Qantas has announced that international travel is back on the cards for fully vaccinated Australians, with flights departing as soon as December.
Travel to Singapore and Fiji will be amongst the first fleet of flights departing Australia, with Qantas also launching a new route direct from Sydney to Delhi – the first commercial flight to the location in over a decade.
Further flights to Bangkok, Pukhet and Johannesburg will also resume in January. These fleets will join current flights on sale from Sydney to London and Los Angeles.
“This is the best news we’ve had in almost two years and it will make a massive difference to thousands of our people who finally get to fly again,”says Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce.
“Australians rolling up their sleeves means our planes and our people are getting back to work much earlier than we expected.”
“We know that Australians are keen to get overseas and see friends and family or have a long-awaited holiday, so bringing forward the restart of flights to these popular international destinations will give customers even more options to travel this summer.”
International Qantas flights will resume four weeks earlier than planned. The decision to ramp up overseas travel comes in the wake of NSW announcing they will be ditching quarantine restrictions for fully vaccinated returning residents come November 1. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has also announced plans for caps to dissolve on international travel, with the nation’s borders set to re-open with the population inching closer to the crucial 80 per cent vaccinated milestone – which will significantly increase travel demand.
We’ve said for months that the key factor in ramping up international flying would be the quarantine requirement,” says Joyce.
“The decision by the NSW Government to join many cities from around the world by removing quarantine for fully vaccinated travellers means we’re able to add these flights from Sydney much earlier than we would have otherwise.”
“We hope that as vaccination rates in other states and territories increase, we’ll be able to restart more international flights out of their capital cities. In the meantime, Sydney is our gateway to the rest of the world.”
Flights to Honolulu, Vancouver, Tokyo and New Zealand are still scheduled to commence from mid-December 2021, with other destinations to restart in the new year. In light of today’s current restrictions, these initial flights will be limited to Australian citizens, permanent residents and their immediate families.
The change to international border directions follows the national roadmap to a COVID safe Australia, as per recommendations of the Doherty Institute. While Australia is on track to reach the crucial 80 per cent threshold, the nation is expected to reach the target well before its 2022 due date.
Over 70% of Australians aged 16 and above are fully vaccinated as of October 22. South Australia is sitting just over 60% of the eligible population fully vaccinated, with at least 77% receiving their first dose.
Singapore | Flights resume November 23
Fiji | Flights resume December 7
Johannesburg | Flights resume January 5
Phuket | Flights resume January 12
Bangkok | Flights resume January 14
To find out more information, head to the Qantas website.