Jetstar Australia eyes more non-stop flights to China

By Chris Chamberlin, August 4 2016
Jetstar Australia eyes more non-stop flights to China

Jetstar intends to open up new direct routes between Australia and China as Qantas' low-cost arm expands its international network.

But rather than the mega-hubs of Shanghai and Beijing, Jetstar Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka reveals that the airline is circling “major regional cities in China”.

Speaking to Australian Business Traveller at the CAPA Australia Pacific Summit 2016, Hrdlicka sees China as an “opportunity of some magnitude”, and that “it wouldn’t be wrong to say we’re working on those opportunities.”

Jetstar's push follows the launch of flights between Queensland’s Gold Coast and Wuhan in September 2015 and comes as a raft of Chinese airlines forge direct paths to China's 'secondary cities'.

Read: Flying to secondary Chinese cities: your options explained

Virgin Australia has also revealed plans to fly to Beijing and Hong Kong next year as part of its new alliance with HNA Aviation Group.

Jetstar's international Boeing 787 fleet offers 21 business class seats in a 2-3-2 layout…

… but as Hrdlicka rightly highlights, “it’s not a fully-flat bed: it’s more like flying business class domestically (with Qantas) than it is flying business class internationally” – but at a cost that can be lower than flying premium economy with full-service airlines.

AusBT review: Jetstar Boeing 787 business class

Hrdlicka added that Jetstar doesn’t directly market itself to corporate travellers, instead having more appeal with start-ups, SMEs and of course, leisure travellers seeking value but also comfort in business class.

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Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller, and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins not just with a single step, but also a strong latte, a theatre ticket, and later in the day, a good gin and tonic.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Aug 2014

Total posts 513

Hopefully their parent airline also does this after the new birds arrive.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

That's a really interesting point and something I was wondering about too.

Qantas have said they might keep the 747s flying for longer on their established routes before replacing them with 787s (or maybe 777-8x/9x or A350s) and use early 787s on new 'long and thin' routes such as Perth to Europe or Sydney to Chicago. I would categorise those as Australia to 'High worth markets'.

Jetstar appears to be used on routes mainly to Asia (should we say, developing markets?) and targeted at the leisure market.
However, if Jetstar had strong demand from Sydney/Melbourne to inland Chinese cities I wouldn't be surprised if Qantas started to fly those routes as well.
After all, Jetstar used to be the only choice for Sydney to Gold Coast before Qantas started to fly that route again (amoung others) so there is precedence for this. 

30 Jul 2015

Total posts 123

I think qantas will convert their remaining A380 orders to the A350

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

I think you're right.
Or more A320s for Jetstar if they decide to go with the 777.

I would be surprised if they go for the balance of their A380s, even if they're re-engined. 

03 Aug 2015

Total posts 59

I think we can expect Wuhan-Sydney soon but beyond that i don't see how Jetstar can do much more with there 787 fleet - unless Bali Flights are moved over to the A321 which i doubt we will see

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

Yeh, they'll need some more birds - which could happen!

03 Aug 2015

Total posts 59

Yeah. Depending on how many 787-9's mainline need, some options might be convered to Jetstar 787-8's in the future? 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

Possibly. And what makes that more interesting is mainline 787s will be -9s but Jetstar favours -8s and it looks like Boeing won't be making -8s for much longer.

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 1000

"it looks like Boeing won't be making -8s for much longer."

Where do you get that idea from?

There are about 120 -8s left on the confirmed order book. It doesn't mean that they'll stop making -8s when those are delivered. They'll just make more -9s and -10s until another -8 order comes in.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

Can't remember where I read it but it said they aren't receiving any new orders for -8s, just -9s and -10s so -8 which is a trend accross the industry to favour larger planes.

The article went on to say that production of -8s will probably come to an end when those -8s on order are completed.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

Jetstar has stopped flying twice a week between Gold Coast and Wuhan, correct?


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