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Qantas flight lands after non-stop journey from London to Sydney

Qantas preparing flights, New Zealand opens skies for Australia
  • Project Sunrise research flight direct from London to Sydney lands after 19 hours and 19 minutes
  • Qantas announces Centenary program to celebrate 100 years of the flying kangaroo
  • Royal Australian Mint unveils commemorative $1 centenary coin
  • Qantas exhibition to visit a number of cities across Australia

Qantas has kicked off 12 months of centenary celebrations as it marks a fresh milestone in aviation with a non-stop London to Sydney flight.

Flown by the latest addition to the national carrier’s fleet, a brand new Boeing 787 Dreamliner landed in Sydney at  12:28pm, 19 hours and 19 minutesafter leaving Heathrow. It follows the non-stop New York to Sydney flight last month as the second of three research flights aim at improving crew and passenger wellbeing on ultra long haul services under consideration.

The direct flight reduced total travel time by around three hours compared with current one-stop services from the east coast of Australia. It is only the second time any commercial airline has flown this route non-stop, after Qantas flew a near-empty 747-400 in 1989. (See more detail on research flight at end of this release.)

The new Dreamliner was met by more than 1,000 Qantas employees to mark the flying kangaroo’s 99th birthday and kick off 12 months of celebrations as it heads towards its centenary.

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Three components of those celebrations were revealed today – special livery on a new Dreamliner that will be seen at airports around the world, featuring every Qantas logo since 1920; a $1 coin to mark the 100th that will enter circulation next year; and a touring exhibition that will visit a number of cities around Australia.

Qantas Chairman Richard Goyder said: “Qantas is a national icon because it’s been such a big part of Australian life for so long.

“We started in outback Queensland carrying mail and a few passengers in the 1920s. We grew as Australia grew, and we’ve had important support roles during wars, national disasters and celebrations. Our founders talked about overcoming the tyranny of distance and through the years we’ve moved from bi-planes, to single wing, to jets to help bring things closer,” added Mr Goyder.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: “Almost a century after our first flight, Qantas and Jetstar carry more than 50 million people around this country and the globe each year. I’m sure that would amaze our three founders, who held the early board meetings of this company at the local tailor’s shop because it was the longest table they could find.”

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“A lot of Australians saw the world for the first time on a flying kangaroo. And a lot of migrants started their life in Australia when they first stepped on a Qantas plane.
“There are so many amazing Qantas stories that also tell the story of modern Australia. We want our centenary to be a celebration of those stories as well as how we’ll be part of taking the spirit of Australia further in the years ahead,” added Mr Joyce.

Qantas will officially turn 99 years old, and begin its 100th year, tomorrow, Saturday 16 November 2019.

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ABOUT THE CENTENARY AIRCRAFT

The new 787 Centenary livery aircraft will fly across key Qantas international destinations, including Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and London. Named Longreach after the Queensland town that was key to the airline’s origins, it joins nine other Qantas 787s that are all named after things that are iconically Australian, including Skippy, Great Southern Land, Waltzing Matilda and Jillaroo.

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ABOUT THE $1 CIRCULATING COIN

The Royal Australian Mint will produce approximately 5 million limited edition one-dollar coins to be used in Australia for every day cash transactions, which will go into general circulation from February 2020.

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For collectors, there is an eleven-piece collection set featuring key milestones and images of aircraft from across the decades including the Avro, Catalina Flying Boat, Boeing 707 and 747 and the A380. The centrepiece is a Kangaroo copper coin similar to the original Australian penny, which inspired Qantas’ iconic Kangaroo symbol. Sets are available at www.qantasstore.com.au.

ABOUT THE DIRECT LONDON-SYDNEY FLIGHT

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  • QF 7879 flight London to Sydney flight time was 19 hours and 19 minutes. Touch down at Sydney International airport was 12:28pm
  • The flight was operated by a brand-new Boeing 787-9 registration VH ZNJ, named Longreach.
  • The service was a re-purposed delivery flight. Rather than flying from Boeing’s factory in Seattle back to Australia empty, the aircraft was positioned in London to simulate one of the Project Sunrise routes under consideration by Qantas. All carbon emissions were offset.
  • The flight departed London’s Heathrow Airport and flew across 11 countries including England, Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Belarus, Russia, Kazakhstan, China, Philippines and Indonesia before crossing the Australian coast near Darwin, tracking south east across Australia towards Sydney.
  • Remaining fuel upon landing was approximately 6300kg which translates to about 1 hour 45 minutes of flight time

Airlines

Indigo contributed 31 crores to India’s political party for election funds

Indigo contributed 31 crores to India's political party for election funds

In a recent disclosure, it has come to light that Rahul Bhatia, the promoter of IndiGo, along with companies under his InterGlobe Group, has made significant donations totaling Rs 56 crore to four political parties. Additionally, SpiceJet, led by Ajay Singh, has contributed Rs 70 lakh to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

The data further reveals that InterGlobe Air Transport Ltd, a part of the InterGlobe Group, purchased 11 electoral bonds valued at Rs 1 crore each on May 10, 2019, amounting to a total of Rs 11 crore. Similarly, Interglobe Aviation, the parent company of IndiGo, acquired 5 electoral bonds worth Rs 1 crore each on October 23, 2023, totaling Rs 5 crore.

