(11 May 2021)
Qantas has confirmed that it will fly a limited number
of passengers on a special, scenic flight to see the supermoon
later this month.
It will be the second and last supermoon for 2021
and it will also coincide with a full lunar eclipse, making it a rare
double phenomenon, with the moon expected to turn red against the
CSIRO astronomer Dr Vanessa Moss will work with
the pilots to design the optimal flight path over the Pacific
Ocean and also join the flight to provide insights into supermoons
and all things space and astronomy.
The flight will depart from, and return to, Sydney
and is the latest in a series of special flights Qantas has
operated for travellers eager to take to the skies.
Stephanie Tully, Chief Customer Officer at Qantas,
said, “We have been absolutely overwhelmed with the popularity of
our special flights. The recent mystery flights sold out within 15
minutes with hundreds of people on waiting lists and they keep
telling us they want more. We are very
excited to now be doing a supermoon scenic flight and the 787 has
the largest windows of any passenger aircraft so it’s ideal for
moon gazing. We think this flight has great appeal for anyone with
a passion for astronomy, science, space photography, aviation or
just keen to do something a little ‘out of this world’.”
The three-hour flight will depart from Sydney and
begin with a scenic flyover of the harbour before climbing
above any potential cloud cover and atmosphere pollution to a
cruising altitude of 43,000 feet – the maximum cruising altitude
of a Boeing 787 Dreamliner – for supermoon and full lunar eclipse viewing.
The moon will be at its closest point, or perigree,
coming within 357,311 kilometres of Earth at 11:50 AEST on
Wednesday, 26 May. The total lunar eclipse will occur between
21:11 and 21:25 AEST, when the moon is 357,462 km from earth.
The flight will operate with net zero emissions,
with 100% of emissions carbon offset.
Just over 100 seats go on sale via Qantas’ website at
midday on Wednesday, 12 May 2021 with fares starting from $499 for
economy (with a Qantas Points earn of 1,500 points plus 20 Status
Credits), $899 for premium economy (Qantas Points earn of 2,500
and 40 Status Credits) and $1,499 for business (4,000 Qantas
Points earn plus 80 Status Credits).
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