Qantas says while the COVID-19 lockdown in Victoria will affect its business, it’s still seeing strong demand in other parts of the nation.
CEO Alan Joyce expects the airline to eventually return to full capacity following the snap seven-day lockdown.
Victoria accounts for about 22 per cent of the airline’s domestic network but is a virtual no-fly zone until Thursday.
‘We are waiting to see what the full impacts will be, dependent on how long the lockdown remains in place,’ CEO Alan Joyce says said on Monday.
‘But what we were seeing in the rest of the network is still huge demand.’
Victoria is almost halfway through a week-long lockdown to contain a virus outbreak that began in Melbourne’s north.
The health measure is due to end on Thursday night, although there are fears it could be extended if new coronavirus cases continue to be uncovered.
So far, during this outbreak, Victoria has recorded 40 cases of community spread of the Indian variant of the virus.
Mr Joyce said that before the lockdown Qantas was aiming to be back above 100 per cent of capacity before the coronavirus pandemic began.
‘I’m sure once the lockdown is over and things get back to normal in Victoria we will go back to that original plan,’ he added.
Mr Joyce also called more Australians to get vaccinated as Qantas considers offering from July a range of ‘rewards’ for customers who get the jab.
‘It will be retrospective, it will include anybody that has already been vaccinated and will apply to anybody that is vaccinated, until the end of 2021,’ Mr Joyce said.
‘We are trying our best to help with this rollout.’
The rewards are likely to include bonus Frequent Flyer points, vouchers, and unlimited travel prizes.
By Joe Cusmano