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InterGlobe Real Estate Venture and InterGlobe Air Transport Ltd directed the lion’s share of their political contributions, totaling Rs 31 crore, to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Surprisingly, the second-largest recipient was the Trinamool Congress (TMC), receiving Rs 16.2 crore from Bhatia. Additionally, InterGlobe Aviation Ltd allocated Rs 5 crore to the Congress party, while Bhatia contributed Rs 3.8 crore to its ally, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).

Rahul Bhatia, individually, also made substantial contributions through electoral bonds, purchasing bonds worth Rs 20 crore. On April 7, 2021, a total of 29 electoral bonds were acquired, with 19 bonds valued at Rs 1 crore each and 10 bonds at Rs 10 lakh each, summing up to Rs 20 crore. When combined with the donations from IndiGo and its affiliated companies, the total contributions from the promoter and associated entities reach Rs 56 crore.

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On the other hand, SpiceJet, once a prominent player in the Indian aviation industry, has seen a decline in its market position, currently ranking fifth in terms of market share. Despite this, the airline has engaged in political contributions, with donations made in three separate installments.

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Aerospace

Comac is set to fly to five Southeast Asian countries for a C919 and ARJ21 demonstration tour

Comac is set to fly to five Southeast Asian countries for a C919 and ARJ21 demonstration tour

Following the successful debut of the COMAC aircraft at the Singapore Airshow 2024, the company has secured new branding rights for its products in the Southeast Asian aviation market. According to sources, the airline is directing its aircraft displays to Malaysia.

A static display and demonstration flight featuring the China-manufactured commercial aircraft C919 and ARJ21 were held on Wednesday at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Malaysia’s Selangor state.

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The event showcased the brand-new C919 and ARJ21 aircraft, both quietly competing in the narrow-body segment market and slightly challenging the Boeing 737 and A320 family aircraft. The ARJ is tailored for regional airports with shorter routes.

C919 and ARJ21’s five-country tour.

This event concluded the C919 and ARJ21’s five-country Southeast Asian demonstration flight tour, which included visits to Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Indonesia.

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COMAC is actively seeking an international market alongside China. Currently, the company has amassed over 1100 aircraft orders for the COMAC C919 aircraft.

Throughout the demonstration flights and static displays, the aircraft manufacturer Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, Ltd. (COMAC) conducted a series of product promotion activities targeting potential customers.

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Furthermore, the company aims to expand its airline network in these countries by obtaining regular licenses from their respective national aerospace authorities.

The purpose of the tour was to evaluate the aircraft’s adaptability to various airports and routes in the five countries, assess the ground service equipment’s suitability, test special flight procedures’ feasibility, and highlight the economic viability of these routes. COMAC stated that demonstration flights would lay the groundwork for future market development in Southeast Asia.

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ARJ21 can carry 97 seats and C919- 192 seats.

The ARJ21 regional aircraft is designed to accommodate 78-97 passengers with a flight range of 2,225-3,700 kilometers. Meanwhile, the C919 jetliner offers a layout for 158-192 seats and a range of 4,075-5,555 kilometers, as per the company’s specifications.

The C919 completed its maiden commercial flight on May 28, 2023. Since then, China Eastern Airlines, its inaugural customer, has received five C919 aircraft, operating round-trip flights on Shanghai-Beijing and Shanghai-Chengdu routes. COMAC reports that it has safely transported over 140,000 passengers to date.

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British Airways Resumes Service to Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur

British Airways Resumes Service to Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur

British Airways has announced the reintroduction of two important capital city routes, marking a bold foray back into the Asian market. To the pleasure of tourists and aviation enthusiasts alike, BA is ready to restore flights to Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur after a protracted hiatus due to the epidemic.

BA has made a strategic choice to expand its network significantly in the Far East by starting flights again to Bangkok in October and Kuala Lumpur in November. Once mainstays on the ba airlines route chart, many wondered where these destinations would end up in the post-Covid network.

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Beginning on November 10th, British Airways will fly to Kuala Lumpur every day from its primary hub at London Heathrow Airport. The airline will give passengers a variety of options, from First Class to World Traveller, aboard an aircraft configured with four cabins. This action demonstrates ba amex dedication to providing its entire range of services to these important Asian markets.

Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL) from London Heathrow (LHR)All times are local
RouteFlight numberDepartingArrivingDateDays in OperationAircraft
LHR – KULBA3320:4517:30+110/11/241,2,3,4,5,6,7787-9
KUL – LHRBA3423:2005:35+111/11/241,2,3,4,5,6,7787-9

Return flights from London Heathrow (LHR) to Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL) per person start at:

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  • First £4,000
  • Club World £3,200
  • World Traveller Plus £1,338
  • World Traveller £620

Beginning on October 28th, british airways will start operating three weekly flights from London Gatwick to Bangkok. A three-cabin aircraft operating this seasonal route will offer alternatives for customers travelling as Club, World Traveller Plus, avios credit cards and World Traveller. The London Gatwick to Bangkok flight schedule is designed to accommodate the needs of passengers.

Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) from London Gatwick (LGW) All times are localThis is a winter only route
RouteFlight numberDepartingArrivingDateDays in OperationAircraft
LGW – BKKBA223121:0015:55+128/10/20241,4 and 6777-200ER
BKK – LGWBA223022:5505:30+129/10/20242,5 and 7777-200ER

british airways booking Return fares from London Gatwick (LGW) to Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) per person start at:

  • Club World: £3,257
  • World Traveller Plus: £1,297
  • World Traveller: £699
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