Qantas delays restart of San Francisco flights until October

The airline has once again hit the pause button on its planned return of direct flights from Sydney.

By David Flynn, May 17 2022
Qantas delays restart of San Francisco flights until October

Qantas travellers hoping to jet direct from Sydney to the ‘Fog City’ of San Francisco will need to wait a little longer, with the airline delaying the route's scheduled return by an additional three months.

Flights to the Californian tourism magnet were originally slated to resume back in February, before being pushed to the end of July. The six times weekly service will now take off from October 30.

In the meantime, the Red Roo’s most rusted-on flyers will need to travel to Los Angeles  and then connect to partner American Airlines for the final 90-minute hop.

Brisbane and Melbourne to San Francisco, both popular routes in pre-pandemic times, remain missing in action from schedules at present, with no dates currently pencilled for their return.

Considering the hassle involved in transiting at LAX – a process which would take at least twice as long as the flight to San Fran itself – the direct Sydney-San Francisco service of United Airlines will no doubt prove the smarter choice.

United, which officially takes off as Virgin Australia’s new partner for US flights from May 24, will also resume its three times weekly Melbourne-San Francisco service on June 5.

Qantas is gradually rebuilding and expanding its international network, unveiling a host of new routes including Sydney-Seoul and Sydney-Bengaluru, in addition to the official return of Project Sunrise, seeing direct flights to London and New York from 2025.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

28 Jun 2019

Total posts 84

Understandable when half of the potential market for the flights remains indefinitely locked out of Oz with no actual plan in sight. Pity.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1437

Flying wrong way round the US has put Australia on the do not travel list.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

27 Feb 2015

Total posts 10

Fingers crossed for a resumption by September - I have a redemption booking for mid month SFO SYD in J.

24 Jun 2020

Total posts 31

They just cancelled the SYD/SFO flights - they now are on the A380 to LAX....

fiji air seems to be the major beneficiary of lack of Qantas nonstop flights to USA. Reports of flights from Sydney to Fiji being over 90% full & to USA from Fiji being over 80% full for month of January.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

01 Mar 2012

Total posts 178

I am currently in SFO and while the economy section of the Fiji Airways flight appeared empty the business class cabin was full. We took them ex Brisbane as it appeared the easiest and was the most cost effective 

24 Jun 2020

Total posts 31

It appears that overnight Qantas has scrapped the SYD/SFO direct flights on the 787 and my flight for September was pushed into a SYD/LAX flight but with no connecting flight onto SFO.

WTF???

I hate Qantas!!!

I'm fly Fiji air in future. Better and safer airline than qantas*. Fiji air seems to fly to SFO 4 times a week.

A350 SYD/NAN, then A332 or A333 NAN/SFO. The premier lounge in Fiji is one of the best around.

(*Think it was Sept 1999 that Qantas wrote off their B744 at Bangkok. The jole going around at the time, was that the pilot was in a hurry to get to the red light district)

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 254

QF once again leaving it until the last possible moment to cancel flights. And then will take customers three months to get a refund or accept an option they didn’t want. Pathetic.

26 May 2011

Total posts 20

Restate number 4 now.....meanwhile United and the likes of FJ get the market handed to them. Travelling via LAX isn't a suitable alternative - I also don't have any connecting flight LAXSFO booked. What a poor way to treat that route. 

24 Jun 2020

Total posts 31

I agree, flying through LAX is a waste of time and Qantas just bumps us onto that flight without a concern about how we get to SFO. Poor form indeed. United direct here I come.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1437

I think this is due to delays in the delivery of the final three 787s due to Boeing incompetence or intransigence. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 470

I believe those three B787s are ready for delivery to Qantas, but Qantas has pushed delivery back (probably for financial reasons).

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1437

John, it all comes down to if the aircraft have been delivered: according to the press ‘Boeing has submitted insufficient documentation to the US aviation regulators to resume 787 Dreamliner deliveries, authorities say’. If that is the case then the delay may be longer due to the ongoing argie bargie with the FAA.

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 1036

Qantas deferred delivery on all outstanding aircraft orders, including the 3 787-9s, in May 2020 due to the impacts of the pandemic. The 787s were completed shortly thereafter and Boeing sent them to Victorville for storage during October and November 2020.

During late 2020, Boeing shutdown the Seattle 787 line and moved all 787 production to North Charleston. Prior to the changes, Seattle had been building half of the -8s and -9s, while North Charleston did the other half and all the -10s.

In early 2021, an increasing number of issues were found in new 787s. Some aircraft have had defective parts, others have had excessive gaps between fuselage panels. The majority of these issues relate to work done at North Charleston, and as a result, the FAA ordered a delivery halt to all 787s until the issues are sorted out. No 787 has been delivered since May 2021 due to the FAA halt.

While the QF 787s were built in late 2019/early 2020 in Seattle, as they are still owned by Boeing, they are impacted by delivery halt.

Qantas wants those 3 aircraft and had scheduled them for service from June. That schedule now has to change because the aircraft are still sitting in Victorville and the FAA will not allow Boeing to deliver them.

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 1036

How much of this delay is due to the FAA continuing ban on new 787 deliveries?

Qantas has 3 787s sitting in CA that are yet to be delivered, which can't be delivered due to quality control issues relating to the North Charleston plant and the FAA banning deliveries while the issues are worked out.

With Qantas starting new routes before resuming suspended routes and some 787s operating routes instead of yet to return A380s, it would seem that Qantas doesn't have enough aircraft to reopen routes as planned until they get those 3 787s delivered and/or get more A380s back in service.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

05 Oct 2016

Total posts 70

Great, just Great... That will make it even harder to get flights out of LAX that I was trying to change to in September.... They need some more competition on the au to us routes...

23 Oct 2014

Total posts 225

Seems like a common thread - publish vast routes in the international markets  - bookings are taken then route launches are constantly delayed. Repeat.  Customers left to deal with 7hr delays on the customer care number. Not ideal. 

24 Jun 2020

Total posts 31

Got a million plus points/miles and nowhere to go because Qantas keep changing their scheduling and there are never seats available in the class I want. Even economy seats these days are hard to come by with points to burn.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

27 Feb 2015

Total posts 10

Gee Qantas are a trick aren’t they. Booked 2 redemptions from SFO SYD for mid October because LAX SYD was unavailable. Been moved to QF12, no discussion of how to get from San Fran to Los Angeles, but as it suits me better might be cheeky to ask for compensation…..


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