Qantas to resume Perth-Singapore flights on Boeing 737

By David Flynn, April 17 2015

Qantas will relaunch Perth-Singapore flights from June 26, just over a year since the airline axed the route and abandoned regular international services from the WA capital.

The airline will roster five flights per week on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with a noon departure from Perth and a return to the WA capital shortly before midnight.

However, travellers shouldn't expect a lie-flat bed in business class or even copious amounts of legroom: Qantas will run the route on a compact Boeing 737-800 aircraft instead of the big Airbus A330.

The Boeing 737 is a single-aisle workhorse mostly seen darting between Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, with domestic business class seats which will stretch the limit of comfort on the five hour Perth-Singapore flight.

The seat's recline and legroom is pretty much on par with Qantas' international premium economy seats on the Airbus A380 and Boeing 747, although the Boeing 737 business class bench is slightly wider.

Each seat comes with a 10.6-inch touchscreen plus an AC and USB sockets for keeping your laptop, tablet or smartphone charged up en route.

Creature comforts

Onboard service will be in keeping with an international flight, with business travellers enjoying meals from Neil Perry's Rockpool Group, Kate Spade and Jack Spade amenity kits and – on the evening Singapore-Perth leg – business class pyjamas.

Qantas' timetable shows flight QF71 leaving Perth at 12 noon for a 5.20pm arrival into Singapore; the return QF72 service is wheels-up from Singapore at 6.25pm to reach Perth at 11.40pm.

Qantas International CEO Gareth Evans said the schedule and choice of aircraft was about making the Perth-Singapore service "commercially viable."

The evening arrival into Singapore is intended to not only suit business travellers but provide "excellent connections with our airline partners into key regional Asia destinations including Tokyo, Shanghai and Delhi, subject to regulatory approval,” Evans added.

Launch fares from $199

Qantas will mark the launch with one-way economy fares from $199 going on sale at 10.30am WST (12.30pm EST) Friday April 17 to 9.50pm WST (11.50pm EST) Tuesday April 28 or until sold out.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce previously blamed harsh economics, increased competition and "ongoing record fuel prices" – prices which have since subsided – for the Flying Kangaroo's decision to shutter regular international flights from Perth.

Read: Qantas CEO – "Why we pulled out of Perth"

However, in August last year Joyce's lieutenant Gareth Evans – then Chief Financial Officer for the Qantas Group, and now CEO of Qantas International – alluded to a Plan B for Perth, telling an aviation conference in Sydney that Qantas planned to relaunch the Perth-Singapore service "with a different approach."

That approach appears to have been the smaller Boeing 737 which will once again carry the airline's red tail to The Lion City.

Perth-Singapore: Qantas vs the rest

Competing airlines use larger twin-aisle aircraft between Perth and Singapore, such as Singapore Airlines' Airbus A330 and Boeing 777-200 jets.

Qantas' premium competitor on the Perth-Singapore run is Virgin Australia partner and stakeholder Singapore Airlines, which offers four flights a day on larger twin-aisle aircraft such as the Airbus A330 and Boeing 777-200.

Singapore Airlines' business class on those jets offer seats with greater legroom which convert into sloping flat beds, with return tickets selling for around $4,100.

This will make business class pricing a crucial element for Qantas, which will find it hard to compete against Singapore Airlines on the basis of seats and flight schedules alone.

Singapore Airlines' low-cost offshoot Scoot is positioned at the lower end of the market, with daily flights using the advanced Boeing 787, where the ScootBiz seats sell for around $800-$1,000 return.

AusBT Review: Scoot’s Boeing 787-9 'ScootBiz' business class seats

Qantas' own budget Jetstar runs two daily flights between Perth and Singapore but in smaller economy-only Airbus A320s.

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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.

Serg

Serg

QFF

12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1446

What is really shame that Qantas will sell those "business" seats at real business price!

V1213

V1213

19 Jun 2012

Total posts 28

At least the launch sale prices are competitive - $1499 return in J is worth it IMO.

