Royal Brunei passengers travelling from Melbourne to London will shave five hours and 15 minutes from their trip when the airline's current two-stop route via Brunei and Dubai becomes a one-stop journey via Brunei only, from October 28 2018.
The Brunei flag-carrier says its Boeing 787s "are presently undergoing modifications by Boeing to enable them to fly from Brunei to London Heathrow direct" without the need for today's refuelling stop at Dubai.
As part of the change, the airline’s flights to both Melbourne and London will be re-timed from October 28, while a dedicated Brunei-Dubai-Brunei service will launch from October 29 for passengers travelling to the UAE.
From late October, flight BI6 from Melbourne to Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei) will depart at 6:30pm daily, arriving at 10:40pm local time. Passengers continuing to London will connect to flight BI3 at 12:15am, touching down at 6:50am, one calendar day later than when departing Melbourne.
On the return journey from Heathrow, BI4 is wheels-up at 5:05pm daily, landing in Brunei at 2:40pm local time the next day, with the airline’s Melbourne-bound BI5 flight jetting off at 7pm to reach Melbourne at 5am one extra day later.
These flights will continue to be served by Royal Brunei’s Boeing 787-8 aircraft, on which 18 business class seats take pride of place up the front, adopting a 2-2-2 layout…
… with business class passengers offered access to the Marhaba Lounge in Melbourne…
… to Royal Brunei’s new flagship business class lounge while on the ground in Brunei…
… and when departing London, to Gulf Air’s Falcon Gold Lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4, which regular UK travellers may have previously visited when flying Etihad during the period when Etihad's own lounge was being refurbished:
As of October 29, the airline’s services from Brunei to Dubai will run at 12:20am on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays under flight BI7, arriving in Dubai at 5am the same day, with journeys back operating at 6am for a 6pm arrival in Brunei.