SYDNEY 22 January 2009: Qantas Freight announced today that it would introduce a direct weekly Boeing 747-400 freighter service between the United States and New Zealand from February 2009.
Group General Manager Qantas Freight, Mr Stephen Cleary said the new route confirmed Qantas Freight’s commitment to serving the needs of its customers in the United States and New Zealand.
“Our new freighter service will provide main deck capacity between the US east coast and New Zealand as well as from New Zealand into Australia, with connections to Asian ports including Bangkok, Hong Kong and Shanghai,” Mr Cleary said.
“The service will initially operate every Friday from New York (JFK) and Chicago (ORD) through to Auckland (AKL) and Melbourne (MEL) and then extend direct from Melbourne into Asia.
“The new schedule will allow us to utilise our aircraft for additional charter work and to give us the option, subject to demand, of adding an additional weekly service on this new route at a later date.”
Mr Cleary said that the introduction of new routes to Qantas Freight’s network diversified the business’s exposure to the current global economic environment and its impact on air freight volumes.
“February marks five years since we added the first of three dedicated B747 freighter aircraft to our fleet,” he said. “Last year we extended the wet-lease on three freighter aircraft until 2014. Along with our recent investments in specialist supply chain businesses such as Jets Transport Express and DPEX, this gives us the flexibility to move resources to where they are needed.”