Tag Archives: QANTAS Airways

QANTAS Airways names its third Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, VH-ZNC

QANTAS Airways’ third Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will be named after one of Australia’s cutest native animals, the quokka (below).

Unique to Australia and largely found on Rottnest Island off the coast of Perth, quokkas are described as the happiest animal on Earth and are even known to enjoy a selfie with tourists.

Quokka was among the most popular suggestions in a national poll of more than 60,000 entries to name the airline’s fleet of eight Dreamliners.

QANTAS International CEO Alison Webster said the quokka and the Flying Kangaroo would make a great team to help entice international visitors to Western Australia, especially as Perth and London will be linked non-stop for the first time.

“Our direct flights between Europe and Australia start in March, so naming our third Dreamliner after a native animal unique to WA seems very fitting,” she said.

“There may be some head scratching moments when people see the name of this aircraft at airports around the world, but a quick internet search will make them immediate quokka converts, and might even encourage them to take a trip,” said Ms Webster.

West Australian Tourism Minister Paul Papalia welcomed the announcement.

“The Quokka, known as the world’s happiest animal, is truly unique to Western Australia,” he said.

“Our pristine Rottnest Island, just a 30-minute ferry ride from Perth, is the only place on the planet where people can mingle with the beloved marsupial. And now the name fittingly sits on the side of a Qantas Dreamliner bringing tourists to our great State.

“We can’t wait to welcome new visitors to Perth, and I know the quokkas will be ready to star in any holiday snaps,” he said.

Quokka, which has the official registration of VH-ZNC, will operate the new Perth to London route as well as other Dreamliner routes to the United States. It is currently undergoing final delivery in Seattle and is expected to land in Australia in late January. Quokka will also be joined by a Dreamliner called Skippy later this year.

QANTAS’ first two Dreamliner aircraft have been named Great Southern Land and Waltzing Matilda. Each name is painted beneath cockpit window. The sequencing of the remaining names will be revealed as the aircraft are delivered.

QANTAS Airways history of naming its aircraft:

People (ourselves included) have a massive soft spot for aircraft. So it’s no surprise that these magnificent machines have been given endearing nicknames over the years.

Out of sheer practicality, airlines (and aviation authorities) give each aircraft a unique registration to help tell them apart.

In Australia these all start with VH and within large fleets, tend to follow a clear pattern. We recycle the regos of our aircraft, so when a plane is retired, the rego is reused for another aircraft in the fleet.

Our first A380, for instance, was given the registration VH-OQA. The second one was OQB. And so on through the alphabet.

Plane spotters will tell you to look for the rego painted on the rear of the fuselage, on the top of the tail and on the front landing gear doors. There’s often a plate inside the door as you step on board.

Super Constellation

A Lockheed Super Constellation

At QANTAS, we give individual aircraft names as well. And to be honest, this is purely for sentimental and symbolic reasons.

In the 1920s, three of our first aircraft – small props that flew mail runs across outback Queensland – were given the lofty and mythical names of Perseus, Pegasus and Iris.

Our Lockheed Super Constellation aircraft (which, as an aircraft type, went by simple abbreviation, Connies) all had the prefix “Southern” in their names – including Southern Sky and Southern Sea. When the jet age arrived our Boeing 707s and the early 747s were named after Australia’s capital cities and major centers.

This tradition continued with the Boeing 747-400 fleet. The first of them was called the City of Canberra, and was the aircraft that did the record-breaking 20 hour delivery flight non-stop from London to Sydney. (It’s now in retirement at an aviation museum south of Sydney). All of the -400s were also given a secondary name – Longreach.

A clever QANTAS staff member suggested Longreach to not only recognize the Queensland town where QANTAS first started but also the plane’s incredible range.The City of Canberra - our first Boeing 747-400 now in retirement at an aviation museum in Wollongong

The City of Canberra – our first Boeing 747-400 now in retirement at an aviation museum in Wollongong

Our 737-400s (the last of which was retired in 2014) were named after Australian birds – lorikeet, kookaburra, brolga…you get the idea).

The 737-800s, which today do the bulk of our domestic flying, are named after Australian towns (Tamworth, Port Douglas, Oodnaddatta). The exception are the 737s dedicated to flying between Australia and New Zealand, which are mostly named for prominent Kiwis (like Sir Edmund Hillary).

Our 12-strong Airbus A380 fleet are named after pioneering figures of Australian aviation such as Nancy Bird-Walton who became the country’s first female commercial pilot and Reginald Ansett – the founder of Ansett Airlines which started flying in 1936. The founders of QANTAS also have A380s named in their honour.

