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Qantas launches more international flights



Qantas is launching more international flights and routes which will put downward pressure on soaring prices but the airline is being accused of outsourcing infrastructure and jobs to foreign workers.

The airline today announced the number of flights to key destinations will be increased each week adding up to one million more seats in the next 12 months.

Some of the routes which will have an increased frequency include Australia to Los Angeles, Tokyo, Singapore, Dehli and New Zealand.

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The new flight timetable will begin at the end of October.

Flights between Sydney and Shanghai will also resume for the first time in more than three years.

"The rebound in demand for international travel since borders reopened has been incredibly strong and this boost to our network will add hundreds of thousands of seats in time for the busy Australian summer holiday period," CEO Alan Joyce said.

He added the added flights will put downward pressure on fares.

But the carrier is accused by the Australian and International Pilots Association (AIPA) of outsourcing pilot jobs to foreign workers after Qantas signed a deal with Finnair to lease two Airbus A330s to be operated by the carrier's own pilots.

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Under the deal, Finnair pilots and cabin crew will operate the flights for the first two and a half years.

From 2025, the Finnar A330s will be operated by Qantas pilots and cabin crew for three years.

The aircraft will be used on flights to Hong Kong and Shanghai.

"With more of our aircraft back in the air, new 787s joining our fleet and our contract with Finnair, we've got more seats for our customers and more opportunity for Qantas crew as we increase our own flying," Joyce said.

AIPA president Captain Tony Lucas said they are "disappointed and frustrated" by Qantas' decision to lease the foreign aircraft and use the carrier's own staff.

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"Qantas' decision to wet lease two Finnair aircraft is shocking, bitterly disappointing and could have been avoided with more effective management decisions," he said.

"It beggars belief that Qantas is outsourcing the Spirit of Australia while simultaneously converting two of our own A330 passenger aircraft into freighters."

Lucas added the decision is disappointing for Australian pilots in light of decisions to let go a number of staff during the pandemic.

"This is a sad day for our great airline," he said.

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