American, Qantas move to form joint business

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Photo: American Airlines

(From American Airlines)

American Airlines and Qantas have filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) seeking approval to form a joint business to better serve customers flying between North America and Australia and New Zealand.

The proposed joint business will significantly improve service, stimulate demand and unlock more than $300 million annually in consumer benefits that are not achievable through any other form of cooperation, including:

– Up to $221 million in value from expanding codesharing between American and Qantas – opening more connections to more destinations.

– Up to $89 million in value by offering a wider range of fare classes across each other’s networks, including lower fares and discounts.

The joint business will also give American and Qantas the opportunity to launch additional routes between the U.S. and Australia and New Zealand, including new flights to city pairs currently not served by either carrier.

An expanded relationship will encourage significant improvements in the overall customer experience, including additional frequent flyer benefits and investments in lounges, baggage systems and other infrastructure designed to better serve the carriers’ joint customers.

All these benefits will stimulate significant demand for new travel – generating up to 180,000 new trips between the U.S. and Australia and New Zealand every year. (Full Story Here)

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Singapore Airlines’ new 787-10s to serve Perth in Australia

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Singapore Airlines
Photo: Singapore Airlines

(From Singapore Airlines)

SINGAPORE — Perth, Australia will become the second scheduled destination to be served by Singapore Airlines’ new Boeing 787-10 fleet.

Flights are expected to commence in May 2018, subject to regulatory approvals, initially on one of the Airline’s four daily flights between Singapore and Perth.

The 787-10s will feature Singapore Airlines’ new regional cabin products and will seat 337 customers in two classes, with 36 Business Class and 301 Economy Class seats.

Prior to the launch of services to Perth, the 787-10s will be operated on selected flights to Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur for crew training purposes, before the first scheduled service to Osaka in May 2018.

The first aircraft in Singapore Airlines’ livery completed its flight testing at Boeing’s North Charleston, South Carolina production facility on 9 February 2018.

Singapore Airlines will be the world’s first airline to operate the 787-10 and has 49 firm orders for this aircraft type. The Airline will take delivery of its first 787-10 from Boeing in March 2018. (Full Story Here)

Qantas to establish pilot academy

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The academy will initially train around 100 pilots a year.
Photo: Qantas

(From Qantas)

SYDNEY — Qantas will establish a pilot academy capable of training up to 500 pilots a year, to help meet the increasing need for skilled aviators in one of the fastest growing global industries.

The Qantas Group Pilot Academy is expected to open its doors to students during 2019 and is likely to be established near an existing airfield in regional Australia to provide easy access to uncongested airspace.

It will represent an initial investment of up to $20 million to establish the new facility.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the academy would become a critical part of the national carrier’s long term talent pipeline – and an important resource for Australian aviation.

“Qantas has a proud history of having some of the best pilots in the world and we want to make sure it stays that way. By creating our own academy, we can train the next generation of pilots to the Qantas Group standard,” Joyce said. (Full Story Here)

Qantas’ Melbourne-Bali service to start in June

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Boeing 737-800 (VH-XZP) retrojet seen at Sydney Airport.
Photo: Damien Aiello (https://commons.wikimedia.org)

(By Qantas)

SYDNEY — Qantas has announced it will begin a new daily Melbourne – Denpasar (Bali) in Indonesia service from June 23, 2018 with fares now available for sale.

Operated by a Boeing 737-800 aircraft, the new Qantas route comes as Jetstar increases its Melbourne-Bali flights from ten per week to twice daily.

Today’s announcement complements Qantas’ year round daily Sydney – Denpasar service and reflects strong demand from customers who want a full-service experience traveling to one of Australia’s most popular holiday destinations.

Qantas’ Melbourne – Denpasar service will be operated by a two-class Boeing 737 aircraft, with a checked baggage allowance, inflight entertainment and food and drinks all included as part of the fare. (Full Story Here)

Philippine Airlines to fly nonstop to Brisbane

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Philippine Airlines
Photo: Alec Wilson (https://commons.wikimedia.org)

(By Philippine Airlines)

MANILA — Philippine Airlines will begin operating direct nonstop flights between Manila and Brisbane from March 27, giving passengers the convenience of a shorter flying time of less than seven hours, compared to the current one-stop service of 9 hours 20 minutes with a stopover in Darwin.

The Manila – Brisbane nonstop flights will operate four times weekly, utilizing the 254-seater Airbus A340 aircraft initially, and PAL’s brand new Airbus A321 NEOs aircraft later in the first half of 2018.

The A321 NEO is the longer-range version of the popular A321, outfitted with full-flat business class seats and entertainment systems.

PR 221 leaves Manila at 11:30PM every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and arrives in Brisbane at 9:20AM local time the following day, every Thursday, Saturday Sunday.

Return flight PR 222 departs Brisbane at 11AM local time (Th/Sa/Su) and touches down in Manila at 5PM on the same day.

Effective May 1, PAL will operate the fourth weekly frequency every Tuesday. PR221 leaves Manila at 12:55AM (Tue) and arrives in Brisbane at 10:45AM local time on the same day. Return flight PR222 departs Brisbane at 12NN local time (Tue) and touches down in Manila at 6PM on the same day.

The nonstop service is expected to boost travel and tourism on the increasingly popular route that links the Philippines with the commercial center of Queensland and gateway to the spectacular beaches, theme parks and lush rain forests of the Gold Coast.

Queensland is also home to a growing number of migrant and expatriate Filipinos. Flying direct to Manila will help encourage Queensland-based Australians to consider holiday trips to the Philippines.