All photos by QANTAS Airways.

QANTAS Airways aircraft slide show:


QANTAS announces Melbourne-San Francisco route starting in late 2018, second Dreamliner named “Waltzing Matilda”

QANTAS' second Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, named "Waltzing Matilda"

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) on December 15, 2017 revealed the name of its second Dreamliner, and announced a new route, ahead of the aircraft’s first scheduled international flight.

QANTAS International CEO Alison Webster was joined by the Victorian Minister for Tourism and Major Events, John Eren, at QANTAS’ engineering base in Melbourne to mark the naming as well as the Dreamliner’s first passenger service to Los Angeles.

Often called Australia’s unofficial national anthem, Waltzing Matilda was one of the 45,000 suggestions received from the public to name the airline’s new fleet of eight Dreamliners.

“Banjo Paterson is said to have written Waltzing Matilda while working on a cattle station in the outback Queensland town of Winton, which was also the birth place of QANTAS 25 years later,” Ms Webster said.

“The Melbourne-Los Angeles flight was the first international service that we put our very first Airbus A380 on in 2008, so there’s a nice symmetry with this being the first for our Dreamliner as well,” added Ms Webster.

The QANTAS Dreamliner will initially operate six days a week on the 14-hour flight between Melbourne and Los Angeles, complementing the existing daily Airbus A380 service between the two cities.

QANTAS today also announced an all-new route to be operated by the Dreamliner, with the introduction of Melbourne to San Francisco service. The route will be on sale from early 2018 with flights expected to start by late 2018. Capacity between Melbourne and the US will be rebalanced to match demand for the two Californian cities, meaning that the Dreamliner will fly to Los Angeles some days of the week and San Francisco other days.

The QANTAS Dreamliner features 236 seats across three cabins including the acclaimed Business Suite, nicknamed “mini First Class” by some frequent flyers, as well as a next generation Premium Economy seat and a significantly improved Economy seat with extra storage compartments and device charging outlets.

QANTAS has so far taken delivery of two Boeing 787-9s. The arrival of its third and fourth aircraft early next year will enable the national carrier to start its historic Perth-London (Heathrow) flight, which originates in Melbourne. All eight aircraft will be delivered by the end of 2018, with half based in Melbourne and half based in Brisbane.

Earlier this year, QANTAS revealed all eight Dreamliner names; Great Southern Land, Waltzing Matilda, Great Barrier Reef, Skippy, Boomerang, Quokka, Uluru and Dreamtime. The sequencing of the names is being announced as the aircraft are delivered.

Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZNB (msn 39039) PAE (Nick Dean). Image: 940184.


QANTAS Airways to operate the world’s first US – Australia biofuel flight

QANTAS Airways has announced it will operate the world’s first bio-fuel flight between the United States and Australia.

The Los Angeles to Melbourne flight will take place early next year, in collaboration with World Fuel Services and Altair Fuels,  and will see QANTAS’ new Dreamliner being powered by Brassica Carinata (carinata), a non-food, industrial type of mustard seed. Carinata produces high quality oil, ideal for aviation biofuel, bio-jet for aircraft and bio-diesel for airport vehicles.

The news of the flight follows QANTAS’ siging of a landmark partnership with Agrisoma Biosciences (Agrisoma), the Canadian based agricultural-technology – company who developed the carinata seed.

The two organizations will work with Australian farmers to grow the country’s first commercial aviation biofuel seed crop by 2020.

Carinita is a ‘drop-in’ crop and requires no specialised production or processing techniques. It is water efficient  and The University of Queensland field trials in Gatton, Queensland, and in Bordertown, South Australia, have demonstrated it should do very well in the Australian climate.

It is sown in either fallow areas where food crops fail or in between regular crop cycles, known as “cover cropping”.  Rotational or break-crops improvessoil quality, reduces erosion for food crops and provides farmers with additional annual income.

University of Queensland’s Dr. Anthony van Herwaarden leads the seed crop trials with Agrisoma in Australia.

Renewable jet fuel is chemically equivalent to, and meets, the same technical, performance and safety standards as conventional jet fuel.

In 2012 QANTAS and Jetstar operated Australia’s first biofuel trial flights. QANTAS’ Airbus A330 Sydney-Adelaide return service and Jetstar’s A320 Melbourne-Hobart return service were both powered with biofuel derived from used cooking oil (split with 50:50 convential jet fuel) certified for use in commercial aviation.

Photo: Boeing.

