Qantas Deploys B717 For Its Canberra Routes

27th May 2013

Travelers to and from Canberra via Qantas may soon be flying on a smaller plane, the B717, as the flag carrier is doing a revamp in all Canberra flights.

But the airline is quick to add that only selected flights on its Canberra routes will see some plane downsizing. One thing for sure, though, is that three routes connecting Canberra to Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne will certainly be seeing some changes. Qantas is currently using Boeing 737 jet that seats 136 at most on the said routes. In the latter half of this year, B717 will take its place. The flag carrier will deploy the slightly bigger aircraft on other routes with higher demand.

The smaller B717 which seats 125 at most on a single-class configuration and currently used by its regional airline, QantasLink, are under lease from Boeing Capital. Before the plane could even fly on a Red Roo livery, it will be refitted and will undergo reconfiguration to include a business class. The B717 planes currently ply on regional routes with a single-class layout packing up a capacity of 125 all-economy seats.

According to John Gissing, Executive Manager of QantasLink, passengers on the business class will be afforded premium food and drinks. He further said that the size of the new configured plane is perfect for the said routes.

The executive said that they also consider adding inflight entertainment with the state-of-the-art Q Streaming system commonly found in Qantas flights, beaming movies and music straight to the iPads via wireless technology.

Passengers on both economy and business class will get to enjoy the same in-flight entertainment quality on board.

QantasLink's new improved services on board B717 planes will be pitted against the newly-upgraded Embraer E190 CapitalConnect of Virgin Australia.