BENGALURU – Qantas Airways, Australia’s flagship carrier, said on Friday it expects its international capacity to reach about 100 per cent of pre-Covid-19 levels by March 2024, as it plans to add more seats and aircraft to its global network.
Qantas said it plans to add about one million seats to its international network over a 12-month period starting late October. It has brought back five international aircraft into its fleet in the past six months and will lease two Airbus A330s from Finnair to meet additional capacity.
“The rebound in demand for international travel since borders reopened has been incredibly strong,” Qantas chief executive officer Alan Joyce said in a statement, while flagging a mismatch between supply and demand for international flying.
Qantas swung to a record profit in the first half of this financial year as raging travel demand jacked up fares and earnings.
The airline will need about 300 more pilots and cabin crew members by the end of the year to support extra flying, it said.
Qantas said in March it expects to create more than 8,500 highly skilled jobs in the Australian aviation sector over the next decade, including 1,600 new positions for pilots and 4,500 roles for cabin crew.
In a separate statement on Friday, the airline said construction has started on a new flight training centre in Sydney, which will train up to 4,500 Qantas and Jetstar pilots and cabin crew each year from early 2024. REUTERS