Qantas says that it expects its non-stop flights between Australia and the United Kingdom to be in higher demand post-COVID-19. The Perth to London non-stop flights were commenced in March 2018 using Boeing 787s.
However, as Western Australia maintains its border restrictions for international and domestic travel, Qantas has shifted its focus on Darwin, the Northern Territory capital, as a probable hub for their non-stop London flights.
In a statement, Qantas said that “the airline is investigating using Darwin as a transit point, which has been Qantas’ main entry for repatriation flights, as an alternative, or addition to its existing Perth hub given conservative border policies in Western Australia.”
This possible move is being considered despite the success of the Perth to London flight service. As of a 2016 census, there are over 160,000 England-born people living in Perth.
Both Darwin and Perth share a similar non-stop flight time to London of about 17 hours.
Qantas has also announced that it aims to resume international travel by December 2021, as they target low-risk countries to COVID-19 like United Kingdom, Canada, United States, Japan and Singapore as its first destinations.