Qantas’ Unrealistic Plan To Restart International Flights

Qantas’ Unrealistic Plan To Restart International Flights

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Qantas has outlined its latest plans to restart international flights. To me this seems highly, highly optimistic, and I’d be willing to bet this won’t work out the way Qantas is hoping.

How Qantas plans to restore route network

Qantas has announced plans to gradually restart international operations as of December 2021. This is based on the National Cabinet’s phased reopening of international borders — specifically, the hope is that the “Phase C” threshold of 80% vaccination in the country will be reached by December 2021.

As Qantas reboots its international network, the focus will be on countries with high vaccination rates, including those in North America, the United Kingdom, Singapore, and Japan. Let’s take a look at what Qantas is planning…

“Safe” destinations resume December 2021, others in April 2022

With this plan, Qantas would gradually resume its international service based on vaccination rates in other countries:

  • As of mid-December 2021, flights would restart from Australia to “COVID-safe destinations,” likely to include Singapore, the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Canada, using 787s and A330s
  • As of April 2022, flights would restart from Australia to destinations with lower vaccination rates, including Bali, Jakarta, Manila, Bangkok, Phuket, Ho Chi Minh City, and Johannesburg
  • While I can appreciate that in theory high vaccination rates should equate to “safe destinations,” that doesn’t seem to be the case in reality, and I’m not sure Australia’s government will view this the way that Qantas does
Apparently the US is “COVID-safe” now!

Qantas could fly from Darwin to London

In 2018, Qantas launched nonstop flights between Australia and the UK, specifically between Perth and London. However, due to Western Australia’s “conservative border policies,” Qantas is exploring the possibility of instead using Darwin as a transit point, which has been Qantas’ main entry point for repatriation flights.

Qantas expects that demand for nonstop travel between Australia and London will be even higher post-COVID.

Qantas could fly from Darwin to London

A380s could return in July 2022, two will be retired

Qantas currently has a fleet of 12 Airbus A380s, and the airline had previously stated that these planes wouldn’t return before 2023 at the earliest. With the latest plan:

  • Five A380s will return to service in 2022 — the Sydney to Los Angeles route would be resumed with an A380 as of July 2022, while the Sydney to Singapore to London route would be resumed with an A380 as of November 2022
  • Of Qantas’ 12 Airbus A380s, 10 would be retrofitted with the new cabins and return to service by early 2024, and two would be retired
Qantas A380s could return in July 2022

Qantas could extend range of Airbus A330s

The Airbus A330 is Qantas’ smallest wide body aircraft, and Qantas has some changes in store for this plane:

  • Qantas is working with Airbus to extend the range of the A330-200, allowing it to operate longer transpacific flights; this will be done by increasing the maximum takeoff weight of the plane, allowing it to carry more fuel
  • Qantas would then fly A330s from Brisbane to Los Angeles and San Francisco
Qantas could extend the range of A330s, fly them to the US

How Qantas’ CEO describes the reboot strategy

Here’s how Qantas CEO Alan Joyce describes the carrier’s strategy to restart flights:

“The prospect of flying overseas might feel a long way off, especially with New South Wales and Victoria in lockdown, but the current pace of the vaccine rollout means we should have a lot more freedom in a few months’ time.

It’s obviously up to government exactly how and when our international borders re-open, but with Australia on track to meet the 80 per cent trigger agreed by National Cabinet by the end of the year, we need to plan ahead for what is a complex restart process.

There’s a lot of work that needs to happen, including training for our people and carefully bringing aircraft back into service. We can adjust our plans if the circumstances change, which we’ve already had to do several times during this pandemic. Some people might say we’re being too optimistic, but based on the pace of the vaccine rollout, this is within reach and we want to make sure we’re ready.”

I think Qantas’ is being way too optimistic

I think it’s important to point out that Qantas has outlined its travel reboot strategy several times before, and up until now none have come to fruition. I don’t see this being any different.

I see where Qantas is coming from. The airline has to start planning for how travel could restart, since that’s not a process that happens overnight, when most of your planes have been parked for 18 months. At the same time, on some level this feels like an attempt to improve liquidity by selling tickets for flights that likely won’t ever operate.

My interpretation of the Australian government’s policy is very different than how Qantas seems to view it. For example, I think the odds of widespread quarantine-free travel between Australia and the United States before the end of the year is pretty close to zero.

The way I view it:

  • Australia has been going for a zero tolerance approach to coronavirus, and even after widespread vaccination is available, the country largely intends to maintain that for some amount of time, at least based on what politicians have been saying
  • Australia is going through a major outbreak (by the country’s standards, which are slightly different than Florida’s standards), and while I’m no epidemiologist, I’d be surprised if this one can be controlled and brought back down to zero, given how transmissible the delta variant is
  • For international travel to restart, something’s gotta give beyond an 80% vaccination rate in Australia — the country has to give up on its zero tolerance approach to coronavirus, and so far I haven’t seen any indication that this will happen
  • Australia wouldn’t just need to open to foreigners without quarantine, but the country also couldn’t have endless hoops if it expects widespread tourism

There are a lot of interesting ideas here — extending range of A330s to fly them to the US, operating a Darwin to London flight, bringing back A380s early, etc. But I just don’t see this playing out as planned.