QANTAS now has Wi-Fi hardware on 15 Boeing 737-800 aircraft, will live stream cricket matches

QANTAS Airways Boeing 737-838 WL VH-XZJ (msn 39365) (Mendoowoorrji) SYD (John Adlard). Image: 922009.

QANTAS Airways made this announcement:

Customers travelling on QANTAS Domestic aircraft fitted with inflight Wi-Fi will have the opportunity to watch every live game of international cricket played in Australia this season.

As part of the airline’s partnership with Cricket Australia, QANTAS will live stream 75 matches of professional cricket played in Australia including the Commonwealth Bank Women’s Ashes T20 matches, Magellan Men’s Ashes, the Gillette One Day Internationals and T20s, the KFC Big Bash League and Rebel WBBL.

Following a successful customer trial earlier this year, the airline has so far installed next generation Wi-Fi hardware on *15 Boeing 737 aircraft as part of its progressive rollout. Focusing initially on its 737 fleet, QANTAS will begin installation on its domestic Airbus A330s from early next year, with 80 Boeing 737 and Airbus A330 aircraft complete by the end of 2018.

In addition to live cricket matches, a dedicated channel on QANTAS Inflight Entertainment from January will keep fans engaged with cricket content produced by Cricket Australia Digital exclusively for QANTAS, including:

  • Ashes Moments: Memorable performances of the storied rivalry recalled by the men who made them happen
  • Turf Wars: Relive the greatest Ashes series with cinematic highlight reels
  • Invaders: Profiling some of the best Englishmen to plant their bat on Australian soil

The QANTAS system gives customers the ability to stream movies, TV shows, sport, music and news programs – including through content partnerships with Stan, Spotify and Netflix. In an extended deal, Netflix will offer new customers three months of access, while existing Netflix customers can apply the same three month offer to their account. Customers can also stay connected through email as well as social media, watch the latest YouTube clips or shop online.

In addition to customer use, Wi-Fi provides QANTAS crew with real time information that will improve efficiency and the passenger experience. Pilots are able to access detailed live weather, which will help them steer clear of turbulence as well as making better use of tailwinds to reduce flying time. Cabin crew have more options to better manage customers’ onward journeys while still in the air.

* subject to Government approvals and licensing arrangements.

Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 737-838 WL VH-XZJ (msn 39365) (Mendoowoorrji) SYD (John Adlard). Image: 922009.

The first QANTAS Dreamliner arrives home in Sydney

The first QANTAS Airways Dreamliner has touched down in Sydney, marking the start of an exciting new era for the national carrier and for how Australians travel.

With its extended flying range and spacious cabin layout, Qantas will use the 236-seat Boeing to not only open up direct routes like Perth to London but take passenger comfort to the next level.

The 787-9 features QANTAS’ next-generation seating across Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class. The aircraft also features the Boeing-designed turbulence dampening technology, improved air quality to reduce jetlag and 65 per cent larger windows that give an increased sense of space.

This morning, around 1,000 of the airline’s employees welcomed the aircraft, which has been given the name Great Southern Land, into a hangar at Sydney Airport after it touched down from the United States. As part of the celebrations, Australian band ICEHOUSE performed their anthemic 1982 song Great Southern Land, the inspiration for which came to singer and songwriter, Iva Davies, as his Qantas flight crossed the country’s red centre.

QANTAS Group CEO Alan Joyce said the arrival of a new type of aircraft was a special time for any airline, but the capability of the Dreamliner put it in a different category.

“We’ve taken delivery of hundreds of aircraft in our 98-year history but only a few of them have been game-changers like this one,” he said.

“In the 1940s the Lockheed Constellation meant we could fly around the world, and in the 1960s the Boeing 707 took us into the jet age and cut flying time in half. The Boeing 747 changed the economics of travel for millions of people and the sheer size of the Airbus A380 meant we could reimagine what inflight service was like.

“Our version of the Dreamliner follows in those footsteps. It gives us a combination of flying range and passenger comfort that will change how people travel.

“This aircraft means we can finally offer a direct link between Australia and Europe, with our Perth to London flight that starts next year. We’re looking at several other exciting route options as well.

“The arrival of the Dreamliner coincides with a new chapter for Qantas. We’re recruiting more pilots and cabin crew, we’re expanding the number of places we fly and we’re investing in technology to improve all parts of the customer journey. It’s a very exciting time, especially as we prepare for our centenary in 2020,” added Mr Joyce.

The first Dreamliner, registered as VH-ZNA, will fly a number of domestic passenger services around Australia to assist with crew familiarisation before its first international service from Melbourne to Los Angles on 15 December this year.

