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Qantas orders six more Boeing 787-9s, brings forward 747 retirement

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 2, 2018

Qantas has exercised options for an additional six Boeing 787-9s, which will bring to 14 the number of the type in the fleet and lead to the withdrawal of the 747 in 2020.

The airline said on Wednesday the six additional 787-9s would arrive between “late 2019 and mid-to-late 2020”.
Currently, Qantas has four 787-9s which are used to operate a Los Angeles-Melbourne-Perth-London Heathrow rotation.

It has four more on firm order due to arrive by the end of 2018. That will allow four aircraft to be based in Brisbane and to replace 747-operated services between Brisbane and Los Angeles, as well as between Los Angeles and New York JFK.

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Qantas said the additional six on order would replace its last six 747-400s by the 2020.

“This really is the end of one era and the start of another,” Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said in a statement.

“The jumbo has been the backbone of Qantas International for more than 40 years and we’ve flown almost every type that Boeing built.

“Over the years, each new version of the 747 allowed Qantas to fly further and improve what we offered passengers. The Dreamliners are now doing the same thing.

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“The 787 has better economics and a longer range, and it has already opened up new routes like Perth to London. With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe.”

Joyce said it was fitting that the retirement of the last 747 would coincide with the airline’s centenary in 2020.
“By the end of 2020 we’ll have farewelled the 747, finished upgrading the cabins of our A380s, and welcomed our fourteenth 787,” Joyce said.

“That’s a great proposition for our customers and creates some really exciting opportunities for our people,” he added.

Qantas has 10 747-400s currently in service, comprising six GE-powered 747-400ERs (VH-OEE thru OEJ) delivered between 2002 and 2003, a single GE-powered 747-48E (VH-OEB, built for Asiana in 1993 and acquired by Qantas in 1998) and three RR-powered 747-438s (VH-OJS, OJT and OJU) delivered in 1999-2000. The airline says it will “steadily” retire the 747 “between July this year and the end of 2020”.

Qantas said the additional six 787-9s would feature the same cabin configuration as the Dreamliners currently in service, with 236 seats comprising 42 in business in a 1-2-1 configuration offering direct aisle access for every passenger, 28 in premium economy laid out 2-3-2 across and 166 in economy in a 3-3-3 layout with 32in seat pitch and 17.2in seat width.

By contrast its 747-400s have 364 seats comprising 58 SkyBed seats in business, 36 seats premium economy and 270 in economy.

Despite the reduction in seat capacity, the airline said “the reduced maintenance needs of the 787 plus more efficient aircraft patterning and reduced payload restrictions on long routes mean the actual impact on overall capacity for Qantas International is expected to be negligible”.

Qantas also said it planned to add another 787 simulator to assist with pilot training. This would be “on top of the Qantas Group Pilot Academy” due to open in 2019.

QANTAS ON TRACK FOR PROFIT GROWTH

Meanwhile, the airline group said in a trading update on Wednesday underlying profit before tax (PBT) – which excludes one-off items and which it regards as the best indication of financial performance – is forecast to be in the range of $1.55 billion and $1.6 billion for the 12 months to June 30 2018.

If the result is in line with guidance, it would represent an improvement of up to 14 per cent from underlying PBT of $1.40 billion in 2016/17.

Qantas’s market update said revenue across the airline group for the three months to March 31 2018 was $4.25 billion, up 7.5 per cent compared with the prior corresponding period.

Meanwhile, revenue per available seat kilometre (RASK), which is a measure of demand, was up six per cent.

“We’re seeing solid results from each of our business units, which is a reflection of broadly positive trading conditions and the work we’ve done to strengthen the Group,” Joyce said.

“A large part of our earnings momentum is driven by ongoing investment in customer experience. Improvements to aircraft interiors, rollout of free wi-fi, changes to our route network and lounge upgrades are why Qantas and Jetstar have a strong place in the market.

“We’ve also continued to broaden our earning streams with health insurance and financial services under Qantas Loyalty.

“Our strong performance allows us to invest in more Dreamliners, which are a lot more efficient than the 747s they replace and give our customers a better experience. They also open up new network options and will be an important part of our success moving forward.”

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35 Comments

  • Christopher

    says:

    Wish they ordered the 747-8 just for nostalgia purposes. Damn airline economics.

  • Leighton

    says:

    Well done to Qantas in becoming such a formidable and profitable airline…hats off to Alan Joyce.
    Sad to see the 747s go…hard to imagine it was once an all jumbo airline!!!

  • kjr

    says:

    The reduced capacity of switching to 787’s will make the Qantas frequent flyer program almost worthless. I have not seen a classic rewards business class seat available for MEL to LON since the 787’s were introduced. Using points for an economy class seat is a waste after you factor in the taxes & fuel surcharge

  • Lechuga

    says:

    Not enough I think. 14 is a small amount I would’ve expect 10 more in the second order, to cover older routes and new ones.
    Will be 6 based straight in Sydney and half of the routes there’s a strong chance a few of them will have to be doubled up with Melbourne or Brisbane.
    Vancouver, Johannesburg, San Francisco, all could be done from both Sydney and Melbourne, all have the demand.
    Not to mention Mel-Dfw which is underdone.

  • Brendan

    says:

    You might find that by 2020 they will announce an order for another 10 at least to be split between Qantas and Jetstar. With a less premium configuration to operate the Asian market.

  • Nathan

    says:

    What happens to SYD-SCL, given the current regulatory restrictions on twin operations? Maybe the concerns are resolved at the same time as the last 747 disappears?

  • Richard James

    says:

    QANTAS is on a diet !
    Down sizing the aircraft, for more Profit….
    The Bottom line …” Profit”

  • Scott

    says:

    Well done Qantas, good to see fleet replacements and new aircraft arriving on our shores.

  • Radar

    says:

    Qantas celebrates its 100 year anniversary on 16th November 2020. That wold be a very fitting and emotional day for the last QF 747 to sail off into the sunset from its Sydney base.

  • Bill

    says:

    @Richard James, Qantas is a business like any other, what do you expect? Of course Qantas will retire the gas guzzling 747s if more 787s can be delivered sooner.

  • Craigy

    says:

    For the order to be announced now suggests that Qantas had to either take the options with their delivery dates or let them go. The announcement that the last B744ER will be retired in 2020 means that none of the B744 aircraft will be repainted with the new livery.

  • random

    says:

    What happens to the last QF 747-400ER to be retired (perhaps OEJ as the most recent arrival)?
    I hope it is maintained as a gate stand or museum piece – surely there is another location (other than a boneyard) that would benefit from having a 747-400ER.
    Would be nice to have a local equivalent of the Smithsonian Stephen F Udvar-Hazy centre, with similar resources.
    Any thoughts? I assume QF would want to convert it via breakdown or repurpose into dollars – understandable but unfortunate.

