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QF Dreamliner will link Melbourne to San Francisco    

December 19, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Qantas has revealed a new route for the Dreamliner, while inaugurating its first scheduled international flight from Melbourne to Los Angeles.

Qantas will start flying between Melbourne and San Francisco at the end of next year using its new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners.

The revelations came on Friday as Qantas announced the name of its second Dreamliner: Waltzing Matilda, following the first which is named Great Southern Land.

Qantas International chief executive Alison Webster was joined by Victoria’s  Minister for Tourism and Major Events, John Eren, at Qantas’ engineering base in Melbourne to mark the naming as well as the Dreamliner’s first passenger service to Los Angeles.

Often called Australia’s unofficial national anthem, Waltzing Matilda was one of the 45,000 suggestions received from the public to name the airline’s new fleet of eight Dreamliners.

“Banjo Paterson is said to have written Waltzing Matilda while working on a cattle station in the outback Queensland town of Winton, which was also the birth place of Qantas 25 years later,” Webster said.

Waltzing Matilda joins the Qantas fleet. Photo by James Morgan

“The name of this aircraft will be seen by thousands of people a year when it pulls up at airport gates around the world. For Australian’s it’s a familiar touch of home. For some of our customers flying from overseas, there will probably be some googling to find out what it means.

“The Melbourne-Los Angeles flight was the first international service that we put our very first Airbus A380 on in 2008, so there’s a nice symmetry with this being the first for our Dreamliner as well,” added Ms Webster.

Dreamliner 787-9s are now flowing through to Qantas. It will use its third and fourth Dreamlers to fly to an historic Perth-London route from March. That route also starts in Melbourne.

Brisbane-Los Angeles-New York should be coming up about the same time as Melbourne-San Francisco – the end of 2018. Other North American possibilities in the future include Chicago, Seattle and Vancouver. All are in range.

The Qantas Dreamliner will initially operate six days a week on the 14-hour flight between Melbourne and Los Angeles, complementing the existing daily A380 service between the two cities.

The Melbourne to San Francisco will be on sale from early 2018 with flights expected to start by late 2018. Capacity between Melbourne and the US will be rebalanced to match demand for the two Californian cities, meaning that the Dreamliner will fly to Los Angeles some days of the week and San Francisco other days.

“A significant number of our Melbourne passengers flying to Los Angeles already connect on to San Francisco. We also see strong demand from San Francisco, both from a tourism perspective and because of the business links between Melbourne and Silicon Valley,” Webster said.

The Qantas Dreamliner features 236 seats across three cabins including the acclaimed Business Suite, nicknamed “mini First Class” by some frequent flyers, as well as a next generation Premium Economy seat and a significantly improved Economy seat with extra storage compartments and device charging outlets.

Qantas has so far taken delivery of two Boeing 787-9s. The arrival of its third and fourth aircraft early next year will enable the Australian carrier to start its historic Perth-London flight, which originates in Melbourne. All eight aircraft will be delivered by the end of 2018, with half based in Melbourne and half based in Brisbane.

Earlier this year, Qantas revealed all eight Dreamliner names; Great Southern Land, Waltzing Matilda, Great Barrier Reef, Skippy, Boomerang, Quokka, Uluru and Dreamtime. The sequencing of the names is being announced as the aircraft are delivered.

Edited by Peter Needham

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