Qantas Activates Five More Embraer E190s Under Alliance Airlines

Qantas will be basing five Embraer E190s at Adelaide Airport as a way to boost domestic flights. The move is part of a three-year deal with Alliance Airlines and responds to increasing leisure and business travel demand. This will see the jets painted in QantasLink livery.

Qantas Activates Five More Embraer E190s Under Alliance Airlines
Qantas has a 20% share of Alliance Airlines. Photo: Simple Flying

“Basing these aircraft in Adelaide means we can service South Australia better and help bring more visitors to the State.

“The E190 is a great aircraft for the Adelaide market, with its size, range and economics opening up a number of new destinations that wouldn’t be viable with the larger 737 aircraft,” – Alan Joyce, CEO, Qantas Group

Alliance Airlines aircraft at Adelaide Airport

We reported on Qantas’ deal with Alliance Airlines as early as February, noting that the Australian flag carrier had struck a deal with Alliance to start services under the QantasLink brand (including livery) from mid-2021. The three-year agreement would see as many as 14 of Alliance’s Embraer E190s fly for Qantas’ regional airline. With the most recent announcement, the number of activated aircraft now sits at eight.

On Friday, Qantas announced that the Alliance five jets would be based in Adelaide. With each aircraft having a 94-passenger capacity and a five-hour range, Qantas is looking to boost its presence out of Adelaide and increase connections to other parts of Australia.

This larger presence at Adelaide has been made possible through the support of the South Australian Government and Adelaide Airport. With the five jets settling into their new home and flying new services, Qantas says an additional 200 jobs will be created, including pilots, cabin crew, and engineers recruited by Alliance.

Alliance Airlines E190s will start flying for QantasLink on May 25, with QantasLink livery. Photo: Alliance Airlines

“The establishment of an Embraer E190 aircraft base is a shot in the arm for the South Australian aviation industry.

“The base will create aviation and maintenance jobs, increase tourism and position Adelaide as Australia’s regional aviation hub. – Steven Marshall, Premier of South Australian

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Where will these aircraft fly?

Dressed up in QantasLink livery, the Alliance E190s will help Qantas grow its domestic capacity to 107% of pre-COVID levels in Fiscal Year 2022. In fact, Qantas boasts that the five E190 aircraft will carry nearly one million additional passengers to-and-from Adelaide each year.

With the additional aircraft based in Adelaide, Qantas will launch a new Adelaide-Gold Coast service “in time for the winter school holidays.” This service will begin on June 25th with four return services per week, increasing to a once-daily frequency during school holiday peaks.

Qantas says that several additional routes from Adelaide will be announced in the coming weeks.

Qantas Activates Five More Embraer E190s Under Alliance Airlines
The highlight of the E190s in Adelaide is a new non-stop service to the Gold Coast. Photo:

Outside of Adelaide, Qantas will begin flying between Darwin and Canberra using E190 aircraft from June 21st.

An indirect benefit of the Alliance deal is that the E190s will free up Qantas’ Boeing 737 aircraft “to be redeployed across the domestic network.” The airline says that all Qantas domestic crew have returned to flying.

Do you think this is a good move for Qantas? Let us know in the comments.