Numerous airlines now offering ‘Flights to Nowhere’

Tribune Content Agency

Ten minutes.

That’s how long it took a flight on Qantas Airways to sell out.

A flight that takes off in Sydney, flies for seven hours and returns to Sydney.

Welcome to the new world of “Flights to Nowhere.”

With the coronavirus pandemic still running amok and travel restrictions in place, several airlines are catering to those still seeking to get in an airplane by running flights to nowhere. Qantas, Taiwan’s EVA, Singapore Airlines and Japan’s ANA have all either run flights to nowhere or are about to.

For Qantas, the flight to and from Sydney was “probably the fastest selling flight in Qantas history,” the airline’s CEO, Alan Joyce, said in a statement. “People clearly miss travel and the experience of flying. If the demand is there, we’ll definitely look at doing more of these scenic flights while we all wait for borders to open.”

According to CNN, the seven-hour scenic flight scheduled for Oct. 10 will perform a giant loop taking in Queensland and the Gold Coast, New South Wales and the country’s remote outback heartlands. Fliers should be able to spot famous Aussie attractions including Sydney Harbor and the Great Barrier Reef. The jet will do a low flyover over certain landmarks, including Uluru and Bondi Beach.

Special onboard entertainment is promised too, including a surprise celebrity host.

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner being used is usually reserved for intercontinental journeys across continents, and CNN noted that the aircraft is renowned for its big windows, making it ideal for sightseeing from 30,000 feet.

USA Today reported that Americans who want the same experience can do so — sort of. A California business has been offering its own nostalgic flights to nowhere called “The Pan Am Experience,” which takes passengers on simulated flights in the shell of former 747 that is now used for movie sets.


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