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Qantas cuts orders for new domestic planes, slashes budget by $700m

By John Walton     Filed under: qantas, Jetstar, Boeing 737, Boeing 737-800

In brief: The Qantas Group, which also owns subsidiary Jetstar, is cutting back on orders for new aircraft as it seeks to slash A$700 million from its capital budget over the next two years.

Both Jetstar and Qantas have either cancelled or deferred the purchase of 12 new "narrow-body" planes -- which means either Airbus A320 aircraft for Jetstar or Boeing 737-800 planes for Qantas.

Domestic competitors Virgin Australia and Tiger Airways have already announced expansion slowdowns this year, but Qantas is cutting its new plane orders by a third, blaming the decision on "slower overall growth rates in the domestic market". 

The new planes were likely next-generation Boeing 737-800 planes with the new Sky Interior that were due to replace some of the oldest and creakiest aircraft in the fleet.

Frequent flyers will be disappointed to learn that the older Boeing 737-400 planes -- some of which are over 20 years old, and which operate flights as long as Brisbane-Adelaide and Adelaide-Perth -- look set to remain unreplaced in Qantas' fleet.

Qantas had put the older 737s up for sale several months ago, and is reported to have sold at least one to an international buyer.

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About John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.

 

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