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Qantas selects Airbus for world's longest flights

Christian Fernsby |
Qantas Airways picked Airbus over Boeing as the preferred supplier for jets capable of the world’s longest commercial flights from Sydney to London.

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The Qantas flights would begin in the first half of 2023, but remain subject to the airline reaching a pay deal with pilots, who would need to extend their duty times to around 23 hours to account for potential delays and switch between flying the A350 and the airline’s current A330 fleet.

A final decision on an order is expected in March, the airline said.

Qantas Chief Executive Alan Joyce said the airline “had a lot of confidence” in the market for non-stop services from Sydney to London and to New York based on two years of flying non-stop from Perth to London, where it has achieved a 30% fare premium over one-stop rivals in premium classes.

“The A350 is a fantastic aircraft and the deal on the table with Airbus gives us the best possible combination of commercial terms, fuel efficiency, operating cost and customer experience,” he said.

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