Qantas Kills Dubai, Goes Back to Singapore as Stopover Between London and Sydney
Qantas is leaving Dubai, a little more than four years after setting up shop there. Dubai International (DXB) has been the stopover point on Qantas flights between London (LHR) and Sydney (SYD) since April 2013, when Qantas and Emirates formed an alliance. With the axing of Dubai from Qantas' route network, the airline has announced it is going back to Singapore (SIN) as the replacement, meaning all Qantas flights between London and Sydney will now stop in Asia, rather than the Middle East. The change becomes effective on March 25th, 2018.
Qantas says the move was decided to "reflect customer demand." CEO Alan Joyce insisted that while the Qantas-Emirates alliance is "a great success, Qantas' partnership has evolved to a point where Qantas no longer needs to fly its own aircraft through Dubai, and that means we can redirect some of our A380 flying into Singapore and meet the strong demand we’re seeing in Asia."
The alliance between Qantas and Emirates remains in place, with no changes to the full codeshare and joint venture agreement. As a result, passengers will still be able to fly on Emirates aircraft to Dubai, and have a choice of three stopover options between Australia and Europe: Dubai, operated by Emirates, or Perth and Singapore operated by Qantas.
The return of the Airbus A380 onto the Sydney-Singapore-London and Melbourne-Singapore routes also means the return of a First Class cabin from Australia to Singapore, and also Premium Economy, as these classes are not currently available on the two-class Airbus A330s serving the route now.
Qantas said that customers with existing bookings affected by the changes will be re-accommodated onto the new services, or will be given the option to change their flights.
Specifically, the following flight numbers are affected by the swapping of Dubai for Singapore:
- From 25 March 2018, QF 1/2 A380 service will operate Sydney – London via Singapore, replacing one of the existing Sydney – Singapore A330 services. The second Sydney – Singapore daily service will continue to be operated by an A330 aircraft.
- From 25 March 2018, one daily Qantas Melbourne – Singapore service will be upgraded from an A330 to an A380 (QF35/36), with the second three per week service increased to a daily A330 service (QF37/38).
Are you happy with the return of Singapore as the new stopover point for flights between London and Sydney? Let us know below.