Qantas is pushing up the restart of more of its international routes, launching a new route to India and plans to bring back its full workforce six month earlier than planned, the carrier announced.
The Australian carrier is starting service from Sydney to Delhi, pending Indian government approval, three times per week on Dec. 6, with service increasing to daily by the end of the year. The service, Qantas’ first commercial service to India in more than a decade, will be on Airbus A330 aircraft and include a stop in Darwin in the Sydney-to-Delhi leg only. Qantas plans to operate the route through March 2022 and continue it if there is sufficient demand.
Qantas also has pushed up the restart of its service to Singapore by four weeks to Nov. 23, starting with three roundtrip flights per week and increasing to daily on Dec. 18. Qantas’ low-cost subsidiary Jetstar will restart service to Singapore from Melbourne and Darwin on Dec. 16.
Service to Fiji will start 12 days earlier than expected on Dec. 7, and Jetstar will start Fiji service on Dec. 17.
Several routes from Sydney for next year have been pushed up as well, Qantas announced. Service to Johannesburg has been pushed up three months to a Jan. 5 start, service to Bangkok has been brought forward by two months for a Jan. 14 start and service to Phuket, Thailand, pushed up two months for a Jan. 12 start.
Plans for flights to Honolulu, Vancouver, Tokyo and New Zealand remain on schedule for a mid-December start, according to Qantas.
Qantas last week announced it would push up its service from Sydney to both Los Angeles and London up two weeks for a Nov. 1 start. The quicker-than-planned return stems from the Australian state of New South Wales, of which Sydney is the capital, announcing that it will begin allowing fully vaccinated international travelers to arrive without quarantine starting Nov. 1, although initially limited to Australian citizens and residents.
With the new routes starting, Qantas now plans to have all Qantas and Jetstar employees based in Australia and New Zealand, including about 11,000 furloughed employees, back to work by early December. The full return of Qantas’ workforce had not been expected until June 2022.
“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,” Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said in a statement.
Sales of international flights from Sydney have outpaced sales on domestic flights in recent weeks, Joyce added.