Chase The Southern Lights On A Chartered Qantas 787 Flight To Nowhere

The steam train popularity of flights to nowhere continues to surge forward. Following on from Qantas’ fast-selling Australian sightseeing flight, an Aussie tour company is now chartering a Qantas plane to go and see the Southern Lights. Taking place in September next year, the flight will use a Qantas 787-9 Dreamliner for the nine to 10-hour trip.

Qantas sightseeing flight to nowhere southern lights
The flight will take place in September 2021. Photo: Quo Vadis Holidays

Not just another flight to nowhere

Everyone knows about Qantas’ popular flight to nowhere. The Australian sightseeing tour sold out within 10 minutes of going on sale, making it the fastest-selling flight in Qantas history. Of course, that meant a lot of people missed out, although the airline is planning to lay on some more similar services in the future.

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For those who are lamenting a flight to nowhere on the Qantas Dreamliner, it seems there is now another opportunity. Quo Vadis Holidays has announced that it will be chartering the Qantas 787-9 to take a bunch of lucky passengers across the Southern Ocean to find the Southern Lights. The company said,

Join us on our “bucket-list” 2021 Southern Lights Flight trip of a lifetime as we take a Qantas 787-9 Dreamliner south over the Southern Ocean in search of the mesmerizing Southern Lights/Aurora Australis!

Qantas sightseeing flight to nowhere southern lights
The company hopes to give passengers an unrivaled view of the Aurora Australis. Photo: Quo Vadis Holidays

Also known as Aurora Australis, the Southern Lights have largely been inaccessible to the human eye. While the Northern Lights are relatively easy to spot from places like Iceland and northern Scandinavia, the Southern Lights can only really be seen following a trek across the frozen Antarctica.

Now, with this inaugural flight, Quo Vadis Holidays hopes to allow a planeload of passengers to experience this rare sight from the comfort of a Qantas Dreamliner. Although the company can’t guarantee a Southern Lights sighting, it plans to maximize the chances by traveling to 62º to 65º S latitude and traveling at 38,000 ft to stay above any cloud cover.

What can passengers expect?

The trip, scheduled to take place in September 2021, will take passengers on a nine to 10-hour scenic flight, departing from Melbourne. On board the 787-9, passengers will be able to avail of all the usual Qantas hospitality, including full meals and beverages.

Also on the plane, there will be an expert aurora photographer to give advice on snagging a top snap of the phenomenon, as well as a guest astrophysicist speaking to the passengers.

Once the plane arrives at the target latitude, it will make some passes in what Quo Vadis calls the ‘aurora oval’. The aircraft will spend around 60 – 75 minutes in this location, alternating direction to give both sides of the plane optimal chances to view the Aurora.

Qantas sightseeing flight to nowhere southern lights
The flight will perform passes in the Aurora Oval. Image: Quo Vadis Holidays

So far, the only date for the flight is September 25th, 2021, departing Melbourne at 20:00 with a return for around 05:00 – 06:00 the next day. However, the company says that, should interest be sufficient, it may look to lay on a second service out of Sydney.

The Qantas 787-9 Dreamliner features a business class cabin, and those seats will also be up for grabs. Photo: Qantas

Seats will be sold in all classes of the Dreamliner – business, premium economy and economy. Seats are only being sold in pairs, with prices ranging from AU$4,380 for a pair of economy class seats to AU$13,980 for a couple in business class. In economy and premium economy, passengers can add on an additional one or two seats for extra guests at a cost of AU$990 up to AU$2,790.

It’s a steep price to pay for the privilege, but it’s a real bucket list experience for those who can afford it. Would you take the trip? Let us know in the comments.