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Trans-Tasman Dreamliner battle looms as Qantas adds 787s

June 21, 2019 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Qantas will operate a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner across the Tasman between Sydney and Auckland over the peak southern summer season, going head to head with Air New Zealand, which operates the same type of aircraft on the same route.

To make its presence felt, Qantas is selling fares on the new service already, with a special sale for seats in premium economy from AUD 299 one-way for Qantas flights QF141 and QF144 between Sydney and Auckland.

Qantas says the flights will let it showcase the 787 across the Tasman before it adds more Dreamliners to its long-haul international network from next year onwards.

Air New Zealand also operates its 787-9 Dreamliners between Sydney and Auckland, the Tasman’s busiest route. Customers love the new-generation planes, a flight attendant told me when I flew on one from Sydney to Auckland last month.

Sometimes, Air New Zealand operates another type of widebody aircraft, the Boeing 777, on the same route.

Qantas doesn’t have 777s, but it has Dreamliners and travellers will be able to try them across the Tasman from 4 December 2019 to 28 March 2020. During that period, Qantas customers travelling on one of five of the airline’s daily flights between Sydney and Auckland will experience the Dreamliner’s next generation economy, premium economy and business cabins.

Qantas International acting chief executive Naren Kumar said the debut of the Dreamliner across the Tasman was good news for customers, while also making the best use of the airline’s fleet.

Already on the Tasman. Air New Zealand B787-9 Dreamliner

“The Dreamliner has been incredibly popular so we’re pleased to give our customers travelling between Sydney and Auckland the opportunity to experience it,” he said.

“The 787 will also offer customers the option to experience our latest premium economy cabin and the opportunity for frequent flyers to upgrade using Qantas points.”

Qantas currently has eight 787-9s in its fleet, with a further six arriving from October 2019, bringing the total fleet of Dreamliners to 14 by the second half of 2020.

Coming on the Tasman. Qantas B787-9 Dreamliner

Qantas’ Dreamliner carries 236 passengers across three cabins. It features the latest version of the airline’s Business Suite, which the airline says is 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 more legroom.

Written by Peter Needham

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