  • Ken

    says:

    Damn shame Alan Joyce. Why not 747 800s.

  • John Reid

    says:

    Random, we already have a 747-200 preserved at Qantas Founders Museum (Longreach) and the first -400 at HARS (Illawarra). Although I’d love to see the last -400ER preserved, I think it would have to be somewhere other than the east Coast to be viable long-term as it lives on its visitor revenue. Too many preserved aircraft is almost as bad as too few.
    Besides, I bet that the ERs might be attractive for freighter conversions. Qantas’ 6 ERs were the only ones built for passengers.

  • Chris

    says:

    Everyone lamenting the minimal 787-9 orders thus far, you’re forgetting ‘Project Sunrise’.
    That will deliver either an A-350ULR (Special Edition) fleet or a B-777X fleet to add to the current fleet of long haulers.
    I have no doubt that Joyce and his crew know more about airframe fleets, fuel burn, PAX economics etc…. than anyone here. Especially with how well QF is doing as an airline.
    Might we take notes.

  • Ben

    says:

    I’m a big fan of the 747 so it’s sad to see them go. However from an airline economics perspective I’m actually surprised it took so long to replace them all. Although I do get the arguments about depreciation.
    One may think if they are going for pure efficiency, that they’ll target the aircraft they’re looking at for project sunrise, as an A380 replacement. So they’ll end up operating about a dozen big twins (most likely the 787x or maybe the A350) and the remainder of the wide body fleet would be the 787-9. Then perhaps the Boeing middle of market aircraft when it’s launched to replace the A330s.
    That will likely leave a capacity shortfall, unless they order extra airframes.
    It would be nice to see them order the 747-8, but sadly that would be wishful thinking.
    Now for all us av geeks getting geared up to book our seats on the final QF 747 flight. I know it’s still 2 years away but that would be a flight to be on.

  • John

    says:

    Spot on @kjr – I also have a bucket load of QF points and have been unable to find any Business class seats. With such a large drop in capacity rewards seats look like becoming rarer than hen’s teeth.
    Whilst Qantas would prefer to fill their planes with fare paying customers they need to recognise that frequent flyers deserve/expect to have a chance to use them on long haul flights. Otherwise, we may as well dump Qantas and switch to another carrier.

  • Craigy

    says:

    @ Random. I agree with John Reid, I think the B744ERs will have a life post Qantas as freighters. The others will be broken up and recycled.
    @ Chris I think Qantas will announce orders for the B787 as the options fall due. Saves on expenditure until necessary.
    @ Ben. Depreciation is done over 10 years. These aircraft have been fully depreciated for some time.
    @John. I guess it depends where and when you want to fly to use points. They already allocate a number of seats for upgrades etc except for blackout periods. Helps to be platinum to get the seats that come up or judicious in which flights you target.. Something to consider though, FF points are a liability in the company’s accounts just like annual leave of staff.

  • Ben

    says:

    @ Craigy – well there you go I didn’t know that re: depreciation, Even more of an argument as to why they didn’t retire them earlier.
    BTW I’ve just realised a slight correction on my original post – I was referring to QF getting the 787x for project sunrise. I did of course mean the 777x.
    Although if a 787x is ever launched – it may be a contender for project sunrise 🙂

  • Australiana

    says:

    Agree with @kjr regarding the difficulty using Qantas FF points. It’s becoming a joke. Impossible to find a business class seat to book with points and booking economy is pointless (pardon the pun) when taxes and charges are added.
    I’ve switched programs to Finnair which is so much more generous and easy to accrue and actually use your points. Very generous Tiering points as well.
    I’m pretty much done with Qantas Frequent Flyer and just accrue points with the credit card.

  • Kel

    says:

    As per my second comment of last week article ‘Qantas tweaks International schedule with changes to US and Asian routes’ Qantas requires 9 B747s to operate the present schedule.
    With B787s replacing the B747s on BNE-LAX-JFK route this requirement reduces 7 B747s to operate the normal schedule, with all services operating from SYD. However, 8 B747s are required to operate the Holiday Schedule.
    The spare A380 available from cancelling MEL-DXB-LHR is presently being used to repaint 8 A380s From 2nd quarter next year to the end 2020, it will be required for A380’s cabin upgrade. End of 2020 probably actually means end of November 2020 so that the plane is available for the Holiday Period.
    With an extra A380 available it will release a B747 permanently, probably SYD-HKG. This reduces normal schedule requirement to 6 B747s.
    However, for 2018/9 Holiday Period this B747 will operate SYD-HNL 5 times a week. It will not be available in the future. If the A330 service is increased to daily, the same capacity of 5 B747s will be achieved or exceeded depending upon the mix of 200 and 300 models. However, there will not be any premium economy. This will reduce Holiday period requirements to 7 B747s.
    SYD-HND is operated inefficiently with departures from both ends in the evening with a B747 sitting on ground all day in Tokyo. If this services is altered to operate like other Tokyo (NRT) and Asian services, one less B747 is require. The over 24 hours segment of SYD-JNB service will have to come out of other SYD B747s layovers. This reduces normal requirements to 5 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements 6 B747s.
    A plane or planes have been nominally allocated to a route. Extra flights can be operated if the planes switch routes. In the previous article I have demonstrated this with the Saturday SYD-YVR service. Probably a plane can be saved here as well as providing for the SYD-JNB segment over 24 hours.
    This reduces normal requirements to 4 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements at least 5 B747s.
    On a seating capacity this converts to 6.1 B787 with the Holiday Period requirements at least 7.7 B787s.
    To replace a daily B747 service with the same passenger capacity you require 10.8 B787s per week . Hence the daily B747 BNE-LAX service is being replaced with 11 B787s per week.
    There are still 3 B787 return services from BNE to USA to be allocated. This equivalent to .85 of B787. Rather than increasing the frequency of a particular service from SYD, if the required increase in frequency is operated from BNE with these 3 B787, the same capacity from AUS is achieved.
    We now have 6.85 B787s available which exceeds the normal requirements for the SYD B787s but is a plane short for Holiday periods.
    Some long layovers in the USA could possibly be utilised by a plane turning around in the morning, arriving in Aus late afternoon a day later. Leave that evening and arriving that afternoon in USA, in time to operate the normal evening flight.
    By doing this once a week, Virgin operate 11 services LAX to BNE and MEL combined with 3 B777s rather than the normal 10 services.
    However, I do not think there is sufficient B787’s long layovers in USA to gain a plane.
    Alternately, some SYD-HND services could be operated by A330s reducing B787s requirements.
    It will be interesting to see what happens.

  • Jarden

    says:

    So only 6 more 787s to come and 10 747s leaving the fleet by 2020 that is not enough to replace all the flying done by the 747 fleet. They will have to order more 787s or they will have to cut some routes and or frequencies.

