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Monday, July 15, 2013

Qatar A380 Emerges & Will Inevitably Fly Australia



Another reminder that there will be a very large number of A380 services to Australian cities by the end of this decade has emerged from the final assembly line at Toulouse with a Qatar Airways tail in the above Twitpic sent out by the Airbus Twitter feed.

Qatar has no announced plans to fly A380s to Australia. When the A380 shown here goes into service early next year its current intention to its use the largest airliner in service to connect Doha to the slot constrained major airports of Europe, including London’s.

But Qatar has Australian ambitions to rival those already achieved by Emirates and being pursued by Etihad, and most traffic arrangements made by Australia, and increasingly, by other countries, are for frequency of service rather than total seats on offer.

Which is a tidy way of overcoming the habit of airlines to put more seats in any jet in their fleets over time to deal with unit costs, changes in product demand, finite airport access in key cities, and of course, clobber competitors with smaller aircraft by being able to offer a larger number of seats than they can in the market and try to drive them under.

And that in turn will see Qatar do to its smaller jet services to Australia what Emirates is already doing, and replace 777s with A380s, assuming it prospers in this market.

Qatar currently flies to Perth and Melbourne from Doha with 777s. It has ambitions to fly to Sydney as well.

It has 13 A380s on order, as well as 80 A350s (43 of the -900s for which it is the launch customer, and 37 of the -1000 version) and 30 Dreamliner 787s and has recently indicated that it will also exercise options for a further 30.

Qatar has joined the Oneworld alliance, and the speculation for some time in the retail travel trade in this country, as well as in some financial analysis, is about how or if Qatar might leverage its membership of that grouping to work with British Airways in offering alternatives to the Qantas-Emirates arrangements and those of Etihad and Virgin Australia.

Etihad has already indicated that it will start A380 services to Australia in the nearish future, and recently announced ordering a bank of A380 and 787 simulators as its fleet replacement program moves up a notch in the coming year.

All of which is going to leave the token Qantas A380 flights (daily from both Sydney and Melbourne to London via Dubai) looking …. very token.

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Live to love and love to live. The motto that I held on my entire life. Just a regular guy who loves what I am passionate in life. A song writer and producer. Living life on the move. From Malaysia to The States, New Zealand to Singapore. With the companion of great people in life. In and out from the music industry. Taking everything one step at a time. 
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