Qantas’ travel reboot strategy seems optimistic

Bottom line

With Qantas’ latest international travel reboot strategy, the airline could resume long haul flights in December 2021. The airline would first fly to destinations with high vaccination rates, we could see A330s flown to the US, we could see A380s back in service by July 2022, and we could see flights between Darwin and London.

Unfortunately unless Australia’s government changes course (and the government’s handling of the pandemic has been popular among residents), this plan just seems highly optimistic to me. Australia would have to stop going for a zero tolerance coronavirus strategy, and would have to greatly ease travel restrictions if widespread tourism will once again become a thing.

What do you make of Qantas’ strategy to restart international flights?

Conversations (60)
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  1. Polarbear Guest

    Unrelated to the topic, really - but is it just me or this article keeps showing as the most recent addition to the blog for couple days now?

  2. Donna Hughes Guest

    MY HUSBAND SAM HAS BEEN STUCK IN NEW DELHI,INDIA FOR OVER TWO YEARS NOW.
    I NEED MY HUSBAND HOME WITH ME AND THE REST OF THE FAMILY NOW TO THE U.S.A.

  3. Morgan Gold

    As a Perth resident I can tell you that us here in WA really don't mind that we can't travel overseas (or interstate for that matter), and we are not too happy about bringing covid in.

    As last year when we introduced hard border policies, the federal government tried to fight against it (we won) and right now with these borders we are covid free, no cases, no deaths, no masks, no restrictions at all....

    As a Perth resident I can tell you that us here in WA really don't mind that we can't travel overseas (or interstate for that matter), and we are not too happy about bringing covid in.

    As last year when we introduced hard border policies, the federal government tried to fight against it (we won) and right now with these borders we are covid free, no cases, no deaths, no masks, no restrictions at all. It is pretty great, being able to do things like go to a footy match with 60,000 people or a packed out night club, or a big wedding, all with no worry about catching or spreading covid.

    And the polls conveyed this, Mark McGowan won by a landslide. The only problem with our great lifestyle is that some people are hesitant to get vaccinated but that is slowly changing luckily.

    1. J James Guest

      That’s good to hear, however, you’re all sitting ducks as it’s only a question of time before Delta variant will come to you and I promise you now all of you will be clambering for a vaccine when Delta is knocking at your door so to speak and you’ll soon be fed up of lockdowns you’ll have to endure. Also Your local economy will suffer if you don’t open up at some point. Your leader...

      That’s good to hear, however, you’re all sitting ducks as it’s only a question of time before Delta variant will come to you and I promise you now all of you will be clambering for a vaccine when Delta is knocking at your door so to speak and you’ll soon be fed up of lockdowns you’ll have to endure. Also Your local economy will suffer if you don’t open up at some point. Your leader is playing politics it has nothing to do with keeping you safe. Good luck. Watch this space.

    2. John.S Guest

      WA is vaccinating people at a steady rate. The aim is to keep delta out as much as possible until they reach 70-80% when opening up becomes more feasible (not gonna kill thousands of people in the process).

  4. philelltt Gold

    Ben,

    It is surprising how many Qantas stories you publish considering how predictable many replies are time and again, and how small an airline it is. I notice the loyalty lobby blog can do up to 3or 4 qantas stories a week. You have a couple Qantas stories running just now.
    Would you like to tell us readers if Qantas is part of your affiliate marketing?
    It seems strange you and other blog...

    Ben,

    It is surprising how many Qantas stories you publish considering how predictable many replies are time and again, and how small an airline it is. I notice the loyalty lobby blog can do up to 3or 4 qantas stories a week. You have a couple Qantas stories running just now.
    Would you like to tell us readers if Qantas is part of your affiliate marketing?
    It seems strange you and other blog sites so rarely do stories about some of the bigger airlines relevant to the USA travel market.
    Just wondering....

    1. Morgan Gold

      @philelltt - It is a global travel blog not just USA focused and due to the fact Qantas is a pretty big airline and Australia is a big travel market and a place lots of people (from America and everywhere) want to travel to, it is keeping people informed when they can indeed travel to Aus or when to plan to. As an Australian I appreciate the different posts and global articles as otherwise I...

      @philelltt - It is a global travel blog not just USA focused and due to the fact Qantas is a pretty big airline and Australia is a big travel market and a place lots of people (from America and everywhere) want to travel to, it is keeping people informed when they can indeed travel to Aus or when to plan to. As an Australian I appreciate the different posts and global articles as otherwise I would not read OMAAT as frequently as I do (and I suspect there is a big Australian readership hence why it is important to write about Qantas) . Also if you compared US airline posts to Qantas posts i can assure you US airlines could come out 10 times ahead. Also you know Ben is always transparent with affiliate marketing.

  5. Nathan Guest

    “..,the government’s handling of the pandemic has been popular among residents”

    No, Lucky, it has most certainly not been. A Resolve poll published just today, with a margin of error of well under 3%, revealed the Prime Minister’s overall handling of the pandemic as -:
    Very well: 12%. Well: 26%. Undecided: 26%. Badly: 18%. Very badly: 18%

    Especially taking into consideration the high amount of ‘undecided’ people in this poll, I’d say this is...

