Qantas' non-stop Perth-London Boeing 787 flights start March 24

Qantas' non-stop Perth-London Boeing 787 flights start March 24

  • Qantas non-stop Perth-London Boeing 787 flights start March 24
  • Daily QF9 service begins from Melbourne with domestic Dreamliner leg to Perth
  • Qantas axes Melbourne-Dubai-London Airbus A380 flights

Qantas will begin daily non-stop flights between Perth and London on its new Boeing 787 Dreamliner from March 24, 2018, with tickets now on sale.

However, as exclusively tipped by Australian Business Traveller in December 2016, the airline will axe its Airbus A380 flights from Melbourne to London via Dubai in favour of the direct Dreamliner service between Perth and London.

The Perth-London flights, which go on sale today, will inherit the QF9 and QF10 numbers of the Melbourne-London superjumbo service and will also begin at Melbourne, offering travellers from the Victorian capital a Dreamliner all the way to London.

Introducing the new QF9: Melbourne-Perth-London

The Qantas Boeing 787 bearing the QF9 flight number will depart Melbourne's international terminal at 3.20pm to reach Perth at 5.20pm.

After a 90 minute layover – with most of that time spent at an all-new Qantas Perth International Lounge – the Dreamliner will set off for its non-stop run to London at 6.50pm, reaching Heathrow at 5.10am the following day.

The return journey on QF10 sees the Boeing 787 wheels-up from Heathrow at 1.30pm – affording travellers time to relax in the new Qantas London Lounge slated to open in the second half of this year – arriving into Perth at 1.15pm the next day.

At 2.45pm it continues onto Melbourne, touching down at 8.10pm.

But that's not the end of the run for this busy Boeing 787, which will then become Melbourne-Los Angeles flight QF95 – which is being re-timed to leave Melbourne at 10.40pm for a 5pm arrival into LAX.

Qantas has designed these additional cross-country and trans-Pacific legs to not only maximise the Boeing 787's flying time but also entice Perth residents with a one-stop Dreamliner route to Los Angeles to help fill the plane's seats on the domestic west-east trek.

Paying the 'non-stop' premium 

However, travellers can expect to pay a premium for the direct Perth-London service over one-stop flights such as London via Dubai.

Qantas is pegging year-round return fares for QF9 as follows:

  • Business class: starting from $9,890 Melbourne-London, and from $9,725 for Perth-London
  • Premium economy: starting from $4,450 Melbourne-London, and from $4,250 for Perth-London
  • Economy: starting from $2,270, "but are expected to drop below $2,000 during sale periods" the airline says

The 14,498km trek will take around 17 hours, which currently pegs it as the third-longest passenger flight in the world, and the world's longest Boeing 787 flight. 

“We’re conscious that this is a long flight, but not much longer than our Sydney to Dallas service," says Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce.

"It’s the kind of route that the Dreamliner was created for, because of its built-in features to reduce jetlag and improve the overall travel experience."

“We’ve added a very high level of comfort in each of the cabins and a lower seat count than most of our competitors.  And we’re making tweaks to our in-flight service designed to help customers enjoy the journey more.”

Before setting out for London, business class travellers and other eligible passengers – including Qantas Platinum and Gold frequent flyers and their Oneworld Emerald and Sapphire equivalents, as well as Qantas Club members – will rest up in an all-new Qantas Perth International Lounge being built in a dedicated 'international wing' of the domestic Terminal 3 which will also include immigration, security and quarantine facilities.

Qantas says it will share more details "on the transit experience at Perth" next month.

A Dream(liner) run for lounge lizards?

With QF9 starting its journey out of Melbourne's international terminal, this will allow Platinum-grade frequent flyers to book the Boeing 787's Melbourne-Perth leg as a domestic flight – and enjoy the food, drink and spa of the Qantas first class lounge by grabbing even the cheapest economy ticket to Perth.

The timings work well for an east-west business trip, with QF9 out of Melbourne at 3.20pm and arriving into Perth at 5.20pm.

However, Qantas will want to keep open as many seats as possible for travellers who are going the whole way from Melbourne to London rather than doing a short hop for which it already offers a half-dozen domestic flights.

As a result, we expect Qantas will deliberately engineer the Melbourne-Perth pricing of QF9 to be far higher than its domestic equivalents in order to discourage transcon lounge lizards.

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.
 

67 comments

  • mviy

    mviy

    27 Apr, 2017 07:11 am

    5:10 am arrival in LHR! For holiday travel that's far from ideal timing. Much prefer the QF9 MEL-DXB-LHR arrival time.

