Qantas boosts Melbourne-Tasmania flights, but there's a catch...

By David Flynn, October 29 2012

Qantas is ramping up flights between Melbourne and Tasmania from this week, with more services to Hobart and Launceston plus an upgrade of the aircraft used for Melbourne-Devonport.

Business travellers between Melbourne and Hobart will see a boost to three services per day, up from the previous double daily roster.

But they'll need to look out for changes in some flight times and flight numbers, along with a downgrade for the morning Hobart-Melbourne and evening Melbourne-Hobart runs.

Those flights shift from the big, quiet and comfy Boeing 737-800 jet with business class, to a smaller noisier Q400 turboprop full of economy seats.

This switcheroo is certain to catch some business travellers out – so here's what you need to know when it comes to booking your Melbourne-Hobart flights with Qantas (there's no change to  Jetstar flights across the Bass Strait).

Melbourne-Hobart

  • QF1011 now departs 7am instead of 8.45am, and runs on a Boeing 737-800
  • a new mid-afternoon QF1015 service leaves Melbourne at 2.55pm, also on a Boeing 737-800
  • the former 7pm QF1013 service edges forward to 6.10pm, becomes QF2155 and is downgraded from a Boeing 737 to a Q400.

Hobart-Melbourne

  • the 6.35am QF1010 service becomes QF2148 and also gets the 737-to-Q400 swap
  • a new 8.55am flight is offered on a Boeing 737-800, although it sports the same QF1012 flight number as the old afternoon service
  • the 4.50pm flight is now dubbed QF1016 (used to be QF1012) and remains on a Boeing 737-800

The upshot? Business travellers will no doubt welcome a third daily service between Melbourne and Hobart, but some won't be thrilled to see their regular flights traded down from the Boeing 737 to a Q400.

If you're booking on the Q400, our expert Best Seats guide reveals that you'll want to snare seats 1A, 1B, 2C or 2D, while doing all you can to avoid anywhere in row 19: click here for all the details.

In addition, Melbourne-Launceston goes from 17 to 28 weekly return services.

Two of the weekly Melbourne-Devonport return flights are upgraded from a 50-seater Q300 turboprop to the larger 74-seat Q400 aircraft for a near-50% boosts in bums.

To help cater for those extra travellers, Devonport also gets a new Qantas Regional Lounge.

There's a selection of soft drinks and snacks plus free wireless internet while you wait for your flight.

Keep up to date with the latest news for business travellers and frequent flyers – follow @AusBT on Twitter.

David
David

David Flynn

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.

acrimmins

acrimmins

29 Apr 2011

Total posts 8

ALthough smaller, there's actually an extra inch of legroom in the Q400. 32 vs 31 inch.  Also no dreaded 'middle seat'.

Noisy, yes.  But that's what Bose made headphones for...

AlG

AlG

04 Nov 2010

Total posts 674

Are you sure about that? QantasSource lists the pitch for the Q400s as 31 inches. SeatGuru has 32 inches but I don't trust SeatGuru much! But true what you say about the middle seat. And I think if you were a very regular flyer, some form of noise-cancelling headphones would be a must!

John Walton

John Walton

03 Jan 2011

Total posts 673

My info says that the Q400 has a 31" seat pitch (the last row has three inches less, at 29") and those Q400 seats feel narrower because of the tighter tube. No middle seat is a plus, mind...

acrimmins

acrimmins

29 Apr 2011

Total posts 8

Appologies all, my info had 32 inches (Not from Seatguru)

31 inches all round, not sure about the 29 in the last row though!  No recline in the 400's either.

Konrad

Konrad

29 Oct 2012

Total posts 1

Actually, the Q400 isn't much noiser than the large turbo jet airliners. The only real 'noiser' part of the flight is the engine propeller startup procedure.

The few times I've flown the Q400s I have experienced no different in in-flight quality.

AlG

AlG

04 Nov 2010

Total posts 674

I flew on a Q400 last year and thought it was quite a bit noisier than the 737s I am used to, maybe because I was sitting near the engine & wing? Of course slip on the noise-cancelling headphones and all that droning noise magically vanishes! :)

FrequentFlyer

FrequentFlyer

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 204

Well if you think about it, this really is only a positive. Although the flight schedules change there is now another flight to Hobart, and there are still two 737 flights daily. Qantas is still far below par for Hobart operations though, especially compared to Virgin and even Jetstar's extensive flights. I recently saw data showing that Hobart was one of the highest revenue gaining cities per flight-distance-etc.


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