From Mirabel to Melbourne: QantasLink welcomes game-changing A220 aircraft

In a significant milestone for the Qantas Group’s fleet renewal initiative, the first brand new Airbus A220 has emerged from the paintshop at Airbus’ facility in Mirabel, Canada.

The aircraft, set to touch down in Australia before the year’s end, is the inaugural unit of 29 A220s slated for delivery to the Group, marking a strategic move in its domestic fleet renewal plan.

This modern generation of QantasLink A220s is designed to gradually replace the Boeing 717s currently servicing flights across Australia. Boasting double the range of the 717, the A220 is poised to open up novel domestic and short-haul international routes, expanding the airline’s operational reach as additional aircraft are incorporated into the fleet.

QantasLink A220: 137 passenger seats in a two-cabin configuration with 10 Business seats and 127 seats in Economy

This delivery represents the twelfth new aircraft within the past 12 months for the Qantas Group, showcasing their commitment to a more sustainable and efficient fleet.

The A321LR aircraft for Jetstar and the Boeing 787 Dreamliners for Qantas International have already joined the ranks, all contributing to reduced fuel consumption, lower emissions, and a quieter travel experience compared to their predecessors.

Over the last six months, the QantasLink A220 has taken shape at the Mirabel facility, with key components sourced from various global facilities, including wings manufactured in the United Kingdom.

Adorned in a striking Aboriginal paint scheme during its two-week stint in the paintshop, this aircraft is the sixth addition to Qantas’ longstanding Flying Art Series.

Launched in 1994, the Flying Art Series has been a canvas for Indigenous Australian artwork, with the latest livery featuring the creations of senior Pitjantjatjara artist Maringka Baker.

Named “Minyma Kutjara Tjukurpa – The Two Sisters Creation Story,” the aircraft showcases a Dreaming narrative of two sisters traversing remote Australia together. The collaboration with Indigenous Australian design agency Balarinji and First Nations artists underscores Qantas’ ongoing commitment to celebrating Australia’s rich cultural heritage.

Qantas Group CEO, Vanessa Hudson, envisions the QantasLink A220s as a game-changer for domestic and regional travel. She said,

These aircraft have the potential to change the way our customers travel across the country, with the ability to connect any two cities or towns in Australia

The enhanced speed and convenience are poised to redefine business and leisure travel, presenting new opportunities for both passengers and the airline’s operational staff.

The Airbus A220 (registration VH-X4A) will undergo post-production test flights and be equipped with Qantas-specific features before officially joining the airline’s fleet by year-end.

It will ferry from Quebec to Australia, initially servicing flights between Melbourne and Canberra, with an additional six A220s scheduled for delivery by mid-2025.

For further information on this groundbreaking development or to explore the enhanced possibilities for your business travel, feel free to reach out to your dedicated Global Travel Account Manager.