Thursday, 16 November 2017

Happy 97th Birthday QANTAS

A red triangle containing a white silhouette of a kangaroo, with the word Qantas beneath the triangle

QANTAS A380-861 VH-OQL (CN 0074)

Qantas Airways Limited, the third oldest airline in the world after KLM (7th Oct 1919) and Avianca (5th Dec 1919) celebrate their 97th birthday today having been founded on the 16th November 1920. Qantas is the flag carrier of Australia and its largest airline in Australia by fleet size, international flights and international destinations. It began international passenger flights in May 1935. The Qantas name stands for "Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services", and it is nicknamed "The Flying Kangaroo".
The airline is based in the Sydney suburb of Mascot with its main hub at Sydney Airport. Various subsidiary airlines operate to regional centres and on some trunk routes within Australia under the QantasLink banner. It has a subsidiary airline "Jetconnect" which provides services between Australia and New Zealand, flying under the Qantas brand. Qantas also owns "Jetstar Airways", a low-cost airline that operates both international services and domestic services  and operates in Australia and New Zealand.

Fergus McMaster was a wealthy grazier who took little convincing about the benefits of aviation. He was crossing the sandy bed of Queensland's Cloncurry River when his car broke an axle. Paul McGinness helped repair the vehicle and the two struck up a friendship. Back in Brisbane, McGinness and Fysh outlined to McMaster their plans for an air service, beginning with joy rides and air taxi trips. McMaster, fired with enthusiasm, convinced business acquaintances to invest with them. With their former flight sergeant Arthur Baird as aircraft mechanic, Fysh and McGinness travelled to Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney, where they ordered two Avro aircraft. The purchase agreement, dated 19 August 1920, was in the name of The Western Queensland Auto Aero Service Limited. A new company name was later adopted, Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services Limited, which was quickly abbreviated to the acronym 'QANTAS'.
Papers formally establishing Qantas were signed in the Gresham Hotel, Brisbane, on 16 November 1920. The company, based in Winton, was registered with Fergus McMaster as Chairman.

In 1921 the Qantas fleet consisted of two biplanes - an Avro 504K with a 100 horsepower (74 kw) water-cooled Sunbeam Dyak engine and a Royal Aircraft Factory BE2E with a 90 horsepower (67 kw) air-cooled engine. The BE2E was purchased for £450 ($900) from Charles Knight, a Longreach stock and station agent who, having experienced a turbulent delivery trip, swore nothing would induce him to fly again. Today QANTAS fleet consists of 118 aircraft.

Qantas has 8 Boeing 787-9's on order and their first one was delivered to Sydney on the 20th October 2017, the others will be delivered during the remainder of  2017 and into 2018 with an option of 15 more; these will replace the aging fleet of 747's which will be completely retired by the end of 2020.
Qantas also had 8 Airbus A380's on order, (out of the original 20 they were going to get) but these have now been cancelled indefinitely.

QANTAS B787-9 VH-ZNA (CN 39038)

Qantas started changing it's colour scheme in October 2016 and the new scheme will eventually be transferred to every aircraft in their fleet.

QANTAS B737-838 VH-VYD (CN 33992)

QANTAS A330-303 VH-QPJ (CN 712)          

Qantas is also a member of the "One World" alliance

BOEING 747-438 VH-OJU (CN 25566)

AIRBUS A330-202 VH-EBV (CN 1365)


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