    I think if I do try this I'm more likely to try the return leg instead of QF10

    Though if QF9 and QF10 do get axed it'll be interesting to see what happens to QF1 and QF2 timing
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  • AJW

    AJW

    27 Apr, 2017 02:55 pm

    Yeah but a later arrival, same as existing QF9 would then mean the flight leaving PER at 1am. That is not good for holiday travel either!
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  • Dean

    deany83

    27 Apr, 2017 07:25 am

    Wonder who QF did a deal to swap slots with unless QF1 is going to be retimed
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  • chap6595

    chap6595

    27 Apr, 2017 08:09 am

    Qantas have a number of slots that are leased by BA..Maybe Qantas took some of the back....only time will tell!
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  • Dean

    deany83

    27 Apr, 2017 08:12 am

    I was thinking that when they retimed QF9 and received the afternoon arrival slot back from BA they maybe held onto the morning slot that QF9 used to have.
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  • chap6595

    chap6595

    27 Apr, 2017 08:08 am

    I would love the QF 9 to be slightly eariler than the Emirates flight going to Dubai...that way you can beat the crowds to the showers then have your full pick of other European Destinations.
    Member who gave thanks

    BatteryBen

  • Christopher Campbell

    Chris2304

    27 Apr, 2017 08:09 am

    Fantastic! A new era for Qantas!
    All we ask Qantas is that you improve the pitch for PE and add another dedicated toilets for Business. 
    Member who gave thanks

    JJJJJJJ

  • colin

    gsx

    27 Apr, 2017 08:23 am

    Another piece in the jigsaw that matches the change to QF 95/96 timings ... just join the dots for the total round trip Lax/Mel/Per/Lhr and back.  interesting use of aircraft I think.
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  • GregXL

    GregXL

    27 Apr, 2017 09:23 am

    The Y and PE fares are about the same as CX for late March.  J on CX is $3000 less.  I expect it is only J that QF can expect a premium for PER - LHR.  CX is their only competitor offering PE over the whole journey, but that may change soon.
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  • mviy

    mviy

    27 Apr, 2017 09:31 am

    $9,725! I wonder how much MEL-PER-LHR return would cost? Even more? One can get QF9 on the A380 for over $2K less on a good sale.

    If QF9 is scrapped it will be interesting to see how MEL-SYD-DXB-LHR compares with MEL-PER-LHR price wise and SC earn. If the saving is significant going via SYD or if QF does MEL-DXB connecting with SYD's DXB-LHR that'd be tempting as a holiday traveller.
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  • moa999

    moa999

    27 Apr, 2017 10:05 am

    You can't compare sale prices to non-early prices. 

    What's the current non-standard fare on MEL-LHR?
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  • ajstubbs

    ajstubbs

    27 Apr, 2017 11:20 am

    Yeah it's comparable to non-sale fares in J. Not sure who books those fares!
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  • GregXL

    GregXL

    27 Apr, 2017 12:18 pm

    Corp accounts, that then get large discounts to bring it back closer to the sale fares.
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  • Joshb

    Joshb

    27 Apr, 2017 10:28 am

    Seems like the 787 MEL-PER would have to leave 2-3pm-ish to link up with the PER-LHR 6.50pm flight. On the return it would arrive at around 7pm-ish into MEL from PER which links up with the retimed QF95. Decent aircraft utilisation, well done QF. 
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  • AJW

    AJW

    27 Apr, 2017 02:39 pm

    It leaves MEL at 15:20, so yup.

    And utilisation is indeed interesting. MEL-LAX, then 5 hour layover in LAX, back to MEL and 6 hours, then to LHR and 8 hours and then back to MEL for a 1:30 turn around before going to LAX again.
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  • OzMattyD

    OzMattyD

    27 Apr, 2017 10:30 am

    A pretty good option if you need to be in London for work on the day you arrive, and you don't have to mess around in Dubai (with the delays etc). I'd consider this as an option outbound (even from Sydney) but I would still return on QF2. The current Dubai - London sector on QF1 is too short to get a proper sleep in before a full day in London.
    Member who gave thanks

    BatteryBen

  • JJJJJJJ

    JJJJJJJ

    27 Apr, 2017 10:52 am

    Geez, at that J class price I'm gonna need an extra red cordial before takeoff...
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  • reeves35

    reeves35

    27 Apr, 2017 11:27 am

    This pricing seems a bit of a try-on.  You can do PER-LHR on SQ in Mar 2018 for $1530 in Y ( that's an 8 abreast A330 or 9 abreast 777).  Over $2K for a 9 abreast 787 is daft!!!