    “..,the government’s handling of the pandemic has been popular among residents”

    No, Lucky, it has most certainly not been. A Resolve poll published just today, with a margin of error of well under 3%, revealed the Prime Minister’s overall handling of the pandemic as -:
    Very well: 12%. Well: 26%. Undecided: 26%. Badly: 18%. Very badly: 18%

    Especially taking into consideration the high amount of ‘undecided’ people in this poll, I’d say this is far from being a ringing endorsement. This is why the PM is regularly called ‘Scummo’ or ‘Scotty From Marketing’.

  6. glenn t Diamond

    Qantas' notion that Japan might be one of the first countries to fly to in Dec/Jan is misplaced. Their case rates are soaring to the point where their hospitals are overstretched, and their fully-vaccinated numbers per capita are even lower than the dismal Australian numbers. I really can't see a gigantic turnaround before the end of the year.
    On another note, pathetically amusing I suppose, the dim-witted Minister for Tourism is burbling on about...

    Qantas' notion that Japan might be one of the first countries to fly to in Dec/Jan is misplaced. Their case rates are soaring to the point where their hospitals are overstretched, and their fully-vaccinated numbers per capita are even lower than the dismal Australian numbers. I really can't see a gigantic turnaround before the end of the year.
    On another note, pathetically amusing I suppose, the dim-witted Minister for Tourism is burbling on about 'travel bubbles' to various Asian places, including Japan. Maybe he accidently picked up an old Press Release from March this year?!
    Doh!
    Way to go Dim Dan!

  7. AA56 Guest

    WA's conservative border policies. Who made you judge of what we do in WA? We have a totally COVID free lifestyle due to those policies. You over 650,000 dead from your liberal policies.

  8. John.S Guest

    I'm finding the Australia/New Zealand bashing tiring. You're not one of us, and don't understand what we've been through or our psyche.

    I won't speak for NZ, but Australia has never been about "Covid Zero forever". We put the community before out individual freedoms to ensure that the least number of people died before a vaccine could be rolled out. We were able to do this because of our closed borders. Yes there was...

    I'm finding the Australia/New Zealand bashing tiring. You're not one of us, and don't understand what we've been through or our psyche.

    I won't speak for NZ, but Australia has never been about "Covid Zero forever". We put the community before out individual freedoms to ensure that the least number of people died before a vaccine could be rolled out. We were able to do this because of our closed borders. Yes there was leaks, and yes there have been outbreaks, but compare the pair.

    Australia: 0.2% of the population has been infected and 2% of them (0.004%) have died.
    USA: 11.6% of the population has been infected and 1.6% of them (0.2%) have died.
    So the % of people infected in Australia is equal to that of who've died in the US. I know which outcome I'd prefer.

    That community first attitude is why we'll easily get 80% of our population vaccinated, and we're well on track to meet that target. In my state, you get paid $450 to get tested (if required by the exposure site tier 1/2/3 system) and $1500 if you need to isolate for 14 days. You also get paid $750 a week if the lockdowns have required your work to stay shut.

    Now that the vaccine program is ramping up, the government messaging is now pivoting to post-vaccine. All about removing lockdowns and opening up as we hit the summer. A bit like the UK did. That's what we're looking forward to. And welcoming people from around the world who similarly hold the same standards that we do.

  9. Josh Guest

    To be clear, Ben: Australia’s official policy IS to abandon Zero Covid once the vaccination target of 70-80% in each state has been reached. In NSW, this is already, prematurely, the rhetorical position of the premier (ie the governor) even though other more cautious states baulk. The PM seems broadly on NSW’s side. So smarter heads do realise that Covid Zero, in the long term, is a dead end. (To the other readers who say...

    To be clear, Ben: Australia’s official policy IS to abandon Zero Covid once the vaccination target of 70-80% in each state has been reached. In NSW, this is already, prematurely, the rhetorical position of the premier (ie the governor) even though other more cautious states baulk. The PM seems broadly on NSW’s side. So smarter heads do realise that Covid Zero, in the long term, is a dead end. (To the other readers who say things like “If lockdowns worked then why do they keep having them?”… Sydney didn’t have a citywide lockdown for 13 months. Thanks to the initial lockdowns, we were living normal, maskless lives with no Covid deaths while Europeans, Americans and—to be fair—Victorians were huddled inside. Porous quarantine, plus super-contagious Delta, only recently changed that.)

  10. Mark Guest

    As we can't at this point in time fly intrastate , let alone interstate , this seems to be a dream of an airline who , understandably , must feel a sense of desperation.

    I can't see Eastern Australia seeing normal international flights till at least 2024 & for Western Australia not in my lifetime.

    1. NathanJ Gold

      You’ve no doubt noticed several of these comments are from what you would call “shills” of our supposed Prime Minister Scummo’s party, the Liberal-National Coalition. The Liberals represent the rich types who value money over people and community and dressing up certain government handouts to the wealthy as totally necessary, whilst simultaneously decrying anything given to the less well-off as unnecessary socialism (gimme, gimme, gimme). The Nationals used to represent farmers, country folk and the...

