Qantas will shift its two biggest trans-continental routes to an exclusive A330-only service from next year.
As of May 2013 all weekday Sydney-Perth and Melbourne-Perth flights will run Airbus A330s – the biggest bird in Qantas’ domestic fleet, with a new A330-200 arriving factory-fresh today from Airbus HQ in Toulouse, France.
The new A330-200, named Kangaroo Island, is configured with 36 seats in business class and 268 in economy and will begin flying at the end of this week.
Qantas currently runs a mix of A330s and Boeing 767s on its cross-country route, with the 767s undergoing a refresh ahead of their eventual retirement.
Qantas will see a boost in the size of its A330 fleet in the second half of next year when it inherits the A330s currently operated by Jetstar, as its low-cost sibling moves over to the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
Each former Jetstar A330 will be sent back for a refit to Qantas spec, a process which the airline says will take four to six weeks, before joining the Red Roo’s fleet.
Virgin Australia has already shifted all Melbourne-Perth flights to the A330, and also plans to transition the Sydney-Perth route to an all-A330 schedule in 2013.