  • Harrison

    says:

    When Are Qantas Going To Start Melbourne-Dallas

  • Mac Carter

    says:

    Would prefer the security of an extra two engines on a long overwater flight.
    Happily pay a bit more for the extra fuel and maintenance involved.
    Larger aircraft with less passengers onboard can earn more freight revenue.
    Enjoy the great photos of the old 747’s

  • Paul

    says:

    Qantas are increasing premium seating with the A380 refurb.
    Agree not keen on a 787 from Sydney to Johannesburg or Santiago, lot of water!
    Realise Latam do Santiago, but they are an operator from another country.
    Reckon Qantas would be better with a daily Perth Johannesburg, if no CASA approval for 787 Sydney Johannesburg.
    At the moment people from any other city south of Sydney it is a one stop trip, and they have to backtrack to catch the Johannesburg flight!
    Queensland its one stop.
    I can see Perth becoming an important mini hub for Qantas

  • Alpha141

    says:

    @Jarden,
    There are 10 787s on the way. 4 later this year previously ordered plus this 6 make ten.

  • Kel

    says:

    Alan Joyce’s comment “With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe” suggests that the additional B787’s flights to maintain the B747’s capacity may not exactly follow existing flights.
    Brisbane’s third and fourth B787s have been allocated to operate 4 returns flights to LAX with the other six days unallocated. If these 4 flights were switched to SFO, together with the proposed daily B787s to BNE-LAX-JFK, the same passenger capacity as the existing daily B747 flights would be maintained BNE to West Coast USA.
    Operating from SFO end, these two B787’s could operate four return flights to BNE and three return flights to SYD.
    HND is very very slot restricted and additional slots would be difficult to obtain. I planned a daily flight leaving SYD before midday to feed the existing overnight flight from HND. I planned four flights per week at the same time as existing daily overnight flight from SYD but to NRT, with the return flights leaving NRT in the morning.
    For South Africa, I planned the additional three flights per week to operate SYD-CPT (Cape Town).
    I did not plan for any B787s to operate SYD-HKG as I believe an A380 will replace the B747.
    By moving flights times, I was able to squeeze all my planned replacements B787’s flights for the SYD B747s flights into the six SYD based 787s operations together with utilising the two BNE planes as above.
    However, four planes were operating a four day rotation with all turn-a-rounds being two hours in length.
    If on the three days per week, when double flights left SFO, the ‘BNE’ plane was switched with the ‘SYD’ plane, the ‘SYD’ plane would have a long layover in SFO after the return flight.
    The fifth plane operating SYD-HND had a daily three hour turn-a-round in SYD.
    This schedule was far too tights and could not be operated, as it left too little time for maintenance and recovery from delayed flights.
    With B747s retired, there will not be enough B787s to operate the normal schedule. Most SYD- Tokyo flights will have to be operated by A330s until further B787 are acquired.

  • Craigy

    says:

    Parts are currently arriving at Boeing for the final assembly of ZNE

  • David Fix

    says:

    I will miss the Qantas 747 but I do like the 787

  • SENPERFi

    says:

    Came to Australia on board – EBK, ’81. Flew in the -300s and -400s too. Memories!

  • ESLowe

    says:

    42 people in business class…that’s where the money is @ times the price of an economy ticket!!!! and all of those people will flock to the Mach 2.2 Boom Jet for about the same ticket price _ and when they get fuel efficient engines, that’ll be 5.5 HOURS to L.A. – not 15. Time to get back on my old hobby horse…the 787 has no future. It cannot carry enough tourist class schmucks, like me, to be really profitable. Boeing will have to use the innovation it used on the 787 and 777 to build a 1000 cattle class passenger 4 engined jet. The international tourist market is to important to nations economies now to not provide transports. There are landmark passenger planes that changed the industry…the DC3, Boeing 747 and soon the 45 passenger Mach 2.2. Boom Jet.

  • ESLowe

    says:

    oops, I should have said @ 8 (eight) times the ticket price……

  • Vannus

    says:

    Once QF’s 747-400ER’s are gone, will 787’s be used to fly Antarctic day flights?

  • andrewdouglas

    says:

    Qantas premium economy on the 787 is dreadful. The seat is less comfortable than the 747 seats and passengers are funneled to already overcapacity economy toilets. I am switching to Air Canada after 40 years flying Qantas. Goodbye.

  • Mark

    says:

    Be interesting to see what they do with the 380s as they must be a bit underemployed at present (remembering they will only have two more 787s than 380’s but they seem to be operating to a far higher work rate).

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Qantas orders six more Boeing 787-9s, brings forward 747 retirement

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 2, 2018

Qantas has exercised options for an additional six Boeing 787-9s, which will bring to 14 the number of the type in the fleet and lead to the withdrawal of the 747 in 2020.

The airline said on Wednesday the six additional 787-9s would arrive between “late 2019 and mid-to-late 2020”.
Currently, Qantas has four 787-9s which are used to operate a Los Angeles-Melbourne-Perth-London Heathrow rotation.

It has four more on firm order due to arrive by the end of 2018. That will allow four aircraft to be based in Brisbane and to replace 747-operated services between Brisbane and Los Angeles, as well as between Los Angeles and New York JFK.

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Qantas said the additional six on order would replace its last six 747-400s by the 2020.

“This really is the end of one era and the start of another,” Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said in a statement.

“The jumbo has been the backbone of Qantas International for more than 40 years and we’ve flown almost every type that Boeing built.

“Over the years, each new version of the 747 allowed Qantas to fly further and improve what we offered passengers. The Dreamliners are now doing the same thing.

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“The 787 has better economics and a longer range, and it has already opened up new routes like Perth to London. With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe.”

Joyce said it was fitting that the retirement of the last 747 would coincide with the airline’s centenary in 2020.
“By the end of 2020 we’ll have farewelled the 747, finished upgrading the cabins of our A380s, and welcomed our fourteenth 787,” Joyce said.

“That’s a great proposition for our customers and creates some really exciting opportunities for our people,” he added.

Qantas has 10 747-400s currently in service, comprising six GE-powered 747-400ERs (VH-OEE thru OEJ) delivered between 2002 and 2003, a single GE-powered 747-48E (VH-OEB, built for Asiana in 1993 and acquired by Qantas in 1998) and three RR-powered 747-438s (VH-OJS, OJT and OJU) delivered in 1999-2000. The airline says it will “steadily” retire the 747 “between July this year and the end of 2020”.

Qantas said the additional six 787-9s would feature the same cabin configuration as the Dreamliners currently in service, with 236 seats comprising 42 in business in a 1-2-1 configuration offering direct aisle access for every passenger, 28 in premium economy laid out 2-3-2 across and 166 in economy in a 3-3-3 layout with 32in seat pitch and 17.2in seat width.

By contrast its 747-400s have 364 seats comprising 58 SkyBed seats in business, 36 seats premium economy and 270 in economy.

