Qantas's Supermoon Flight: Ticket Price, Schedule, Passenger and Lunar Views
|Qantas's Supermoon Flight: Ticket Price, Date&Schedule and Lunar Views|
Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Qantas airlines has been operating flights to nowherethe. The airline has upped its game with the latest offering set to appeal to eager astronomy fans. A Boeing 787 Dreamliner will be enlisted to allow passengers from Sydney to get even closer to the second supermoon of 2021.
Since the start of the current crisis affecting the aviation industry, flights to nowhere have risen in popularity. This is as passengers on such flights are not subject to entry restrictions given that they originated at their destination. Qantas has a long history of operating flights to nowhere, with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner taking over following the retirement of the Australian flag carrier’s Boeing 747s.
What is Supermoon Flight - Date and Schedule - Voyage
With travel restrictions due to Covid-19, airlines are offering "Flights to nowhere" that allow passengers to board planes, enjoy the trip and disembark at the same location.
On May 26, Qantas airlines will conduct a three-hour scenic flight over Sydney before climbing to an altitude of 40,000 to view the last super moon and lunar eclipse for the year.
The voyage departing Sydney will be on one of Qantas’ Boeing 787 Dreamliners and is off the back of several recent one-offs put on by the airline, including mystery flights and scenic low level fly-bys.
It’s the first time the airline has conducted an eclipse flight since its Boeing 747 in 2003 took passengers on a 14-hour round-trip to chase a total solar eclipse.
On May 26th, the moon will be at its closest point while orbiting the earth. The situation, known as perigee, will see the mood coming within 357,311 kilometers (222,022 miles) of the earth. Between 21:11 and 21:25 Australian time on that day, a total lunar eclipse will also occur. This means that the earth will perfectly pass between the moon and the sun, causing it to go dark temporarily.
To celebrate this rare double phenomenon, the Australian flag carrier will be taking a group of just over 100 passengers out over the Pacific Ocean to get an optimum view of the event. The flight’s pilots will work with astronomer Dr. Vanessa Moss to ensure this.
The Qantas flight will take place on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, chosen because its large windows make it "ideal for moon gazing," the airline's chief customer officer, Stephanie Tully, said in a statement.
|The supermoon on March 26 will be the second and final supermoon of this year. |
The moon will be at its closest point at 11.50am AEST on May 26, coming within 357,311km of Earth.
The total lunar eclipse will occur between 9.11pm and 9.25pm AEST, when the moon is 357,462km from Earth.
The total lunar eclipse, the only one of 2021, should be visible from Australia, New Zealand, some Pacific territories and the US west coast.
|Qantas offers passengers chance to see supermoon from sky|
Qantas is selling tickets for a one-off flight which will give passengers a chance to catch a closer look at next month's supermoon when it lights up the night sky.
The three-hour scenic flight will take off from Sydney before flying over the harbour and climbing to an altitude of 43,000 feet.
It will be the second and last supermoon for 2021 and also coincides with a full lunar eclipse, making it a rare double phenomenon, with the moon expected to turn red against the night sky.
Tickets for the one-off flight will cost between $500 and $1500 and go on sale from midday tomorrow - with 100 seats available.
Chief Customer Officer Stephanie Tully said Qantas' unique flying experiences were proving popular with customers, especially while travel options were limited.
"We have been absolutely overwhelmed with the popularity of our special flights. The recent mystery flights sold out within 15 minutes with hundreds of people on waiting lists and they keep telling us they want more," Ms Tully said to Australian Media.
"We are very excited to now be doing a supermoon scenic flight and the 787 has the largest windows of any passenger aircraft so it's ideal for moon gazing."
Just over 100 seats go on sale via Qantas.com at midday Wednesday 12 May 2021 with fares starting from $499 for economy (with a Qantas Points earn of 1,500 points plus 20 Status Credits), $899 for premium economy (Qantas Points earn of 2,500 and 40 Status Credits) and $1,499 for business (4,000 Qantas Points earn plus 80 Status Credits).
What should passengers on the flight expect?
Travelers will stay masked up and will be required to social distance on board.
The supermoon flight will last for around three hours. While aircraft typically cruise lower, Qantas will take the 787 right up to 43,000 feet, its maximum cruise altitude, to avoid as much atmospheric disturbance as is possible.
Onboard, the airline will theme its catering around the flight. As a result, lucky ticket holders will be treated to “cosmic cocktails and supermoon cakes”. The Qantas Boeing 787 has around 66 window seats. It also boasts the largest windows found in the Qantas fleet, meaning that the view should hopefully be available to those not in the window seats too.
Tickets for this lunar liftoff will go on sale tomorrow at mid-day (Australian time). Fares will start at AU$499 ($392) for the economy cabin, AU$899 ($706) for the premium economy cabin, and AU$1,499 ($1,177) for the business cabin.
Not the first sightseeing flight to nowhere
The flight promises some pretty spectacular lunar views. The airline said in a press release that it's working with astronomer Dr. Vanessa Moss to design "the optimal flight path over the Pacific Ocean."
This isn’t Qantas’ first dabble into offering flights to nowhere. For years, the airline has been operating sightseeing charter flights to Antarctica. These used to be performed by the Boeing 747, but since its retirement, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner has taken over.
Last year, the Australian flag carrier operated a mammoth day trip from Syndey. One of its Boeing 787 Dreamliners flew up the Australian coast before heading to Ayers Rock and then back to Sydney. The triangle journey lasted around eight hours.
Cosmic cocktails and supermoon cakes will be on the menu when Qantas launches a one-off B787 Dreamliner supermoon scenic flight later this month to give a limited number of passengers a closer look at the upcoming supermoon.