Qantas cuts Auckland flights from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane

By David Flynn, June 20 2014

Qantas will axe up to 15 trans-Tasman flights from October, slashing services from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to Auckland.

Up to half of those routes will be handed over to low-cost offshoot Jetstar as Qantas continues its cost-cutting campaign.

Qantas says it is moving to a seasonally-driven schedule geared more closely to the different demands of business and leisure travellers.

There will be three fewer Qantas flights a week during the peak season but 15 less across the low season.

From October 26 Qantas will cancel one daily ­Melbourne-Auckland flight and one daily Sydney-Auckland flight, while also trimming the Brisbane-Auckland timetable to five flights a week during the low season.

Jetstar will step in with six new weekly Melbourne-Auckland services and a new weekly Sydney-Auckland flight, but will also axe its thrice-weekly Adelaide-Auckland service from August 24.

Here's the full list of affected Qantas services: 

QF186/183: Auckland-Melbourne
Introduced to the network during Christmas and school holiday peak periods. QF183 will operate on Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays and the QF186 will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. QF183 will depart Melbourne at 0855 and QF186 will depart Auckland at 1950.

QF181/182: Sydney-Auckland
Introduced to the network during Christmas and school holiday peak periods on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. The QF181 will depart Sydney at 1345 and the QF182 will depart Auckland at 1100.

QF185/188: Sydney-Auckland
Introduced to the network during Christmas and school holiday peak periods on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The QF185 will depart Sydney at 1800 and the QF188 will depart Auckland at 1530.

QF125/126: Auckland-Brisbane (daily)
During low demand periods, will change from a daily service, to operate five days per week (will not operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays).
 

QF156/153: Auckland-Melbourne (daily)
Cancelled from 26 October 2014.

QF148/141: Auckland-Sydney (daily)
Cancelled from 26 October 2014.

The trans-Tasman turf war

The trans-Tasman corridor is Australia's most popular international route, with a total of 2.5 million travellers from both Australia and New Zealand crossing the pond each year.

Stepping down to to all-economy Jetstar flights are unlikely to please corporate travellers who book into Qantas business class.

But there's little choice in it for travellers leaning towards the Virgin Australia/Air New Zealand alliance, as most of those airlines' flights also forego a business class cabin.

However, Virgin Australia is expected to move to take advantage of Qantas' cuts. Earlier this year Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti revealed plans to take the trans-Tasman alliance with Air New Zealand to a new level. 

"Trans-Tasman is in good shape and the alignment with Air New Zealand has been nothing short of superb" he told Australian Business Traveller, "but the best thing about that is there is still a lot more that we can do together, and you will see that happen over the next nine months or so."

In July 2013 Qantas pledged to maintain "existing capacity on trans-Tasman routes that both Qantas and Emirates fly" as a condition of approval for its partnership with Emirates, and the airline says it will continue to comply with that requirement.

According to a Qantas spokesperson, "the number of seats offered by the Qantas Group will remain relatively the same, and there is likely to be additional ad hoc services on top of the new published schedule."

“As part of our transformation program, Qantas is becoming more dynamic and more flexible in responding to market conditions" said Qantas International CEO Simon Hickey.

"This has seen us take advantage of seasonal opportunities, like the Perth to Auckland service we started last summer. On the flip side, we’ll reduce flights at times of the year when demand naturally drops back."

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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.

Qantas - QFF Platinum

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 213

'Qantas is becoming more dynamic and more flexible...' by giving routes to a low cost airline that no one in the corporate/business world ever wants to fly.

In my mind that's neither dynamic nor flexible.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

04 Mar 2013

Total posts 42

It is important to remember that there is a strong leisure demand for Aus-NZ travel. Qantas (and their partner Emirates) are by no means ceding the corporate market, mainly the flights that have a stronger leisure demand. 

Qantas - QFF Platinum

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 213

Are you saying leisure travellers don't want to fly Qantas or full service airlines? 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

04 Mar 2013

Total posts 42

Not in the slightest. I'm simply saying that the market for full service premium isn't as strong trans tasman as some think it is. 

Agreed. It's not always about the corporate dollar.  There is also Emirates as an alternative if they want business class.

Flights Bne-Akl always full,so it's a shame,lucky they have EK to take over.

QF

02 Nov 2012

Total posts 37

I fly BNE - AKL a lot and theyre often quite light loads, I hope it's not the evening flights that get canned.

20 Jun 2014

Total posts 3

It's just being reported incorecctly.  QF125/126 will be reduced from daily to 5 weekly.  QF123/124 will remain daily.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 736

Prediction - VA/NZ swap out premium Y for basic J on the 737/A320.

