Farewell to the Boeing 747
Qantas is the Last to Say Goodbye to an Australian & Global Icon
Qantas is one of Australia’s leading airlines and has been servicing multiple models of the Boeing 747 since 1971. With the long range capability of the 747, the plane was ideal for commercial passenger service to the isolated continent of Australia.
A Qantas 747 over Sydney Harbor in 1971
The sheer size of the plane in the 1970's transformed the flying experience in a dramatic way. With two levels, passengers experienced their first staircase on a commercial jetliner and the original 747 offered up its upper deck as a lounge, making for a luxurious and one-of-a-kind travel experience.
The original upper deck of the 747 in the 1970's
However, Qantas is sadly due to retire the admirable Boeing 747 by 2020, as the airliner has already been retired by U.S. airlines in 2017 along with other international airlines in the past years. Even though there has been discussion to upgrade the 747, Qantas CEO Alan Joyce stated that remodeling the airplanes would cost a considerable amount of money. This is why Qantas has decided to direct funds toward 787-9s instead to replace the long-used 747s.
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce has bet heavily on the 787-9 above
While the 747 will be missed by Australian passengers and Qantas pilots, the implementation of the smaller 787-9 will be more efficient for travel frequency and maintenance, and it has already proven itself as a dependable means of air travel since its first use in November 2017.
The new Boeing 787-9 above
Additionally, there will be a need for more pilots and, therefore, the creation of new jobs. But, sadly what will become of the 747's legacy?
Qantas 747's in "retirement" in Victorville, California
For now they will be taking their retirement in the desert of the Southwestern United States. Qantas will be storing their planes in Victorville, California with the hopes that in the future technologically evolved engines will bring a second life to the once iconic plane.
Victorville, California's "Airplane Boneyard"