Qantas has announced it will launch direct flights from Sydney to London and New York from 2025.
The new routes will be the longest passenger flights in the world and are expected to take over 19 hours.
A direct Qantas test flight from New York to Sydney in 2019 took 19 hours and 16 minutes.
The airline has purchased 12 Boeing Airbus A350-1000s to operate the routes, and says the planes “will have the range of direct flights between Australia and any city in the world”.
Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the airline was looking at ways to make long new routes enjoyable for passengers, including a “wellness zone” in the center of planes.
“The cabin is specially designed for maximum comfort in all classes for long-haul flights,” he said.
New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet said the announcement was “a huge win for the state”.
The airline has been operating direct flights between Perth and London since 2018, but these have been suspended during the pandemic due to strict COVID-19 border restrictions in Western Australia.
It now flies between London and Darwin instead.
Mr Joyce also announced that the airline’s domestic fleet would be revamped with 40 new Boeing A321s and A220s.
These planes will land in Australia from the end of 2023.