Qantas will continue flying between Sydney and Vancouver in 2015 following a successful trial of seasonal flights during December-January.
The airline's "extended seasonal schedule" will see three flights a week during the US summer and winter periods on a three-class Boeing 747 fitted with A380-grade business class, premium economy and economy seats.
"Our direct Vancouver services proved really popular so we’re pleased to expand them this year, offering customers more flights on more days over winter and summer" said Qantas Executive Manager International Sales, Stephen Thompson.
From Vancouver, travellers can fly onwards to other Canadian cities through Qantas codeshare partner WestJet.
PREVIOUS | Ahead of planned seasonal flights to Vancouver in January 2015, Qantas is seeking travel rights between Australia and Canada on an ongoing basis.
According to an application [PDF, 426kb] filed with the International Air Services Commission (IASC), “Qantas plans to operate seasonal services between Australia and Canada during periods of peak demand throughout the year.”
A Qantas spokesperson confirmed to Australian Business Traveller that if granted, the IASC submission would “permit Qantas to operate up to 3 return services per week between Australia and Canada” year-round.
With an allocation of 1,092 seats per week, Qantas could run those three return flights on its 364-seat reconfigured Boeing 747 aircraft with fully-flat Skybeds in business class, plus A380-like seats in premium economy and economy.
The application doesn’t preclude the Red Roo’s Airbus A380s from hopping onto the route, although at a whopping 484 seats spread across first class, business, premium economy and economy, flights would be limited to twice-weekly under the current IASC request.
Interestingly, the proposal would also allow the travel rights to be “utilised by Qantas or another Australian carrier which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qantas”.
Jetstar Australia’s growing fleet of long-range Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners could easily make the 7,757-mile trek from Sydney to Vancouver, although most business travellers would naturally gravitate to the fully-flat beds in Qantas business class against the reclining seats at the pointy end of Jetstar’s Dreamliners.
Qantas has also forged a codeshare partnership with Canadian airline WestJet, providing direct connections from Vancouver to destinations such as Toronto, Ottawa and Calgary, while also adding Montréal, Halifax and Edmonton to the Red Roo’s codeshare map.
Air Canada currently has a monopoly on the direct Sydney-Vancouver route, running its own daily flights with business class and economy – although not premium economy or first class – on its Boeing 777-200LRs.
Responding to heavy transpacific demand, Qantas will also ramp up its services between Melbourne and Los Angeles from seven to ten each week as of January next year after upsizing its direct Sydney-Dallas flights from the Boeing 747 to the Airbus A380 later this month.
Santiago also picks up an extra weekly return flight from November – originally tagged as a ‘seasonal’ service but now carried forward from February 2015 as a permanent boost following an expanded codeshare partnership with Chilean Oneworld member LAN Airlines.
Also read: Qantas to fly to Vancouver in January 2015
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