Qantas brings back the A380 and all its staff

October 22, 2021
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The Qantas Group is bringing back its iconic A380s early and all staff will be back at work by early December as the airline group accelerates its return to the international skies.

In a briefing this morning Qantas chief Alan Joyce said that two A380s that had been slated to remain in the desert till 2023 would be back in service in April on the Sydney to LA run.

Qantas will also bring three new 787s out of the desert storage into service.

The airline said that the faster ramp-up follows the Federal and New South Wales governments confirming that international borders would reopen from 1 November 2021 and the decision by the NSW Government to remove quarantine requirements for fully vaccinated arrivals – which significantly increases travel demand.

These decisions – combined with plans by states and territories to reopen domestic borders – support all Qantas and Jetstar workers based in Australia and New Zealand who are currently stood down to return to work by early December 2021.

This includes around 5,000 employees linked to domestic flying and around 6,000 linked to international flying.

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Qantas also plans to launch a new route from Sydney to Delhi on December 6, 2021 with three return flights per week with its A330 aircraft, building to daily flights by end of the year.

Qantas will bring forward flights from Sydney to Singapore to November 23 and Fiji to December 7.

Flights to Honolulu, Vancouver, Tokyo, and New Zealand are still scheduled to commence from mid-December 2021, with Phuket, Bangkok, and Johannesburg in January.

Qantas said that after the two A380s commencing regular service in April, an additional three will be added in November 2022 and the remaining five in early 2024.

Jetstar will bring the remaining five of its 11 Boeing 787-8s out of storage in Alice Springs over the coming months.

Qantas Group chief executive Alan Joyce said “Australians rolling up their sleeves means our planes and our people are getting back to work much earlier than we expected.

“This is the best news we’ve had in almost two years and it will make a massive difference to thousands of our people who finally get to fly again.

“We’ve said for months that the key factor in ramping up international flying would be the quarantine requirement. The decision by the NSW Government to join many cities from around the world by removing quarantine for fully vaccinated travellers means we’re able to add these flights from Sydney much earlier than we would have otherwise.”

All passengers on Qantas and Jetstar international flights (aged 12 years and older) will be required to be fully vaccinated with a TGA-approved vaccine (unless they have an exemption).

As part of Federal Government requirements, customers on these flights will also be required to return a negative COVID test from an approved PCR testing site within 72 hours of departure.