Australians rejoice! Very soon the dreaded long haul flights from Sydney and Melbourne to hot spots and other destination gateways, London and New York, will be reachable by DIRECT flight. Yep. No more long stopovers, wandering aimlessly through a terminal in your trackie dacks (an Australian term for sweatpants) and interruptions of your plane movies.
Qantas CEO, Alan Joyce, has revealed the Australian airline has plans in the works to offer non-stop flights from major Australian cities Melbourne and Sydney to London, and another non-stop flight path from Sydney to New York.
Speaking at an Amazon Web Services Summit Innovation Day earlier in the month, Alan said their big focus was connecting Australians to the world quicker thanks to their internal ‘Project Sunrise’: “For the future of Qantas, what’s the next big thing that we have to do, and for the next decade? We think it is the ability to fly from Sydney to London non-stop, Melbourne to London non-stop, and Sydney to New York non-stop.”
Qantas announced a 17-hour non-stop flight from Perth to London in 2018 on their Dreamliner planes, and it’s been revealed that with a new order of planes incoming later in the year it’s likely these babies will be serving the long haul flights for Sydneysiders and Melbournites. Alan told Bloomberg that their commitment to thinking outside the box when it comes to air travel has given them the answers to do it by 2022: “We’re now comfortable that we think we have vehicles that could do it. I’m actually confident that it will get there, and we will have aircraft in 2022.”
There’s no telling if the planes will be Dreamliners (which have anti-jet lag technology and a bunch of other cool features), or something new entirely. All we know is that Qantas is trying to make flying long-haul easier and help people to become comfortable doing it. Joyce says there may even be gyms on board for these long legs and we’re on board with that plan (get it?). “Would you have the space used for other activities — exercise, bar, creche, sleeping areas and berths? Boeing and Airbus have been actually quite creative in coming up with ideas,” he told Bloomberg when quizzed on aircraft layout options.
Sadly, Qantas isn’t able to magically decrease the flying time so direct flights to London will likely be around the 20 hour mark, and flights from Sydney to New York will be around 18 hours. It’s a long time to sit on the plane and may not be for everyone, but for many of us who just want to get to our holiday spot without having to spend a few hours (and sometimes more than a few!) in a random airport when we could be flying straight to our destination, it’s welcomed news indeed.