Lonely Planet Writer

Go straight from Perth to London on the first direct flight linking Australia and Europe

Soon travellers will be able to get from Australia to Europe without all the layovers, as Qantas has announced a new flight that will be welcome news for jet-setters on both continents.

Australia and Europe direct flight
Perth’s largest park, overlooking Perth City and the Swan River. Image by Lynn Gail/Getty Images

The Australian airline announced the first direct flight between its home base and Europe this week, calling it the “shortest and fastest version of the Kangaroo Route”. The non-stop 14,498-kilometre service from Perth to London will begin in March 2018 and is expected to be the third-longest passenger flight in the world.

Australia and Europe direct flight
Great Britain, England, City of London, Bank junction in the financial centre of London with view of the Bank of England and the Royal Exchange. Image by Manfred Gottschalk/Getty Images

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said that “when Qantas created the Kangaroo Route to London in 1947, it took four days and nine stops. Now it will take just 17 hours from Perth non-stop”. The last time a national carrier connected the two continents was in 2015, when Qantas operated a one-off charter flight from Perth to Istanbul to take Australians to the Centenary of Anzac at Gallipoli.

Cottesloe Beach, Perth.
Cottesloe Beach, Perth. Image by Neal Pritchard Photography/Getty Images

The new flight will be on a Dreamliner 787, which is intended to make sure the long flight is as comfortable as possible, as guests will have to be prepared to be in the air for 17 hours. To make it a bit easier to take, economy seats will have features that other airlines reserve for premium economy, according to Joyce. The Dreamliner was selected for the route as it is designed to have improved air quality, lower cabin noise and technology to reduce turbulence.

Westminster Bridge and Big Ben in London, England.
Westminster Bridge and Big Ben in London, England. Image by ©Yunli Song/500px

The company anticipates that a direct route will make Australia a more attractive travel destination to people around Europe, as Perth will become a new gateway into the country. Often considered one of the world’s most remote cities, Perth is the capital of Western Australia and is home to many museums and galleries. The move will also provide another option to people around Australia looking to get to Europe, as they will also have to the option to take a domestic flight to the city, before continuing on one flight into Europe. Seats will go on sale in April 2017 for the first services in March 2018.

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