and cancellations in August, which we expect will return to pre-COVID standards next month. On time performance also improved significantly and should be close to our usual high standard in September.

“We’re even more confident in the future than we were six months ago, so today we’re announcing more investment in our people and our customers, including a major boost to staff travel benefits, new routes and new lounges. We’re also announcing the first capital return for shareholders since they provided us $1.4 billion at the start of the pandemic to support our Recovery Plan.”

GROUP DOMESTIC

After several stop/start rebounds across FY22, domestic travel demand made a sustained recovery in the fourth quarter. Total domestic flying averaged 63 per cent of pre-COVID levels for the year and reached 103 per cent by 30 June.

This drove Group Domestic to positive Underlying EBIT for the fourth quarter, but long periods of low activity combined with restart costs resulted in a full year Underlying EBIT loss of ($1.1) billion.

Across Qantas and Jetstar, revenue intakes from leisure bookings in the fourth quarter were approximately 125 per cent of pre-COVID levels, with the Group’s dual brand strategy putting it in a unique position to meet demand from both the budget and premium parts of the market. The rebound in leisure saw the Group add more than 20 new domestic routes during the year.

Revenue intakes from business purpose travel in the fourth quarter were around 90 per cent of pre-COVID levels.

With a cost base significantly below its competitors, Jetstar’s commitment to low fares saw 47 per cent of its customers pay less than $100 for their domestic flight and 87 per cent paid less than $200 – a larger proportion than before the pandemic.

GROUP INTERNATIONAL AND FREIGHT

Heavy losses by the Group’s international passenger business were again significantly offset by a record performance of Qantas Freight, which benefited from high yields due to a continued shortage of cargo space globally but also from the ongoing shift to e-commerce domestically.

Overall, the Qantas International and Freight division recorded an Underlying EBIT loss of $(238) million and Underlying EBITDA profit of $448 million.

While the reopening of Australia’s border in November 2021 finally saw international passenger travel return, the rebound was initially slowed by the Omicron variant and the delayed opening of key markets such as New Zealand and Indonesia.

The Group’s international capacity averaged just 17 per cent of pre-COVID levels for the year but rose to 49 per cent by 30 June. The Group has now resumed flying to 19 ports and announced eight new destinations, including Rome, Seoul and Delhi.

Jetstar suffered significant financial losses in New Zealand, Singapore and Japan due to continued border restrictions plus restart costs as flying gradually returned.

Globally, airlines are constrained by aircraft and labour availability in returning to pre-COVID capacity levels despite high levels of demand. While this situation is temporary it is driving strong yields across the Group’s international flying, which are offsetting the significant rise in the cost of jet fuel.

QANTAS LOYALTY

Loyalty achieved a significant increase in revenue, up 36 per cent to $1.33 billion. Underlying EBIT rose by 7 per cent across the year and increased by double digits in the second half as consumer patterns changed out of lockdowns. The division has performed strongly throughout the pandemic by focusing on its value to members and, by extension, its program partners.

A decision to lower the number of points required for hotel and holiday redemptions in February 2022 helped drive a 40 per cent increase in bookings in 4Q22.

Acquiring a majority stake in online travel business TripADeal in May 2022 opened up new ways for members to earn and redeem points, and also offered a significant growth opportunity. TripADeal’s sales rose 70 per cent in the first month following the acquisition compared with the month prior and with the same period in 2019. Over 150 million points have already been redeemed and 120 million points earned by Frequent Flyers on TripADeal packages.

During the year, agreements were renewed with all five major financial services partners as well as Woolworths. New partnerships were launched with Accor, Optus and Zip. Qantas Business Money was launched and will expand further in FY23.

Frequent Flyer members grew to 14.1 million during FY22, reflecting a total increase of around 1 million since the start of the pandemic.

FINANCIAL FRAMEWORK

Strong revenue intakes, plus the sale of surplus land, helped the Group to lower its net debt to $3.94 billion, taking it below the optimal target range of $4.2–$5.2 billion. Total liquidity at 30 June 2022 was $4.6 billion including $3.3 billion cash.

