Qantas eyes non-stop Boeing 787 flights to Paris, Rome, Berlin

By David Flynn, April 27 2017
Qantas eyes non-stop Boeing 787 flights to Paris, Rome, Berlin

Qantas has pegged Paris, Rome and Berlin as the next non-stop routes for the airline's Boeing 787 network.

The flights would all fly via Perth, leveraging the WA capital's role as a new international hub for Qantas following the launch of non-stop flights between Perth and London.

This would also maximise investment in converting part of Qantas' domestic Perth terminals to support international services, including dedicated customs and immigration along with an all-new Qantas Perth International Lounge.

Qantas will reveal more details on its Perth domestic-international transit experience in May.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce tells The West Australian that flights from Perth to Berlin, Rome and Paris are on the airline's radar.

Those flights will rely on the second wave of Boeing 787s due from mid-2018 to mid-2019, as the airline's first four Dreamliners – which will arrive between mid-October 2017 and late February 2018 – will be dedicated to the Melbourne-Los Angeles and  Perth-London routes.

The growing Boeing 787 fleet will also see Qantas retire five of its iconic but ageing Boeing 747 jumbo jets.


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 - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 Apr 2013

Total posts 387

So it looks like then the last 6 B747ER will hang around for a bit be be replaced with either B777-8 or A350ULR. 

Air New Zealand - Airpoints

23 May 2013

Total posts 45

Paris yes, Rome maybe but Berlin? That seems strange and I can't imagine its an especially premium heavy destination. Would have thought Frankfurt for sure before Berlin.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Nov 2014

Total posts 365

I suspect it's because TXL is the hub for AB, which is a OW partner vs FRA which is a LH hub for star alliance. 

12 May 2015

Total posts 5

Perhaps in the absence of much one stop competition from east coast to Berlin, QF may expect to carve out a niche that may actually yield highly if coupled with good east coast connections (SQ, CX, EK etc. don't serve/ in some circumstances cannot get air rights to serve TXL whereas many airlines serve the more competitive FRA) 

27 Apr 2017

Total posts 2

Berlin is the most visited city in Europe after London and Paris. And a boom-City! It makes sense!

27 Apr 2017

Total posts 2

By the time the second tranche of 787s arrive, I suspect Air Berlin will be long gone. I'd have thought FRA, even though it's a Star hub, would've made more sense. It's the financial centre of Germany, and they previously flew there for many years ( not always a guarantee of success, of course). 

Rome is an odd one to me. I can't imagine yields would be very high. I find it hard to see QF filling  the front  end of the high premium configuration aircraft which I would've thought would be a prerequisite for successful operation. I guess time will tell.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 463

QF axed FRA because it was a loss-making route, according to AJ. I think out of CDG, TXL or FCO, TXL is the one that actually is the most interesting and has the most potential in the long-term.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

15 Aug 2012

Total posts 171

It was probably not profitable because it was serviced by 747's, Dreamliner being a lot more efficient and less seats to fill changes the economics considerably.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 1140

Berlin will only be an option once TXL is replaced by the new but much delayed Berlin Airport.  TXL is a terrible place not worthy to be part of a great city like Berlin.  It is a true time warp to visit this place.  It is like something out of the '70s.

Oneworld currently lacks a true European hub on mainland Europe.  Berlin may be one day but that assumes AB survives and remains in Oneworld.  Skyteam has AMS and CDG whilst Star has FRA.

I'm a bit puzzled by QF's plans to use PER as a hub into Europe.  For those from MEL, SYD and BNE, there is no benefit compared with flying through DXB onto multiple connections with EK.  I'd understand a plan for non-stop into Europe from SYD but currently that is a bit of a stretch for QF's current fleet.  An A380 could make Europe from SYD but probably only eastern Europe and not into any marketable hub in central or western Europe.

06 Jan 2015

Total posts 67

I can only assume where possible, people who are QFF's would rather fly on qantas metal as they cannot upgrade via points on EK?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 Jul 2015

Total posts 220

Yes. Exactly that.  Don't mind Dubai in the least but prefer QF where possible 

Air New Zealand - Airpoints

23 May 2013

Total posts 45

Haha funny you say that the same day they cut MEL-DXB 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 463

Well QF cannot fly non-stop to Europe from BNE, SYD or MEL - the range is too great for the aircraft (as things stand at the moment). If they're going to do non-stops, they basically have to be ex PER or DRW.

27 Apr 2017

Total posts 1

We do have BA in Oneworld for European connections from a rather congested LHR.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Sep 2013

Total posts 187

Dusseldorf is also a OW hub.  Only used it once, incoming, and we were at the pointy end and our bags were first off, so had little opportunity to check the place out fully.  The city itself is also well located, and a nice visit.

Qantas - QFF Platinum

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 213

There are a lot of restrictions into Berlin, especially with services by ME3 so its a bit of an untapped market for not just oneworld but for airline services heading East.

Qatar Airways

04 Apr 2014

Total posts 26

I think Berlin could be a real smart move. Obviously it would need to be once Brandenburg is up and running, but given its development as a Leisure / Business hub and the as yet unknown consequences of Brexit, especially with regard to development of alternative finance hubs, it might have legs, especially if oneworld or a.n.other partner hub there.

