North America

Qantas Is Planning New Direct Flights From Brisbane To America

By James Shackell
17th Jun 2019

Big news from Qantas today. They’re about to announce the opening of two new flight paths out of Brisbane, direct to the USA.

The two planned routes are Brisbane to San Fran and Brisbane to Chicago. That will be the first direct flight to Chicago from anywhere in Australia, which is a pretty big deal.

Chicago is also a big hub for American Airlines, which means Brisbane travellers could jump off to over 143 destinations, with 500 flights operating daily.

To manage the hefty flight time, Qantas will be using its state-of-the-art Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. They’re the same planes that do the (slightly ridiculous) non-stop flight from Perth to London.

The Brisbane routes shouldn’t be quite the same 24-hour, just-let-me-off-I-want-to-die category, but you’ll still want to pack a double serve of Phenergan or something to make it through. Even so, better an annoying stopover in Sydney or LA.

“The launch of 787 flights from Brisbane to Chicago and San Francisco would be a win for customers and tourism,” CEO Alan Joyce told “These flights would make it one stop from Chicago to Hamilton Island or San Francisco to Townsville.”

Queensland Premier, Anastasia Palaszczuk is pretty psyched about the whole thing too. “The new routes will pump over $150 million into the Queensland economy over the next three years,” she said. “As the world’s largest economy, the United States offers enourmous potential for inbound tourism to Queensland.”

The only thing holding up the deal is approval from American Airlines and the US Department of Trade, but Qantas expects that to happen in the next few weeks. Once it’s got the go-ahead, Qantas will start selling seats immediately, with flights to take off in early 2020.

Want to stay a little closer to home? Check out these eco-friendly hotels in Queensland

Image credit: Ragnar Vorel

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