V Australia, Delta Announce Los Angeles-Australia Flights

As the travel world waited for the results of merger talks between Qantas Airways and British Airways— which have since been called off due to difficulty in determining the value of each airline, with BA proving to have more revenue and Qantas having strong market share— two other airlines have opened new routes between Los Angeles and Sydney.

V Australia has confirmed a new launch date of February 27 for its historic transpacific inaugural flight from Sydney to Los Angeles. The airline’s original launch date of December 15 was delayed due to industrial action at the Boeing factory in Seattle, which slowed down the delivery of V Australia’s launch aircraft.

From Friday, February 27 the airline will initially operate three weekly direct services before ramping up to daily flights March 21 following the delivery of additional 777-300ER aircraft. V Australia has also confirmed Wednesday, April 8 as the revised launch date for direct Los Angeles-Brisbane flights, with three weekly direct flights. V Australia will operate from the LAX’s recently renovated Terminal 3. In preparation for its February launch, V Australia has opened a U.S. sales office in Los Angeles.

Visit www.vaustralia.com.

Delta Air Lines Inc., which recently became the world's biggest carrier by merging with Northwest Airlines, will begin nonstop service between LAX and Sydney, starting in July.

The start of Sydney flights— which may prompt a fare war on the popular U.S.-Australia route next year— is part of a broader move by Atlanta-based Delta to expand international operations at LAX, airline officials said.

Delta said it also would increase nonstop service from LAX to New York's JFK Airport from seven departures a day to eight to improve connection times for travelers from the Northeast flying to Sydney.

For travelers, the effect of Delta's entry was immediate. Even before Delta formally announced that it would begin the Sydney service Thursday, Qantas and V Australia began cutting fares.

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