Qantas to keep Dubai hub even as it plans non-stop Sydney-London

By David Flynn, June 9 2017

Qantas plans to continue its alliance with Emirates and use Dubai as a hub airport for connecting passengers, even as it launches more non-stop flights between Australia and Europe.

The March 2018 debut of direct Perth-London flights on the airline's new Boeing 787 Dreamliner is likely to be followed by a second European city – tipped to be Paris – by the second half of next year, after Qantas brought forward the delivery of its next four Boeing 787s.

Other European cities cited by Qantas as likely candidates for additional non-stop Dreamliner flights include Rome and Frankfurt, once the airline takes up additional Boeing 787 orders to grow its fleet.

However, Qantas will also seek to renew its current five-year partnership with Emirates which began in April 2013.

Non-stop vs the Emirates network

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the International Air Transport Association's annual general meeting in Cancun, Mexico  this week, Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said that "even when we start flying direct to London, still Dubai will play a big role."

"Emirates has 40 destinations in Europe. We're never going to fly direct to places like Venice and Prague."

That extensive network was a key plank in the original Qantas-Emirates alliance, which also saw Dubai replace Singapore as the stopover point for the airline's Kangaroo Route between Australia and London.

However, once Qantas launches its direct Perth-London flights the airline will shutter its Melbourne-Dubai-London Airbus A380 service – and Fairfax Media notes that "Qantas would not be drawn on whether Sydney to London flights would eventually route via Perth."

'Dubai' and 'direct' not in competition

Joyce expects that flights via Dubai will carry the bulk of the airline's European-bound travellers, while the direct Boeing 787 services – which carry fewer passengers and are likely to come with a price premium – will be more niche.

Qantas is also planning longer-range direct flights such as Sydney to London and Melbourne to Rome – both without the need to stop at Perth – as well as non-stop flights to New York, Chicago and Boston.

These would rely on new aircraft such as the Boeing 777X or Airbus A350-900ULR, and Qantas is in discussions with both aircraft manufacturers about taking its long-range fleet into the next decade.

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.

undertheradar Banned

undertheradar Banned

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 662

Makes sense to me. Qantas aircraft will pick to fly to select  longer haul destinations NON STOP, to service those who will pay a more for less time/hassle, which is a 'market' from/to AUS.  and along with a few regional ports (within 8-14hrs, middle east/asia),  funnel pax onto partner airlines to reach other destinations. I have always found it bizarre that people expect Qantas (a publically owned company) to fly to/from ALL ports across the globe, yet they don't expect other airlines controlled by various govts/'authorities' to do the same!!!

undertheradar Banned

undertheradar Banned

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 662

AUS is a country of 25million ish population, and the rest of the world comprises 7billion ish, YET some people expect the SOLE premium airline of AUS to service THE REST OF THE WORLD!!!! LOL.

BLAMEX

BLAMEX

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 May 2017

Total posts 53

Bring back via Singapore or other Asian cities.  Biggest mistake QF made was this arrangement. Never have I or will I fly QF to Europe while they offer this route.

Mightyreds

Mightyreds

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Feb 2015

Total posts 254

A large majority certainly prefer Singapore or HK as stopover options to LHR. 

crwilkins

crwilkins

Qantas

02 May 2016

Total posts 34

Bring back Singapore as transit makes no sense for QF, they will never compete with SQ for onward destinations out of SIN and will certainly never be codeshare. Dubai and the EK relationship gives them significant connections into Europe and Africa not possible out of SIN or HKG, and the financial results of QF versus CX, SQ etc speak for themselves

rowwdy

rowwdy

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Mar 2013

Total posts 135

What I would really love is for QF to keep the EK alliance, but increase their AY codeshares to other cities within Europe, especially on routes not served by EK. Imagine if there was a QF codeshare to cities like Berlin, Gothenburg, Krakow and Tallinn. 

Metoo

Metoo

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Nov 2016

Total posts 62

It's good QF and EK alliance will continue. Dubai is a great springboard to Europe. Also, EK planes, especially Bus class are so much better. I know QF needs to run a business and make a profit but at the same time it needs to provide a service people want to buy including customers flying on quality planes, comfortable seats, good food and quality lounges. I can never fault QF staff who are at the coalface but they are guided by decisions made from boardrooms and number crunchers. And the QF FF program is making a lot of money for the business. 

crosscourt

crosscourt

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer - Chairmans Lounge

01 Sep 2011

Total posts 346

Seriously ...? EK business better? Tired and cramped is my view and as for the 777 ones, they are down right poor.

