Qantas unveils new direct flights to US cities
HALF of Qantas' new ultra-long-range Boeing 787-900 Dreamliner fleet will be based in Brisbane, allowing passengers to fly direct to a host of US destinations.
More than 100 flight and crew who will fly the four new-generation aircraft will also be based in Brisbane, supporting 470 jobs.
The announcement was made by Qantas chief executive officer Alan Joyce and Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk at a joint press conference at Brisbane Airport today.
"The Dreamliner is one of a new generation of highly efficient, ultra-long-range passenger aircraft," Ms Palaszczuk said.
"It will put Brisbane in range of direct flights to cities including Dallas, Las Vegas, Vancouver, Chicago and Seattle, opening up new markets for business and tourism.
"It also adds to the range of highly skilled Brisbane-based jobs with Qantas.
"One hundred and twenty flight and cabin crew who will fly the Dreamliner will be based in Brisbane, with the crew base also supporting an additional 350 jobs."
Mr Joyce said the Dreamliners would base in Brisbane from mid-next year.
He said a whole series of routes became viable out of Brisbane now with the new aircraft.
Every category of seat would be a step up in luxury from current offerings.
"Queensland is the birthplace of Qantas, and it's fitting that we will base four of our Dreamliners in the state," he said.
"The 787 offers a step-change for customers in terms of comfort and efficiency, and we are pleased Queenslanders will be able to experience them direct from Brisbane."
It follows Qantas' decision to base its refurbishment of its Airbus A330s and installation of Wi-Fi on its A330s and B737s in Brisbane.Brisbane Airport Corporation chief executive Julieanne Alroe said it was a significant commitment ahead of Brisbane's second runway opening in coming years.
"These new aircraft have a flight range of nearly 16,000km, opening up a new world of opportunities, securing opportunities in the tourism, trade, investment, business and education sectors for many years to come," she said.
"For Queensland travellers it will mean having access to more non-stop ultra-long-haul routes direct from Brisbane in an aircraft that offers unparalleled passenger comfort, while also positioning Brisbane as the new gateway for access into North America."