Qantas begins auctions of Boeing 747 memorabilia

Fancy a Boeing 747 business class drinks cart as your own personal bar?

By David Flynn , September 21 2020
Qantas begins auctions of Boeing 747 memorabilia

Qantas will hold the first auction of Boeing 747 memorabilia on Saturday October 10, prior to the departure of the ‘Great Southern Land’ Boeing 787 sightseeing flight.

The live auction will take place in the Qantas Business lounge at Sydney Airport Terminal 3, where passengers on the flight will gather for breakfast from 8am.

Some of the items going on the block will include emergency exit signs, phone handsets used by the crew and a galley control unit, with all money raised being donated to the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children.

However, this won't be your only chance to snap up some souvenirs of the beloved jumbo jet for work, home, garage or den: a Qantas spokesperson assured Executive Traveller that other events and opportunities will follow, with an online auction also under consideration.

Update: From Thursday morning, October 24, Qantas will also put on sale one thousand Boeing 747 bar carts fully loaded with wine, Champagne, snacks and even business class PJs – see our storyhere  for the details.

As previously reported, Qantas is also mapping out more Boeing 787 scenic flights which begin and end at the same airport, following the sell-out success of the initial Great Southern Land tour.

All 149 seats, priced from $3,787 in business class to $787 in economy, were snapped up in ten minutes: a rate of one seat every four seconds, making this what the spokesperson described as "probably the fastest selling flight in Qantas' history."

Read more: Qantas considers more Boeing 787 sightseeing 'flights to nowhere'

PREVIOUS [August 28, 2020] | Qantas will auction off a selection of Boeing 747 memorabilia, giving fans of the iconic jumbo jet the chance to bring a little of the Queen of the Skies back into their home.

The crippling impact of the coronavirus saw Qantas dispatch its remaining Boeing 747s to the infamous boneyard of California's Mojave Desert – but not before removing a goodly number of items which are now bound to become highly sought after among high flyers.

Before each Boeing 747 made its last flight, Qantas engineers rescued a selection of keepsakes.
Before each Boeing 747 made its last flight, Qantas engineers rescued a selection of keepsakes.

"The absolute outpouring for the 747, the queen of the skies has been terrific," reflects Stephanie Tully, the airline's Group Chief Customer Officer.

"We did do some behind the scenes work with our engineering teams to take some of the aircraft pieces aside," Tully tells Executive Traveller, "and in the future weeks and months, we will be looking to sell some special memorabilia from those aircraft."

Bar carts from the galley are expected to be on the list and in solid demand, gaining a second life as unique drinks cabinets in the office, dining room or den – think of them as conversation-starters with their own story to tell.

This could be the start of creating your own Captain Cook lounge...
This could be the start of creating your own Captain Cook lounge...

The rest of the roster is likely to be a mixed all-sorts of whatever the Qantas engineers could remove before the 747s flew away – so we're not even ruling out the odd business class seat. Previous similar exercises by Qantas have included the handsets from crew phones and tray tables from first class cabin.

Qantas isn't revealing exactly what pieces of Boeing 747 tchotchke are up its sleeve – or should that be, in the Flying Kangaroo's pouch – but more details, including how they can make their way from the Qantas hangar to your home, will be revealed as each event draws near.

Tully says that this will be anything but a revenue-generating exercise, and is "more about connecting with our people and our customers."

Also read: The Qantas Boeing 747 – looking back on a half-century of flying

Power up your Qantas Frequent Flyer points balance with our selection of Australia's best Qantas credit cards and pocket a hefty 150,000 points as a sign-up bonus.

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

13 May 2015

Total posts 21

Credit card and points balance may both be in for a beating!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1227

Tchotchke. A word so rarely used in a sentence.

20 Oct 2015

Total posts 69

Come for the articles, stay to learn a new word and expand your vocabulary.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 328

Ah-hum!  Google says it means "a pretty girl or woman".   Has Qantas found a new way to soften the blow for 'qualifying' staff being laid-off (i.e. retrenched)?

OMG, look at the time, beer o'clock.

