Qantas has launched the first nonstop flight between the UK and Australia operating between Heathrow and Perth.
The first service departed Perth on Saturday (March 24) with the return flight leaving Heathrow’s Terminal 3 on Sunday (March 25). The flight on a Boeing Dreamliner 787-9 takes around 17 hours.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce was one of the passengers on the inaugural flight and called it “a major milestone for Australia as well as global aviation”.
“This is a truly historic flight that opens up a new era of travel. For the first time, Australia and Europe have a direct air link,” said Joyce.
“The original Kangaroo Route from Australia to London was named for the seven stops it made over four days back in 1947. Now we can do it in a single leap.
“The response to the flight has been amazing, both for the attention it’s received since we announced it and the bookings we’ve seen coming in. It’s great for Australian tourism, for business travellers and for people visiting friends and family on both sides of the world.”
The daily service (QF9) starts in Melbourne, before flying to Perth and flying non-stop to Heathrow. Qantas has adjusted the timing of some domestic services to Perth so that passengers from Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane can join the flight to the UK.