Accelerating Change in the 1990s

Captain Sherelle Quinn
Qantas Jet Base, Mascot

In December 1992 the Government announced that British Airways had successfully bid A$665 million for 25 per cent of Qantas and in February 1993 Qantas received a A$1.35 billion capital injection from the Government.

The British Airways purchase was completed in March 1993, setting the stage for partnership arrangements in many areas to achieve economies of scale. The following month the Qantas board decided to merge Qantas and Australian under the banner Qantas - 'The Australian Airline'.

The pace of change at Qantas accelerated in 1994 under the leadership of James Strong. The airline sharply increased capacity allocated to Australian domestic routes to meet market growth and win back market share. It introduced a new cabin design for the core fleet as part of a comprehensive product update that also featured more comfortable seats, new menus and uniforms and expanded airport lounges. New intrastate services were launched in Western Australia by subsidiary Airlink and Qantas began its own flights to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. A Boeing 747-400 painted in a spectacular Aboriginal design and called 'Wunala Dreaming' launched flights to Osaka in Japan.

QantasLink began operating in 2001 combining the former Eastern, Southern, Airlink and Sunstate regional airlines that had originally been part of the Australian Airlines Group.

Another historical accomplishment was achieved on 31 March 2002 when the $9 million Qantas Founders Outback Museum which has been built alongside the original Qantas hangar at Longreach airport. For further information visit the Qantas Founders Outback Museum website.

In 2008, the first Qantas Airbus A380 was delivered, ushering in a new standard of in-flight comfort and service on long haul routes. The partnership with Emirates launched in March 2013 brings together the national and international networks of two great airlines to offer an unrivalled choice of destinations and benefits including earning frequent flyer points on both networks and chauffeur drive services.