China Southern is looking to bring the Airbus A380 onto its Sydney-London service, with the superjumbo flying both legs of the 'Canton Route' from Sydney to Guangzhou and then onwards to London.
The airline's president and CEO Mr Tan Wangeng, said this could be tied to the introduction of a third daily service from Sydney to Guangzhou.
"China Southern does have a plan to use the A380 on the Canton Route" Tan confirmed at a media briefing today.
"On our current Sydney route we operate double daily using our A330 aircraft and the load factor has been very satisfying. We are now investigating the possibility of using the A380 on this route, which means we could be operating a triple daily service. We have to study if the market will be big enough to digest this capacity."
A senior China Southern executive later confirmed to Australian Business Traveller that if introduced onto flights from Australia, the A380 would continue through to London.
As Australian Business Traveller previously reported, China Southern also intends to introduce the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on flights between Sydney and London.
China Southern, which is Asia's largest airline, has three A380s in its fleet and orders for two more, along with 10 Boeing 787s due to begin flying later this year.
"More than 30% of the passengers travelling on (the Canton Route) are from Australia and Europe" Tan noted.
China Southern's Guangzhou-London flights, which form the second leg of the Canton Route from Sydney, currently run three times per week but as of late October will tick up to the daily frequency prized by business travellers.
The move will bring further choice for business travellers bound for London, and further competition for Qantas on its crown jewel Kangaroo Route.
David Flynn is attending China Southern's Canton Route press conference in Guangzhou as a guest of China Southern.
About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.