Qantas Airways Makes First Non-Stop Flight Between Australia and Europe

Janita Kan
By Janita Kan
March 26, 2018World News
Qantas Airways Makes First Non-Stop Flight Between Australia and Europe
Cabin crew wait to board a Qantas 787 Dreamliner before taking off on its inaugural flight from Perth to London on March 24, 2018. Qantas's 14,498 kilometer (9,009-mile) journey from Perth to London is the world's third-longest passenger flight and the first ever regular service to connect Australia and Europe directly. (Greg Wood/AFP/Getty Images)

A Qantas Boeing 787 Dreamliner made its first non-stop flight between Perth and London in on Saturday, March 24. The historic journey for the Australian airline is the first to connect the two continents of Australia and Europe directly, and is one of the longest commercial flights in the world.

The inaugural flight carried more than 200 passengers and 16 crew members, and took around 17 hours and 20 minutes to complete.

The flight touched down in London at 5:05 a.m. on Sunday, March 25, and covered a distance of approximately 14,484km (9,000 miles), reported 7News.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce, who was on the inaugural flight, described it as a major milestone for Australia as well as global aviation, according to a statement released on March 24.

“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,” Joyce said.

“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.”

Joyce said a lot of work had gone into creating an experience that would help passengers cope with a 17-hour flight.

Economy passenger Wayne Kwong documented his flight and shared his experience on social media.

Kwong complimented different aspects of the long flight, such as the food and services provided.

“All the research that went into the design of the meals has proven to work,” he wrote on Twitter.

Qantas said the aircraft was operated by four pilots across the 17-hour journey — with one or two pilots resting at any one time — and seats 236 passengers.

The Dreamliner carries around 92 tonnes or 110,000 litres of fuel and burns approximately 20 percent less than traditional aircraft of its size.

According to the statement, the flight is the third longest commercial flight currently in operation and the world’s longest Dreamliner flight. The longest commercial flight currently available can be taken between New Zealand and Qatar at 17 hours and 40 minutes, according to CNBC.


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