      You’ve no doubt noticed several of these comments are from what you would call “shills” of our supposed Prime Minister Scummo’s party, the Liberal-National Coalition. The Liberals represent the rich types who value money over people and community and dressing up certain government handouts to the wealthy as totally necessary, whilst simultaneously decrying anything given to the less well-off as unnecessary socialism (gimme, gimme, gimme). The Nationals used to represent farmers, country folk and the outback, but are now nothing but right-wing nut jobs that deny climate change, swinging their support from farmers to fossil fuel industries.

      The “eligible population” distinction makes a big difference to the stats, and they know it.

      Gives you a clearer picture of how and why we’re currently so rooted in so many ways down under. :-)

  11. Richard Guest

    Things have changed. There are some leaders, particularly among the far left wing Labor Party who want borders to remain closed. This is more a political move than one about safety. Queensland for example have started building quarantine camps. West Australia have proclaimed that they intend to remain Covid free. Neither of these are realistic approaches from an economic standpoint. But the far left in Australia have become extremely xenophobic during Covid.
    The right...

    Things have changed. There are some leaders, particularly among the far left wing Labor Party who want borders to remain closed. This is more a political move than one about safety. Queensland for example have started building quarantine camps. West Australia have proclaimed that they intend to remain Covid free. Neither of these are realistic approaches from an economic standpoint. But the far left in Australia have become extremely xenophobic during Covid.
    The right wing want borders to reopen. They want people to restart their lives. Either way, no matter what state leaders say, the federal government have the final say over whether International borders remain closed or not and under what conditions they open. The federal government have formally announced that border restrictions will ease once the country hits 70% fully vaccinated and at 80% fully vaccinated there will be no need for any type of quarantine, home based or otherwise for any fully vaccinated traveller into Australia.

    At the moment, we have one of the highest vaccination rates in the world. We are coasting along at full speed. At this point the endure country is due to hit 80% fully vaccinated by 28 October this year. Currently we are at 55.24% single vaccinated and 32.30% fully vaccinated. Increasing by approximately 5% on both metrics each week. NSW is currently the state at the head of the pack of vaccination and at current rate, it will hit 80% fully vaccinated by 7 October.

    So the plan isn't totally unrealistic. I'd say it's conservative in waiting until December. Australia will open, regardless of what the parochial, xenophobes in the far left think or want. Even now, they're in a minority as vaccinated people are demanding more and more freedoms.

    1. jly New Member

      Ironic you mention Queensland and WA killing their economies with zero COVID when we’re the ones with the strongest economic recoveries and are completely open because we didn’t wait for Delta to spiral out of control before locking down…..

    2. JDee New Member

      Not sure if you're an Australian but you're a number of decades out of date. There aren't any "...far left wing Labor Party [leaders].." as the Labor Party is virtually centrist both at State/Territory & Federal Government levels.

  12. Miamiorbust Guest

    I’ll bet on Qantas. People seem to believe international travel needs to look like 2019 to be viable. It doesn’t. International travel and limited quarantine such as at-home isolation alongside testing and high domestic vaccination rates may be one scenario. There are undoubtedly other restrictive options. Won’t be attractive to traveler bloggers but to people with businesses and families to tend, they will travel in significant numbers. Think leisure destinations will be more difficult but...

    I’ll bet on Qantas. People seem to believe international travel needs to look like 2019 to be viable. It doesn’t. International travel and limited quarantine such as at-home isolation alongside testing and high domestic vaccination rates may be one scenario. There are undoubtedly other restrictive options. Won’t be attractive to traveler bloggers but to people with businesses and families to tend, they will travel in significant numbers. Think leisure destinations will be more difficult but UK and US have huge ex pat populations and will work fine even with quarantine light restrictions.

  13. Andy 11235 Guest

    Yeah, I think the tide is changing. The fact that the delta outbreak in Sydney hasn't been stamped out is combining with a general fatigue of the lockdown cycle necessary for a "zero covid" strategy. As such, the latest rhetoric from politicians is shifting as the (Aussie) federal government tries to respond to the valid complaints that it has bungled vaccination and has no exit strategy. While December 2021 may be optimistic, even NZ has...

    Yeah, I think the tide is changing. The fact that the delta outbreak in Sydney hasn't been stamped out is combining with a general fatigue of the lockdown cycle necessary for a "zero covid" strategy. As such, the latest rhetoric from politicians is shifting as the (Aussie) federal government tries to respond to the valid complaints that it has bungled vaccination and has no exit strategy. While December 2021 may be optimistic, even NZ has recognized that "zero covid" is not a long-term solution.

  14. Billy Bob Guest

    You may not like them but the only way forward on covid and freedom is to vote for whoever will finally accept that covid is here forever and lift all restrictions and mandates.
    Not really a big fan of DeSantis (in the US), for instance, but if he promised to remove all mandates and lift all restrictions, he'd get my vote.
    It's either that or live in fear forever.

    1. Steve Gold

      Yup it is a shame that politics come first and not facts, statistics, science or general common sense. There is no stopping covid all we can do is prevent deaths with vaccines, masks dont work, lockdowns dont work. Our economy will be much worse off with continued shutdowns. Inflation is not transitory its going to hit every individual on earth like a ton of bricks here shortly. The policy of shutdown and print money is...