    Likewise J pricing is way up there.  I don't think the 2.5 hours saved justifies the $3K price difference compared with QR or MH.

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  • Chris

    flychrisfly

    27 Apr, 2017 11:38 am

    11:37am... waiting waiting for qantas.com to be updated with the new flights
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  • Damien Harbert

    Damien00

    27 Apr, 2017 11:39 am

    No more A380 out of Melbourne in the evening.... looks like the options are to travel via Perth, Syd on QF1 or another carrier.
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  • maabbot

    maabbot

    27 Apr, 2017 11:47 am

    Arrival time in London works well for business travellers...in fact replicates the old timing when Qantas routed via Singapore.  Arrive 5.10am...beat traffic...freshen up...can be in meetings mid morning...
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  • GregXL

    GregXL

    27 Apr, 2017 01:03 pm

    As the article suggests, Y fares for PER-MEL on QF9/10 are about double the cheapest fares currently on offer.  PE is not offered on that sector. 

    PE is offered on PER-LAX, but on the PE sale fare the PER-MEL sector is in Y.  Not competitive so far. 

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  • downdata

    downdata

    27 Apr, 2017 01:05 pm

    Sooooo this is essentially a downgauge for mel-lhr
    Member who gave thanks

    J-sh

  • bl812

    bl812

    27 Apr, 2017 01:15 pm

    ridiculous pricing-at nearly 10K you can get a first class ticket with other airlines so who in their twisted mind would pay such for a business class???
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  • Meridiengroup

    Meridiengroup

    27 Apr, 2017 01:41 pm

    Bookings BNE-LHR routed via PER now also on booking site. Sadly, best connections use 738. Quotes 18.20 flight time for PER-LHR .... wayyyyyy tooooo long ... prefer CX - BNE-HKG-LHR.
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  • wdeguara

    wdeguara

    27 Apr, 2017 03:24 pm

    Yes.  I notice that too when looking at the Qantas web site today.  After March 24 the web site no longer offers QF8435 (the Emirates A380 code share to Dubai) and QF8434 (the return service) as a booking option.  The only way to get to/from London from BNE as a Qantas passenger will be via PER, SYD or MEL.   Oh man !  I hope this is just a bug with the booking system.
    Member who gave thanks

    jgb59

  • RTWFF

    RTWFF

    27 Apr, 2017 02:21 pm

    I understand that the cabin crew on the international leg (ie. to/from London) will NOT be Aussies but London-based crew
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  • Looking

    Looking

    27 Apr, 2017 11:22 pm

    Being an Australian and being based in London are not mutually exclusive.
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  • Craig Sandford

    Rezzadogs

    29 Apr, 2017 02:56 am

    No, it's not mutually exclusive, but from my experience most QF London-based staff in the pointy end are Brits.
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  • AJW

    AJW

    27 Apr, 2017 02:45 pm

    I am still perplexed by the change from MEL to LHR from A380 to 787.

    Essentially the capacity has halved, plus now the potential traffic wanting to fly this route will have probably doubled. Eg passengers wanting to fly PER-LHR (plus CBR/ADL/BNE one stoppers via PER). Plus add in traffic that might want to fly PER-MEL-LHR. Lots of competition for few seats.

    Would have thought MEL-DXB at least would remain possibly connecting to QF1 or an EK service to LHR, or latter when more 787's a MEL-DXB-LHR route, which of course would need a slot pair back from BA.

    But as it stands just doesn't make too much sense from a pure seat number perspective.
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  • patrickk

    patrickk

    28 Apr, 2017 04:02 pm

    AJW the capacity has halved as QF is struggling in an overcrowded market as AJ said. For me from Canberra I always prefer the Melb LHR Flight as it is easiest to get upgrades etc on it, which means it is not a big earner.  Dropping capacity by half on that route makes sense. The A380s need their D checks plus a refresh (which will take a couple of years to do the lot) and a focus on Asia makes sense for the A380s. If LHR demand picks up they can go double daily but the next four 789s may focus on continental Europe (eg Paris). They will see how demand to the US pans out with Trump before adding more on that front. The last six 747s are around until 2022 so plenty of time to work things out.
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  • Teejay Cal

    Theresnormissin

    27 Apr, 2017 03:36 pm

    It's currently showing at £4231 (Approx' $7,300AUD) to fly Business Saver LHW - PER return for those interested.
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  • Chris

    flychrisfly

    27 Apr, 2017 03:47 pm

    QF website has no J class flights (or availability) for PER-LHR for 24th, but they do for 25th...
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  • Chris

    flychrisfly

    27 Apr, 2017 03:54 pm

    Just spoke to QF. 24 March 2018 is already oversold in J and W with 2 seats left in Y. I missed out :(
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  • JJJJJJJ

