Qantas brings the A380 and first class to Sydney-Jo’burg

It’s the first time the red-tailed superjumbo will fly to South Africa.

By David Flynn, September 4 2023
Qantas brings the A380 and first class to Sydney-Jo’burg

Qantas is upgrading its Sydney-Johannesburg route to an Airbus A380 from July 2024, although the flights will no longer run on a daily basis.

July 8 will see the non-stop trek move from a Boeing 787 to the double-decker superjumbo, with a resultant uplift in capacity from tip to tail – including the A380’s business class and premium economy cabins.

First class will also be available on the Sydney-Jo’burg flights, giving high flyers the opportunity to make this 14-hour trek in the greater comfort of the superjumbo’s ‘open’ suites.

And there appears to be good early availability of first class seats to book with Qantas Points at low Classic Flight Reward rates (142,300 points) on both the Sydney-Johannesburg QF63 and Johannesburg-Sydney QF64 flights.

(Also, keep your eyes peeled for business class Classic Flight Rewards at 94,900 points each way.)

However, as of July 8 the Sydney-Jo’burg service will drop to between four and six times per week, depending on the time of year and demand. 

The move will free up the Qantas Boeing 787s to appear on more US-bound routes:

  • Sydney-Auckland-New York will move to a daily service, up from the current four flights per week, from August 2024
  • Sydney-Los Angeles flights will increase from eight to nine per week from July 2024, with a mix of Boeing 787s and Airbus A380s

Qantas also says Melbourne-Los Angeles will see “more A380 flights on the route from July 2024”, while Sydney-Bali will be upgraded from a domestic Boeing 737 to a far superior twin-aisle Airbus A330 on a daily basis from October 2023.

Qantas and Jetstar combined now stand at around 80% of their pre-Covid international capacity levels; this is on track to reach 100% by March 2024, and surpass that milestone in July 2024.

“Hundreds of thousands of extra seats on our network is great news for our customers planning their next overseas trip,” says Qantas International CEO Cam Wallace.

“We know our customers are looking for great value and this additional capacity will put more downward pressure on fares.”

Driving the push will be the return of the final two A380s, with the ten-strong superjumbo fleet upgraded with new business class and premium economy seats.

09 Nov 2018

Total posts 8

Does capacity refer to number of seats, planes or routes? Losing the 747's and some A380's over COVID and replacing them with 787's feels like they might be down in seat capacity in the longer term....

07 May 2019

Total posts 11

Still no current or future 7 day a week A380 flights from MEL! This is appalling Qantas. The demand for MEL-LAX flights is huge. All A380 flights out of SYD shows how centric this airline is!

13 Nov 2018

Total posts 2

Absolutely agree more D747.    Capacity still constrained MEL-LAX putting aside the mish mash of a schedule, making it effectively impossible to catch a (non redeye) connection some days out of LAX.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

26 Nov 2012

Total posts 118

And the prices 🤯 

I’m flying ANA J via Tokyo for 1/3 the price (plus a little inconvenience). I’d much prefer a direct flight, but alas…

Jetstar Airways - Qantas Frequent Flyer

24 Aug 2018

Total posts 104

David, I flew to Johberg more than 8 years ago on a B 747 out of Sydney and flew directly over my home town Melbourne on the way there. Clearly that was a stupid service and simply generated some unwelcome revenue for Qantas. Why is it that SA is so poorly serviced? With Cape Town the ultimate tourist destination, why does Qantas persist in flying to Johannesberg?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 May 2013

Total posts 136

QF is well known to pick routes that would fill their premium cabin. Hence, they pick financial hubs, corporate cities more than tourist meccas. (Bali is an exception). 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

05 Oct 2016

Total posts 91

Can't understand what's up with their current A380s. I realize there are perhaps up to 3 getting upgraded currently, and one at least that's floating around not yet upgraded. But as far as i can see there are only ever about 2-4 active. What are the others doing?? Seems like there are often up to 4 not doing anything.... (Overnight from AU I'm referring to).

08 Feb 2018

Total posts 149

Remind me why they scrapped 2 of them A380’s again? 

03 May 2021

Total posts 43

Any attempt by Qantas to rest star Perth-Johannesburg flights too? After they threw a tantrum cause Perth airport doesn’t let them do whatever they want.

03 May 2021

Total posts 43

Any comment on whether they will resume per-jnb after last year throwing a tantrum cause they weren’t allowed to whatever they wanted.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

23 Aug 2014

Total posts 139

Will there be a dedicated F cabin or will it be a J service mainly populated by CL P1 and P?

01 Apr 2014

Total posts 115

A380 has been updated in the timetables, but tried booking a F ticket just now and not showing availability as B787 still showing in the booking engine. Assume that will be updated in the coming days, but it was my understanding that F cabin will be available for sale.  

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

14 Jan 2014

Total posts 340

Interesting.. will be nice to have First Class out of JHB.. now start thinking about Cape Town Qantas!!! 

01 Apr 2014

Total posts 115

JNB schedules have now been updated, but no surprises that no Classic Rewards seats are showing. Appears to be A380 only for all of July / early Aug, with just a few random days with no flights at all. No B787 on any days from what I saw.

05 Jan 2018

Total posts 59

LOADS of F classic rewards availability on the A380. Not a single in J or Y though. Strange. 

05 Jan 2018

Total posts 59

...AND just like that, F classic-reward availability in Jul, Aug '24 is now Zero. I was seeing in excess of 6+ seats available just last week.

Whats gives??

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