      Yup it is a shame that politics come first and not facts, statistics, science or general common sense. There is no stopping covid all we can do is prevent deaths with vaccines, masks dont work, lockdowns dont work. Our economy will be much worse off with continued shutdowns. Inflation is not transitory its going to hit every individual on earth like a ton of bricks here shortly. The policy of shutdown and print money is furthering the problem. The sooner everyone accepts that every human will get covid the sooner we can move on, just make sure when you do get it you limit the risk with a vaccine because the virus doesnt care about your politics youre gonna get it eventually.

  15. Billy Bob Guest

    The politicians who are in favor of zero covid need to be voted out of office and then prosecuted. They are tyrants.
    Covid is endemic. It's here to stay, forever, and vaccinated or not, everyone will get it.

  16. EC2 Guest

    Australia is not going to get to zero cases and they wouldn’t get to zero Lucky even if the Delta variant emerged. I wouldn’t be planning any trips to Australia or New Zealand for the next 2 years. They are out of control in their mad efforts to eradicate the coronavirus.

    1. Hutch Guest

      I can't speak on NZ, but there is this continued assertion that Australia is aiming to forever be without Covid. I'm not sure that is reality and perhaps a little understanding of different perspectives is needed.

      The US has been through its massive covid outbreak and anyone who wanted a vaccination has been able to get one (the worst is likely behind you).

      Australia, by world standards, has not had a massive outbreak and...

      I can't speak on NZ, but there is this continued assertion that Australia is aiming to forever be without Covid. I'm not sure that is reality and perhaps a little understanding of different perspectives is needed.

      The US has been through its massive covid outbreak and anyone who wanted a vaccination has been able to get one (the worst is likely behind you).

      Australia, by world standards, has not had a massive outbreak and hence desires to keep it that way until the population has had a chance to be vaccinated. Considering in the grand scheme of things, that is only months away from that occuring... Why would you change that approach now.

      In any case, the continued fascination of a distant small population country, which most Americans will never visit and whose policies have zero impacts on most commentators day to day life, is just odd.

    2. JDee New Member

      Totally agree! Many Americans who claim not to care what the rest of the World thinks about them seem to be overly invested in Australian &, to a lesser extent, New Zealand COVID policies.

      As an Australian I don't care what Americans think in this regard & am pleased that Australia's response to COVID will likely not be influenced in any way by what Americans do or say

  17. Steve Gold

    Im not sure how Qantas is able to survive. Australia has the most unrealistic covid policies on earth. If lockdowns worked why do they keep having them? Zero-covid is a pipe dream its something we have to learn to live with. Vaccines prevent deaths but they dont stop cases there is too much evidence from countries with 80%+ vaccine rates that show cases can not be stopped by either mask or vaccine. I hope australia...

    Im not sure how Qantas is able to survive. Australia has the most unrealistic covid policies on earth. If lockdowns worked why do they keep having them? Zero-covid is a pipe dream its something we have to learn to live with. Vaccines prevent deaths but they dont stop cases there is too much evidence from countries with 80%+ vaccine rates that show cases can not be stopped by either mask or vaccine. I hope australia realizes this before they destory their economy with further lockdowns. The sooner the world realizes this isnt going away the sooner we can deal with reality, take the shot so you wont die but we will never stop cases from occuring we need to stop focusing on cases as a whole.

  18. Andrew Guest

    I think the issue with almost every country is that they somehow think Covid only affects foreigners, and not their own citizens. Everyone can repatriate just fine with a single negative test, but people from other lands? Stay away!

    Delta don't care what your nationality is. Neither will Lambda, nor any of the subsequent variants we'll undoubtedly encounter.

  19. Jan Guest

    Qantas needs to understand that they will never fly internationally again in any meaningful capacity, since Australia will never open again. Best case scenario for them is that hopefully they establish an actual NZz travel bubble that doesn’t pop.

  20. stogieguy7 Gold

    Now that COVID is in the wild, it is continuously mutating and multiplying. Thanks to idiots in Wuhan, we have a new strain of virus among us - forever. It will not go away. And any policy based on totally eradicating it is pure folly. You cannot eradicate an airborne virus. Just ask influenza or the rhinovirus.

    We have to learn to live with this. Crazy lockdowns and untenable policies will not work. Vaccinations, however, will.

  21. Ryan Guest

    My guess is if Singapore is successful with reopening this will move things along sooner. Still doesn’t excuse the crap government in Australia who waited so long to actually start vaccinating seriously(still not even 30% Fully vaccinated!). Saying there was no rush. Hello, lockdowns almost 2 years later. But oh wait there is no rush lol

  22. Ryan Guest

    Why would QF need to extend the range of the A330 to do transpacific ops when they have the 787? Use the A330 on flights to Asia to free-up the 787s for transpacific.

    Also, QF did, for a while, use the A330-200 on its LAX-AKL route, which is about 6500 miles.

    1. AT Guest

      Exactly- why fiddle with the A330 when the 787 can do the trick. Plus the 787 is more fuel efficient and can haul more cargo without compromising the range.

    2. Topher Guest

      They don't have enough 787s to operate through the network, so need to backfill with 330s. 787s, among others, will be operating DFW, LAX, LHR which were previously A380 markets.