Serg

Serg

QFF

12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1446

If you like EK planes and service so much (I disagree, BTW) then why not buy EK tickets directly from EK? They usually cheaper and EK (unlike QF) flying from all major AUS cities to DXB.

steeleg

steeleg

QF NZ

28 Jul 2013

Total posts 27

If I am going to Europe I just love an afternoon flight to Asia, with great food and a few drinks, a short stop and then a flat bed and a long kip to Europe, SIN does that, Dubai does not. And staying on the same plane  gives a much shorter stop in SIN.   

crosscourt

crosscourt

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer - Chairmans Lounge

01 Sep 2011

Total posts 346

SIN is a way, way nicer airport than DXB. Night and day in my view.

John Phelan

John Phelan

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 317

True, though on the way back, LHR-DXB-Australia is the better option, for the same reason.

Himeno

Himeno

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 913

"The March 2018 debut of direct Perth-London flights on the airline's new Boeing 787 Dreamliner is likely to be followed by a second European city – tipped to be Paris – by the second half of next year"

Why does this speculation persist? It is not possible for 4 787s to replace 3 747s, as planned, and open a new route to Europe. The 2nd batch of 787s will need to be placed on existing 747 routes in order to allow the planned retirement of VH-OJS, VH-OJT and VH-OJU.
The 5th-8th 787s can not open new routes without either keeping at least 1 of the planned retirement aircraft and/or cutting another route.

DaveSyd

DaveSyd

11 May 2017

Total posts 4

I agree- its completely bewildering how they will be able to retire 3 x 747 and at same time open new route opportunities with the 789s. Some random scenarios that if used in combination could possibly allow this to happen would be;

(1) American Airlines enters MEL-LAX and QF 789 freed up to open MEL-DFW instead of the MEL-LAX supplementary.  

(2) SYD-DXB-LHR downgauge from a380 to 789 and the displaced 3 x a380 used to retire 3 x 747s.

(3) They drop to just one flight a day into LHR and open CDG aiming for the highest yielding passengers only and code on EK for rest.

(4) A seismic network reshuffle is about to occur with multiple capacity changes and also flight timing changes across the entire QF international and domestic network allowing even greater fleet utilisation than currently available?

I think the most likely new routes that make the most sense and carry the least amount of risk would be from BNE and MEL into DFW.

traveller90

traveller90

29 Jan 2012

Total posts 108

Asia will always be the preferred stopover choice for flights to Europe when travelling Eastbound. QF with it's EK bond is a fly by night venture and may last another 5 years but that will be all. Ultra long flight in a 789 - realistically a failure. Aircraft to small for the long distance, comfort wise, as is only designed to replace 767 / A330 type aircraft. Wide bodies A380 / 748 aircraft have the room and comfort needed for the long haul routes. Passengers will vote with their bookings. Price premium fares for long haul 789 aircraft over wide bodied - will not work. It did once with the Pan Am 747SP when competing against its own 747's with their one stop, but that was a completely different situation and in another time. QF should take note as the competition is on its heals and has already caught up, QF just haven't realised it yet!

timster

timster

04 May 2016

Total posts 34

So once QF adds PER-CDG, PER-FRA, PER-FCO, we'll be back to pre-9/11 days when QF flew 747s to CDG / FRA / FCO via SIN and BKK. Except you'll have the 'pleasure' of a Perth transit/stopover and a 17 hour leg to Europe, over SIN or BKK and more palatable leg durations. Or the horrid domestic to international transfer bus in SYD if you have to go via DXB.
Meh.
Just further reinforces my switch to Star (TG, SQ) when QF married EK.
Even if they eventually do MEL-Europe I can't see myself wanting to spend that long in a plane.

Joe

Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 359

I agree Traveller90 for us aussies the 787 is a small plane for ultra long haul. I'm really hoping QF goes for the Airbus A350 ULR perhaps even the rumoured A380 NEO. Aus is just too far from major world capitals for small 787's comfort wise.

