Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Qantas slashes China, India routes

Australian carrier Qantas announced cuts to “underperforming” routes to China and India on Tuesday, and said it was handing its domestic New Zealand services to discount offshoot Jetstar.
Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the airline made the changes after closely monitoring its international operations amid turbulence created by the global economic crisis.
“The Qantas Group is performing well in this difficult environment but we are not immune from the need to address underperforming routes,” he said.
“We are reluctantly making changes to our China and India schedules, but will continue to offer significant capacity into both countries as they remain important business and leisure markets.”
The airline will cut direct flights from Sydney to Beijing and Mebourne to Shanghai, although flights between Sydney and Shanghai will increase.
Qantas also cut direct flights from Australia to Mumbai, with all services to the Indian financial capital to operate via Singapore from mid-May.
In New Zealand, Qantas will withdraw completely from the domestic market so budget arm Jetstar can take over, although flights between Australia and New Zealand will increase.