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Qantas to base half of 787 fleet in Brisbane

Qantas will base four of its upcoming Boeing 787-9s in Brisbane, complementing the four aircraft that will be based in Melbourne.

The Oneworld carrier says in a statement that the four aircraft earmarked for the Brisbane base will be delivered during the second half of 2018.

“We’ve said that initially our Dreamliners will replace the routes that our older 747s fly, but there are also new destinations we are looking at given the capability of the aircraft,” says Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce.

At present, Qantas’s only 747 services from Brisbane are to Los Angeles, FlightGlobal schedules data shows, making that the likely launch route for 787s from the Queensland capital. The airline says, however, that the aircraft could potentially open up new services to destinations including Seattle, Chicago and Vancouver.

Joyce adds that decisions on those new routes will be made in the coming months.

Qantas has previously announced that its first four 787-9s will be based in Melbourne, where its budget unit Jetstar also has a major base for its 787-8 fleet.

The Australian airline will take delivery of its first 787-9 in October, and will use the aircraft on domestic services for six weeks for crew training purposes. From 15 December, the type will be used on Melbourne-Los Angeles services, and from March 2018 on the Melbourne-Perth-London route.

Flight Fleets Analyzer shows that Qantas has options on a further 45 787s, but it has given no indication if or when it may exercise those options.

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