2A

2A

23 Feb 2017

Total posts 10

Greetings from the North of England. From where I live, only a fool would struggle to get to the hell-hole that is Heathrow. For me this means MAN-DXB (another hell-hole)-Aus or MAN-SIN-Aus on SQ. London is irrelevant.

AT

AT

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Sep 2012

Total posts 245

I've tried looking at many European cities but taking the QF flight to DXB arrives around midnight and all the EK flights to Europe leave the next morning so forcing an overnight stay, much better off flying EK all the way from OZ. You'd really only fly QF if you're going to LHR I think. 

lind26

lind26

24 Apr 2014

Total posts 269

Remember when QF did fly to Rome, Frankfurt, Paris and London all on their own planes? History is repeating itself.

Metoo

Metoo

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Nov 2016

Total posts 62

Was that when they allowed smoking on planes? I remember catching flights years ago and the smoking section was upfront and non smoking in the back. This cloud of tobacco smoke would drift from the front to the back like a fog. The Horror lol. And smokers would come to the back to escape it. Good luck. 

chap6595

chap6595

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

17 May 2015

Total posts 51

I wonder if Qantas would schedule a Mel/Syd/Bris to DXB and then back again allowing us to then jump on an EK out to Europe. Better use of a A380...less time sitting around. 

I would love to do a QF metal to DXB then have the choice of EK to heaps of EU destinations. 

Thoughts?

mviy

mviy

05 May 2016

Total posts 522

If DXB is still so important it's crazy that they plan to stop flying there from MEL. On the one hand talking up the partnership and on the other hand discouraging flying via DXB by cutting QF operated services.

If you can't join the upgrade lottery flying via DXB on a QF ticket then a major reason to remain loyal to flying on QF tickets is taken away and flying other airlines becomes that much more attractive.

If QF flies SYD-LHR direct I fully expect they'll do MEL-LHR as well and that puts the future of PER as a hub in question. PER is a stop gap.

E63AMG

E63AMG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

17 Oct 2014

Total posts 15

chap6595 I agree and believe that as the QF B789 fleet grows, we will see a return to Dubai from MEL with possibly the addition of PER & BNE to DXB. I'm hopeful that QF will also add additional trans pac services to DFW from MEL & possibly BNE as well as expanded services to SFO. The B787 will indeed be a game changer for QF coupled with a future fleet of B777X's, QF will be a different airline in years to come there's no doubt.

rcnr25

rcnr25

QANTAS

12 Jun 2014

Total posts 23

QF would need to fly the 787 from multiple AU destinations to DXB to get good utilisation, yes. It's a ~14 hour flight.

Would love it if QF flew the 787 daily to SFO from MEL, but they do need to fix the lounge problem. The Air France Lounge is a poor option and access to the CX lounge is unreliable.

large

large

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Jun 2017

Total posts 4

Good news for us QC members stuck in Adelaide wanting to get to Europe. At least we can book a QF flight number on a  EK operated flight and still use the EK business lounge in DXB.

Nick Sydney 2

Nick Sydney 2

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 Jul 2015

Total posts 223

A few comments about SIN or HK being the preferred choice of stop. If one travels for business then the choice is irrelevant.  It's 90 mins whether in DXB or SIN. Enough time to freshen up. If you have time for a night or two then it's a personal choice. I like the lounges as DXB for the convenience.  The SIN and HK lounges are also fine. But to allude to reasons relating to Dubai being in the Mid East and so on is just ridiculous. I have stayed there many times and have never had a problem. Folks an airport is an airport. The only time recently that the choice of airport is relevant to me is in NYC.  JFK and reaching it from Midtown Manhattan is a nightmare.  So La Guardia is it for me. Otherwise an airport is simply a point of transit and to board a plane. A fancy bus stop. 

Serg

Serg

QFF

12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1446

IMHO plainly stupid. If QF keeps only SYD-DXB flight then yes it means that one can get DXB - NameCityInEurope in one jump, but then it require changing flight in SYD. According to my experience it is far easier and simple to change flight say in Helsinki than in Sydney and especially so on fly back.
In other words as usual - if you like EK and keen to change flight in DXB then by all means buy EK ticket on EK metal.

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