The Qantas A350, which will operate the airline’s ultra-long-haul flights will indeed be a dream machine as well as a time machine taking passengers back to the roomy days when economy travel was pleasant.
One insider in Sydney told AirlineRatings.com that the A350 will be the most spacious commercial aircraft flying and a “real dream machine”
According to the insiders, the configuration of the A350 will be four classes and economy passengers will get about 34-inch (86.4cm) seat pitch, rather than the normal 31 inches (79cm).
And the economy seats will be wider than those on the 787 and 747.
The Qantas A350 economy seats will be 18 inches (45.7cm) wide – almost an inch (2.54cm) wider than those on the 787.
It is understood that the passenger configuration of the A350 will be around 270 seats rather than the 300 touted in the original Sunrise Project specification.
The insiders tell AirlineRatings.com that First Class, Business Class and Premium Economy will all be “significantly” enhanced with more legroom in Premium Economy, closer to Air New Zealand’s industry high 42 inches (106.7cm).
And the word is that the first 12 to be delivered from late 2021 will be just the start of a major buy from Airbus.
While the nonstop routes New York to Sydney and Sydney to London for the A350 get the all headlines the aircraft will be used from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth to London as well as New York to Sydney and Melbourne.
Those services alone will require more A350s than Qantas has on order.
Following those routes, others such as Los Angeles to Perth non-stop will evolve.
Insiders suggest a fleet of 30 A350s could be expected within 10 years.
It is also highly likely say insiders that the airline’s 12 A380 will not last for another 10 years as stated by the airline being retired starting from 2025/6.
Qantas’s A380s are currently undergoing an expensive refurbishment program with the first two in service.