This is the latest move of PAL to convert one-stop flights to nonstop services for the convenience of the traveling public. (Full Story Here)

SIA bares sew service to Australia, New Zealand

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Singapore Airlines
Photo: Singapore Airlines

(By Singapore Airlines)

Singapore Airlines (SIA) announced that it will introduce a new service that will connect Singapore and Melbourne to New Zealand’s capital city, Wellington.

The new service will be introduced as part of a restructuring of existing Singapore-Canberra-Wellington flights, which will see the Canberra-Wellington flights de-linked and Canberra served on a daily basis, up from the existing four times per week.

The new Singapore-Melbourne-Wellington service will be operated four times per week as SQ247 starting 3 May 2018. Return services will be operated as SQ248 on a Wellington-Melbourne-Singapore routing.

Flights will be operated with 266-seat Boeing 777-200s fitted with 38 Business Class seats and 228 Economy Class seats.

Also on 1 May 2018, SIA will launch a new daily service to Australia’s capital city, Canberra, via Sydney. Flights will be operated as SQ288 on a Singapore-Sydney-Canberra routing.

Return services will be operated as SQ288 on a Canberra-Singapore routing.

The Airline will operate services to Canberra via Sydney using its 264-seat Boeing 777-300ER aircraft fitted with four First Class seats, 48 Business Class seats, 28 Premium Economy Class seats and 184 Economy Class seats.

SIA first launched services from Singapore to Canberra and Wellington in September 2016.

It also became the first airline to operate regularly scheduled international flights to and from Australia’s capital city. (Full Story Here)

Qantas’ new service from Melbourne to San Francisco to start in September

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Qantas
Photo: Qantas

(By Qantas)

MELBOURNE — Qantas announced that its new Melbourne to San Francisco service will start on September 1, 2018 with fares already available for sale.

With an evening departure from Melbourne and an overnight flight on the return, Qantas’ schedule means customers can arrive in each city ready to make the most of their stay.

Qantas International CEO Alison Webster said the new nonstop Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner service reflects strong demand in travel to the popular Californian city.

“We expect this flight to be popular with tourists and also corporate travelers looking to do business with San Francisco’s world-leading technology companies,” Webster said.

“With connections to 17 codeshare destinations including Chicago, Seattle, and Vancouver, the new service also provides another gateway for Australians traveling into the US,” she added.

The Qantas Dreamliner features 236 seats across three cabins including the 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. (Full Story Here)

Qantas’ new Sydney-Osaka direct flights start

(By Qantas)

SYDNEY — Qantas’ direct flights between Sydney and Osaka has started on Thursday, providing passengers with another gateway into Japan following strong growth in travel between the two countries.

Qantas’ fourth route between Australia and Japan begins as the airline celebrates 70 years of flying between the two countries.

The year-round direct flights will operate three times per week with Qantas’ upgraded two-class Airbus A330 aircraft and will be the only direct service linking Sydney and Osaka.

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Osaka, Japan
Photo: 名古屋太郎

The service adds to the airline’s popular Sydney-Tokyo (Haneda), Brisbane-Tokyo (Narita) and Melbourne-Tokyo (Narita) services and complements Jetstar’s Cairns-Osaka service.

With Jetstar’s flights from Cairns and the Gold Coast to Tokyo (Narita), customers will have even more options when travelling between Australia and Japan.

Qantas International CEO Alison Webster said it was an exciting time to be launching the new service with travel between the two countries booming.

“We initially announced the route as a seasonal service but quickly extended it to year-round to meet customer demand,” she said.

“Australia has seen a 23 per cent increase in the number of Japanese travelers visiting the country on the last year with many staying longer and spending more while they’re here,” she added. (Full Story Here)

Qantas opens new lounge at London airport

(By Qantas Airways)

LONDON — Qantas will welcome customers into the new spacious Qantas London Lounge at Heathrow Airport, as the airline counts down to its direct 787 Dreamliner flights between Australia and London.

Qantas has spent the past 12 months building a dedicated lounge at Heathrow as part of a multi-million dollar investment for customers on its existing London services as well as the landmark Perth-London route starting on 24 March 2018.

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Qantas Airways
Photo: Paul Spijkers

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said investing in the first dedicated Qantas Lounge at Heathrow was key as the airline prepares to directly air link Australia and Europe for the first time.

“The Kangaroo Route is at the heart of Qantas’ identity and London is one of our most important destinations,” said Joyce. “We have worked with leaders in design, food and service to create a lounge that is modern and comfortable and incorporates the aesthetics of the Qantas lounges that make our customers feel at home.

“We are reshaping what customers come to expect from international travel with direct flights between Australia and London. It’s a long flight, so we’re taking a holistic approach to passenger wellbeing on and off the aircraft, and the new Heathrow lounge is an important part of that,” Joyce added. (Full Story Here)

Qantas to operate first U.S.-Australia biofuel flight

(By Qantas Airways)
Qantas announced it will operate the world’s first biofuel 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.

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Carinata produces high quality oil, ideal for aviation biofuel.
Photo: Qantas Airways

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.

Qantas International CEO, Alison Webster said the historic flight and the partnership mark the first step in developing an aviation biofuel supply in Australia.

“We are constantly looking for ways to reduce carbon emissions across our operations but when it comes to using renewable jet fuel, until now, there has not been a locally grown option at the scale we need to power our fleet,” Webster said.

“Our work with Agrisoma will enable Australian farmers to start growing today for the country’s biofuel needs of the future. The trans-Pacific biofuel flight is a demonstration of what can be achieved locally,” Webster added. (Full Story Here)