Qantas is increasing its Brisbane – Los Angeles services over the busy January holiday period. Currently, the airline offers 10 non-stop Boeing 787-9 services each week between the two cities. But over the month of January 2020, the frequency will increase to 13 return services a week.
QF55, the thrice-weekly service to Los Angeles, and QF56, the return service to Brisbane, will operate every day of the week except Thursday between January 2nd, 2020, and February 1st, 2020.
The passenger traffic on the Brisbane – Los Angeles route has grown enormously in recent years. According to BITRE statistics, in the year ending 30th June 2019, 32,222 passengers flew between Brisbane and Los Angeles. That is a 5% increase on the 30,673 passengers who flew the route one year earlier.
Award availability still difficult
As Zac George in Points From The Pacific writes, award availability on Brisbane-Los Angeles flights has always been notoriously tight (in fact, award availability on Qantas flights across the Pacific is always tight). The temporary increase in frequency out of Brisbane might shake a few seats free from the poorly fruiting Qantas awards tree.
But given the popularity of the route and the fact that the extra flights will span the busy Australian summer school holiday period, these extra flights are unlikely to bear many extra seats for frequent flyers with points to spend.
Qantas 787 Dreamliners rolling out
On the plus side, the Brisbane-Los Angeles-Brisbane flights are exclusively operated by Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. These aircraft are fitted with the most up to the minute Qantas seats including their well-regarded business suites. You’ll see the same aircraft flying the popular QF9/10 Perth-Heathrow-Perth route. In addition, you’ll find the aircraft flying out of Sydney and Melbourne and heading across the Pacific to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York.
By the middle of 2020, you can also expect to see the Qantas Dreamliners heading across to Santiago.
Dreamliners are a nice way to travel
The plane is a comfortable way to travel across the Pacific in. The Qantas 787-9 carries 236 passengers, including 42 lucky passengers in lie-flat business suites in a 1-2-1 configuration, 28 passengers in premium economy in 2-3-2 configuration, and 166 passengers in the main economy cabin in a 3-3-3 configuration. In the economy cabin, rows 40 and 46 are the pick – bulkhead seats with lots of legroom.
Business-class passengers, Qantas Club members, Qantas Chairman’s Lounge, Platinum and Gold frequent flyers, Oneworld Emerald and Sapphire members can use the recently refurbished and well regarded Qantas International Business Lounge in Brisbane prior to flying out.
In Los Angeles, business class passengers, Qantas Club members, Qantas Gold frequent flyers and Oneworld Sapphire members can use the International Business Lounge up on level 5 (airside) at Tom Bradley before heading back to Brisbane. Chairman’s Lounge members, Qantas Platinum, and Oneworld Emerald passengers can all head straight to the exceptional Qantas Los Angeles First Lounge.
Lots of Qantas activity out of Brisbane
Qantas is busy expanding its services out of fast-growing Brisbane Airport as more 787-9s are delivered. In February 2020 Qantas is commencing their nonstop Brisbane-San Francisco flights. In April 2020 Qantas is kicking off its Brisbane-Chicago flights, marking the first time an Australian city will have direct flights into the big midwestern city.
In addition, there is speculation that Brisbane will soon enjoy extra flights to Japan. Extra landing slots at Haneda have just opened up for Australian airlines and Qantas is in the box seat to snap them up. As a result, Qantas is pushing back the retirement date of their 747s, said to be keeping them available to exploit the emerging opportunities in Japan. The days of Qantas 747s in Brisbane may not be over yet.
It all makes for a busy time at Brisbane International for Qantas.