Despite the reduction in seat capacity, the airline said “the reduced maintenance needs of the 787 plus more efficient aircraft patterning and reduced payload restrictions on long routes mean the actual impact on overall capacity for Qantas International is expected to be negligible”.

Qantas also said it planned to add another 787 simulator to assist with pilot training. This would be “on top of the Qantas Group Pilot Academy” due to open in 2019.

QANTAS ON TRACK FOR PROFIT GROWTH

Meanwhile, the airline group said in a trading update on Wednesday underlying profit before tax (PBT) – which excludes one-off items and which it regards as the best indication of financial performance – is forecast to be in the range of $1.55 billion and $1.6 billion for the 12 months to June 30 2018.

If the result is in line with guidance, it would represent an improvement of up to 14 per cent from underlying PBT of $1.40 billion in 2016/17.

Qantas’s market update said revenue across the airline group for the three months to March 31 2018 was $4.25 billion, up 7.5 per cent compared with the prior corresponding period.

Meanwhile, revenue per available seat kilometre (RASK), which is a measure of demand, was up six per cent.

“We’re seeing solid results from each of our business units, which is a reflection of broadly positive trading conditions and the work we’ve done to strengthen the Group,” Joyce said.

“A large part of our earnings momentum is driven by ongoing investment in customer experience. Improvements to aircraft interiors, rollout of free wi-fi, changes to our route network and lounge upgrades are why Qantas and Jetstar have a strong place in the market.

“We’ve also continued to broaden our earning streams with health insurance and financial services under Qantas Loyalty.

“Our strong performance allows us to invest in more Dreamliners, which are a lot more efficient than the 747s they replace and give our customers a better experience. They also open up new network options and will be an important part of our success moving forward.”

25% off starts now! Australian Aviation magazine Cyber Monday sale is now live. Have the very best of Australian Aviation’s annual print and digital subscription. This includes every In Focus and Behind the Lens digital magazine, special coverage, exclusive photos and editions you may have miss. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

35 Comments

  • Christopher

    says:

    Wish they ordered the 747-8 just for nostalgia purposes. Damn airline economics.

  • Leighton

    says:

    Well done to Qantas in becoming such a formidable and profitable airline…hats off to Alan Joyce.
    Sad to see the 747s go…hard to imagine it was once an all jumbo airline!!!

  • kjr

    says:

    The reduced capacity of switching to 787’s will make the Qantas frequent flyer program almost worthless. I have not seen a classic rewards business class seat available for MEL to LON since the 787’s were introduced. Using points for an economy class seat is a waste after you factor in the taxes & fuel surcharge

  • Lechuga

    says:

    Not enough I think. 14 is a small amount I would’ve expect 10 more in the second order, to cover older routes and new ones.
    Will be 6 based straight in Sydney and half of the routes there’s a strong chance a few of them will have to be doubled up with Melbourne or Brisbane.
    Vancouver, Johannesburg, San Francisco, all could be done from both Sydney and Melbourne, all have the demand.
    Not to mention Mel-Dfw which is underdone.

  • Brendan

    says:

    You might find that by 2020 they will announce an order for another 10 at least to be split between Qantas and Jetstar. With a less premium configuration to operate the Asian market.

  • Nathan

    says:

    What happens to SYD-SCL, given the current regulatory restrictions on twin operations? Maybe the concerns are resolved at the same time as the last 747 disappears?

  • Richard James

    says:

    QANTAS is on a diet !
    Down sizing the aircraft, for more Profit….
    The Bottom line …” Profit”

  • Scott

    says:

    Well done Qantas, good to see fleet replacements and new aircraft arriving on our shores.

  • Radar

    says:

    Qantas celebrates its 100 year anniversary on 16th November 2020. That wold be a very fitting and emotional day for the last QF 747 to sail off into the sunset from its Sydney base.

  • Bill

    says:

    @Richard James, Qantas is a business like any other, what do you expect? Of course Qantas will retire the gas guzzling 747s if more 787s can be delivered sooner.

  • Craigy

    says:

    For the order to be announced now suggests that Qantas had to either take the options with their delivery dates or let them go. The announcement that the last B744ER will be retired in 2020 means that none of the B744 aircraft will be repainted with the new livery.

  • random

    says:

    What happens to the last QF 747-400ER to be retired (perhaps OEJ as the most recent arrival)?
    I hope it is maintained as a gate stand or museum piece – surely there is another location (other than a boneyard) that would benefit from having a 747-400ER.
    Would be nice to have a local equivalent of the Smithsonian Stephen F Udvar-Hazy centre, with similar resources.
    Any thoughts? I assume QF would want to convert it via breakdown or repurpose into dollars – understandable but unfortunate.

  • Ken

    says:

    Damn shame Alan Joyce. Why not 747 800s.

  • John Reid

    says:

    Random, we already have a 747-200 preserved at Qantas Founders Museum (Longreach) and the first -400 at HARS (Illawarra). Although I’d love to see the last -400ER preserved, I think it would have to be somewhere other than the east Coast to be viable long-term as it lives on its visitor revenue. Too many preserved aircraft is almost as bad as too few.
    Besides, I bet that the ERs might be attractive for freighter conversions. Qantas’ 6 ERs were the only ones built for passengers.

  • Chris

    says:

    Everyone lamenting the minimal 787-9 orders thus far, you’re forgetting ‘Project Sunrise’.
    That will deliver either an A-350ULR (Special Edition) fleet or a B-777X fleet to add to the current fleet of long haulers.
    I have no doubt that Joyce and his crew know more about airframe fleets, fuel burn, PAX economics etc…. than anyone here. Especially with how well QF is doing as an airline.
    Might we take notes.

  • Ben

    says:

    I’m a big fan of the 747 so it’s sad to see them go. However from an airline economics perspective I’m actually surprised it took so long to replace them all. Although I do get the arguments about depreciation.
    One may think if they are going for pure efficiency, that they’ll target the aircraft they’re looking at for project sunrise, as an A380 replacement. So they’ll end up operating about a dozen big twins (most likely the 787x or maybe the A350) and the remainder of the wide body fleet would be the 787-9. Then perhaps the Boeing middle of market aircraft when it’s launched to replace the A330s.
    That will likely leave a capacity shortfall, unless they order extra airframes.
    It would be nice to see them order the 747-8, but sadly that would be wishful thinking.
    Now for all us av geeks getting geared up to book our seats on the final QF 747 flight. I know it’s still 2 years away but that would be a flight to be on.

  • John

    says:

    Spot on @kjr – I also have a bucket load of QF points and have been unable to find any Business class seats. With such a large drop in capacity rewards seats look like becoming rarer than hen’s teeth.
    Whilst Qantas would prefer to fill their planes with fare paying customers they need to recognise that frequent flyers deserve/expect to have a chance to use them on long haul flights. Otherwise, we may as well dump Qantas and switch to another carrier.

