Imagine flying on a very lightly loaded long-haul widebody jet for 15 hours. All that space must be quite luxurious, especially in economy where you would have three seats to yourself. This is standard these days on Australia flights.

I have written before about how the Australian Government is restricting international arrivals. Flights are arriving with few passengers on board due to this, however it hasn’t really been quantified. Until now.

How Many People Are On Australia Flights?

Qatar Airways have helpfully written how the restrictions are affecting their Australia flights. Services from Doha to Sydney are restricted to between 28 and 40 passengers per flight. That’s not many on an Airbus A350-1000 that seats 327 people.

It’s the same story for people going to Perth. 30-35 passengers per flight. Brisbane is even lower, with a limit of 25 passengers per flight. The only saving grace here is that the Brisbane services currently continue on to Auckland, perhaps making the airline some more money.

Nobody is allowed into Melbourne at all, which makes sense as they recently had a massive spike in cases and many deaths. They had bigger problems to deal with really.

Adelaide is the other city Qatar Airways serve in Australia. Each flight allows in a generous 60 people, mainly because Adelaide has fewer international services, so there are more seats to go around under the allocation. The Airbus A350-900 seating 283 is still going to have a lot of seats empty.

Overall Thoughts

Australia flights are probably losing money hand over fist right now for the airlines. While the belly space is likely filled with cargo, offsetting some of the costs, the reality is that flights are losing money.

With Australia’s Qantas not running any international services at all, it is great that a fellow oneworld partner has continued flying.

Qatar Airways is playing the long game here, continuing to serve their usual Australian gateways as well as Brisbane. Hopefully the Australian Government will allow them extra services under the bilateral eventually, so they can continue serving BNE.

What do you think of these caps on passenger numbers on the Australia flights? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

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Images by Sam Chui.