  23. Evan Guest

    Every time an airline or government announces a plan, restriction, etc., you always pounce on it as out of touch, unrealistic, not making sense, etc.

    Frankly, your responses are getting annoying. It's easy to criticize as an individual. However, when you're an entity that has to look at this situation through the eyes of millions of citizens (i.e. government) or customers (i.e. airlines), it's not that easy to develop a solution, especially considering how fluid...

    Every time an airline or government announces a plan, restriction, etc., you always pounce on it as out of touch, unrealistic, not making sense, etc.

    Frankly, your responses are getting annoying. It's easy to criticize as an individual. However, when you're an entity that has to look at this situation through the eyes of millions of citizens (i.e. government) or customers (i.e. airlines), it's not that easy to develop a solution, especially considering how fluid the COVID situation is.

    QF may not have a perfect plan, but they have to start somewhere. They can't just whip up a plan at the last minute. Pilots probably have to be retrained since they haven't flown in a while, crews need to be re-activated, etc. That all takes time. My guess is it will change, but having a framework to restart operations is better than what the US airlines did. It's clear the US airlines had no plans for the uptick in operations and we're all paying the price this summer.

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Evan -- As I stated in my post, I recognize Qantas is in a tough position. At the same time, it's worth noting that this is (at least) the fourth restart plan, and the previous three didn't happen at all. Obviously preparations have to be made in advance, but the airline doesn't actually restart training or take planes out of storage when these announcements happens, but rather this communication is almost entirely to investors...

      @ Evan -- As I stated in my post, I recognize Qantas is in a tough position. At the same time, it's worth noting that this is (at least) the fourth restart plan, and the previous three didn't happen at all. Obviously preparations have to be made in advance, but the airline doesn't actually restart training or take planes out of storage when these announcements happens, but rather this communication is almost entirely to investors and prospective customers.

      Qantas saw an immediate surge in bookings a few months back when a plan was released that suggested travel would restart, and consumers in many ways seem to think that Qantas knows something that they don't. Is it wrong of me to point out that this likely isn't happening, to save people the effort and money of locking in a ticket, only for it to likely be canceled?

    2. Evan Guest

      It's not wrong of you to point out something may not happen, but IMO, your post indicates QF is just putting plans "out there".

      Working on the other side of this issue (as a government employee), we don't just put plans "out there" and I doubt QF is. Based on my experience, if we don't put a plan out, we're criticized for not being transparent. If we put a plan out, we're criticized for...

      It's not wrong of you to point out something may not happen, but IMO, your post indicates QF is just putting plans "out there".

      Working on the other side of this issue (as a government employee), we don't just put plans "out there" and I doubt QF is. Based on my experience, if we don't put a plan out, we're criticized for not being transparent. If we put a plan out, we're criticized for it being unrealistic, etc.

      So, IMO, QF is being transparent. I guarantee it's plan will change. If you don't think it is reasonable, fine, don't book. However, I don't think it's fair to criticize QF for telling you what their plan is. The problem is not QF telling you it's plan, the problem is people taking it as gospel and expecting no deviation from the plan.

    3. N king Guest

      I work for Qantas and I can confirm to you retraining and recertification commenced a while back in readiness. It’s not like going back to an office where you can just turn up after working from home last 18 months or so. You have highly skilled crew that need to renew licences. Of course Qantas are going to have a plan. Also as others have commented WA and Queensland are deluded in thinking they can...

      I work for Qantas and I can confirm to you retraining and recertification commenced a while back in readiness. It’s not like going back to an office where you can just turn up after working from home last 18 months or so. You have highly skilled crew that need to renew licences. Of course Qantas are going to have a plan. Also as others have commented WA and Queensland are deluded in thinking they can suppress forever and aim for covid zero. It’s all politics to derail govt plan. Also irresponsible of them there people will soon get fed up when they see all the other states moving around and opening up. Then see the riots they’ll have!!!

      Bottom line we all have to live with this covid sensibly and move on.

    4. JDee New Member

      Given that people are living almost normally in both WA & QLD at present, I don't see too many rioters in those States

    5. Topher Guest

      Ben, this plan aligns with government-announced 'triggers' to reopen, and I believe was proposed in liaison with the government. The government is throwing everything at ensuring we'll be reopened for some international travel before Christmas (and before the start of the 2022 election year).

  24. Never In Doubt Guest

    Keying *anything* to an 80% vaccination rate (particularly if that’s “fully vaccinated”) means it will never happen.

    One country (Malta, 82%) is currently above 80%. Singapore & UAE are at 76%.

    No country of significant size is above 70%.

    More fantastical planning by the ANZ folks.

    1. brianna hoffner Gold

      Exactly. ScoMo has to put out some sort of plausible-sounding "plan" every few months to try an assuage the public that there's a light at the end of the tunnel. But for those of us whose lives have been completely upended by this border policy, we've seen the goalposts moved again and again and again and we're not falling for it.

    2. TranceXplant New Member

      Precisely. Every (developed) country has been "on pace" to hit a high vaccination percentage quickly at an early point in the process. Because those who receive the jab when it's first offered, like me, are generally people who've been actively waiting for it and are thus motivated to do so. It's the last 1/3 to 1/2 of the population - as a product of misinformation, fear of the unknown, or simply apathy - that presents...

