Qantas’ first Perth to London flight took off on 24 March 2018, marking the start of the only direct air link between Australia and Europe – and the fastest way of traveling between the two continents.
The history-making QF9, carrying more than 200 passengers and 16 crew, pushed back just before 7pm last Saturday evening and landed in London at 5am on Sunday.
Operated by a Boeing 787-9, the flight reduces total travel time by eliminating stopovers and taking advantage of the most favourable winds on any given day without having to factor in a mid-point in the Middle East or Asia when choosing a flight path.
The new route is a major milestone for Australia as well as global aviation. For the first time, Australia and Europe have a direct air link, opening up a new era of travel.
A huge amount of work has gone into improving the experience for customers taking the 17-hour journey, with the Dreamliner recognised as the most comfortable aircraft that Qantas has ever put in the sky.
Boeing designed the Dreamliner with features to reduce jetlag, turbulence and noise. Qantas has taken that a step further with our cabin design, giving passengers more space in every class as well as bigger entertainment screens and more personal storage, plus a menu that helps the body cope better with jetlag.
The daily QF9 begins in Melbourne, flying to Perth before then flying non-stop to London. Qantas has adjusted the timing of some domestic services into Perth so that passengers from Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane can join the flight to London.
The first flight coincided with the opening of the airline’s new Perth International Transit Lounge featuring jetlag reducing lighting as well as pre-flight stretching classes, and relocating all of the airline’s domestic and international flights into a single terminal at Perth Airport for faster, smoother connections.
Qantas customers can now choose from three routes between Australia and London – the direct Perth-London service on the Dreamliner; a reinstated Sydney-Singapore-London service on the A380; and via Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth to London via Dubai with partner Emirates on mix of A380 and 777 aircraft.