    JJJJJJJ

    27 Apr, 2017 05:46 pm

    So who's getting dragged out down the aisle????
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    UA1kGuy, chewkc65

  • chewkc65

    chewkc65

    6 Jun, 2017 02:41 am

    LOL...and earn a few million bucks in law suit...
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  • Colin Steven

    colin5353

    27 Apr, 2017 03:48 pm

    Email for QF today touting "book now" do a dummy booking from Adelaide for May 2018, I get ADL-MEL, MEL-LHR via DBX on QF9 in a A380: no mention of PER
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  • Colin Steven

    colin5353

    27 Apr, 2017 03:50 pm

    my mistake, wrong year....  duh.

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  • mviy

    mviy

    27 Apr, 2017 04:00 pm

    Yeah, May seats for next year are not being sold yet.
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  • UpUpAndAway

    UpUpAndAway

    27 Apr, 2017 03:58 pm

    I'm sure Qantas will be giving heavy discounted fare after the first 12 months, the pain of sitting on a plane for that long deserves a bigger discount then flying via another country. My wife would shoot me 5 times over if I put her on a plane for that long.

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  • dravid74

    dravid74

    27 Apr, 2017 05:31 pm

    Dumb question... but Is this flight daily?
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  • Michael Gibbons

    rowwdy

    27 Apr, 2017 06:16 pm

    Wonder what time the MEL lounge will close at now...
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  • MelbFlyer

    MelbFlyer

    27 Apr, 2017 06:27 pm

    They still have the overnight flight to AKL that leaves around 2300 so will have to remain open late for that. 
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  • Meridiengroup

    Meridiengroup

    27 Apr, 2017 08:04 pm

    Just checked. BNE-LHR J class via PER = 51k points and 480 sc. OOL departure = 66k points and 640 sc. Over 30% difference. They are funneling everyone via PER and cut 380 from MEL. It's all very weird really. They would need 2 x 787's from PER. And the 738 connections suck for the big $10k + fare. Not for me. Back to SIN or HKG to Europe. Not impressed at all. 
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  • henrus

    henrus

    27 Apr, 2017 09:05 pm

    Yeh I see where you're coming from. The closest connection I could see (on the day I searched) left a four hour stop between the BNE-PER and PER-LHR flights and to top if off the flight BNE-PER was an B737.
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  • grahama33

    grahama33

    27 Apr, 2017 11:40 pm

    Not a great day for Melbourne travellers. Losing an A380 service - and instead we get Jetstar like 9 abreast seating in a 787 :(
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  • JY

    JY

    28 Apr, 2017 12:47 am

    The Australian is already reporting that the first flight is completely sold out!
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  • mviy

    mviy

    28 Apr, 2017 01:12 am

    Considering a number of seats would be reserved for the media, QF management and perhaps others as well such as some important customers that's not surprising.

    The big test is
    a) convincing people to fly the route from e.g. MEL
    b) giving an experience that's good enough that people keep on coming back for more. If passengers fly it once and then decide never again they may do well for a while but they'll eventually lose a lot of business.
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  • John Phelan

    John Phelan

    28 Apr, 2017 11:03 am

    It sold out in 2 hours, apparently!
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  • TAADC9

    TAADC9

    28 Apr, 2017 07:52 am

    Will still do QF/EK on the A380 from Sydney, then doing the 787 via Perth. Why?? Space/Room to Move, Bar, wifi, More Toilets, First Class Lounge, Service, Limousine, 560 Status Credits (instead of 480 via Perth). Alternatively Singapore Airlines, Etihad and Qatar as well. 
    No member give thanks

  • Bait

    Bait

    28 Apr, 2017 01:48 pm

    I noticed that SYD- PER-LHR gives a lot less status credits (515) than SYD-LHR return (560)
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  • Rusty1