      Precisely. Every (developed) country has been "on pace" to hit a high vaccination percentage quickly at an early point in the process. Because those who receive the jab when it's first offered, like me, are generally people who've been actively waiting for it and are thus motivated to do so. It's the last 1/3 to 1/2 of the population - as a product of misinformation, fear of the unknown, or simply apathy - that presents an obstacle to reaching the desired threshold. Australia just hasn't run into that reality yet.

  25. Anthony Guest

    Ben, there has been a major shift in the Australian Federal Government's approach and reopening strategy in the last couple of weeks as it shifts from the Covid-elimination strategy to living with the virus. The PM has been very forthright in his view that the company will progressively start to reopen at 70% fully vaccinated, then with further restrictions eased once the 80% milestone is reached.

    Current indications are that nationally Australia will reach the...

    Ben, there has been a major shift in the Australian Federal Government's approach and reopening strategy in the last couple of weeks as it shifts from the Covid-elimination strategy to living with the virus. The PM has been very forthright in his view that the company will progressively start to reopen at 70% fully vaccinated, then with further restrictions eased once the 80% milestone is reached.

    Current indications are that nationally Australia will reach the 80% mark on 24 November. Present progress is approximately 300,000 daily doses, with a record 335,000 doses given today.

    Where the complication remains is that two of the major state governments - WA and QLD - still are not fully supportive of moving away from the 'living with COVID' strategy and have expressed they'll reserve the right to close borders, impose snap lockdowns and continue mandatory quarantine, even for domestic travel from other states. Part of this is politics as both premiers from these states are from the opposing party to PM Scott Morrison, so they see this as a mechanism to undermine the federal government's 2022 election prospects.

    Alan Joyce as usual is playing his own brand of politics by threatening to withdraw from the Perth to London route if the WA government does not accede to the federal government's re-opening plan. But this is only bluster: Perth-London is Qantas' most profitable route and Darwin would not be a suitable replacement for the high-yield traffic ex PER. Also worth mentioning is that Alan Joyce and Scott Morrison met on Tuesday, so one would expect they are aligned on thinking.

    Overall though, I'd say that this plan is the most convincing and realistic Qantas has so far put together.

    1. Never In Doubt Guest

      What?

      The NYT shows 25% of Australia as “fully vaccinated”, 45% with one shot.

      Does counting work differently Down Under?

    2. [email protected] Guest

      As of today, Australia is over 30% fully vaccinated. That NYT article is already outdated. Australia is currently vaccinating 1% of it population, per day. The fastest rate in the world.

    3. Chris Guest

      In Australia, we work out the % vaccinated based on the eligible population (which is everyone over 16). We're sitting around 56% partly and 33% fully jabbed.

    4. Never In Doubt Guest

      @Chris, apparently, counting DOES work differently Down Under.

      80% of the “eligible” population may be doable. Depending on how much you limit who’s eligible.

      By comparison, 52% of the total US population is “fully” vaccinated, but 61% of the “eligible” (12+) population is.

    5. Andrew Guest

      The NYT is not the go to source for Australian vaccination rates. Try the Sydney Morning Herald, which updates stats in real time. Currently, Australia is 55.2% single dose, 32.3% double vaccinated: https://www.smh.com.au
      We will only open up once we have reached 80% double-dose. We are on track to get there by December. The US is far behind Australia in that respect - their highest vaccinated state, Vermont, is only 67.5% double vaccinated.

    6. Never In Doubt Guest

      Andrew, I laugh at Australians who think it’ll be a similarly sloped straight line from 33% today to 80% in December.

      No other country did that. Dream on.

    7. Never In Doubt Guest

      Andrew, just checked the SMH, THOSE % ARE FOR AGES 16+, NOT FOR THE ENTIRE POPULATION.

      The US number for 16+ fully vaccinated is ~62% given that 12+ is 61% and 18+ is 63%.

    8. NathanJ Gold

      You’ve no doubt noticed several of these comments are from what you would call “shills” of our supposed Prime Minister Scummo’s party, the Liberal-National Coalition. The Liberals represent the rich types who value money over people and community and dressing up certain government handouts to the wealthy as totally necessary, whilst simultaneously decrying anything given to the less well-off as unnecessary socialism (gimme, gimme, gimme). The Nationals used to represent farmers, country folk and the...

      You’ve no doubt noticed several of these comments are from what you would call “shills” of our supposed Prime Minister Scummo’s party, the Liberal-National Coalition. The Liberals represent the rich types who value money over people and community and dressing up certain government handouts to the wealthy as totally necessary, whilst simultaneously decrying anything given to the less well-off as unnecessary socialism (gimme, gimme, gimme). The Nationals used to represent farmers, country folk and the outback, but are now nothing but right-wing nut jobs that deny climate change, swinging their support from farmers to fossil fuel industries.

      The “eligible population” distinction makes a big difference to the stats, and they know it.

