Inside Qantas' A350 jet for world's longest flight: wellbeing zones and first-class suites

Project Sunrise aircraft are designed to make 20-hour flights more comfortable for travellers flying from Sydney to New York and London

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Qantas is gearing up to launch the world’s longest commercial flights, at nearly 20 hours, by 2025.

This week, the Australian airline placed an order for 12 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft that can fly non-stop from Down Under to any city in the world.

It's the latest step to revive Project Sunrise, which Qantas has been working on since 2017 as a way to operate direct commercial flights from Sydney to London and New York.

The new twin-aisle jets will undergo adaptations ahead of their ultra-long-haul flight operations with an additional fuel tank being added, as well as upgraded passenger cabins.

Each will have 238 passenger seats, meaning the jets will have the lowest seating capacity compared with any other A350-1000 currently in service.

More than 40 per cent of the aircraft will be geared towards premium travel, with 52 business-class suites, all of which come with direct aisle access.

Digital displays will show travellers recommended exercises to combat in-flight muscle fatigue. Photo: Qantas

“Our first and business-class seats will set a new benchmark for premium long-haul travel,” said Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce.

Each A350-1000 will have six first-class suites, arranged in a 1-1-1 configuration and coming with recliner lounge chairs, separate beds and privacy doors.

First-class travellers will also get their own personal wardrobe, several storage compartments and a 32-inch in-flight entertainment screen for ultra-long movie marathons.

Stretch and hydrate in the Qantas Wellbeing Zone

A Wellbeing Zone in front of the economy cabin is designed as a place for passengers to stretch, move and hydrate. Photo: Qantas

There’s also a new Wellbeing Zone, designed to make travelling on the world’s longest flights a little easier.

Located in front of the economy cabin, it's a place where travellers will be able to move around and rehydrate.

Equipped with self-serve snack stations offering juices, water and more, it will also have digital displays where passengers can get recommendations for movement and stretching exercises to help combat in-flight muscle fatigue.

Travellers settling in for the near-20-hour flights in economy class will be pleased to find out that they will also have a bit more room for the journey.

Qantas' 140 economy seats are arranged in a 3-3-3 configuration and each comes with a higher-than-average 33-inch pitch.

Premium economy passengers will enjoy more space as seats have a 40-inch pitch and are laid out in a 2-4-2 configuration, ideal for those travelling in pairs.

Airbus' A350-1000 jets are also some of the quietest in the sky, which will be welcome news for any travellers settling in for the long-haul.

Updated: May 05, 2022, 11:46 AM
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