11 Dec 2015

Total posts 85

Berlin is also a nice starting point if you're going into Eastern Europe.

FCO? Doubtful. Not much premium traffic there and zero connection opportunities on that end. The Italian economy isn't performing so don't see this doing well. CDG is a maybe, but again there isn't much connecting opportunity there as CDG is a Sky Team hub. TXL? Strange choice. Yes, it's a hub for Air Berlin, but as others have said, its quite possible AB will not survive or eventually be absorbed into Lufthansa. Then what? Madrid would seem more logical. IB is a stronger carrier now than it has ever been and has a decent route map which could allow for good connections throughout the continent, though with some back tracking due to geography.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

08 Jun 2014

Total posts 258

PER to CDG.... oh my!!!! 

06 Feb 2014

Total posts 114

Berlin makes a lot of sense as Emirates (Qantas Code share) ) is currently restricted from flying there and it's an air berlin hub. Might not be enough traffic but one could think the QF9 metal could move from DXB-London to DXB Berlin...

This is very surprising but somewhat understandable in a way; PER will become QF's European hub effectively. I presume QF will try and pick the 'best' destinations yield-wise and rely on business traffic, and thus the lower-yielding traffic gets put on EK. 

I wonder what this means for Qantas First though. I presume they won't abolish it completely but these direct services to Europe will all lack it. 

05 May 2016

Total posts 630

These services are a stop gap till QF can fly direct from MEL and SYD to LHR and JFK. Which is rumoured to be as soon as 5 years away (but I suspect it probably will be longer). If the oil price is very high then that would be one likely cause of a delay. The heavier a plane is the more fuel it needs to burn. The further a plane needs to fly all else being equal the more fuel is required. Sure ultra long range planes will become more fuel efficient, but so will planes used on shorter routes.

Once QF can do East Coast to LHR and JFK if the planes they use to fly those direct non-stop flights don't have some F seats then it'll be clear that QF is exiting the F market.

Once QF can fly direct from the East Coast to LHR and JFK I suspect the 787s will mostly/all get moved away from PER onto other routes e.g. perhaps more from MEL/SYD to West Coast of the US.

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

11 Mar 2015

Total posts 193

Probably Perth is much cheaper to tank up before the long flight to any Eu destinations than Dubai,hence QF can save lot of dough by running all it's EU destinations via homeland.But the sad thing is that their price is not compatible with the arabs-hence rather fly with airlines that offer better value for money

05 Dec 2013

Total posts 37

I really don't see Berlin or Rome being clever decisions if they come to fruition.  Paris makes sense though.  Also wonder how many additional US routes they will try to open up after the second batch of screamliners are received.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Dec 2016

Total posts 31

Well I'm glad Qantas is bringing back more international services to Perth.

15 Sep 2012

Total posts 94

Cant se Perth being a successful hub given flying times from East Coast comb8ned with 17 hours to Europe! Qantas should  return  to hubbing in Singapore. 787s  could fly from Adelaide,  Canberra,  Brisbane  with 737s  from regional  centres like Townsville,  Darwin  and Broome. A380s from Sydney  and melbourne  thru to London and Frankfurt. 787s  thru to India, Africa,  mid east and Europe. Several hours less flying time. Qantas did this successfully  for years until deal with Emirates! No reason cant do it again. Would be popular with average Australian citizen who sees Perth as out of the way and not on the route to europe.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Aug 2016

Total posts 57

out of interest, how is this compelling for Melbourne based platinum flyers or First flyers?

seems like a short sighted move from qantas, surely just have some first on some of the 787s and a first lounge in perth

05 May 2016

Total posts 630

These are the hardest hit by these changes. It's unfortunate that QF doesn't value their MEL premium passengers as highly as their SYD ones.

05 May 2016

Total posts 630

I wonder where these extra 787s will fly to on the East Coast (if at all), whether to MEL or SYD and if they'll fly onto a US destination e.g. LAX, SFO, DFW etc. to help minimise the time they spend on the ground.

Would be nice to have a MEL-SFO service again. Perhaps if QF had a few flights a day to SFO (one from SYD and one from MEL) they could justify arranging a better lounge offering than unreliable access to CX lounges where "capacity constraints" are routinely used as an excuse to deny entry.

27 Apr 2017

Total posts 2

Berlin is a good choice! Most visited town in Europe after London and Paris!


13 Jun 2015

Total posts 140

Reasons why Berlin is a good city to fly from Australia

- most visited city in Europe
- Has an Air Berlin hub that is part of One World. 
- offers other Short European routes from Berlin by a codeshare with AB. 


12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1447

IMHO great news - QF will be better off to diversify destinations using smaller plane as B787. And hopefully it will bring to the end "partnership" between QF and EK.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Aug 2014

Total posts 509

I think since EK doesn't have the rights for TXL, QF should perhaps do MEL-HKG-TXL or something of that type and that way could absorb all the Aussie customers along with those connecting from CX. Not sure how this would play out but QF have a real chance at stepping all over EK and CX on this one. 

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 1042

If the 2nd batch of 787s are used for new routes, instead of existing routes, they are not going to be able to replace the last 3 744s without cutting other routes.

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