A further $270 million in cost benefits were realised in FY22, bringing the total achieved under the Group’s COVID recovery plan to $920 million since FY20. The annualised benefit of $1 billion is on track from FY23 onwards.

Qantas was one of only six airlines to retain an investment grade credit rating through the pandemic and, during the year, had its outlook upgraded to ‘stable’ by Moody’s.

The Board has approved an on-market share buyback of up to $400 million as the benefits of the recovery materialise. This is the first return to shareholders since 2019 and follows $1.4 billion of equity raised at the start of the pandemic.

INVESTING IN OUR CUSTOMERS

In addition to investment in operational performance, the Group is delivering the following improvements to customer experience:

  • Introduction of a new route – Auckland to New York – from June 2023, using the 787 Dreamliner. This will be timed to offer convenient connections to Qantas’ flights between Australia and New Zealand.
  • Major improvements to several lounges starting progressively from late this year:
    • Creation of a Business Lounge in Adelaide (in addition to the existing Qantas Club) and full renovation of the Chairmans Lounge.
    • Complete upgrade of Qantas’ Auckland lounge.
    • Port Hedland and Rockhampton lounges to be upgraded and expanded.
  • As recently announced:
    • A $50 voucher offered to all Frequent Flyers towards their next Qantas flight.
    • Extension of the increase in Classic Reward redemption seats by up to 50 per cent for a further 12 months.
    • Complimentary extension of Frequent Flyer status (Silver through to Platinum One) for a further 12 months.

These improvements represent an investment of more than $400 million.

INVESTING IN OUR EMPLOYEES

The Group is delivering a record amount of training with more than 1,500 people joining the organisation and around 1,000 internal appointments made since April 2022. A new flight training centre in Sydney is scheduled to open by the end of calendar 2023 and a new cabin crew training centre has been officially opened in Mascot today.

The Staff Travel scheme will be made more generous, with better access for family members and an expansion of the already significant fare discounts on standby travel.

The Group expects to spend approximately $50 million on pay increases for EBA-covered employees as agreements are finalised in FY23, taking the average non-executive salary at Qantas to more than $100,000. This is in addition to approximately $200 million being set aside for a $5,000 recovery boost payment and 1,000 share rights for more than 17,000 people.

FLEET

All Qantas and Jetstar aircraft based in Australia and New Zealand have returned to flying, with the exception of some Airbus A380s. Five A380s with updated interiors have now returned to service with the remaining five to follow by December 2023 once mid-life maintenance is completed.

In July, Jetstar took delivery of its first Airbus A321LR, which is 15 per cent more fuel efficient than its existing A320s. This is the first of almost 300 next-generation narrow-body aircraft arriving across the Group in the next 10 years, which will improve emissions, noise, customer experience and route economics.

Work associated with the entry into service for the Airbus A220 and A321XLR for Qantas Domestic, and the A350 for Qantas International, is underway.

Qantas International is due to receive its three remaining Boeing 787-900s by the end of FY23. Qantas Freight will receive two converted A330s in the second half of calendar 2023 and six A321F freighters from early calendar 2024 onwards to replace five 737-400Fs and help meet demand from a permanent increase in e-commerce from key customers, including Australia Post.

OUTLOOK[1]

The Group has entered FY23 with its balance sheet repair process effectively complete, strong levels of travel demand and a clear path to improving its COVID-related operational challenges. Based on current forecasts, key settings and assumptions for FY23 include[2]:

  • Recovery plan to be completed in FY23, delivering $1 billion in annual cost reduction. Parallel focus on offsetting CPI from FY19 to FY23 through additional cost and revenue initiatives.
  • Fuel cost for FY23 expected to be $5.0 billion, driven by a ~60 per cent increase in fuel prices compared to FY19.
  • RASK performance expected to fully recover increased fuel prices across the Group as well as temporary unit cost increase associated with addressing operational challenges.
  • Group Domestic capacity reduced by a further ~10 percentage points[3] in response to higher fuel costs and operational challenges. Some capacity may be restored once operational resilience improves.
    • 1H23 – 95 per cent of pre-COVID levels
    • 2H23 – 106 per cent of pre-COVID levels
  • Group International capacity to increase as more A380s and 787-900s enter service and overseas borders continue to reopen.
    • 1H23 – 65 per cent of pre-COVID levels
    • 2H23 – 84 per cent of pre-COVID levels
  • Qantas Loyalty Underlying EBIT to increase to $425-450 million for FY23.
  • Strong yields in Qantas Freight expected to moderate but remain above pre–COVID levels.
  • Underlying depreciation and amortisation for FY23 expected to be $1.8b.