  • Craigy

    says:

    @ Random. I agree with John Reid, I think the B744ERs will have a life post Qantas as freighters. The others will be broken up and recycled.
    @ Chris I think Qantas will announce orders for the B787 as the options fall due. Saves on expenditure until necessary.
    @ Ben. Depreciation is done over 10 years. These aircraft have been fully depreciated for some time.
    @John. I guess it depends where and when you want to fly to use points. They already allocate a number of seats for upgrades etc except for blackout periods. Helps to be platinum to get the seats that come up or judicious in which flights you target.. Something to consider though, FF points are a liability in the company’s accounts just like annual leave of staff.

  • Ben

    says:

    @ Craigy – well there you go I didn’t know that re: depreciation, Even more of an argument as to why they didn’t retire them earlier.
    BTW I’ve just realised a slight correction on my original post – I was referring to QF getting the 787x for project sunrise. I did of course mean the 777x.
    Although if a 787x is ever launched – it may be a contender for project sunrise 🙂

  • Australiana

    says:

    Agree with @kjr regarding the difficulty using Qantas FF points. It’s becoming a joke. Impossible to find a business class seat to book with points and booking economy is pointless (pardon the pun) when taxes and charges are added.
    I’ve switched programs to Finnair which is so much more generous and easy to accrue and actually use your points. Very generous Tiering points as well.
    I’m pretty much done with Qantas Frequent Flyer and just accrue points with the credit card.

  • Kel

    says:

    As per my second comment of last week article ‘Qantas tweaks International schedule with changes to US and Asian routes’ Qantas requires 9 B747s to operate the present schedule.
    With B787s replacing the B747s on BNE-LAX-JFK route this requirement reduces 7 B747s to operate the normal schedule, with all services operating from SYD. However, 8 B747s are required to operate the Holiday Schedule.
    The spare A380 available from cancelling MEL-DXB-LHR is presently being used to repaint 8 A380s From 2nd quarter next year to the end 2020, it will be required for A380’s cabin upgrade. End of 2020 probably actually means end of November 2020 so that the plane is available for the Holiday Period.
    With an extra A380 available it will release a B747 permanently, probably SYD-HKG. This reduces normal schedule requirement to 6 B747s.
    However, for 2018/9 Holiday Period this B747 will operate SYD-HNL 5 times a week. It will not be available in the future. If the A330 service is increased to daily, the same capacity of 5 B747s will be achieved or exceeded depending upon the mix of 200 and 300 models. However, there will not be any premium economy. This will reduce Holiday period requirements to 7 B747s.
    SYD-HND is operated inefficiently with departures from both ends in the evening with a B747 sitting on ground all day in Tokyo. If this services is altered to operate like other Tokyo (NRT) and Asian services, one less B747 is require. The over 24 hours segment of SYD-JNB service will have to come out of other SYD B747s layovers. This reduces normal requirements to 5 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements 6 B747s.
    A plane or planes have been nominally allocated to a route. Extra flights can be operated if the planes switch routes. In the previous article I have demonstrated this with the Saturday SYD-YVR service. Probably a plane can be saved here as well as providing for the SYD-JNB segment over 24 hours.
    This reduces normal requirements to 4 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements at least 5 B747s.
    On a seating capacity this converts to 6.1 B787 with the Holiday Period requirements at least 7.7 B787s.
    To replace a daily B747 service with the same passenger capacity you require 10.8 B787s per week . Hence the daily B747 BNE-LAX service is being replaced with 11 B787s per week.
    There are still 3 B787 return services from BNE to USA to be allocated. This equivalent to .85 of B787. Rather than increasing the frequency of a particular service from SYD, if the required increase in frequency is operated from BNE with these 3 B787, the same capacity from AUS is achieved.
    We now have 6.85 B787s available which exceeds the normal requirements for the SYD B787s but is a plane short for Holiday periods.
    Some long layovers in the USA could possibly be utilised by a plane turning around in the morning, arriving in Aus late afternoon a day later. Leave that evening and arriving that afternoon in USA, in time to operate the normal evening flight.
    By doing this once a week, Virgin operate 11 services LAX to BNE and MEL combined with 3 B777s rather than the normal 10 services.
    However, I do not think there is sufficient B787’s long layovers in USA to gain a plane.
    Alternately, some SYD-HND services could be operated by A330s reducing B787s requirements.
    It will be interesting to see what happens.

  • Jarden

    says:

    So only 6 more 787s to come and 10 747s leaving the fleet by 2020 that is not enough to replace all the flying done by the 747 fleet. They will have to order more 787s or they will have to cut some routes and or frequencies.

  • Harrison

    says:

    When Are Qantas Going To Start Melbourne-Dallas

  • Mac Carter

    says:

    Would prefer the security of an extra two engines on a long overwater flight.
    Happily pay a bit more for the extra fuel and maintenance involved.
    Larger aircraft with less passengers onboard can earn more freight revenue.
    Enjoy the great photos of the old 747’s

  • Paul

    says:

    Qantas are increasing premium seating with the A380 refurb.
    Agree not keen on a 787 from Sydney to Johannesburg or Santiago, lot of water!
    Realise Latam do Santiago, but they are an operator from another country.
    Reckon Qantas would be better with a daily Perth Johannesburg, if no CASA approval for 787 Sydney Johannesburg.
    At the moment people from any other city south of Sydney it is a one stop trip, and they have to backtrack to catch the Johannesburg flight!
    Queensland its one stop.
    I can see Perth becoming an important mini hub for Qantas

  • Alpha141

    says:

    @Jarden,
    There are 10 787s on the way. 4 later this year previously ordered plus this 6 make ten.

  • Kel

    says:

    Alan Joyce’s comment “With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe” suggests that the additional B787’s flights to maintain the B747’s capacity may not exactly follow existing flights.
    Brisbane’s third and fourth B787s have been allocated to operate 4 returns flights to LAX with the other six days unallocated. If these 4 flights were switched to SFO, together with the proposed daily B787s to BNE-LAX-JFK, the same passenger capacity as the existing daily B747 flights would be maintained BNE to West Coast USA.
    Operating from SFO end, these two B787’s could operate four return flights to BNE and three return flights to SYD.
    HND is very very slot restricted and additional slots would be difficult to obtain. I planned a daily flight leaving SYD before midday to feed the existing overnight flight from HND. I planned four flights per week at the same time as existing daily overnight flight from SYD but to NRT, with the return flights leaving NRT in the morning.
    For South Africa, I planned the additional three flights per week to operate SYD-CPT (Cape Town).
    I did not plan for any B787s to operate SYD-HKG as I believe an A380 will replace the B747.
    By moving flights times, I was able to squeeze all my planned replacements B787’s flights for the SYD B747s flights into the six SYD based 787s operations together with utilising the two BNE planes as above.
    However, four planes were operating a four day rotation with all turn-a-rounds being two hours in length.
    If on the three days per week, when double flights left SFO, the ‘BNE’ plane was switched with the ‘SYD’ plane, the ‘SYD’ plane would have a long layover in SFO after the return flight.
    The fifth plane operating SYD-HND had a daily three hour turn-a-round in SYD.
    This schedule was far too tights and could not be operated, as it left too little time for maintenance and recovery from delayed flights.
    With B747s retired, there will not be enough B787s to operate the normal schedule. Most SYD- Tokyo flights will have to be operated by A330s until further B787 are acquired.

