BA And Qatar JV Receives Approval For Some Australia Routes

British Airways and Qatar Airways are hoping for more custom on select Australian routes after the Australian Competition…

BA And Qatar JV Receives Approval For Some Australia Routes

British Airways and Qatar Airways are hoping for more custom on select Australian routes after the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) approved their joint venture to operate to Four Australian cities earlier this week. The airlines operated in a joint venture before submitting their latest application. However, Australia was not one of the countries listed. The airlines will be allowed to start services in the cities from 29th May.

British Airways’ joint venture with Qatar Airways has been approved by the ACCC to operate in Australia. Photo: Getty Images

The ACCC grants approval for Australian expansion

The ACCC has approved an application for British Airways and Qatar Airways to operate a joint venture to four Australian cities. The two airlines submitted their application in January 2020, hoping for the opportunity to ameliorate their customer service on these routes.

At that time, the airlines sought approval to run services between London and Doha, Manchester and Doha and Edinburgh and Doha. BA and Qatar asked the ACCC for permission to operated Beyond and Behind routes (B&B routes) to the following cities:

  • Canberra
  • Melbourne
  • Adelaide
  • Perth.

Earlier this week, it was revealed that the ACCC had accepted the proposal.

The airlines will be allowed to operate to Australia on routes through Doha. Photo: Great Circle Mapper

What impact will the Australian expansion have?

British Airways and Qatar Airways will be allowed to participate in the joint venture to Australia from 29th May. The agreement from the ACCC is active for the next five years. During that time, both airlines hope the venture will bring many customer benefits. In its proposal to the ACCC, the joint venture claimed: “the co-ordination will likely result in a number of benefits to the public.” That’s because the agreement is much more than a codeshare.

On its website, British Airways says:

“British Airways and Qatar Airways have teamed up to provide you with an enhanced network which offers you more flight choices and better connections when traveling between the UK, Doha, and beyond. This will help make your travel experience easier and more rewarding.”

Qatar Airways Flying
Both airlines will be able to offer a more seamless process. Photo: Tom Boon / Simple Flying

This new regulation allows the airlines to coordinate their schedules, pricing, and marketing. The joint venture also said that passengers would profit from greater flexibility on connecting flights, a seamless booking process, and access to both airlines’ frequent flyer points systems.

Up until now, both Qatar and British Airways have had an agreement to cooperate in 80 cities worldwide. However, Australian routes were not part of this.

Could the coronavirus pandemic affect plans?

Qatar Airways and BA submitted their proposal in January this year, a few months ahead of the global imposition of travel restrictions due to coronavirus. Since then, there has been some concern that the return to normal for the industry could be slow.

British Airways cabin service
It may take a while for the airline industry to recover to pre-COVID-19 levels. Photo: British Airways

If that happens, then the two carriers could lose out on many years of success on this venture. In 2019 alone, over 670,000 UK travelers visited Australia. In the coming years, that number is likely to be a lot less.

Fortunately, this new agreement will not expire until 2025, so there are many good years ahead for these two airlines. That said, the ACCC will be keeping a close eye on travel developments. It says that it will reconsider its verdict based on fluctuations in demand in the years preceding expiration.

Will you be making the most of these new Australian routes? Let us know in the comments. 

Source : Simple Flying More   

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Why Did Delta Air Lines Operate The DC-9?

On October 7th, 1965, Delta Air Lines received its first McDonnell Douglas DC-9 aircraft. The firm was the…

Why Did Delta Air Lines Operate The DC-9?

On October 7th, 1965, Delta Air Lines received its first McDonnell Douglas DC-9 aircraft. The firm was the first operator to introduce the narrowbody into service. It took the type on to serve smaller and intermediate-sized cities on its routes. This first unit, named the Delta Prince, led this task.

Delta had a long-term relationship with the DC-9. Photo: Delta Air Lines

A shift in the market

During the 1960s, many new passenger segments had opened up within the aviation market. With airlines growing their network and connecting more airports across the United States, more people gained the opportunity to hit the skies.

According to the Delta Flight Museum, before this purchase, Delta took on the DC-8 and then Convair 880 for longer-distance flights. However, with a capacity of 65 passengers, the DC-9 helped fulfill shorter-distance operations. During this time, 60 percent of all passenger traffic in the country was on routes that had a distance of 500 miles or less.

These services were usually performed by propellor aircraft such as the DC-6 DC-7 and Convair 440. Therefore, the Pratt & Whitney JT8D-1 turbofan-powered DC-9 was designed to fly from 98 percent of the country’s airports in 1965. Moreover, it was the first American-built jet to serve smaller sized cities.

Delta DC-9
The DC-9 in newer livery. Photo: Cory W. Watts via Wikimedia Commons

Further developments

Its first passenger flight departed Atlanta on November 29th, 1965. The plane headed for Kansas City via Memphis to perform the beginning of what became a daily scheduled service on December 8th of that year.

As passenger demand increased, Delta took on the Model 32 in 1967, which was much larger than the DC-14 and DC-15 variants. The new model was fifteen feet longer than the standard jet. Additionally, it could carry to 108,000 lbs in gross weight. Altogether, it could serve up to 89 passengers.

Delta had initially let go of the twin-engine plane in 1993. However, just like the Boeing 747, the type reentered service following the firm’s merger with Northwest Airlines in 2008.

Delta Air Lines DC-9
The newer units of the DC-9 are longer than their predecessors. Photo: Cory W. Watts via Wikimedia Commons

All great things must come to an end

As of 1996, over 880 of the planes were still in the air. However, as airlines continued to modernize their fleets, Delta started to phase out the DC-9s that they gained in the new millennium.

Therefore, on January 6th, 2014, the operator retired the last of its remaining DC-9s. This final service departed Minneapolis/St. Paul for Delta’s hub of Atlanta, in a fitting send-off. This was the last scheduled commercial passenger flight of the DC-9 by a major US-based carrier. Altogether, Delta flew a total of 305 DC-9s since 1965

Former Delta’s vice president of fleet strategy Nat Pieper spoke highly of the aircraft when it was retired. He explained that the plane made way for more efficient options.

“The DC-9 has been a workhorse in our domestic fleet while providing a reliable customer experience,” Pieper said, according to Delta’s press release.

“The aircraft’s retirement paves the way for newer, more efficient aircraft.”

With several other aircraft going through retirement this decade, Delta is also looking to reshuffle its fleet once again. Just like the DC-9, these planes all served a specific purpose, but as the industry continues to evolve, each type has to eventually leave.

What are your thoughts on Delta’s history with the DC-9? Have you experienced a trip with this aircraft? Let us know what you think in the comment section.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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