Serg

Serg

QFF

12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1446

And Qantas just launch Brisbane-Perth new Business suite! Does it getting ridiculous?

reeves35

reeves35

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 521

I suppose it is good that they have re-entered this market even though it is fairly token and unlikely to compete with SQ in a meaningful way given limited frequency and dubious timings.  It is more likely to compete against the ScootBiz offering in premium rather than SQ except for those who are addicted to QF FF or bound by contracts.  

 

In economy, it is hard to say what the advantage of QF is against Scoot and JQ unless it is priced close to those airlines where the free meals etc may be seen as a bonus.  At the entry fare, economy is good value; longer term is open to debate.

Yohy

Yohy

20 Apr 2014

Total posts 94

Seriously? A 737 on this route, are people really going to pay over the odds for a few QF points for an experience that will be very close to JQ standards.

with the end of the mining boom hopefully a 332 can be redeployed to this route as demand tapers, even one in domestic configuration would be more successful at competing with SQ than a 737.

GgFlyer

GgFlyer

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 Mar 2015

Total posts 55

They should put some re-furnished a330s on this route, but I guess a 737 is better than nothing.

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

What and fly them half empty?

Chris_PER

Chris_PER

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Feb 2014

Total posts 451

Assuming it survives until summer, a QF A332 (weekly AKL service) and 738 might restore a hint of aussie pride to the international terminal.

sagidec

sagidec

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

19 Nov 2011

Total posts 246

Perth has opportunities to be hub for QF to connect to nearby countries with the range that 737-800 can do where there aren't too many passengers to fill an A330-300 or larger.

They could perhaps open up possibilities of Jakarta, Medan, Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Penang, Langkawi, Manila. They could even codeshare on MH to go beyond from KUL to increase traffic.

Chris_PER

Chris_PER

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Feb 2014

Total posts 451

The only one that would remotely work would be an A332 to KUL to hook up with BAs service to LHR when it gets re-instated later in the year.  But with Air Asia X and MH, it's a bit saturated imo.

drgmarshall

drgmarshall

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2012

Total posts 140

Does anyone know if the 5.20pm arrival into Singapore co-incides with the QF A380 which I still believe operates from Sydney - SIN - London?  I'd love to go back to the old Qantas Kangeroo route to the UK via Singapore. Emirates and Dubai  from Perth just don't do "it" for me.

Chris_PER

Chris_PER

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Feb 2014

Total posts 451

No QF A380s from SIN to Europe.  BA operate A380s though I think.

Ozshanel

Ozshanel

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Dec 2014

Total posts 30

QF do not have any aircraft that operate to London via Singapore.  All are via Dubai.

jrfsp

jrfsp

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

04 Mar 2014

Total posts 111

It connects to the BA11/12 which is an A380 service, have to book on BA ticket as QF will route you on EK metal

riley

riley

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Mar 2014

Total posts 574

Sinagpore Airlines must be shaking in their boots with that news!

You have to be in it to win it, but how could any passenger choose Qantas 737 over a Singapore 772? 

patrickk

patrickk

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 395

Apart from sheer size I think a 737 is all over a 772 (with 10 across seating??). Using narrow bodies to their range makes sense (757s across the Atlantic are very common) and in the US 737s across the continent is the rule. This route should work well, and next should be a A332 Perth to Dubai to connect with QF9 and keep the utilisation rate up.

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

I don't think SQ could care less to be honest. They have the lions share of the market for the simple reason of their onwards network.

Qantas cannot compete with that and is not pretending to either, though maybe now perople realise why Qantas wanted to set-up their own full service airline in Singapore.

abudhabi1

abudhabi1

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

It depends on the age of the plane.I would be connecting from Adelaide using the Crazy O'Clock service to Perth to feed into this but would sooner If It was a New 738 get this over say a past it's use by date SIA 772.

David

David

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2322

Business class prices currently starting at $764 one-way for Sale and $977 for Saver - just don't leave your run too late and have to stump $2,500 for Flex. Still, they're fairly competitive prices.

itchyfeet

itchyfeet

09 Jul 2014

Total posts 31

I'm really not sure whether to be happy or offended about this news... Is Perth not good enough for better aircraft and better scheduling?