  • Craigy

    says:

    Parts are currently arriving at Boeing for the final assembly of ZNE

  • David Fix

    says:

    I will miss the Qantas 747 but I do like the 787

  • SENPERFi

    says:

    Came to Australia on board – EBK, ’81. Flew in the -300s and -400s too. Memories!

  • ESLowe

    says:

    42 people in business class…that’s where the money is @ times the price of an economy ticket!!!! and all of those people will flock to the Mach 2.2 Boom Jet for about the same ticket price _ and when they get fuel efficient engines, that’ll be 5.5 HOURS to L.A. – not 15. Time to get back on my old hobby horse…the 787 has no future. It cannot carry enough tourist class schmucks, like me, to be really profitable. Boeing will have to use the innovation it used on the 787 and 777 to build a 1000 cattle class passenger 4 engined jet. The international tourist market is to important to nations economies now to not provide transports. There are landmark passenger planes that changed the industry…the DC3, Boeing 747 and soon the 45 passenger Mach 2.2. Boom Jet.

  • ESLowe

    says:

    oops, I should have said @ 8 (eight) times the ticket price……

  • Vannus

    says:

    Once QF’s 747-400ER’s are gone, will 787’s be used to fly Antarctic day flights?

  • andrewdouglas

    says:

    Qantas premium economy on the 787 is dreadful. The seat is less comfortable than the 747 seats and passengers are funneled to already overcapacity economy toilets. I am switching to Air Canada after 40 years flying Qantas. Goodbye.

  • Mark

    says:

    Be interesting to see what they do with the 380s as they must be a bit underemployed at present (remembering they will only have two more 787s than 380’s but they seem to be operating to a far higher work rate).

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Qantas orders six more Boeing 787-9s, brings forward 747 retirement

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 2, 2018

Qantas has exercised options for an additional six Boeing 787-9s, which will bring to 14 the number of the type in the fleet and lead to the withdrawal of the 747 in 2020.

The airline said on Wednesday the six additional 787-9s would arrive between “late 2019 and mid-to-late 2020”.
Currently, Qantas has four 787-9s which are used to operate a Los Angeles-Melbourne-Perth-London Heathrow rotation.

It has four more on firm order due to arrive by the end of 2018. That will allow four aircraft to be based in Brisbane and to replace 747-operated services between Brisbane and Los Angeles, as well as between Los Angeles and New York JFK.

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Qantas said the additional six on order would replace its last six 747-400s by the 2020.

“This really is the end of one era and the start of another,” Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said in a statement.

“The jumbo has been the backbone of Qantas International for more than 40 years and we’ve flown almost every type that Boeing built.

“Over the years, each new version of the 747 allowed Qantas to fly further and improve what we offered passengers. The Dreamliners are now doing the same thing.

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“The 787 has better economics and a longer range, and it has already opened up new routes like Perth to London. With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe.”

Joyce said it was fitting that the retirement of the last 747 would coincide with the airline’s centenary in 2020.
“By the end of 2020 we’ll have farewelled the 747, finished upgrading the cabins of our A380s, and welcomed our fourteenth 787,” Joyce said.

“That’s a great proposition for our customers and creates some really exciting opportunities for our people,” he added.

Qantas has 10 747-400s currently in service, comprising six GE-powered 747-400ERs (VH-OEE thru OEJ) delivered between 2002 and 2003, a single GE-powered 747-48E (VH-OEB, built for Asiana in 1993 and acquired by Qantas in 1998) and three RR-powered 747-438s (VH-OJS, OJT and OJU) delivered in 1999-2000. The airline says it will “steadily” retire the 747 “between July this year and the end of 2020”.

Qantas said the additional six 787-9s would feature the same cabin configuration as the Dreamliners currently in service, with 236 seats comprising 42 in business in a 1-2-1 configuration offering direct aisle access for every passenger, 28 in premium economy laid out 2-3-2 across and 166 in economy in a 3-3-3 layout with 32in seat pitch and 17.2in seat width.

By contrast its 747-400s have 364 seats comprising 58 SkyBed seats in business, 36 seats premium economy and 270 in economy.

Despite the reduction in seat capacity, the airline said “the reduced maintenance needs of the 787 plus more efficient aircraft patterning and reduced payload restrictions on long routes mean the actual impact on overall capacity for Qantas International is expected to be negligible”.

Qantas also said it planned to add another 787 simulator to assist with pilot training. This would be “on top of the Qantas Group Pilot Academy” due to open in 2019.

QANTAS ON TRACK FOR PROFIT GROWTH

Meanwhile, the airline group said in a trading update on Wednesday underlying profit before tax (PBT) – which excludes one-off items and which it regards as the best indication of financial performance – is forecast to be in the range of $1.55 billion and $1.6 billion for the 12 months to June 30 2018.

If the result is in line with guidance, it would represent an improvement of up to 14 per cent from underlying PBT of $1.40 billion in 2016/17.

Qantas’s market update said revenue across the airline group for the three months to March 31 2018 was $4.25 billion, up 7.5 per cent compared with the prior corresponding period.

Meanwhile, revenue per available seat kilometre (RASK), which is a measure of demand, was up six per cent.

“We’re seeing solid results from each of our business units, which is a reflection of broadly positive trading conditions and the work we’ve done to strengthen the Group,” Joyce said.

“A large part of our earnings momentum is driven by ongoing investment in customer experience. Improvements to aircraft interiors, rollout of free wi-fi, changes to our route network and lounge upgrades are why Qantas and Jetstar have a strong place in the market.

“We’ve also continued to broaden our earning streams with health insurance and financial services under Qantas Loyalty.

“Our strong performance allows us to invest in more Dreamliners, which are a lot more efficient than the 747s they replace and give our customers a better experience. They also open up new network options and will be an important part of our success moving forward.”

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35 Comments

  • Christopher

    says:

    Wish they ordered the 747-8 just for nostalgia purposes. Damn airline economics.

  • Leighton

    says:

    Well done to Qantas in becoming such a formidable and profitable airline…hats off to Alan Joyce.
    Sad to see the 747s go…hard to imagine it was once an all jumbo airline!!!

