"so, does anyone know why QF
purchased 2 additional daily landing slots?"
If you dont have the slots it doesn't matter how many new air services you get under the air services agreement you can't fly them to Heathrow!!! One must put the horse before the cart and now that QF
has the access it is inevitable that route capacity will be expanded.
"something is going on here.... possibility of an offshore-registered carrier owned by Qantas taking on the slot?"
Definitely not. I can't imagine QF
giving up the slots to anyone. They will use them to LHR
via Hong Kong, Shanghai or Singapore. It doesn't matter which city it goes through because QF
will profit share with BA
anyway so both airlines are happy in that BA
gets a new service without having to use its own slots & QF
gets to fly more 747's/A380's to LHR
"or possibily as additional equity if they buy into Air NZ
and transfer the slot to the Kiwis?"
Two points. Firstly the ANZ/QF partnership will not go ahead. Competition authorities have put a stop to it and QF
has already spent the money earmarked for the ANZ acquisition anyway. Secondly why on earth would you spend the money buying LHR
slots only to give them away??? You wouldn't. Let the Americans/EU work out a new agreement and then sell them to the highest bidding US airline if your not using them.
"there could also be the possibility that the Australian-based carrier alotment may increase in the next 12 months?"
Very likely. I would say the Australia/England bi-lateral will have some work done on it shortly.
The question I have over the new LHR
slots is where is the 747-400 capacity going to come from to fly them??? QF
certainly doesn't have any lying around and I doubt that QF
would fly the 747-300's to LHR
. Does this mean QF
will buy more 747-400's this year???