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Qantas

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Qantas (IATA: QF; ICAO: QFA) [1] is an Australian airline which operates an extensive network through Australia, as well as an international network flying to destinations in every continent except Antarctica. Nicknamed 'The Flying Kangaroo', highlighting it's uniquely Australian herritage and flight experience, Qantas has grown to become the flag carrier of Australia. Currently, Qantas is considered a four star airline by Skytrax[2] and was voted the eight best airline in the world in 2011, Qantas has previously held second place in this accolade.

Qantas is a full service, mid-priced airline with an untarnished safety record for the 91 years it has been operating. In-flight service on Qantas aircraft can vary greatly, but is generally favourable, especially on flagship services operated by the A380 aircraft. All international services operated by Qantas have a good standard of entertainment options, with personal television screens in all classes of travel, while most domestic aircraft use shared television screens for entertainment. Unlike its domestic competitors, food, drink and checked baggage is included in the price of all tickets on Qantas operated flights. QantasLink is the name given to Qantas' regional operations[3], which operate a fleet of small turboprop aircraft.

Key airports[edit]

  • Sydney's Kingsford Smith International Airport is the primary hub of Qantas, with a dedicated terminal (T3) for most Qantas domestic flights, with international flights operating from Terminal 1. QantasLink flights, and codeshare Jetstar flights operate from Terminal 2.[4]
  • Melbourne International Airport is a slightly smaller hub used by Qantas, with Qantas Group domestic flights operating from Terminal 1, and international flights departing from Terminal 2.[5]

Aircraft[edit]

Qantas operates a modern and well-maintained fleet of aircraft, if given the option of different aircraft it is usually worthwhile doing research to find the most appropriate aircraft. Seat maps are available on the Qantas website.

Domestic Fleet[edit]

  • Boeing 737-800 (x67) operate most domestic routes in a business & economy configuration. All are modern aircraft, most have shared televisions for IFE, but if you are lucky the latest 737s come equipped with the Boeing Sky Interior, personal in flight entertainment and power available in both classes. A comfortable option for short trips. These are also used by subsidiary Jetconnect on most all Qantas branded flights to New Zealand.
  • Boeing 737-400 (x16) is an ageing series of the 737, used on lower density domestic routes, especially to and from Canberra. These planes share a similar configuration to the 737-800, with less seats. Rather than shared LCDs, this aircraft features older, lower quality CRTs, but it should be considered that a lot of Qantas' rivals domestically do not offer in flight entertainment on similar planes.
  • Boeing 767-300 (x24) are usually found on high-density routes such as Sydney-Melbourne. While slightly older than the 737-800, it is more spacious in a 2-3-2 configuration in economy, with shared video entertainment on large screens throughout the cabin. Business class customers may prefer the 737-800, which offers a newer variety of seat.
  • Airbus A330-200 (x8) are used for longer flights, such as the four hour Sydney to Perth route. This aircraft should be taken in favour of single-aisle aircraft, as travellers in economy are guaranteed personal video players (looped content, not on demand) and travellers in business class get a Skybed (first generation) lie-flat seat, far more comfortable for sleeping than any other domestic offering.
  • Boeing 747-400 are sometimes seen on the Sydney-Perth route, and are fitted with personal televisions with on demand content. Customers can also find themselves on a 747 on the Brisbane-Sydney route if they take QF8, which originates in Dallas before stopping over in Brisbane and then continuing to Sydney.

International Fleet[edit]

  • Airbus A380 (x16) are Qantas' flagship aircraft, with optimal standards of comfort in all classes and the largest selection of entertainment of any Qantas aircraft, the A380 should always be a travellers first preference. Business class seats are of the latest Skybed, which are completely flat and level to the floor. Premium economy is available on this aircraft, so too is first class which is quite highly regarded.
  • Airbus A330-300 (x10) are found on lower density routes and offer all that one would expect of a Qantas international flight, although usually A380 and 747s compare more favourably in reviews. These aircraft operate in a business & economy configuration.
  • Boeing 747-400 (x30) are found in multiple configurations, and are quite inconsistent in terms of seat offerings. Some aircraft offer the older (but still comfortable) economy class seats and previous generation Skybed, while some offer A380 style seats without a first class. Premium economy is available on 747s, the same seat as the A380.

Alliances[edit]

Qantas is a founding member of the Oneworld airline alliance, and airline points can be earned with any Oneworld members loyalty programme. Qantas also offers a frequent flyer programme, free to join for Australians (apply through the Woolworths Everyday Rewards programme) and international travellers.

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