[1] Please refer to slides 32 to 35 in the Qantas Group’s Investor Presentation for more detail and assumptions on FY23 Outlook.

[2] These outlook statements are predicated on the Group’s current assessment of the profile of key external factors that will impact the Group’s financial performance, including economic conditions, supply chain profile and public health settings.

[3] Compared with assumptions given in 24 June 2022 Market Update.

QANTAS to fly the Auckland – New York JFK route

Qantas will recommence flights to New York, with a new service from Australia to the Big Apple via Auckland from June 14, 2022*.

The launch of QF3 and QF4 will see the flying kangaroo return to New York three days a week initially, after a three-year COVID-induced hiatus. Flights will be operated by its Boeing 787 Dreamliners, with three new aircraft scheduled for delivery next year.

Sydney-Auckland-New York flights are on sale from today. Qantas currently operates six daily services to Auckland from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne which will increase to 11 daily services when the new flight to New York launches.

Qantas will fly two Points Planes in the first week, with all seats across every cabin available as a Classic Reward flight on QF3 and QF4 on 16 June. Points Plane connections will also be available for Frequent Flyers based in Brisbane and Melbourne to use Classic Rewards for their trans-Tasman flights.

LOUNGE UPGRADE PROGRAM

The airline will upgrade its lounge network, with a multi-million dollar investment to build new lounges in Adelaide, Auckland, Port Hedland and Rockhampton.

“We know how much our customers value being able to relax before their flight, whether they’re flying from a major regional port or an international hub,” said Mr Joyce.

“Our new Auckland International lounge will be a step change in comfort. It will offer a lot more space and, like all of our offshore lounges, feature the best of local design, food and wine.”

Qantas has Australia’s most extensive lounge network with 35 domestic lounges as well as 16 lounges at International airports across Australia and around the world, including a new First Lounge in Singapore and our flagship First Lounges in Sydney and Melbourne, which are firm favourites with our Frequent Flyers.

Qantas has now reopened almost all of its 51 domestic and international lounges, including its Los Angeles First Lounge earlier this month. The lounge at Honolulu is scheduled to reopen in coming months after a light refresh to furniture and amenities.

Auckland International Airport

Qantas will completely redesign and expand its existing lounge precinct at Auckland International Airport – plans for which were stalled by the pandemic – to provide a modern pre-flight oasis for customers travelling to-and-from Australia as well as on the new Auckland-New York service.

The existing two lounge space will be combined and redeveloped into a single Qantas International Lounge and include a footprint expansion into an adjacent space to increase total capacity by around 40 percent from 244 seats to 340 seats.

The detailed design process will begin shortly and building work will be staged to enable the lounge to operate during the redevelopment. The lounge will offer a number of features specifically tailored for long haul travel, based on positive feedback from other parts of its network.

Adelaide Domestic Airport

Qantas will build a new Business Lounge at Adelaide Domestic Airport with 190 seating capacity, as well as fully upgrade its current Chairmans Lounge and Qantas Club. The new Business Lounge will cater to Qantas’ growing business and premium leisure travellers. Total seating capacity across the three lounges will be 570.

The redevelopment of the lounge precinct at Adelaide Airport will begin in the second half of 2023. South Australia’s culinary reputation and natural environment is expected to play a key role in the design inspiration.

Rockhampton Airport

Qantas will build a new lounge at Rockhampton Airport as part of its ongoing commitment to invest in regional Australia and as part of the overall airport redevelopment. It will be double the capacity of the existing one, with seating for up to 60 guests, and is expected to open in November this year.