    Rusty1

    28 Apr, 2017 03:19 pm

    "We've added a very high level of comfort in each of the cabins ..." says Alan Joyce.  But toilet ratio in Business (sharing with PE) is a significant reduction in comfort, along with PE seat pitch.  I've done QF9/10 a number of times over the years in J but not any more.  Plenty of alternatives with greater comfort and better price,
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  • patrickk

    patrickk

    28 Apr, 2017 04:07 pm

    Rusty the A380 shares business with PE toilets (I know I do it regularly) and the ratio is much the same when business and PE are added together.
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  • rambler

    rambler

    28 Apr, 2017 03:32 pm

    More confirmation that Qantas is indeed "Sydney Airlines" rather than the national carrier. Despite the Boeing hype often repeated here, A380 is a vastly more comfortable aircraft for long distance travel. 
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  • maabbot

    maabbot

    28 Apr, 2017 04:08 pm

    One think that really hasn't been promoted is Perth - LAX part of this route...this plane will get a lot of patronage as it's (correct if wrong) the same 787-9 all the way with 1.5hrs in Melbourne?  No more Sydney transits for Perth travellers and international to international transfer in Melbourne...Qantas should sell this!
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  • patrickk

    patrickk

    28 Apr, 2017 04:13 pm

    Having just come to the US on a United 789 over 14 hours. The experience is much the same as a A380 in terms of smooth ride noise etc. In economy it is cramped but not much more than a A380. UNITED's rather more than average service is very easy to beat by QF. It is not a game changer plane as it is rather tiny compared to what I am used to, but 17 hours is doable.
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  • zoomzoom

    zoomzoom

    28 Apr, 2017 04:14 pm

    So Ho Hum..........too little too late......and far too expensive........much better options through Asia with much better carriers......QF  can carry on about this but I wouldn't even consider it. 
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  • Ryan Stephen

    RaptorNation158

    28 Apr, 2017 04:38 pm

    I can deal with everything else but lower SCs flying MEL-PER-LHR especially when it's a lot more expensive and far brutal just seems absurd. At least give more SCs for what you're paying and enduring.
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  • johnnypc67

    johnnypc67

    28 Apr, 2017 04:42 pm

    Can we expect when more 787 come into the fleet to see Melbourne to Perth to Paris/Frankfurt given the Dubai connections will be no longer??
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  • patrickk

    patrickk

    29 Apr, 2017 03:37 am

    Johny, AJ mentioned Berlin rather than Frankfurt which is interesting. I think he plans to go to the new Brandeburg airport assuming it opens next year or early 2019. I think the next four 789s will cover Brisbane to LA and New York, and Paris. Berlin would come later I think, but is clearly in the mix. QF may get a good discount on landing fees to attract it there rather than Paris. There will be some juggling to keep the 789s based in Melbourne, but maybe double daily to LA and then onto New York for one of them. The freed up A380 could then do the Brisbane to LA run assuming the current 747 had good loads.
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  • patrickk

    patrickk

    2 May, 2017 02:23 am

    Johny it seems Brisbane to Los Angeles - Brisbane - Perth - Paris may be next with the next four 789s being based in Brisbane from the second half of next year. Would New York be in the mix? This would mean tickets on sales from October or so.
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  • crosscourt

    crosscourt

    28 Apr, 2017 05:01 pm

    very sorry that the A380 is being dropped MEL-LHR.
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  • Rusty1

    Rusty1

    28 Apr, 2017 05:13 pm

     
    Patrickk, I'm fully aware of the current sharing arrangement of toilets on the A380 with PE. That's the reason I stopped flying QF9/10 (and QF1/2) a few years back after they modified the aircraft and removed two J Class toilets for more J seats.  International J Class with QF just goes from bad to worse in terms of comfort, including the dated Skybed Mk2. To reiterate my comment in an earlier separate post on the Qantas 787, I would like to see AJ and his senior internal design manager travel on the inaugural QF9 MEL-LHR in the "revolutionary" PE class.  They might then gain an understanding of the negative comments from seasoned flyers about the 787's degradation of comfort for premium PAX.
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  • Shane Tomlinson

    shane.tomlinson

    29 Apr, 2017 08:24 am

    Is 3:20pm meant to be 4:20pm? Given the two hour time difference, and three during DST?
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  • LondonAussie

    LondonAussie

    29 Apr, 2017 10:09 pm

    I wonder if they will re-time the QF1/2 to suit? If the 789 from MEL/PER is arriving early morning and departing early morning, would it make business sense to change the 380 to an afternoon arrival and evening departure.

    It certainly would funnel some pax onto the 789 who need the morning arrival.
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  • Andrei Bobylev

    Dexter

    5 May, 2017 06:05 pm

    They have to retime QF1/2. Currently qf1 a380 becomes qf10 (aircraft stays 6hrs in LHR). Most likely qf1 will be retimed for evening departure to minimise aircraft parking fees in LHR.
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  • thehound

    thehound

    30 Apr, 2017 12:29 pm

    Does anyone know when QF will offer PER-LHR or LHR-PER legs as a classic award, and what the pts cost will be? Maybe they already are but are getting snapped up quickly...
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23 Oct, 2018 11:34 pm

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