Qantas has decided to bring forward the restart of some international flights following the Federal Government’s announcement that Australia’s borders will reopen in November.
From November 14, it will operate three weekly return flights between Sydney and London and three weekly return flights between Sydney and Los Angeles with its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners.
Qantas said these two destinations have been the most searched on its website in recent weeks and more flights will be added if there is demand.
All passengers will be required to be fully vaccinated with a TGA-approved or recognised vaccine, with some exemptions for medical reasons and children.
They will also be required to return a negative PCR Covid test 72 hours prior to departure and to home quarantine for seven days on arrival into Australia.
For the first week, all flights on both routes will be ‘Points Planes’, which means frequent flyers can access uncapped Classic Flight Reward seats across all cabins.
Seats on these flights will also be available as regular flight bookings.
Once the Federal Government announces the exact date that Australia’s international borders will reopen, flights will be brought forward if it’s earlier than November 14 or moved to later in the month if necessary.
Customers booked on these flights will have the flexibility to make ‘fee free’ date changes for travel until December 31 2022, although a fare difference may apply.
If flights are cancelled customers may also be eligible for a refund or credit voucher.
All other international routes scheduled to resume from December 18 will continue as planned, although Qantas said it has the flexibility to add additional routes if other states and territories decide to open their borders earlier and reduce quarantine requirements.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: “We’d already sold out some of our international flights for December and seen strong demand on flights to and from London and Los Angeles, so we’re confident there will be a lot of interest in these earlier services.
“We know many frequent flyers have been stockpiling their points over the past 18 months to use on an overseas flight, so we’re making more seats available to be booked with points alone.
“Beyond the initial rush, the ongoing demand for international flights will hinge largely on what the quarantine requirements are. The shift to seven day home quarantine for fully vaccinated Australians with a negative test is a great step towards reducing this closer to what is becoming standard in many countries overseas, which is a test and release programme.”