Australia’s national carrier, Qantas Airways has finalised a contract to buy 110 Airbus A320 aircraft, including 78 A320neos.
According to the carrier this will be the country’s single largest aircraft purchase to date and will pave the way for the launch of its low cost and premium carrier in Asia, announced in August.
The creation of two new airlines and a radical overhaul of existing fleet is part of a new five year plan to ensure Qantas’ survival.
In a joint statement by Airbus and Qantas it was revealed that the new aircraft will be deployed across the Qantas Group on short-to-medium haul domestic and international operations.
Jn addition to the new aircraft, there will be a $400 million overhaul of existing in-flight entertainment, aircraft interiors and airport lounges to meet changing demands.
Qantas has also confirmed that the A320 will be the aircraft used to launch a new premium airline based in Asia.
This joint venture airline will have a new name, a new brand, new aircraft and a new look and feel.
The airline will not be called Qantas but it will leverage all Qantas’ know-how, making the most of its brand management, aviation safety, customer experience, finance, and marketing skills, as well as its corporate customer relationships.
The new aircraft will also be deployed across Qantas’ low-cost subsidiary Jetstar, Singapore-based Jetstar Asia, and the upcoming Jetstar Japan.
As a result of the planned changes, Qantas will shed 1,000 jobs, with roles to go among management, pilots, cabin crew and engineers.