LATAM locks in Melbourne to Santiago return from September

The direct connection is set to be a significant time saver, shaving three hours off current travel times.

By Chris Ashton, April 3 2023
LATAM locks in Melbourne to Santiago return from September

LATAM Airlines is doubling down on Australian shores from September 1 as non-stop flights between Melbourne and its Santiago de Chile hub make a triumphant return to the skies following more than three years hiatus.

Taking wing thrice-weekly on the Boeing 787, the rebounded connection is sure to be a big hit with both Victorians and South Americans, unlocking more than 140 destinations including Buenos Aires, Lima and Rio De Janeiro.

It’s also set to be a significant time saver, with the 13-hour trans-Pacific hop shaving three hours travel time off the airline’s existing daily Sydney to Santiago via Auckland service.

From September 1, the Melbourne-Santiago schedule is as follows:

  • LA804 will jet off from Melbourne at 12:25pm every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, arriving into Santiago at 11:20am the same day
  • LA805 leaves Santiago at 12:55am on Monday, Wednesday and Friday before descending into Melbourne at 5:30am a day later

Those perched at the pointy end of LATAM’s Dreamliner will enjoy a comfortable lie-flat business class, though it’s worth noting it will be the older-style seat in a less-than-ideal 2-2-2 layout. That means no direct aisle access for every passenger.

The airline's previous-gen 787 business class will be making an appearance on the route.
The airline's previous-gen 787 business class will be making an appearance on the route.

Chris Ellis, LATAM’s Oceania Country Manager, says there’s been huge demand for travel to Australia since the return of its Sydney-Santiago connection from March 2022.

“LATAM has the largest network in Latin America with connections to 144 destinations, including some of the greatest bucket list destinations in the world.”

LATAM's new-look Santiago lounge is almost double the size of its predecessor.
LATAM's new-look Santiago lounge is almost double the size of its predecessor.

Those still looking to jet off from Sydney will use the following schedule:

  • LA800 sees wheels up at 11:35am each day, stopping in Auckland at 4:40pm before continuing across the Pacific and arriving into the Chilean capital at 1:40pm
  • LA801 takes off at 12:40am, briefly touching down in the City of Sails at 5:15am, and then landing in Sydney just in time for a late breakfast at 9:35am

Of course, LATAM isn’t alone on the Sydney to Santiago route, with Qantas resuming non-stop flights on its own Boeing 787 Dreamliner in October last year. 

In Santiago, travellers will find a city brimming with artistic and cultural delights, from the historic Plaza de Armas main square – home to impressive monuments such as the Metropolitan Cathedral – to the bohemian Bellavista neighbourhood.

Last year, LATAM opened the largest airport lounge in South America, with the 4,000sqm space – which is actually three lounges in one – almost doubling the size of its VIP sanctuary.

Flew SYD-AKL in July this year in J, never again. Shortly after a delayed takeoff, I asked for a sparkling water and was told to wait for meal service. 1.5 hours after take-off I finally got the sparkling water that I asked for. The meal was mediocre at best, with no drinks replenishment. Crew disappeared into the gally after meal service and was not seen again until minutes prior to landing. 

No thank you! I’d rather fly via US or the Middle East to get to South America than flying this mob. 


10 Jul 2019

Total posts 17

Flew AKL - SCL a couple of weeks ago in J with LATAM having connected from QF in J (A330) from SYD, no problems with LATAM, did what they said on the tin. Timely and efficient service. No real complaints. Got us to SCL well fed and rested. 

30 Jan 2015

Total posts 25

Have they committed to deploying 787s with the updated 1-2-1 business cabins by a certain date? Last I heard they were still using the old ones, and the seat map on their page for a speculative booking is showing 2-2-2.

24 Mar 2015

Total posts 19

My best ever vegan breakfast onboard a flight was served on LATAM AKL - SYD in business class, service was great, would do it all again in a heartbeat.

09 Nov 2018

Total posts 7

Flew LATAM economy to Santiago in November. The staff were friendly, but the food was subpar in terms of quality and size. Entertainment options were distinctly average as well.

Came back on the Qantas direct service which had much better catering and entertainment. Would use Qantas where possible in the future.

Be careful when flying LATAM on a Qantas ticket. On the return flight we couldn't check in online for the domestic LATAM flight to Santiago connecting to the international flight because the booking reference is not the same as the Qantas one. On airport check-in two hours before the flight we were put on standby because the flight was full and LATAM said we hadn't checked in online. 

Too late for you now obviously, but for future reference you can call up and get the other PNR - the QF PNR is the Amadeus booking reference and the LA one would be the SABRE booking reference.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

12 May 2022

Total posts 12

Oh, this is concerning to me as I am flying to Brasil via Santiago with LATAM and only booked via the Qantas site as LATAM (AU) only book in US dollars, which I didn't want to do.  So to clarify, can I check on the Qantas app departing Brasil or do I need the LATAM app and to get the correct PNR? Thanks :)

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

11 Mar 2015

Total posts 193

I will do this flight in Feb next year but the price was too much for a buiness class ticket from Sydney one way- so used the QF FF points to fly ADL-SYD_AKL-legs domestic business for 45K and paid for the AKL-SCQ-still over 5K but 2 K lower than the SYD-SCQ- --still got the old version as far as seating goes -2-2-2 wonder if LATAM changed the seat configuration for all flights on this route-anyone knows?

19 Sep 2017

Total posts 10

Wish LATAM will use its only two refitted JCLS Dreamliners on AU routes. Otherwise, it’s the most misleading product description.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Jul 2014

Total posts 4

I just got back from return flights Auckland to Santiargo business class (1/3rd cheaper then flying via Sydney) & the service was fantastic, couldn't fault it.  Seat/meals/wines/customer service better then SIA business class.  I will def fly them again on next trip to South America

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