Qantas will today launch flights to another new international destination, with direct services between Sydney and Seoul taking off for the first time in nearly 15 years to meet growing demand.
Seoul is one of the 28 international ports that Qantas has resumed or launched new services to since Australia’s borders reopened.
Of the 28 international destinations, eight of the routes are to countries that weren’t part of Qantas’ pre-COVID network, including South Korea, Italy and India.
The 11-hour Qantas flights to Seoul will operate four days per week during the peak summer season with an Airbus A330 aircraft. Flights will operate three times a week between May and October.
The flights add to Jetstar’s Sydney-Seoul service, which commenced last month operating three days per week.
Together, these flights offer customers more than 200,000 seats on the route annually and the choice to fly to Seoul on six days of the week, with either a premium or low fares airline.
Qantas Domestic and International CEO Andrew David said the national carrier was adding international capacity as quickly as it could to meet growing demand.
“What we’ve seen this year is that there is no shortage of Australians wanting to travel overseas again and we know South Korea is at the top of the list for many,” said Mr David.
“Australia has also grown in popularity as a destination for South Korean travellers, so we’re pleased to be welcoming more visitors just in time for them to experience summer in Sydney and beyond.
“We’ve had a fantastic response from travellers in both directions since tickets first went on sale with strong demand particularly around the upcoming peak school holiday period, which is terrific for Australia’s tourism and small business operators.
“The combination of Qantas and Jetstar means we can provide business, premium leisure and low-cost travel options to a destination that caters to different budgets, with good connections for those travelling to and from other parts of Australia.
“We’d like to thank the New South Wales Government for its support and collaboration on the launch of this new route.”
NSW Minister for Tourism Ben Franklin said the new route would accelerate visitation from one of the state’s key international markets.
“We’re thrilled that the NSW Government’s Aviation Attraction fund has created this opportunity to bring more people from Seoul to Sydney, providing a boost for our tourism operators,” Mr Franklin said.
“In the year ended December 2019, NSW welcomed approximately 196,200 visitors from South Korea, accounting for $558 million in visitor expenditure and putting it in our top five markets.”
Qantas flight QF87 is scheduled to depart Sydney at 9.35am, with the launch marked by celebrations for customers at check-in.
To celebrate the new Seoul route, Qantas has introduced a number of new Korean-inspired menu items inflight, including Beef bulgogi, vegetarian bibimbap and Banchan.