The second QANTAS Dreamliner is currently on the production line at Boeing’s Seattle factory and will be delivered by early December. Two more Dreamliners will be delivered by March next year to coincide with the start of Perth-London services; all eight will have arrived by the end of 2018.

The Business Suites and Premium Economy seats featured on the Dreamliner will also be installed on the airline’s Airbus A380 fleet from 2019 onwards as part of an upgrade of its largest long-range aircraft.

 Seven facts about the QANTAS 787

  1. With a total seat count of 236 passengers, it has significantly fewer seats than many other airlines who have configured the aircraft to carry more than 300 passengers.
  2. Currently, most aircraft have cabin air pressure equivalent to that of an altitude of 8,000 ft. For the Dreamliner, Boeing cut that down to 6,000 ft, meaning it’s closer to conditions on the ground.
  3. The 787 uses up to 20 per cent less fuel that other traditional aircraft of its size.
  4. QANTAS took a ‘best of Australia’ approach to configuring the aircraft, with Australian designer David Caon shaping the look and feel of the cabins; leading restaurateur Neil Perry designing the meals; and Sydney University’s Charles Perkins Centre collaborating on how to improve health and wellbeing on board.
  5. Windows that are 65 per cent larger and positioned higher create an improved onboard environment and mean every seat is effectively a window seat.
  6. The QANTAS 787s are named after Australian icons following a nationwide poll that generated more than 45,000 suggestions.
  7. The Perth to London route will be the first time Australia and Europe have been connected by a direct air link.

Photo: QANTAS Airways.

QANTAS’ first Boeing 787 will arrive in Sydney on October 20

QANTAS Airways has unveiled its first Boeing Dreamliner, the game-changing aircraft that will open up new routes and new levels of comfort for travellers.

The latest addition to the QANTAS fleet, the 787-9 Dreamliner features next generation seating in Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class (below), with more space and a lower passenger count than most of its competitors.

Other Dreamliner features include larger windows to create a greater sense of space, better air quality to help reduce jetlag and ride dampening technology to minimise the effects of turbulence. It is also quieter, more fuel efficient and generates fewer greenhouse emissions than similarly-sized aircraft.

At a ceremony at the Boeing factory in Seattle, QANTAS Group CEO Alan Joyce said the first Dreamliner signaled the start of an exciting new era for the national carrier and for the travelling public.

“The Dreamliner makes routes like Perth to London possible, which will be the first direct air link Australia has ever had with Europe. And it means other potential routes are now on the drawing board as well.

“There are lots of elements that combine to make the QANTAS Dreamliner special. The seats, the lighting, the entertainment, personal storage, right through to the special crockery, cutlery and glassware that weighs on average 11 per cent less.

“We’re working with sleep specialists, dieticians and other scientists at the University of Sydney to see how adjustments to our inflight service can improve wellbeing and help people adjust to new timezones,” added Mr Joyce.

The interiors of the aircraft and seating were shaped by Australian industrial designer David Caon who has collaborated with QANTAS on cabin upgrades and its lounges in Singapore and Hong Kong.

A total of eight Dreamliners will be delivered to QANTAS by the end of 2018, enabling the retirement of five of the airline’s 747s (below).

QANTAS Airways Boeing 747-438 VH-OJL (msn 25151) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 921533.

Above Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 747-438 VH-OJL (msn 25151) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 921533.

Two Dreamliner routes have been announced so far – Melbourne to Los Angeles starting in December this year and Perth to London starting in March next year. Additional flights from Brisbane have also been flagged.

The name ‘Great Southern Land’ was chosen for the first aircraft out of 45,000 suggestions from the travelling public. Each Dreamliner will be named after something that is uniquely Australian, including animals, places and literature.

As part of the aircraft unveiling in Seattle, Australian band, Icehouse, performed its anthemic 1982 song Great Southern Land, the inspiration for which came to singer and songwriter, Iva Davies, as his Qantas flight crossed the country’s red centre.

The Dreamliner is painted in QANTAS’ updated livery, first revealed in late 2016 in preparation for new aircraft entering the fleet and the airline’s centenary in 2020. This marks only the fifth time the iconic Flying Kangaroo has been updated, with those updates traditionally coinciding with the introduction of a significant new aircraft type.

The Dreamliner, registered as VH-ZNA, is scheduled to land in Sydney on the morning of  October 20, 2017 after it performs a flyover of Sydney Harbour, weather and air traffic control permitting.

All photos by QANTAS Airways except the Boeing 747.