Port Hedland Airport

Qantas will redevelop its Port Hedland lounge as part of the broader terminal upgrade. The new lounge footprint will be significantly larger, providing more space to quadruple the lounge capacity to 120 guests to cater for the growing FIFO market. Work will be completed by late 2023.

New Cabin Crew Training Centre

Qantas has also opened a Cabin Crew training facility, “The Longreach Centre”, at its Sydney headquarters with the capacity to train up to 200 crew members a day. It comes as the airline embarks on a recruitment drive for new team members across its regional, domestic and international airlines, with more than 1,600 new cabin crew team members expected to join the national carrier over the next 10 months.

The Longreach Centre features First, Business and Economy aircraft cabins and galleys where new recruits and existing crew undergo service training from cooking in the onboard kitchens to wine and sommelier training.

*Flights subject to regulatory approval

QANTAS Airways aircraft photo gallery:

QANTAS is reaching out to its customers to formally apologize for recent operational challenges

QANTAS Airways made this announcement:

  • Direct apology is being sent to millions of Frequent Flyers
  • Operational performance improving, with plan in place to bring Qantas ‘back to its best’
  • Frequent Flyers offered $50 towards a return flight from Australia or New Zealand
  • 12 month extension of status for Silver Frequent Flyers and above
  • Up to 50 per cent increase to Classic Reward seat availability extended; first release of additional seats from midday Monday

Qantas is reaching out to millions of its customers to formally apologise for recent operational challenges and thank them for their patience as the national carrier works to get back to its best after COVID.

The airline is rolling out a range of initiatives to improve mishandled bags and on time performance as it also deals with high levels of sick leave (due to flu, COVID and isolation requirements) as well as an industry-wide labour shortage.

Qantas has hired 1,500 new people since April with more to come, adjusted flight schedules and invested $15 million in new technology at key airports to help smooth the travel experience.

Speaking directly to Frequent Flyers via an email and video message being sent on Monday, Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce acknowledged while it was great to see people back on-board after so long on the ground, the return to flying hasn’t all gone smoothly.

“Over the past few months, too many of you have had flights delayed, flights cancelled and bags misplaced. There are good reasons why, but when it comes to what you expect from Qantas, it’s not good enough.

“On behalf of the national carrier, I want to apologise and assure you that we’re working hard to get back to our best.

“We’re already seeing a sustained improvement in baggage handling and on-time performance, and while factors out of our control like weather can have an impact on our schedule, we expect things to keep improving each week.

“As well as saying sorry, we also want to say thank you. We’re investing in a range of initiatives including status extensions for Frequent Flyers Silver and above, thousands of Qantas Points and lounge passes. All our Frequent Flyers in Australia and New Zealand will be offered $50 towards a return Qantas flight, which equates to many millions in discounts,” added Mr Joyce.

Qantas will also extend its commitment of up to 50 per cent more Classic Reward seat availability through to 30 June 2023 with the first tranche of additional seats released from 12pm Monday across international and domestic flights. Reward seats are booked using Qantas Points.

Qantas first announced its commitment to increasing Classic Reward seats in October last year. Since then, Frequent Flyers have redeemed more than 80 billion Qantas Points, with one in every 11 passengers carried by Qantas flying a reward seat.

Summary of bonus benefits

Status extension:

12 months status extension across tiered members Silver and above to continue to enjoy the benefits associated with their tier for another year.

Flight discount offer:

$50 off flight promo code for Australian and New Zealand-based Qantas Frequent Flyer members to redeem towards a return Qantas flight.

Classic Reward availability extension:

Extension of previously announced commitment of up to 50 per cent more reward seat availability on Qantas International, trans-Tasman and popular domestic routes until 30 June 2023 being released progressively from 12 noon Monday.

Qantas Lounge invitations:

Additional invitation for members to use themselves, or offer to a Frequent Flyer friend, colleague or family member, to enjoy a pre-flight visit with them to a Qantas Lounge. For Gold members, an invitation to visit a Qantas Domestic Business Lounge, or for Silver members, an invitation to visit the Qantas Club or an international Business Lounge.