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

Out of MEL There is one service on a 777 with NZ.If you don't mind a noon departure I would suggest that option.It's a shame though so much capacity has gone.UA should introduce once the 787 comes in a Daily Melbourne via Auckland to LA service for those of us who need a business class and allow codesharing on that.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 736

No, don't mess with the UA 787; non-stop or nothing. 

24 Apr 2014

Total posts 271

Yes no more one stops to America from Melbourne please

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

12 Jun 2012

Total posts 6

Something doesn't add up: SYD-AKL sees 7 flights pw removed, same as MEL-AKL, Qantas currently operates 14 flights pw between BNE and AKL and you're saying this is being reduced to 5 pw...this is 19 cancellations however the first line reads 'up to 15...'

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

12 Jun 2012

Total posts 6

Now I'm not adding up...this is a total of 23 cancellations

15 Dec 2013

Total posts 43

You're right, the "QF" numbers in the article don't add up. Unless you factor in the new JQ flights and then you get a net loss of 15 on the SYD/MEL/BNE routes.

Slashing BNE-AKL from 14 to 5? Yikes. Tasman traffic is rising, but nobody wants to fly QF...

They didn't give JQ ADL-AKL long; only started a couple of months ago.

20 Jun 2014

Total posts 3

It's just being reported incorecctly.  QF125/126 will be reduced from daily to 5 weekly.  QF123/124 will remain daily.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Dec 2013

Total posts 3

Most of this must be because of the Emirates partnership. People would prefer to fly on an A380 to auckland then a cramped 737. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 May 2013

Total posts 73

And the "business class" product (if you even want to call it that) on QF's 737s is nowhere near the same league as EK's A380. It still gobsmacks me how they charge the same fare for the two. QF's product would just pass as Premium Economy

LR
LR

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 May 2012

Total posts 76

Exactly, Internation EK A380 in F/J/Y Vs B737-800 30inch seat pitch in Y and 37In in J. I know what I would pick every time.

 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Mar 2014

Total posts 73

Trans-Tasman is downgraded from Qantas to Jetconnect and now Jetconnect downgrades to Jetstar. 

The next logical step is to strap passengers to a life raft in botany bay on an outgoing tide and wishing them the best of luck.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

17 Aug 2012

Total posts 2221

Don't be giving AJ no ideas!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Mar 2014

Total posts 73

A few weeks ago QF had a sale $220 each way BNE-AKL on EK A380. I am going at the end of August to watch the Wallabies and I just did a search OOL-AKL on JQ for the same weekend and it was $407 rtn inc. bags and entertainment but no food, QF points or status and JQ fly at dud times.  

People are so stupid they just believe that LCC's offer the best value. 

I know who I will be flying with.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 May 2011

Total posts 335

You'll actually find there is no difference between a Qantas flight and a Jetconnect flight. Staff wear the same uniforms, serve the same meals and provide the same entertainment. In fact, many people prefer a Jetconnect service as the find the service more consistant than mainline Qantas flights

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Aklrunway,

Your right and may some consideration should be made to Jet Connect to opperate Qantas mainline opperations. 

17 Feb 2012

Total posts 121

All makes sense.  I travelled to Wellington with QF over the past 3 months in J and the service, on-demand entertainment system was great.  I don't need a fully flat seat for a 3 hour flight.  The majority of these cuts only kick in for part of the year so am not sure what all the yelping is about.  Apparently an airline isn't meant to be run to make any money.  If that's the case lets renationalise it.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

13 Sep 2011

Total posts 182

Another nail in the coffin for QFi. 

How does the company make any money if it doesn't fly internationally?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Yet again i say Qantas is done. No person on this site wants to acknowledge QF mainline is done.Just last year the F UP ..AJ said trans tasman was making money...what BS.You can not make money when you costs are more than any other carrier. 

07 Oct 2012

Total posts 1229

Robert, you are pretty open in saying that QF should cease flying to Asia and should boost flights to the USA (where they make money). With the amount of capacity to NZ from Australia, it makes sense to cut back on capacity where appropriate - especially as yield is poor.

It appears that QF is damned if they don't and damned if they do. Sure, there are many many many things that QF management have stuffed up and could do better etc etc... but why soooo negative alll the time! Even when QF boost flights to a market, there needs to be a negative response!!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Huch,

I have long said Qantas is the best trans pacific.I am critical of poor inconstintant servce,fleet structure and purchases.You know it as do i.The ..AJ statements are fact from last year.If Jet Connect  cant make it with ther lower costs ...man tell me where QF can make money.I strongly support the off shoring of mainline Qf operations as it,s the only way forward.

