Qantas to introduce a premium airline to the Asian market

Qantas to introduce a premium airline to the Asian market

Qantas is taking steps that will help the airline grow its brand over the next 10 to 15 years, including the launch of an Asia-focused premium carrier.

The airline recently announced that it will acquire up to 110 Airbus A320 aircraft, in addition to 194 purchase rights and options as a part of the carrier's five-year plan to improve its business model. With these new additions to it fleet, Qantas will have the ability to cater to travelers who seek luxury flying options to and from Asia.

According to The West Australian, Qantas' Asian airline would be modelled after British Airways and Lufthansa planes that only provide services to travelers who purchase business class tickets.

"This product will be better than anything else seen in Asia with lie-flat beds in the business cabin, superior to the award-winning first-class A380 beds," Alan Joyce, Qantas' chief executive, told the news source.

The airline will use the Airbus A320, which features 180 seats and a single aisle to provide travelers with more flexibility, the news outlet reported. Joyce added that using this plane will allow for more destinations and a higher frequency of flights than larger aircraft would be able to manage. Once the new carrier has been established, it will provide services throughout Asia from a hub that has not yet been identified and down to Australia.

Travelers who purchase business class airfares for the airline will experience a "private-jet feel," Joyce said in a television interview, as quoted by Bloomberg. At first, 11 Airbus A320s will be used for flights to and from Australia and into important destinations such as China and India. These steps will help the airline position itself in the Asia-Pacific aviation market.

The news source stated that the new airline may prove to be competition for Singapore Air, as Qantas is looking to establish its hub in either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur. For the carrier, Singapore is an attractive option as Qantas is currently the city-state's second-biggest airline. In addition, Singapore is a popular hub for long distance flights to European locations, such as London and Frankfurt.

Meanwhile, selecting Kuala Lumpur would allow Qantas to work with the Malaysian Airline System and AirAsia, the news outlet reported. 

By Christopher Straub

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