With the current iron ore problems, now doesn't seem any better economically than when they pulled out of the route in the first place. Hopefully it's just the start of better things though.

patrickk

patrickk

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 395

Which is a better aircraft (not bigger!!!) than a new 737 for likely loads???

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

Define better? It is all about the load to be carried. No point flying a 'better' (if you will) A330 if it is half empty and making a loss.

ChrisFrame

ChrisFrame

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 Jan 2014

Total posts 4

737 or not, the Qantas experience beats the Jetstar offering in both classes and gives Perth based travellers some options to earn points and status credits at a full rate when travelling direct to Asia. 

Very good first step, though I expect the majority of the success will be made in the economy cabin. 

DrTGanguly

DrTGanguly

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Nov 2011

Total posts 185

Wow these threads quickly get sidetracked! I think there is a lot of positive in this news.  QF are trying to resucitate a route that in important to the network, and important to loyalty.  They have consistently touted re-investment and renewal in the international network once profit was achieved.

Sure it may not be what we would all like (daily A330s with flat beds) but it is a positive step in the right direction.  I note that going back a few years Jakarta was an Int. destination from Perth with 737s prior to the jetstar take over, and as other posters have mentioned there are many airlines that use 737s/A320s for similar length flights.

I suspect that if they can re-establish a customer base, aim to expland it with competative pricing etc then this route may be ripe for a 787 etc in the not so distant future.

As I said, its a good sign of things to come.  Maybe direct ADL-SIN will come next...although that might be a bit long for a 737... 

Henrypenang

Henrypenang

One world

22 Sep 2013

Total posts 2

Try the business class of Air Asia and the price !!

Mightyreds

Mightyreds

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Feb 2015

Total posts 260

Give us the news so many want...Singapore to London!!

hutch

hutch

07 Oct 2012

Total posts 1218

Will be waiting for that news for a long long time... 

abudhabi1

abudhabi1

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

Many of us miss those days.Just sitting next to someone when I last flew Qantas ADL-SIN connecting onto the BA12 onto London got me thinking how much we QF lot who fear Dubai really miss our beloved Favourite city of Asia.

PJM

PJM

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

02 Sep 2012

Total posts 2

The departure timing from PER to SIN is to early especially of a Wednesday when there are many FIFO workers that arrive into Perth Domestic terminal from 10.00am to 11.20am time slots and hence are unable to get to the international terminal to board this QF flight. Hence will have to stay flying with SQ as they has the best depature slot to pick up all relative customers to SIN. Qantas need to consult the travelling commuter before jumping at shadows. SQ have the lions share believe I fly from PER to SIN every week and there aircraft and service are impeccable. Qantas needs to do some more homework on this flight as basically they have gone into direct competition with one of asia's largest airlines. 

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

Singapore Airlines has the Lions share of traffic because of where they can take passengers beyond Singapore.

Only about 30% of all passengers that pass through Changi actually enter Signapore. And of those 30% many are only stopping over for a night or two on the way to/from somewhere else and of course some live there too. Doesn't leave much left for others to pick up the slack on.

Additionally Singapore attracts on average 2410 Australians visitors a day. Now WA has about 10% of the population of Australia, so if we were to assume that travel patterns were equal around Aus, that means that there are only 240 passengers a day from WA. Of course we need to factor in Singaporians visiting WA. Either way it doesn't leave much of a passenger pool if you don't have the ability to take or receive passengers beyond does it?

Frank

Frank

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Sep 2013

Total posts 175

Why would you want PJs on a 5 hr flight Singapore to Perth?   I doubt they get them issued in biz on a Sydney to Perth flight.

 

They still have a long way to go to win me back, a 737 just doesnt cut it.

RaptorNation158

RaptorNation158

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Aug 2014

Total posts 513

The old Qantas has almost been ressurected.

grov

grov

QFF

19 Sep 2013

Total posts 149

An absolute joke, to remove the 330 service with Skybeds, then reinstate it with those horrible 737s. The little leprechaun just doesn't get it.

