Qantas continues to expand its network and increase capacity, after this week starting operations on five new routes and resuming flights between Sydney and Wellcamp.
However, the airline has also pushed back its intentions to resume to Bali, with flights from Sydney to Denpasar initially scheduled to take off on 28 March, now pushed back to 15 April.
It comes as Qantas launched new mainline flights on its Boeing 737s between Sydney and Uluru on Sunday, while four new regional routes took off on Monday operated by regional subsidiary QantasLink.
These new routes include four weekly return flights between Darwin-Cairns, as well as three new weekly return services on Adelaide-Newcastle, Darwin-Townsville, and Brisbane-Wagga Wagga.
While Brisbane-Wagga Wagga will be operated by its existing De Havilland Dash 8 fleet, the remaining three new routes will be operated under Qantas’ wet lease agreement with Alliance Airlines on its fleet of Embraer E190s.
Together, the new routes add more than 2,300 seats into Qantas’ domestic network each week.
Meanwhile, Monday also marked the return of Qantas’ regional subsidiary QantasLink to Wellcamp Airport outside Toowoomba, Queensland, with the return of twice-daily return flights between Wellcamp and Sydney, and daily weekend flights.
QantasLink CEO John Gissing said the new services were among 52 new routes the national carrier has added to its domestic network since the beginning of the pandemic as Australians looked for local travel opportunities.
“Qantas has a tremendous history of connecting people and economies across Australia,” Gissing said.
“What we’ve seen over the past two years, is that what started as a way of meeting pent-up demand for Aussies to travel where they could, is being sustained as visitors discover new destinations and as business links flourish.
“Not only have we seen a huge surge in demand for domestic tourism, but we have a seen a real shift towards investment in our regional communities as economic and industrial hubs.”
The news comes just one day after Qantas announced it is set to launch a new route from Melbourne to the US hub airport of Dallas Fort Worth in December.
The four-times-weekly flights will be serviced by its 787-9s and land at a destination that provides quick ongoing connections to major US cities including New York, Chicago and Miami.
The Flying Kangaroo said customers will then be able to take advantage of its longstanding codeshare with American Airlines, effectively allowing it to significantly expand its international network to Victorian flyers.
Qantas Group’s chief customer officer, Stephanie Tully, said, “We are seeing really strong demand from Melburnians wanting to travel overseas for a holiday or business trip after two years at home, while inbound tourism is starting to pick up.
“Flights to the United States are particularly strong with Los Angeles bookings now exceeding pre-COVID levels.
“We know large numbers of customers have been travelling between Melbourne and Dallas Fort Worth via our existing Sydney service, which gives us great confidence about how this route will perform when flights start.”
Qantas on Sunday also announced it would increase flights between Melbourne to LA from four to eight weekly, effective this week, and reintroduce the A380 on the service from December.