Qantas to redeploy, upgrade two WA-based 717s

Qantas says redeploying two Boeing 717s from its intrastate WA network will be offset by increasing the utilisation of its Perth-based Fokker 100 fleet.

Two QantasLink 717s currently operating in Western Australia will be refitted from 125-seat all-economy class configurations to two-class 110-seat (12 business and 98 economy) interiors, Qantas says, as the airline continues to match capacity with demand.

The airline’s QantasLink regional arm operates a total of 20 Boeing 717s, with 10 single-class aircraft currently operating   intrastate WA flying and 10 two-class aircraft flying on East Coast routes.

Reconfiguring one of the 717s will allow that aircraft to be based in Brisbane to operate Brisbane-Adelaide and Brisbane-Cairns flight, in turn freeing up a Boeing 737-800 to be redeployed elsewhere on the Qantas network.

“By having the flexibility to move aircraft around the network we can manage changes in demand while continuing to support customers with the right schedule and product,” a Qantas spokesperson said via emailed statement.

The second reconfigured two-class aircraft will be used as an operational spare to cover maintenance on other 717s.

The first 717 will gain its new interior “later this year”, while the second aircraft will be refitted in January.

“Eight single-class 717 aircraft will continue to operate our intra-WA routes and we’ll also look to increase the utilisation of our F100 aircraft,” Qantas says.

“These changes will have no impact on our frequencies in intra-WA.”

The two aircraft will be refurbished at QantasLink’s Canberra heavy maintenance facility.

The 717s are crewed for QantasLink under contract by Cobham Aviation Services.


  1. Ben says

    It would be nice if WA pax got the same niceties as the east coast ones! Guess we just have to continue to await the occasional 737 service to get the luxury of IFE and business class (if you can afford it/have it paid for).

  2. peter says

    Agree with Ben, you pay huge prices in WA and get inferior aircraft. Fokkers are very old airframes. Both major airlines have been price gouging in WA for years. Hence the current parliamentary inquiry. which is probably toothless anyway

  3. Malcolm Smith BROOME says

    As usual, WA is the poor cousin EXCEPT when it relates to fare prices in regional WA

  4. Mike says

    Paragraph three points out there are twenty B717 aircraft in the QFlink fleet.
    Twelve single-class in WA and 8 two-class over East.
    Okay, the article states two B717s from the WA fleet are to be reconfigured, which would leave ten B717s.
    In summary the article quotes Qantas as saying, “Eight single-class 717 aircraft will continue to operate our intra-WA routes,”
    So, what is happening with the missing pair of B717s from the WA fleet?

  5. says

    Hi @Mike, apologies, no missing aeroplanes, just bad maths. There are currently 10 single-class and 10 two-class 717s.

  6. John Reid says

    Wish they could buy a few more 717 airframes somewhere…shows just how right the DC-9 was! .

  7. Craig says

    @ John Reid

    There are a few airlines wanting to increase their fleet size but there just aren’t the airframes available. Qantas and Hawaiian have been competing for those that do come on the market.