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

Maybe your right the leprechaun doesn't get it. I mean to say how silly wasting A330's with flat beds on 4.5 hour domestic flights when there are ports in Asia that those A330's could be used on, ex Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne you know the corridor where 80% of the countries population lives. I mean to say the rest of the world gets by quite nicley with A320's and 737's on 4-6 hour flights.

 

 

 

 

JBH

JBH

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

01 May 2012

Total posts 118

Good to see QF have come to their senses and returned this service albeit piece meal 737 metal and 5 days a week. Come on QF step up and compete. The irony was not lost with the email blast today from QF praising themselves on the return of service "Perth, we missed you." the opening line, really?

TheRealBabushka

TheRealBabushka

21 Apr 2012

Total posts 3034

Who's complaining? Bring on the cheap direct Oneworld fares from Perth to Singapore vv.

To those moaners: It's only a 5h flight. Suck it up princesses.

To Qantas: Don't even dream of charging premium fares on this sector. It's not going to happen.  

abudhabi1

abudhabi1

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 279

I agree quit complaining.I remember the days when every week they ran a Jumbo Adelaide via Perth to Singapore way back in 1990 and that was a much bigger plane than the 738's THEY use now.I would have done for an inbuilt audio video on demand system back then but other than that no worries.I know they don't unless you count the two BA services to London have feed to the UK out of any Australian City but it is a start.

romaau

romaau

20 Feb 2012

Total posts 66

Interesting to see all the comments.

i think it's great that Qantas has restarted the service. To compete they actually may want to equip their 737 with a slightly better business class product and remove some of the economy seats.

There are lots of airlines that have put large business class seats 50-60inch pitch on 737/a320s. Virgin America first has 55" pitch.

This large business class would also work on the cross country flights and would be very welcome to the 737. They could even use some of the seats out of the refurbished 767s that are just standing there unused.

In Economy you would be better flying Scoot/Singapore as you get more legroom. As it stands even Scoot has more room in its Y and J products. So the only product they are beating is JQ.

Will people travel on it? I think so. There are still lots of people that chase the status credits, their company has agreements or they simply love to fly the red tail.

MichaelP

MichaelP

07 Feb 2013

Total posts 14

With 100 A320's on order (Qantas group, ostensibly for Jetstar), the notion of mainline QF replacing the 73's with Airbus metal is entirely plausible. The recently announced LR version of the A321 Neo would make an excellent mid - haul platform... I recently flew JetBlue's 'Mint' business class cabin LA - NY... they're fitted with basically the same lie flat seat that QF have refurbed the A330's with. JB's are in a staggered four abreast - two abreast config, meaning every second row has two private 'suites'... while not a widebody it is an excellent setup, and the range of the LR would allow direct flights to just about everywhere in Asia. On busier routes it would allow them to increase frequency without adding too much capacity... 

 

jmcgeough

jmcgeough

22 Oct 2014

Total posts 4

The PER - SIN is a good size market now... so I think the decision to re-launch the service with a 737 is a bit gutless... my decision would be to re-launch with a large aircraft (larger the better) and spoil the passengers with a smorgasboard of special (experimental?) services and goodies... with the established pricing in this market established, passengers with switch for something special in the service area; the spaciouness of a large aircraft adds significant value to passenger comfort! Like a nice size bar and lounge in the economy section... something unusual but special! And maybe Uber Black rides to the airport for Business and First Class pax...  make it the 'Gereatest Show On Earth' type of flight... all with adequat  pre-launch publicity of course!

AJW

AJW

16 Nov 2011

Total posts 501

 PER-SIN with SIN as a destination is not a good market. About 300 seats a day. The reason SQ has so many flights and on wide bodies and the reason Qantas had A330's before is because of the passengers using SIN as a transit point to somewhere else. But SIN as a destination not that big in the grand scheme of things.

Posted the stats a couple of times now but only 30% of all passengers that pass through Changi actually enter Singapore, and that 30% also includes those that may be using Singapore for a night or two stop over. 


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