Qantas drops First Class on Johannesburg flights

Qantas drops First Class on Johannesburg flights

Qantas will drop first class from its Sydney-Johannesburg flight from October 1 as the airline rolls one of its updated Boeing 747s onto the service.

The rejigged jumbos forego the first class cabin in favour or an expanded business class section featuring fully flat second-gen Skybeds and other A380-style fittings such as an improved in-flight entertainment system and self-service mini-bars.

Qantas says that travellers already booked into first class on flights from October 1 will be re-booked into business class on the same flight and given a "partial refund" of the fare, or can cancel their booking and claim a full refund.

If you're taking the business class option, check out our guide to the 12 best business class seats on the revamped Boeing 747s.

For the latest news for business travellers and frequent flyers, follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT.

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.


  • 11sjw


    12 Sep, 2012 06:39 pm

    Qantas making cuts, who would've thought? :-(

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  • John Walton

    John Walton

    12 Sep, 2012 08:11 pm

    Actually, I reckon the new Skybeds are more comfortable than the old First seats...

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  • Stephen787


    14 Sep, 2012 08:08 am

    Agree. The Skybed mark2 is a better option than the old First seats.

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  • 180mis


    12 Sep, 2012 09:31 pm

    i agree with John; IMO the old First product has been superceeded by the new business Skybed.

    This doesn't come as a surprise - weren't Qantas saying they were planning on doing this a while ago?

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  • Nat


    11 Nov, 2012 12:35 pm

    To those who don't avidly follow what these companies are doing, the removal of First in the middle of my trip did come as a surprise.  The information on this website is only known about once the airlines actually want you to know what they are planning.  

    I was booked to come home First Class through Joburg and was caught unawares.  I chose First class for my trip as it gave me more room to manoever (movement/pain concerns) than business.  I was then told by my Travel Agent when I went to change my flights after this news that it would cost me almost $600 to do so because of airline/airport costs.  I asked my agent to press the point with Qantas that nobody had informed me of this change even though it had been well known by the airline for some time and that they should bear the cost of the change, which, fortunately they did.  I re-routed through Hong Kong and was delighted travelling in Cathay's First.  

    Travelling in Business is NOT the same as First even though these airlines are pushing towards no First class on alot of flights.  They will get you where they want you and then adjust the prices.  So in effect, what they will have done is add premium economy, partially improve business, but not to the level of First and then removed First so that they have effectively downgraded First to Business and Business to Premium Economy ... "not happy, Jan!"

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  • Russell79


    8 Dec, 2012 11:43 pm

    Was wondering if this article is still current? Will the QF service to Johannesburg really have a380 style interior and what about premium economy?

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20 Jun, 2019 03:39 pm


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