Qantas Points:

A gift of Qantas Points for Platinum and Platinum One members.

An email will be sent to Qantas Frequent Flyers from Monday with details on the offers along with a video message from Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce with a direct apology to customers for the airline’s recent performance issues.

QANTAS Airways to fly to Tonga

QANTAS Airways has made this announcement:

Qantas is expanding its South Pacific presence with the addition of Tonga to its network, offering a new tropical destination for Australian travellers to explore.

Following the recent reopening of Tonga’s borders, Qantas will fly weekly between Sydney and Nuku’alofa’s Fua’amotu Airport. The four and a half hour flights will be the only direct services between Australia and Tonga.

Qantas has been operating services since December 2020, supported by the Australian Government’s Pacific Flights Program. These flights have maintained critical passenger and freight links while international borders were closed. From today, passengers can book a flight directly on qantas.com with services operating every Thursday to Tonga.

The inclusion of Tonga to the international network follows the recent commitment of weekly services to Samoa as Qantas grows its presence in the South Pacific Islands off the back of strong holiday travel demand.

Qantas will initially operate one flight a week with a A330 aircraft between Tonga and Sydney alongside the Samoa service.

QANTAS Airways aircraft photo gallery:

QANTAS Freight to add six Airbus A321 freighters

Qantas Freight will increase its domestic fleet with six Airbus A321 aircraft to meet growing e-commerce demand from its customers.

Since the onset of COVID-19, the national carrier’s freight division has seen a step change in cargo volumes driven partly by a structural shift to online shopping.

The six Airbus A321 freighters, which are expected to progressively arrive between early calendar year 2024 and mid-2026, will replace the long-term fleet of five Boeing 737 freighters that are approaching the end of their economic life.

Each A321 freighter can carry 23 tonnes of cargo, nine tonnes more than the older 737s, and are around 30 per cent more fuel efficient per tonne of freight carried.

The aircraft will be sourced on the open market and converted from carrying passengers to cargo, subject to commercial negotiations. Their model designation is A321P2F, which stands for ‘Passenger to Freighter’. This conversion work will include removing seats and the installation of a cargo handling system.

Qantas currently has three A321P2Fs and replacing the remaining 737 freighters with these newer aircraft will simplify Freight’s fleet, bringing extra efficiency in training and maintenance.

Customers are expected to benefit from increased reliability, network flexibility and a net increase in Qantas’ freight carrying capacity.

Qantas is also converting two widebody A330s to freighters, one of which will be used on the domestic network and will continue to supplement its fleet with wet-leased aircraft.

Qantas Freight had a record performance in the first half of FY22 due to increased demand for e-commerce, higher international yields driven by supply chain disruption, and reduced capacity on passenger flights. Further detail about Qantas Freight’s performance will be provided at the Group’s full year results on 25 August 2022.

Comments from Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce:

“Qantas Freight plays a vital role in Australia’s supply chain and this investment will grow our operations so they can support increased demand for next-day delivery,” Mr Joyce said.

“Qantas Freight has been one of the standout performers for the Group during the pandemic as Australians rapidly shifted to online shopping. While some of that shift is temporary, demand remains well-above pre-pandemic levels even with the lifting of almost all COVID-related restrictions.

“This is one of the largest ever investments in our domestic freight fleet, that will enable Qantas Freight to capture more of that demand and will provide the opportunity to help Freight further grow revenue and earnings.

“The first three A321P2F have been a fantastic addition to our fleet and operating a single-type of narrow body aircraft in the future will enable us to generate further operational efficiencies and significantly reduce emissions per tonne of freight flown.”

Further information

Current domestic freight fleet Future domestic freight fleet
3 x A321F 

3 x B737-300F*

1 x B737-400F

9 x A321F 

1 x A330F**

 

* One B737-300F was retired in July 2022 after first entering service 36 years ago.

** Two A330s are currently undergoing conversion. One will be used on the domestic network, and the other will join Qantas’ international freight network.

Qantas Freight also operates a Boeing 767 and wet leases two Boeing 747s from Atlas to connect Australia with key international freight hubs.