20 Oct 2015

Total posts 69

You're looking at the wrong definition, it's actually a Yiddish word (!) which means decorative little trinkets, souvenirs, knick-knacks etc.  As a person of European Jewish descent I'm impressed to see it used here!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Sep 2020

Total posts 1

It's actually misused in the sentence in the article, IMHO. Tchotchke is singular - so a business class trolley would be a Qantas Tchotchke. (referring to a woman as a tchotcke is mysoginistic in current vernacular like she's a trinket on the arm of some ageing dude!) The plural would apply here when referring to Qantas merch' up for auction: Tchotchkes. There is also the more playful "tchotchkela" E.G. From the New York Mag 1992 review of Zabar: "When Sam Cohen, 40 years a fish cutter, says to a pretty young customer, "Come , let me help you, mein tchotchkela," you know this store's roots go deep."

05 Mar 2015

Total posts 108

Oh, I am definitely keen on a drinks cart, it would be an amazing project to clean up and customise to make an eye-catching drinks cabinet! Not sure who would want a handset from the 747's intercom system but I suppose it takes all types!

08 Feb 2018

Total posts 94

aren't they actually cheap flimsy foldaway things that they just put a nice towel on and top it full of booze so no one notices the trolley?

iM
iM

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

27 Jul 2016

Total posts 57

No, they're absolutely solid and hugely over-engineered (beautiful old-school Boeing!). We have two as tool boxes in the garage and they will outlast us!

23 Jul 2017

Total posts 62

I was offered an intercom phone off VH-OJT on her last flight from Brisbane. Someone piped up, "you can't have it yet. We're going on to New York and still need it". Oh blow. 😔 They told me I could keep my serviette, pillow and blanket from seat 8B. I'm not sure of what use the phone would have been, but what I got I can use, carefully. ☺️

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 77

Tully says that this will be anything but a revenue-generating exercise, and is "more about connecting with our people and customers."

Hopefully this is true, and the money can go to charity or even to some of the thousands of employees that are being let go. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 May 2020

Total posts 9

My mate who works for QF got one of the 747 bar carts... all proceeds went to HARS museum.

23 Jul 2017

Total posts 62

If some proceeds of the sell-off go to HARS, I hope some will go to the Qantas Founders' Outback Museum in Longreach, as well. There aren't too many vistors at the moment as Queensland is cut off from its neighbours.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Jul 2018

Total posts 10

Visited the Longreach Qantas museum in early September and “Wing Walk” experience was booked out two months in advance.   Accommodation is a premium out there ATM with Queenslanders flocking to enjoy their best place in the world without being jostled by the usual hordes of Southern rubberneckers.    BTW ... Qantas provides NO financial input into this iconic destination.

12 Feb 2014

Total posts 230

Driving along General Holmes Drive the other day I saw one in the rear seat of a Mercedes convertible. Maybe staff are getting first dibs. 

iM
iM

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

27 Jul 2016

Total posts 57

I hope so. There aren't many other advantages to being QF staff these days...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Jul 2017

Total posts 24

Better perks than most passengers for years .... 

iM
iM

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

27 Jul 2016

Total posts 57

We have a pair of Qantas B767 bar carts from when they sold them to crew (my wife flew) and nobody seemed to want them. I think we paid about $100 for the pair and they now serve as toolboxes in the garage. Perhaps now is the time to clean one up and bring it inside as a bar cart again? It's about as close to an airliner as we'll get for some time...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer - Chairmans Lounge

01 Sep 2011

Total posts 387

Any indication when, how and where? 

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2405

Hi Crosscourt - no indication of when, how and where as yet – if Qantas had shared those details they'd definitely have been included in the article.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 328

Hmmm, perhaps David was strategizing to get one for himself first (unless it was he who Fonga saw the other day !!).

16 Dec 2016

Total posts 41

KW72 when they are losing tens of millions a week just keeping the aircraft serviceable do you think selling some bar carts is going to make a difference to their bottom line??? It is up to all of us to support Qantas (and subsequently their staff) in any way we can - most importantly by buying tickets and flying with them as much as we can as soon as we can.  

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

13 Sep 2015

Total posts 4

Yeah, just like Alan Joyce supported the travelling public when he grounded the entire fleet leaving people stranded all over the world. People who were booked on flights to say a final goodbye to loved ones in their last moments, attend funerals or weddings, families who have saved for years for an overseas trip; all in an attempt to circumvent the fair work act and the bargaining rights of Australian workers.