  • kjr

    says:

    The reduced capacity of switching to 787’s will make the Qantas frequent flyer program almost worthless. I have not seen a classic rewards business class seat available for MEL to LON since the 787’s were introduced. Using points for an economy class seat is a waste after you factor in the taxes & fuel surcharge

  • Lechuga

    says:

    Not enough I think. 14 is a small amount I would’ve expect 10 more in the second order, to cover older routes and new ones.
    Will be 6 based straight in Sydney and half of the routes there’s a strong chance a few of them will have to be doubled up with Melbourne or Brisbane.
    Vancouver, Johannesburg, San Francisco, all could be done from both Sydney and Melbourne, all have the demand.
    Not to mention Mel-Dfw which is underdone.

  • Brendan

    says:

    You might find that by 2020 they will announce an order for another 10 at least to be split between Qantas and Jetstar. With a less premium configuration to operate the Asian market.

  • Nathan

    says:

    What happens to SYD-SCL, given the current regulatory restrictions on twin operations? Maybe the concerns are resolved at the same time as the last 747 disappears?

  • Richard James

    says:

    QANTAS is on a diet !
    Down sizing the aircraft, for more Profit….
    The Bottom line …” Profit”

  • Scott

    says:

    Well done Qantas, good to see fleet replacements and new aircraft arriving on our shores.

  • Radar

    says:

    Qantas celebrates its 100 year anniversary on 16th November 2020. That wold be a very fitting and emotional day for the last QF 747 to sail off into the sunset from its Sydney base.

  • Bill

    says:

    @Richard James, Qantas is a business like any other, what do you expect? Of course Qantas will retire the gas guzzling 747s if more 787s can be delivered sooner.

  • Craigy

    says:

    For the order to be announced now suggests that Qantas had to either take the options with their delivery dates or let them go. The announcement that the last B744ER will be retired in 2020 means that none of the B744 aircraft will be repainted with the new livery.

  • random

    says:

    What happens to the last QF 747-400ER to be retired (perhaps OEJ as the most recent arrival)?
    I hope it is maintained as a gate stand or museum piece – surely there is another location (other than a boneyard) that would benefit from having a 747-400ER.
    Would be nice to have a local equivalent of the Smithsonian Stephen F Udvar-Hazy centre, with similar resources.
    Any thoughts? I assume QF would want to convert it via breakdown or repurpose into dollars – understandable but unfortunate.

  • Ken

    says:

    Damn shame Alan Joyce. Why not 747 800s.

  • John Reid

    says:

    Random, we already have a 747-200 preserved at Qantas Founders Museum (Longreach) and the first -400 at HARS (Illawarra). Although I’d love to see the last -400ER preserved, I think it would have to be somewhere other than the east Coast to be viable long-term as it lives on its visitor revenue. Too many preserved aircraft is almost as bad as too few.
    Besides, I bet that the ERs might be attractive for freighter conversions. Qantas’ 6 ERs were the only ones built for passengers.

  • Chris

    says:

    Everyone lamenting the minimal 787-9 orders thus far, you’re forgetting ‘Project Sunrise’.
    That will deliver either an A-350ULR (Special Edition) fleet or a B-777X fleet to add to the current fleet of long haulers.
    I have no doubt that Joyce and his crew know more about airframe fleets, fuel burn, PAX economics etc…. than anyone here. Especially with how well QF is doing as an airline.
    Might we take notes.

  • Ben

    says:

    I’m a big fan of the 747 so it’s sad to see them go. However from an airline economics perspective I’m actually surprised it took so long to replace them all. Although I do get the arguments about depreciation.
    One may think if they are going for pure efficiency, that they’ll target the aircraft they’re looking at for project sunrise, as an A380 replacement. So they’ll end up operating about a dozen big twins (most likely the 787x or maybe the A350) and the remainder of the wide body fleet would be the 787-9. Then perhaps the Boeing middle of market aircraft when it’s launched to replace the A330s.
    That will likely leave a capacity shortfall, unless they order extra airframes.
    It would be nice to see them order the 747-8, but sadly that would be wishful thinking.
    Now for all us av geeks getting geared up to book our seats on the final QF 747 flight. I know it’s still 2 years away but that would be a flight to be on.

  • John

    says:

    Spot on @kjr – I also have a bucket load of QF points and have been unable to find any Business class seats. With such a large drop in capacity rewards seats look like becoming rarer than hen’s teeth.
    Whilst Qantas would prefer to fill their planes with fare paying customers they need to recognise that frequent flyers deserve/expect to have a chance to use them on long haul flights. Otherwise, we may as well dump Qantas and switch to another carrier.

  • Craigy

    says:

    @ Random. I agree with John Reid, I think the B744ERs will have a life post Qantas as freighters. The others will be broken up and recycled.
    @ Chris I think Qantas will announce orders for the B787 as the options fall due. Saves on expenditure until necessary.
    @ Ben. Depreciation is done over 10 years. These aircraft have been fully depreciated for some time.
    @John. I guess it depends where and when you want to fly to use points. They already allocate a number of seats for upgrades etc except for blackout periods. Helps to be platinum to get the seats that come up or judicious in which flights you target.. Something to consider though, FF points are a liability in the company’s accounts just like annual leave of staff.

  • Ben

    says:

    @ Craigy – well there you go I didn’t know that re: depreciation, Even more of an argument as to why they didn’t retire them earlier.
    BTW I’ve just realised a slight correction on my original post – I was referring to QF getting the 787x for project sunrise. I did of course mean the 777x.
    Although if a 787x is ever launched – it may be a contender for project sunrise 🙂

  • Australiana

    says:

    Agree with @kjr regarding the difficulty using Qantas FF points. It’s becoming a joke. Impossible to find a business class seat to book with points and booking economy is pointless (pardon the pun) when taxes and charges are added.
    I’ve switched programs to Finnair which is so much more generous and easy to accrue and actually use your points. Very generous Tiering points as well.
    I’m pretty much done with Qantas Frequent Flyer and just accrue points with the credit card.

