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Qantas has announced it will commence direct non-stop flights from Sydney to London and New York from 2025, with a landmark order for Airbus A350-1000 jets capable of the monumental task.
But West Australian veteran journalist Ben Harvey argues that the decision by Qantas to establish flights from London to Sydney makes flights to Perth virtually pointless.
Questions have been raised over the practicality of non-stop long-haul flights from London to Perth following news this week of Qantas ‘ plans for 19-hour non-stop flights between London and Sydney. (Pictured: An Airbus flying over the Opera House)
‘There’s gonna be f**k all Londoners who want to come to Perth instead of Sydney… because Perth is to Sydney what Birmingham is to London,’ Harvey said.
‘The Poms have two choices, fly to Perth and then go four or five hours on a flight to the east coast because that’s where the cool stuff is, or fly direct to the cool stuff without being attacked by a meth zombie at an empty shop outside of the Hay Street Mall.’
Social media users were most divided on whether the new route would render flights from London to Perth irrelevant and what they think would be better.
One user said in response to Harvey’s statement: ‘Yep go to Sydney, Perth is horrendous at the moment.’
‘Nothing to see in Perth,’ wrote another. ‘This place is 20yrs behind. Best coastline with little accommodation.’
However, many disagreed with Harvey’s assertion, with some pointing towards the significant proportion of UK immigrants in Perth.
Qantas has announced it will commence direct non-stop flights from Sydney (pictured) to London and New York from 2025
West Australian veteran journalist Ben Harvey (pictured) argued that the decision by Qantas to establish flights from London to Sydney makes flights to Perth virtually pointless
Those flying in from London (pictured) will have the choice of a direct, non-stop flight to either Sydney or Perth from 2025
One respondent argued that Perth has a ‘much higher proportion of UK immigrants’ in comparison to cities in the eastern states.
‘Does this guy know how many UK residents we have in Perth. It is a very large part of our population,’ commented one.
A third added: ‘Because half England live north of Perth’.
Others shared their view that many people have family in Perth and the West Australian capital is a better city to see compared to Sydney.
‘I have family in Perth, have no wish to fly to Sydney,’ one woman said.
‘Perth always my family are there! Have been to Sydney but Perth wins!’ another woman wrote.
One man gave a detailed response, writing, ‘The Brits don’t come to Perth for the city centre when they’ve got that in spades in the UK. They come to visit for the beaches, sun and a small slice of our laid back way of life – and visiting friends and family.’
‘There’s more to Oz than the Opera House and Bondi Beach. WA is the bees knees.’
Many disagreed with Harvey’s assertion, with some pointing towards the significant proportion of UK immigrants in Perth
Qantas staff wave Australian and British flags at the Boeing 787 Dreamliner after landing at Heathrow Airport on March 25, 2018, following a historic direct flight from Perth
Qantas announced this week that London to Sydney will become the world’s longest direct flight when the airline introduces flights between the two cities from 2025.
Qantas launched direct flights from Perth to London Heathrow in 2017, but has now announced an order of 12 Airbus A350-1000s to ‘conquer the final frontier of long-haul travel’.
The non-stop flights will allow ‘make almost any city in the world one flight from Australia’, including London and New York.
It comes after ‘strong demand’ for the Perth to London flights due to ‘convenience and time savings’, while the new fleet of aircraft will ‘set a new benchmark for premium long-haul travel’.
As part of the new project, codenamed ‘Project Sunrise’, UK passengers will be able to expect more direct flights to Australia and ‘reduced point-to-point travel time’.
A trial flight from London to Sydney in 2019 took 19 hours and 19 minutes.
The new aircraft will feature a seat count of 238, the lowest of its kind in service, and a dedicated wellbeing zone designed for ‘movement, stretching and hydration’ with complimentary water, fruit and snack bars.
The first-class suites will include a private area with door, a full-size flat-screen TV, a separate bed, a recliner lounge chair, and a personal wardrobe for the cashed-up.
The new state-of-the-art Airbus plane’s will fly out from Sydney linking the city to Europe and America via non-stop flights (pictured)
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce (pictured) announced Qantas would be committing to direct, non-stop flights from Sydney to London and New York from 2025 at a ceremony of an Airbus A350-1000 on Monday
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: ‘For more than 100 years, Qantas has been at the forefront of transforming the way the world travels, particularly through direct flights. Now, the A350 and Project Sunrise will make almost any city in the world just one flight away from Australia.
‘It’s the last frontier and the final fix for the tyranny of distance that has traditionally challenged travel to Australia.
‘Our direct Perth-London flights started in 2017 and showed strong demand for the convenience and time savings from this kind of travel if the product and service is right.
‘Pre-COVID it was the longest route on our network and had the highest customer satisfaction on our network. All signs point to that demand increasing post-COVID.’
The first ‘Project Sunrise’ flights will be from New York and London, but the aircraft will also be able to operate non-stop flights to Australia from destinations such as Paris and Frankfurt.