Not to mention the hundreds and hundreds of "redundancies" for positions that actually weren't redundant, but instead were shopped out to the Philippines, South Africa and New Zealand.

Time for us to support the airline that has a minimum 2 hour phone wait time when calling their South African based call center.

Qantas is no longer an Australian Airline Markspak, it simply operates with a Kangaroo on the tail and markets itself as our national carrier. Virgin is more loyal to this country than Qantas has been under Joyce. 

Thanks but i'll be supporting Virgin. 

iM
iM

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

27 Jul 2016

Total posts 57

This (https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/BN/2011-2012/ChronQantas) makes interesting reading. As in life there are always two sides (at least) to every situation. Given Qantas has always employed many more people than Virgin due to its size; that Virgin is basically a foreign-owned company operating in Australia and will continue to be so after Bain Capital's buyout, and that any profits it makes in future will go to the US (rather than being like Qantas which is a min 51% Australian owned), you are basically swearing allegiance to a foreign company while decrying Qantas for being one (which is patently isn't). Food for thought, perhaps...

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

13 Sep 2015

Total posts 4

Hi iM,

You've actually kind of made my point for me. 
Virgin Airlines (Virgin Holdings), which was formally owned by (Virgin Group) ended up with a majority ownership by foreign investors including foreign airlines, which is currently the status quo, albeit different owners.  

Since starting up in Australia, they have bought lower airfares which forced Qantas to actually be a competitive company, they have employed tens of thousands of Australians and have kept pretty much everything in the country other than a percentage of dividends. 

They have a unionised workforce just like Qantas, however unlike Qantas they have bargained in good faith as required to do under the Fair Work Act.
At no point have I've never ever spent 2 hours on hold waiting to talk to a Virgin rep, not even close. 

Additionally, and I didn't raise this in my former post, Qantas (under Joyce) were found guilty and substantially fined for trying to create a cartel and fix freight costs which was a deliberate breach of anti competition laws. Virgin were not.

Qantas only exist because over the decades they were supported by Australians and the Australian government, yet at every turn, Alan Joyce seeks to outsource all that they can to circumvent labour laws at the expense of his employees and the travelling public. 

I can't argue with anything you've written because you've simply stated facts, however when you look at who has looked after Australia the most, I'd have to say that Virgin has done far more for Australia than Qantas has under Joyce.

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

19 Jan 2018

Total posts 18

Instead of a man cave, maybe I can have a crack at creating my own Captain Cook Lounge in the back yard? That pic above looks very 70's though and obviously all of those uber-cool lounge items are long gone. Shame really as I first flew on a QF 747 in 1972 when I was kid and I still remember marveling at how big and amazing that "jumbo jet" was. Having my own 70's Captain Cook lounge might make me feel young again? Or very old!  :) 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Mar 2015

Total posts 154

If the TWU could have it's way the first thing Qantas should Auction off is Alan J !!!

Not sure if anyone would want to buy him though!

He's not terribly popular with his staff so maybe they would buy him to make sure he's gone.

20 Oct 2015

Total posts 69

That'd be the same TWU whose baggage handler members enjoyed a very cushy workplace and conditions, overstaffed and underworked like the worst of the 1980s?

Perhaps the proceeds may be used to hasten the flight cancellation refunds which Qantas are dragging their heels on. 8-(

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Jan 2017

Total posts 5

"tchotchke."  So how exactly do you pronounce that??   Sort of like "Trotsky?"

20 Oct 2015

Total posts 69

"Tchoch-ka" with very little much stress on the 'T', more of a hard "ch" sound, and not a hard "a" in the "ka", more of just the "k as in key" sound.

18 Sep 2015

Total posts 7

Hello David,

Thanks for the alert, and I hope you can publish more details, from a Miami based airline geek and veteran.I look forward to be able to bid on some mementos.

Cordially,

Ray

7 four 7 your comments are so true well done i agree with you!

19 Aug 2018

Total posts 1

Hi David,
Thanks for the update. I would certainly be interested in some memorabilia - always liked the Qantas 747 Jumbo. Look forward to receiving updates for the events as mentioned and how to participate.
All the best, cheers Kim. 

I'd rather see the Queen flies, instead of being dismantled and sold piece-by-piece.

AT
AT

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Sep 2012

Total posts 310

Why don’t they list all the items online and have a eBay style auction over a few days so everyone can join in?


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