Qantas has announced a significant expansion of its international network as part of its ongoing recovery strategy. The airline is set to introduce extra flights, more aircraft and launch new routes as it restores capacity in line with strong travel demand.
With the industry entering a new phase of recovery, Qantas aims to meet the pent-up demand for international travel by enhancing its services and offerings. From late October 2023, the national carrier will add around one million seats to its international network over 12 months. This will offer customers more choice to popular destinations across Asia, the United States and the Pacific.
Qantas will progressively restore seats across its international network. This will be made possible through a combination of more Qantas aircraft returning to service, new aircraft joining the fleet, and a new arrangement with oneworld partner Finnair to operate two Airbus A330 aircraft on two Qantas routes. Qantas have confirmed that these planes will have Finnair’s new AirLounge in business class, which is similar to an over-sized cocooning sofa.
We will see international capacity grow to around 100% of pre-covid levels by March 2024. This shows a 44% increase from 12 months ago and 84% from today. The additional aircraft and new routes will be powered by the 2,400 pilots and cabin crew the airline recruits since the return of travel post pandemic, with a further 300 people expected to be needed by the end of the year.
In line with restoring capacity, Qantas will introduce additional aircraft into its fleet. Qantas began this process six months ago, bringing five international aircraft back into its fleet, some from long term storage and some that were on standby as operational spares while the industry stabilised. With the latest A380 reactivated in January and an additional A380 returning to service at the end of the year, we have also seen the arrival of the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner added in May with another two being delivered next month.
Qantas will launch two international routes from Brisbane and is also preparing to resume San Francisco flights mid May and resume its inaugural service from Sydney to New York via Auckland next month. We will see its seasonal services to Rome and flights between Melbourne and Hong Kong also resume in June.
Allan Joyce, CEO of Qantas, commented “With more of our aircraft back in the air, new 787s joining our fleet and our contract with Finnair, we’ve got more seats for our customers and more opportunity for the Qantas crew as we increase our own flying”.
Qantas will add more flights to key destinations including Tokyo, Los Angeles and New York
Frequency between Australia and Japan will double with four flights daily to Tokyo
Two Airbus A330s to be leased from Finnair
Two new international routes to launch from Brisbane
300 more pilots and cabin crew will be required to support extra flying
To book your next trip, contact one of our airfare specialists today.