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DALLAS – With its domestic fleet’s future determined and a clear path out of the pandemic in sight, Qantas (QF) is focusing on the aging mid-range Airbus A330s.
Executivetraveller.com quotes QF’s Chief Financial Officer Vanessa Hudson as saying that the aircraft was “heading to the end of its useful life.” Hudson added that QF would be looking at the market in the coming 12 months for a replacement.
Qantas will run a competition in a similar fashion as it did for its narrow-body fleet, with both Boeing and Airbus making their bids to replace the mid-sized jets.
Airbus is anticipated to enter the race with its next-generation A330neo aircraft, while Boeing will push its 787 Dreamliner. Of course, the fact that Qantas and its crew are familiar with the A330 works in Airbus’ favor.
However, QF still has a sizable number of options on the Boeing 787 that it put in place during the early stages of the Dreamliner’s development. As a result, Boeing could offer the aircraft at an alluringly low price.
Legacy of Qantas’ A330
In the Qantas fleet, the A330 is undoubtedly the most adaptable aircraft, operating transcontinental flights between Australia’s east and west coasts as well as a few flights to New Zealand and destinations in Asia, including Singapore, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Manila, and most recently India.
The Business Suite, a contemporary business class seat, first debuted on the Airbus A330s at the end of 2014; it has since been added to the Boeing 787 and Airbus A380. Domestic flights are also equipped with quick, free WiFi.
Qantas has a total of 18 A300-200, two of which will be converted into freighters, and 10 A330-300 in its fleet. The type will launch flights to Seoul and Johannesburg later this year for the Australian airline.
Qantas VH-EBM Airbus A330-200. Photo: Noah Pitkin/Airways