Aviation

Qantas group cuts capacity after WA delays border reopening indefinitely

Qantas Group will reduce its planned domestic capacity by approximately 10 per cent from 5 February through to 31 March 2022.

This comes after the airline reviewed its domestic capacity settings given the decision by the Western Australian Government to indefinitely delay reopening its borders in the face of rising Omicron cases.

The decision has been calculated on an available seat kilometre basis and reflects the long sector lengths of trans-continental flights, according to the airline.

Despite reducing its capacity, Qantas Group plans to maintain core connections between Perth and the rest of Australia.

The cuts will take Qantas Group’s domestic capacity for the third quarter of FY22 to approximately 60 per cent of pre-COVID levels.

The new flight cuts come after the airline group cut flights earlier this month as it expected domestic capacity for the third quarter to be at around 70 per cent of pre-COVID levels, down from the 102 per cent that had been planned.

However, Qantas has not been the only airline to cut flight capacity in the face of Omicron, as Virgin Australia reduced flights by 25 per cent and suspend ten routes, including its only international flight, Sydney-Fiji, a few weeks ago.

Virgin’s announcement was due to the reduced level of crew availability and hindered travel demand.

Virgin Australia CEO, Jayne Hrdlicka, commented on the updates, saying there is some uncertainty as to how the company will go forward.

“Although we don’t know when this wave will pass, we do know that as we make the shift to living with COVID-19 there will continue to be changes in all our lives,” Hrdlicka said.



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