Qantas Airways is set to make history with the first ever non-stop flight from Australia to the UK.
The QF9 flight carrying 200 passengers took off from Perth at 7 p.m. local time on Saturday (11 a.m. GMT) and is due to land in London at 5 a.m. GMT on Sunday, Business Insider reports.
The airline is using the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner for the 17 hour flight which will cover 9,009-mile over the course of the journey.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce, one of the passengers on the inaugural flight, described it as a major milestone for Australia as well as global aviation.
“This is a truly historic flight that opens up a new era of travel. For the first time, Australia and Europe have a direct air link,” he said.
The route between Australia and London was originally dubbed the “kangaroo route” for the seven stops it made over four days in 1947.
“Now we can do it in a single leap,” Mr Joyce said.
The new link with Perth will be around three hours quicker than routes which involve stopping in the Middle East to change planes or refuel.
It will also enable faster journeys to Sydney and Melbourne than flying via Dubai.
Travel firm Flight Centre has recorded “high demand” for the new Qantas flights.
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