Qantas updates fleet on Asian routes, records rise in 1H profits

QANTAS Group will upgrade its entire fleet of Airbus A330s and order new Boeing 737-800s to drive its international and domestic strategy.

Beginning in late 2014, the interior of 10 A330-300s and 20 A330-200s will be reconfigured with a new flat seat in business class, refreshed economy cabin and a new inflight entertainment offering.

The A330-300s will be operated by Qantas International on its network between Australia and Asia, while the A330-200s will be operated by Qantas Domestic on routes between the east coast and Perth.

Qantas CEO, Alan Joyce, said: “Last month we announced a new schedule for Qantas International’s Asian network (TTG Asia e-Daily, February 5, 2013) – today I’m delighted to confirm our plans to upgrade the A330-300 aircraft that we’ll be flying across that network.”

Qantas Group will also purchase five additional B737-800 aircraft for Qantas Domestic (for delivery during 2014) and extend the leases on two existing B737-800s this year, growing its B737-800 fleet to 75 aircraft.

The older narrow-body B737-400s will be phased out by end-2013 and B767s by mid-2015. The group has recently announced its order for five additional B717 aircraft and three additional Bombardier Q400s for regional operations.

Qantas today also announced its financial results for the six months ended December 31, 2012, highlighting that losses in Qantas International were reduced by 65 per cent in 1H2013 compared with 1H2012.

The Qantas Group reported statutory profit after tax of A$111 million (US$114 million), up 164 per cent, and underlying profit before tax of A$223 million, up 10 per cent. All operating segments of the Group’s portfolio were profitable with the exception of Qantas International.

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