Qantas, China Southern partnership to take flight on April 11

Qantas, China Southern partnership to take flight on April 11

Codeshare flights on the new Qantas/China Southern alliance are now on sale for travel from May 1 as Qantas looks to boost its relevance to Australians travelling to China.

Under the agreement, Qantas travellers will be be able to book and fly codeshare China Southern flights from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth to Guangzhou – China's third-largest city which sits at the heart of the southern manufacturing region, as well as being home to the massive twice-yearly Canton Trade Fair.

However, onward connections will be initially restricted to the regional Chinese cities of Xiamen, Kunming, Fuzhou and Urumqi.

In return, inbound China Southern passengers will able to book on nine different Qantas routes within Australia and on flights between Sydney and Auckland for travel from today.

A Qantas spokesperson told Australian Business Traveller that the ability of Qantas Frequent Flyers to earn points and status credits on China Southern flights with a CZ code, along with access to status-based perks such as reciprocal lounge access it yet to be announced.

China Southern has been steadily increasing its Australian flights and in October introduced a daily Airbus A380 as one of its two daily Sydney-Guangzhou services, although that's now been swapped out for an A330, at least for the time being.

China Southern is also promoting its Canton Route from Australia to London, Paris and Amsterdam via Guangzhou as an alternative to the Kangaroo Route, with competitive fares undercutting those of major airlines by as much as 30% – although the airline admits that it needs to lift its oft-criticised levels of service.

Read: China Southern promises better meals, more Aussie crew

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said he was "very pleased to have China Southern as a partner in the world’s fastest growing aviation market."

“Partnership is key to our strategy in Asia and we’re very pleased to now have China Southern as one of our codeshare partners in the world’s fastest growing aviation market,” said Mr Joyce.

“Qantas is now in a unique position of having commercial relationships with the three biggest carriers in Greater China. We have codeshare agreements with China Southern and China Eastern, and through oneworld, a relationship with Cathay Pacific."

In sharing the breadth of the Red Roo's Asia network, Qantas International CEO Simon Hickey said that partnerships "are at the core of our strategy in Asia and together with our airline partners, we’re pleased to now offer customers access to 179 flights to 12 cities in Asia each week, with fares available to over 120 additional Asian cities."

On its own Qantas currently has only one flight into China, in the form of its daily Sydney-Shanghai service.

Joyce: no 'silver bullet' for Asia

Last year, in a media briefing following Qantas' 2012-2013 financial results, Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce observed that "our Asia strategy is not a 'big bang', there isn't a single big deal that will solve the issues".

"There isn't an Asian 'silver bullet', there's no single carrier like Emirates" he expanded. "You have to work individual markets and work with the best players in each market."

Qantas has been steadily stitching up its Asian network map along with retiming selected Singapore flights, increasing the number of Airbus A380s between Sydney and Hong Kong and investing in new lounges for Singapore and Hong Kong.

A Qantas spokeswoman told Australian Business Traveller that with codeshare partner flights included, "Qantas operates over 140 flights to Asia each week, with direct flights to 11 cities, and fares available with partner airlines to over 120 more cities in Asia", adding that "about one fifth of the Qantas Group revenue now comes from Asia."

Alan Joyce's previous push into Asia centred on a multimillion dollar investment in creating a new premium airline, codenamed Red Q, which was to be based in either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur, although the plans were shelved in November 2011.

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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.


  • moa999


    8 Apr, 2014 05:47 pm

    "status credits" -- that would be a nice surprise

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  • watson374


    8 Apr, 2014 08:30 pm

    Took AJ long enough to come up with the 'no silver bullet' line.

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  • driley28


    8 Apr, 2014 09:02 pm

    The silver bullet would be a joint venture with Cathay Pacific in North Asia and Malaysian in South Asia, not a raft of poor quality airlines.

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  • Southland


    9 Apr, 2014 09:53 am

    dirley28 I was suprised when we were informed by an IATA auditor that asian airlines in the last 5 years have really improved their safety and its a well known that their Safety Management Systems are the more advanced than "Western SMS's"

    I was suprised as well!!

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  • crosscourt


    12 Apr, 2014 06:36 am

    agreed. i would have thought obvious as they are all part of the same alliance, so why go outside the alliance? yes yes i know that was also done with emirates but such moves surprise so many people.

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  • amanda


    10 Apr, 2014 08:17 pm

    This code share agreement means very litte to the travellers at the moment.

    I have emailed and phoned both airlines media departments over the past few months, they knew nothing. In fact they asked me to email them the media release statements! Until points can be made and status credits acheived its of little consequence?

    Flying B/C Melb -Guangzhou with them for the first time next week, any tips?


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  • hutch


    11 Apr, 2014 10:41 am

    You will get points + status on the QF code. Which won't help you for next week.

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  • Himeno


    11 Apr, 2014 11:55 am

    Why do people keep making up new names for different options on the Kangaroo Route?

    EVERY route between AU/NZ and Europe is the "Kangaroo Route", it doesn't matter where the stop over point/s is.

    No member give thanks

  • Jason Lee


    16 May, 2014 10:05 am

    Good to see Aussie pilots as captains on China Southern Airlines flying the A330s.  CZ325 recently had an Aussie pilot flying a the captain!

    Member who gave thanks

    1 guest

  • amanda


    16 May, 2014 10:29 am

    Flew with CS last month BC to Guanghzou, great flight, no complaints at all.

    As overnight flight didnt eat, but looked reasonable enough.

    Staff were most helpful and amenities were better than recent SG flights, who now provide nothing in BC!

    Will be flying them regularly now.

    Also aussie pilots voices over the speaker is a calming reassuring effect!

    No member give thanks


20 Jul, 2019 02:59 am


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