Qantas Operates First Non-Stop Perth-Rome Flight

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    Qantas

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    QF/QFA

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Brisbane Airport, Melbourne Airport, Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport

    Year Founded:
    1920

    Alliance:
    oneworld

    CEO:
    Alan Joyce

    Country:
    Australia

Qantas’ latest non-stop flight between Australia and Europe took off on June 22nd following massive anticipation. The flight is notable not just for being a non-stop connection between Perth and Rome but also for marking Qantas’ return to Italy after more than a decade and a half.


QF5 takes off

Qantas achieved another milestone on June 22nd when one of its Boeing 787-9 airplanes departed Perth on a non-stop journey across the hemispheres to Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Airport. The Dreamliner (registered VH-ZNF) took off at 22:34 local time and is scheduled to land a little after 08:00 in the morning on Thursday. It was still en route at the time of writing.

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The aircraft can carry 236 passengers, including 166 in economy class, 28 in premium economy, and 42 in business class.

The flight features an “Italian-inspired” menu curated by well-known chef Neil Perry for business class passengers, offering “regional recipes,” including prawn spaghetti, and zucchini and basil soup, as well as traditional tiramisu for dessert.

First non-stop connection between Australia and Continental Europe

The thrice-weekly Perth-Rome service will see the Australian airline return to Italy after an 18-year absence and mark its return to continental Europe. Qantas flew to Rome continuously between 1948 and 2003, but the service was stopped around the same time with the airline ending flights to several European destinations.

With no other direct connection to Italy from Australia, travelers so far have had to connect in cities like Singapore or Dubai.

QF5 comes just weeks after Qantas resumed its Perth-London non-stop service, which was paused due to COVID restrictions in Western Australia. The airline has been gradually resuming scheduled international services, such as the QF1 route, which operates from Sydney-Singapore-London on the airline’s flagship A380 aircraft and recently came back on June 19th.

The airline is gradually bringing its A380s from storage as demand picks up. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

There are also plans for a potential Perth-Johannesburg route in the near future, with the airline holding discussions with the concerned stakeholders. This is part of Qantas’ larger plans for international expansion after COVID.

The airline is bringing back its A380s from storage and restarting and increasing flights to several key markets such as New Zealand and Japan. Last month, Qantas said that it is targeting 70% of pre-pandemic capacity by October this year.

Perth back in action

With QF9 operating out of Perth now, Darwin’s tryst with ultra-long-haul-flight has come to an end. Meanwhile, with the start of QF5, Perth is happy to see more business come its way. The airport had invested a lot in getting together the infrastructure for the direct flight to London, only to see it go away due to strict border policies of WA.

The two non-stop flights are also expected to boost the state’s economy, with Tourism Minister Roger Cook commenting,

“The two direct connections from Perth to London and Rome will provide a huge boost in the number of visitors coming to WA from Europe, which will create more jobs in our tourism, entertainment, and hospitality industries, and inject millions into our state’s economy.

This is yet another sign of confidence that WA is open for business and open for tourism.”

What do you think about Qantas’ non-stop services to Europe? Please let us know in the comment section below.

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