Qantas says it has experienced “really strong bookings” for its direct services between Australia and Europe within the first 24 hours of fares going on sale.

An airline spokesperson told KarryOn that there’s been “a lot of interest” for the non-stop Perth-London service, particularly the historic inaugural flight.

So far, the carrier has completely sold out of Business Class seats on the launch service – that’s a lot of people quick to pay some $9,725 for the ‘mini First Class’ – as well as Premium Economy seats.

Qantas first Class 2

Economy sales were also strong with half the cabin sold out on the first flight, despite being roughly a year out from taking off (24 March 2018).

“This reflects a unique level of interest in the new direct service as the first flights are still a year out and most people usually start to plan their trips about six months ahead.”

Qantas Spokesperson

Kate Webster, Travel Agent and Travel Industry Professional, told KarryOn that she isn’t surprised by the initial demand for the service and is keen to see how sales travel once more seats are available for sale.

“Lots of ex-pats live in Perth and you’ll get the plane spotters who will want to be on the first non-stop flight to the UK,” Webster said.

“[Fares are] expensive at the moment, but they’ve only released year-round fares and there’s only seats available for sale for about a week period.”

Qantas feature

She continued, saying she wasn’t sure if travellers would be willing to pay over $2,270 return for a non-stop flight to Europe, particularly with other airlines offering one-stop services for $1,000 or less.

“Once the tactical fares come into play, then yes I’m sure more people will be willing to pay, just not their year round fares,” Webster added.

Social media users have also had their say on the Perth-London route, with some saying it’s a little out of their price range while others can’t wait to book.

Like for example, Anne-Britt who’s already seeing future possibilities for the direct service:

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And David, who recognises the time it’ll save to fly London non-stop:

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Les wasn’t a fan of the cost but she did see the ‘progress’ behind the new route:

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While Simon crossed his fingers for further direct services between Australia and the UK:

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And then there was Michael who believes the route doesn’t benefit those on the East Coast who could stopover in other cities:

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Qantas plans to promote the new route through an expanded marketing partnership with Tourism Western Australia and by making Perth-London the focus of the next phase of its Feels Like Home advertising campaign, which launched today the airline’s social channels.

What are your thoughts on the new route and fares?