  • Kel

    says:

    As per my second comment of last week article ‘Qantas tweaks International schedule with changes to US and Asian routes’ Qantas requires 9 B747s to operate the present schedule.
    With B787s replacing the B747s on BNE-LAX-JFK route this requirement reduces 7 B747s to operate the normal schedule, with all services operating from SYD. However, 8 B747s are required to operate the Holiday Schedule.
    The spare A380 available from cancelling MEL-DXB-LHR is presently being used to repaint 8 A380s From 2nd quarter next year to the end 2020, it will be required for A380’s cabin upgrade. End of 2020 probably actually means end of November 2020 so that the plane is available for the Holiday Period.
    With an extra A380 available it will release a B747 permanently, probably SYD-HKG. This reduces normal schedule requirement to 6 B747s.
    However, for 2018/9 Holiday Period this B747 will operate SYD-HNL 5 times a week. It will not be available in the future. If the A330 service is increased to daily, the same capacity of 5 B747s will be achieved or exceeded depending upon the mix of 200 and 300 models. However, there will not be any premium economy. This will reduce Holiday period requirements to 7 B747s.
    SYD-HND is operated inefficiently with departures from both ends in the evening with a B747 sitting on ground all day in Tokyo. If this services is altered to operate like other Tokyo (NRT) and Asian services, one less B747 is require. The over 24 hours segment of SYD-JNB service will have to come out of other SYD B747s layovers. This reduces normal requirements to 5 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements 6 B747s.
    A plane or planes have been nominally allocated to a route. Extra flights can be operated if the planes switch routes. In the previous article I have demonstrated this with the Saturday SYD-YVR service. Probably a plane can be saved here as well as providing for the SYD-JNB segment over 24 hours.
    This reduces normal requirements to 4 B747s with the Holiday Period requirements at least 5 B747s.
    On a seating capacity this converts to 6.1 B787 with the Holiday Period requirements at least 7.7 B787s.
    To replace a daily B747 service with the same passenger capacity you require 10.8 B787s per week . Hence the daily B747 BNE-LAX service is being replaced with 11 B787s per week.
    There are still 3 B787 return services from BNE to USA to be allocated. This equivalent to .85 of B787. Rather than increasing the frequency of a particular service from SYD, if the required increase in frequency is operated from BNE with these 3 B787, the same capacity from AUS is achieved.
    We now have 6.85 B787s available which exceeds the normal requirements for the SYD B787s but is a plane short for Holiday periods.
    Some long layovers in the USA could possibly be utilised by a plane turning around in the morning, arriving in Aus late afternoon a day later. Leave that evening and arriving that afternoon in USA, in time to operate the normal evening flight.
    By doing this once a week, Virgin operate 11 services LAX to BNE and MEL combined with 3 B777s rather than the normal 10 services.
    However, I do not think there is sufficient B787’s long layovers in USA to gain a plane.
    Alternately, some SYD-HND services could be operated by A330s reducing B787s requirements.
    It will be interesting to see what happens.

  • Jarden

    says:

    So only 6 more 787s to come and 10 747s leaving the fleet by 2020 that is not enough to replace all the flying done by the 747 fleet. They will have to order more 787s or they will have to cut some routes and or frequencies.

  • Harrison

    says:

    When Are Qantas Going To Start Melbourne-Dallas

  • Mac Carter

    says:

    Would prefer the security of an extra two engines on a long overwater flight.
    Happily pay a bit more for the extra fuel and maintenance involved.
    Larger aircraft with less passengers onboard can earn more freight revenue.
    Enjoy the great photos of the old 747’s

  • Paul

    says:

    Qantas are increasing premium seating with the A380 refurb.
    Agree not keen on a 787 from Sydney to Johannesburg or Santiago, lot of water!
    Realise Latam do Santiago, but they are an operator from another country.
    Reckon Qantas would be better with a daily Perth Johannesburg, if no CASA approval for 787 Sydney Johannesburg.
    At the moment people from any other city south of Sydney it is a one stop trip, and they have to backtrack to catch the Johannesburg flight!
    Queensland its one stop.
    I can see Perth becoming an important mini hub for Qantas

  • Alpha141

    says:

    @Jarden,
    There are 10 787s on the way. 4 later this year previously ordered plus this 6 make ten.

  • Kel

    says:

    Alan Joyce’s comment “With a larger fleet of Dreamliners, we’ll be looking at destinations in the Americas, Asia, South Africa and Europe” suggests that the additional B787’s flights to maintain the B747’s capacity may not exactly follow existing flights.
    Brisbane’s third and fourth B787s have been allocated to operate 4 returns flights to LAX with the other six days unallocated. If these 4 flights were switched to SFO, together with the proposed daily B787s to BNE-LAX-JFK, the same passenger capacity as the existing daily B747 flights would be maintained BNE to West Coast USA.
    Operating from SFO end, these two B787’s could operate four return flights to BNE and three return flights to SYD.
    HND is very very slot restricted and additional slots would be difficult to obtain. I planned a daily flight leaving SYD before midday to feed the existing overnight flight from HND. I planned four flights per week at the same time as existing daily overnight flight from SYD but to NRT, with the return flights leaving NRT in the morning.
    For South Africa, I planned the additional three flights per week to operate SYD-CPT (Cape Town).
    I did not plan for any B787s to operate SYD-HKG as I believe an A380 will replace the B747.
    By moving flights times, I was able to squeeze all my planned replacements B787’s flights for the SYD B747s flights into the six SYD based 787s operations together with utilising the two BNE planes as above.
    However, four planes were operating a four day rotation with all turn-a-rounds being two hours in length.
    If on the three days per week, when double flights left SFO, the ‘BNE’ plane was switched with the ‘SYD’ plane, the ‘SYD’ plane would have a long layover in SFO after the return flight.
    The fifth plane operating SYD-HND had a daily three hour turn-a-round in SYD.
    This schedule was far too tights and could not be operated, as it left too little time for maintenance and recovery from delayed flights.
    With B747s retired, there will not be enough B787s to operate the normal schedule. Most SYD- Tokyo flights will have to be operated by A330s until further B787 are acquired.

  • Craigy

    says:

    Parts are currently arriving at Boeing for the final assembly of ZNE

  • David Fix

    says:

    I will miss the Qantas 747 but I do like the 787

  • SENPERFi

    says:

    Came to Australia on board – EBK, ’81. Flew in the -300s and -400s too. Memories!

  • ESLowe

    says:

    42 people in business class…that’s where the money is @ times the price of an economy ticket!!!! and all of those people will flock to the Mach 2.2 Boom Jet for about the same ticket price _ and when they get fuel efficient engines, that’ll be 5.5 HOURS to L.A. – not 15. Time to get back on my old hobby horse…the 787 has no future. It cannot carry enough tourist class schmucks, like me, to be really profitable. Boeing will have to use the innovation it used on the 787 and 777 to build a 1000 cattle class passenger 4 engined jet. The international tourist market is to important to nations economies now to not provide transports. There are landmark passenger planes that changed the industry…the DC3, Boeing 747 and soon the 45 passenger Mach 2.2. Boom Jet.

  • ESLowe

    says:

    oops, I should have said @ 8 (eight) times the ticket price……

  • Vannus

    says:

    Once QF’s 747-400ER’s are gone, will 787’s be used to fly Antarctic day flights?

  • andrewdouglas

    says:

    Qantas premium economy on the 787 is dreadful. The seat is less comfortable than the 747 seats and passengers are funneled to already overcapacity economy toilets. I am switching to Air Canada after 40 years flying Qantas. Goodbye.

  • Mark

    says:

    Be interesting to see what they do with the 380s as they must be a bit underemployed at present (remembering they will only have two more 787s than 380’s but they seem to be operating to a far higher work rate).

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