Qantas plans to add extra services to Japan and the Philippines while scaling back its presence in Beijing and Dallas/Fort Worth as part of changes to its international network.
The airline announced on Tuesday it would increase its Sydney-Osaka Kansai schedule to four flights a week from December 7, compared with three times a week currently. Qantas is the only airline offering nonstop flights between Sydney and Osaka. The route is served with Airbus A330 equipment.
Meanwhile, the airline said it would lift its A330 Sydney-Manila service to daily from October 28, compared with six times a week currently. The airline competes with Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific on the route.
However, its nonstop Sydney-Beijing flight, which launched in January 2017 with A330s, would be reduced to five flights a week from daily. Qantas said it would drop flights on the “lower demand days” of Tuesday and Thursday. Its alliance partner China Eastern and Air China are also on the route.
There were also adjustments to Qantas’s North American network, with Sydney-Honolulu to receive a capacity boost over the summer months when a Boeing 747-400 replaces the A330 that normally serves the route.
The use of the 747-400 between December 7 2018 and Easter 2019 means Qantas will be able to offer premium economy to Honolulu, given its 747s are configured in three classes (business, premium economy and economy) while the A330s have just business and economy.
Qantas’s low-cost carrier unit Jetstar also flies between Sydney and Honolulu, as does Hawaiian Airlines.
In other network changes, Qantas plans to make the Sydney-Los Angeles route an all A380 operation by December 4, compared with six A380 and one 747 service a week currently. Extra flights on the route over December and January will also be flown with A380s, Qantas said.
Also, Qantas customers will have a daily nonstop option between Sydney and San Francisco from December 17, up from six times a week currently.
Offsetting those capacity additions will be a reduction of Sydney-Dallas/Fort Worth from a daily service to six nonstop flights a week from February 4.
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The changes were “in response to demand and to better utilise its fleet,” Qantas said.
“The adjustments to our international network are part of our strategy of making the best use of our fleet and matching demand by having the right aircraft, on the right route, at the right time,” a Qantas spokesperson said in a statement.
“We’re already seeing strong demand for the end of year holiday period on our services to Los Angeles and Osaka, so we expect the extra capacity to be well received.”
In February, Qantas and American Airlines applied to the US Department of Transportation to deepen their partnership on trans-Pacific routes.
The pair told the DOT the future of Qantas’s nonstop Sydney-Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) service and American’s Los Angeles-Sydney and Los Angeles-Auckland flights would be at risk should the partnership be knocked back.
The application is the pair’s second attempt to receive approval to work more closely together as part of a proposed revenue-sharing, metal-neutral, joint business agreement. The DOT rejected the first application in November 2016.