      Gives you a clearer picture of how and why we’re currently so rooted in so many ways down under. :-)

    9. Andrew-Stuart New Member

      Anthony,
      Why would Darwin not be a suitable replacement for the current MEL-PER-LHR route? Are we talking flying distance, fuel requirements, passenger comfort etc

      Personally, despite the steamy, tropical weather, I'd prefer a brief stopover in a place like tropical Darwin ;before the long flight onto LHR overnight;...

    10. Chris Guest

      Perth is a larger and wealthier port with a far higher propensity to travel than Darwin. The PER-LHR flights were typically 50-60% Perth-originating...a stat that could in no way be replicated from Darwin (which has a population of about 130k compared to Perth's 2 million). Darwin also has the issue of cyclone season which doesn't help the reliability of year-round daily operations.

    11. Anthony Guest

      Perth is the home to the majority of Australia’s iron ore and LNG resources, so it has very substantial corporate traffic from BHP, Rio Tinto, Chevron, Woodside and INPEX and others. The majority of this traffic is high yield and Alan Joyce has said several times that the Perth-London is their most profitable route, has the highest international yield and also the highest seat factor.

      While Darwin is technically possible, it has a much...

      Perth is the home to the majority of Australia’s iron ore and LNG resources, so it has very substantial corporate traffic from BHP, Rio Tinto, Chevron, Woodside and INPEX and others. The majority of this traffic is high yield and Alan Joyce has said several times that the Perth-London is their most profitable route, has the highest international yield and also the highest seat factor.

      While Darwin is technically possible, it has a much smaller population, the main issue is that it lacks the major energy and resources corporates that are needed to profitably fill the front of the aircraft.

      If they do indeed move the sector to Darwin, one would presume it would mainly be filled by connections from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane which would be unlikely to enjoy the same yield premium as traffic between Perth and London.

    12. Mh Gold

      While your statements are technically correct, they are pre-covid.

      If WA maintains its hardline isolationist policy, while NSW progressively opens up, Qantas will logically seek business where it can and operate a tag line service via Darwin to enable that. While it would not be as profitable as before, it would be the best opportunity at that time, and also both reduce costs, and increase revenue.

      It's not a black/white scenario that they will...

      While your statements are technically correct, they are pre-covid.

      If WA maintains its hardline isolationist policy, while NSW progressively opens up, Qantas will logically seek business where it can and operate a tag line service via Darwin to enable that. While it would not be as profitable as before, it would be the best opportunity at that time, and also both reduce costs, and increase revenue.

      It's not a black/white scenario that they will only operate when they can operate exactly as profitably as before via Perth.

    13. Alan Gold

      Given the current efficacy of the vaccines they will newd booster shots even before they reach the 80% threshold. There are a nunber of promising treatments in the pipeline. Australia should just wait a bit longer. Better vaccines like Novavax are also nearing authorization. Why the rush to use a defective product?

  26. Tim Dunn Guest

    While many Australians have supported the zero covid policy so far, the increasing number and intensity of protests show that significant portions of the population not only are tired of the lockdowns but also frustrated that the ability to protest is being summarily dismissed when it has been repeatedly allowed to occur in other western countries during the pandemic. Qantas wants to project a return to normal - they have ads promising that - but...

    While many Australians have supported the zero covid policy so far, the increasing number and intensity of protests show that significant portions of the population not only are tired of the lockdowns but also frustrated that the ability to protest is being summarily dismissed when it has been repeatedly allowed to occur in other western countries during the pandemic. Qantas wants to project a return to normal - they have ads promising that - but the government is not anywhere near that point.
    Qantas desperately needs to restart its international operations but all of the reasons you listed plus the social/governmental dimensions make it unlikely they will come anywhere near their target.

    1. Scotty Guest

      Flights won’t resume from Australia. The nation of Australia is now divided and dead.

      However, flights will likely resume from newly created nations (formerly states) such as New South Wales. No chance of Queensland and Western Australia opening up this decade.

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Ben Schlappig OMAAT

@ Evan -- As I stated in my post, I recognize Qantas is in a tough position. At the same time, it's worth noting that this is (at least) the fourth restart plan, and the previous three didn't happen at all. Obviously preparations have to be made in advance, but the airline doesn't actually restart training or take planes out of storage when these announcements happens, but rather this communication is almost entirely to investors and prospective customers. Qantas saw an immediate surge in bookings a few months back when a plan was released that suggested travel would restart, and consumers in many ways seem to think that Qantas knows something that they don't. Is it wrong of me to point out that this likely isn't happening, to save people the effort and money of locking in a ticket, only for it to likely be canceled?

4
AA56 Guest

WA's conservative border policies. Who made you judge of what we do in WA? We have a totally COVID free lifestyle due to those policies. You over 650,000 dead from your liberal policies.

3
Steve Gold

Im not sure how Qantas is able to survive. Australia has the most unrealistic covid policies on earth. If lockdowns worked why do they keep having them? Zero-covid is a pipe dream its something we have to learn to live with. Vaccines prevent deaths but they dont stop cases there is too much evidence from countries with 80%+ vaccine rates that show cases can not be stopped by either mask or vaccine. I hope australia realizes this before they destory their economy with further lockdowns. The sooner the world realizes this isnt going away the sooner we can deal with reality, take the shot so you wont die but we will never stop cases from occuring we need to stop focusing on cases as a whole.

3
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