Qantas aircraft
| © Qantas

Australia flag carrier Qantas has resumed its non-stop long-haul service from Perth to London for the first time in over two years. 

Currently, Qantas’ flagship route from Perth to London is the only service running that connects Australia to the UK. 

Flying to the UK again

The flight took off from Perth Airport on Monday at 6:50 pm local time and will land at London Heathrow Airport after over 17 hours. The service will be run six times a week, with flights departing every single day apart from Thursday. 

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner operates the flight. Boeing’s Dreamliners make up 14 of Qantas’ large fleet made up of 126 aircraft. 

This highly anticipated relaunch comes only weeks after the Western Australia government confirmed that Qantas will resume the Perth – London route, favourably nicknamed the Kangaroo route in recognition of its iconic nature, three weeks ahead of schedule. The route is currently the only one in Australia that connected Australia with the UK and was initially scheduled to resume next month on the 19th. 

Before the pandemic forced the world to a standstill in March 2020, the Perth – London connection was highly popular and very profitable. It’s clear that getting the route up and running was of high importance in order to resume traffic between the countries once again. 

In September 2021, Qantas confirmed that it will be rerouting the Kangaroo route from Australia to London to depart from Darwin, the capital of Australia’s Northern Territory, instead of Perth until April 2022 “at least”. This was because of strict restrictions within Western Australia in response to COVID-19 and subsequent variants at the time.

Thankfully, Qantas’ estimations were more or less correct with the popular route returning in late May….we can forgive them for being a month late. 

Darwin will no longer serve as a part of the service. 

This announcement comes as Qantas prepares to launch a new route from Perth to Rome on 22 June and announced its first direct route between Australia and southern India in early April

A Qantas spokesperson shed further light on the major carrier’s latest announcements in the wake of travel opening up post-pandemic:

“With one of our flagship London routes heading back to Perth and the Rome take-off just around the corner, it’s clear that Western Australia is back on the international travel map. We know that Western Australians love our direct flight to the UK and we’re seeing huge demand on these services already. It’s also terrific news for UK passengers who can stop off and enjoy all that the west coast has to offer.”

Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan was pleased to see Qantas’ flagship route back on track, citing how proud Western Australia is to welcome the connection’s return. He continued:

“This direct route between Perth and London made history when it was first launched, and along with the upcoming Perth to Rome route, its early return firmly positions WA as Australia’s western gateway to Europe.”

The critical route will kickstart Western Australia’s tourism industry igniting crucial recovery for various sectors in the wake of the pandemic. This sentiment is echoed by Western Australia’s Tourism Minister Roger Cook who believes that the Perth – London connection and the new Perth – Rome connection will provide a “huge boost in the number of visitors coming to WA from Europe” which in turn will “create more jobs in our tourism, entertainment and hospitality industries, and inject millions into our state’s economy.” 

Qantas B787 Dreamliner aircraft
The Qantas Perth – London route was launched for the first time in March 2018. It was the first time Australia and Europe were connected via non-stop flight. | © Qantas

Finally, after over two years of pandemic-induced restrictions, Western Australia is “open for business and open for tourism”. 

Are you excited to see the iconic Kangaroo route back up and running? Let us know your thoughts on this story in the comments below.


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