09 Nov 2011

Total posts 88

Easy - for me from Melbourne - late morning 777-300ER Business Class ANZ. As a Platinum Velocity member I just sit back and watch as Qantas dissolves and makes further stupid moves. Also looking forward to the direct 787-9 ANZ Auckland - Perth. I wouldn't consider Jetstar even for a 1 hour hop let alone 3 hours crammed in an A320 to NZ. Adelaide is aslo gone again from the International Qantas/Jetstar scene. Some of the QF 737's will return to Australia as the 767's dissapear as they will be needed on the East coast to fill in the gaps along with the A330's. Sydney domestic can't have too many A330's at once due to their wingspan - so will need to stagger gates with 737's

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 May 2013

Total posts 303

ADL still has JQ services to DPS, however that's it. Pathetic, Qantas.

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

It's the best way to go NZ.I did it that way Years ago when they had the 767 evening services to Auckland and the afternoon run was done with a United 747 that continued to LAX.Qantas even had a mixture of 747's some in the morning and some in the evening that ALSO continued to LAX BACK IN THE Nineties This is a big step backwards for those of us who grew up using wide bodies on the Tasman.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Agreed Franz, I did it .But  it will not come back.

Cathay Pacific - The Marco Polo Club

19 Apr 2014

Total posts 46

How is it that Air NZ can expand but Qantas has to shrink. in my opinion Qantas offers a much better  product (overall - food, service, timings). J product is off course dwarfed by EK but one does wonder why Qantas is walking backwards...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

03 Aug 2012

Total posts 6

Out of brisbane to Auckland why would anyone fly anything but EMERITES

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 Nov 2013

Total posts 457

Because Norman, those of us travelling for business don't want to waste half of a business day on an aircraft. 

As has been noted above, the Jetconnect service is usually pretty good. Whilst the A380 might be a comfortable aircraft I don't rate the inflight service - I'd rate it below both Qantas and VA.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1136

Because people would prefer to fly Emirates?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 Nov 2013

Total posts 457

Not sure of your point Eminere...

If a business traveller really wants to fly from Brisbane to Auckland on an A380 (with indifferent inflight service, super long and disruptive inflight announcements) and spend the majority of a working day out of contact with the rest of the world then yes, Emirates is a good option. 

I personally prefer to work the business day in Brisbane and then catch QF125 to Auckland - it's a 3hr flight that departs after a normal east coast work day (so minimal downtime/catch up required). 

Saying that people (possibly everyone) would prefer to fly Emirates is like walking around with a hammer thinking everything you see is a nail!

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

I know their reliability isn't perfect but out of Sydney has anyone considered booking under a Qantas Code a Lan Flight You know the one that goes to Auckland and onto Santiago.It might be another way if you refuse to fly Jetstar or don't want to get onto another little 737.For those of you who fly to Wellington and christchurch you have nz on a 320.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Mark,

You said it,a QF 737 for an A380 are you nuts i understand it for economy but does not come annywhere close for business on the A380.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 Nov 2013

Total posts 457

Hi Robert,

I've not had the opportunity to experience the Emirates biz product on the A380 but I have experienced Qantas business class on both trans-tasman, cross-country, Asia, and most often US flights.

The context of my response was that (in my opinion) a business traveller wouldn't necessarily 'always' choose the Emirates option given that it means you are dark for the best part of a business day.

If you are so fortunate that you can justify spending a half day or so in business class flying to Auckland then I'd say go hard - I can't justifiably make that request on my employer or clients. 

I (also) agree with earlier comments that the pricing similarity between the Qantas and Emirates business fares is difficult to understand given the product differences - but again, BNE-AKL is nothing more than a slow BNE-ADL flight

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1136

Mark - my post was in response to Norman's.  If one is going to capitalise something and highlight it in red, one should make sure it's at least spelt correctly. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 Nov 2013

Total posts 457

Apologies Eminere - the site doesn't thread comments under the one you want to reply to! 

mark

15 Apr 2011

Total posts 3

Cutting these routs and letting low cost airline "Jetstar" take over is just stupid. The BNE to AKL flight is always packed and coming across AKL to BNE also has bums on seats. Maybe if they increase the size of the aircraft and offer a better service the Air New Zealand they might take more share of the market.

Once again another stupid move by the puppets of the board of Qantas

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Sep 2013

Total posts 469

Shane they Qantas are so f up this ts just the start sadly.I agreewith your comments. 


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