Qantas Non-Stop to London05 April 2020 by News Desk
Qantas has struck a deal to launch non-stop flights from Australia to London and New York.
Qantas says it has agreed a deal with pilots to enable the flights – the longest in the world – once the current coronavirus emergency subsides.
Qantas’ international pilot group has voted in favour of a new pay deal that will cover proposed non-stop services to London and New York after the airline threatened to bring in outside pilots to operate the flights.
Pilots have now backed the plan to launch the ultra-long haul flights from Sydney and Melbourne in 2023.
But the airline’s ambitious “Project Sunrise” has now been put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic that has devastated airlines.
Qantas had a March deadline to place a multibillion-dollar order with Airbus for a new fleet of up to 12 A350-1000s jets to operate what would be the longest commercial flights in the world.
The carrier said it needed pilots to agree to a new pay deal which included “productivity benefits” to make the Project Sunrise business case stack up before it could make the order.
Qantas has stood down two-thirds of its workforce, or close to 20,000 pilots, cabin crew and other employees until demand returns. Virgin Australia has stood down about 8000 workers. The moves come as a result of travel restrictions and fallen demand.
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