Today is quite a big day for our national carrier, the airline has announced their full year financial report and as well as that quite an interesting announcement was made in regards to some flights that are going to be operated. Qantas have a project called ‘Project Sunrise’ which is basically testing for their future planned services to New York as well as London, these flights will be apart of that.
The airline has announced that they will be operating 3 flights over the next 3 months non stop from New York and London to Australia to carry out testing.
The flights will of course utilise their 787-9 aircraft but unfortunately will not be available for booking as these flights will consist of staff and will be extremely weight restricted, down to just 40 passengers. The flights will start in October and end in December.
The whole purpose of these trips of to test the ways to greater improve the onboard experience that passengers will and already do on ultra long-haul flights. Qantas have been very vocal about their plans to launch direct services from Australia to both New York and London which are massive markets for the airline.
By operating these services Qantas will officially become the first airline to operate direct service from New York to Sydney, it will also be the second to have operated a London to Sydney flight.
“Flying non-stop from the East Coast of Australia to London and New York is truly the final frontier in aviation, so we’re determined to do all the groundwork to get this right.
“No airline has done this kind of dedicated research before and we’ll be using the results to help shape the cabin design, inflight service and crew roster patterns for Project Sunrise. We’ll also be looking at how we can use it to improve our existing long-haul flights,”
The airline is also still deciding which aircraft would be best suited for them on the route as the current fleet just don’t have the range at full capacity.
The choice is either the 777-8 or A350-1000ULR and the airline stated that the final decision will be made once all approved in December of this year.
Instead of the airline taking the Dreamliners out of service, they’ve planned these flights to match the deliveries of new aircraft. They will fly the 787-9 to New York twice and once to London.
This is fantastic to see and quite exciting if you’re hoping to soon fly directly to New York and London. Project Sunrise has been running for some time so it’s obvious Qantas are extremely excited about these future routes.
What aircraft do you think Qantas will use for these ultra long flights and would you fly on these 19 hour services once introduced?