Now, I think the seating density on SYD-LHR will be even lower than PER-LHR. First, they might add F class seats. Then, all the news about a possible gym onboard hints at QF not intending on going sardine can mode here. I wouldn’t be surprised if this plane ends up having 260-270 seats maximum.
It will be more premium heavy than PER-LHR for sure.
This is bang on the money. I think a number around 260 is what we are looking at for either aircraft.
It's interesting to ponder about F though. QF's A380s that fly from SYD/MEL to LHR/LAX have F of course. But these planes don't do Asian routes in between. If QF is really serious about the Sunrise aircraft also doing shorter flights, will it make sense to configure the plane with F? On the other hand, LHR and JFK would both have some demand for F, it also doesn't make sense to leave that money on the table.
I personally think whichever aircraft is chosen will be configured in ULH mode, and won't do any shorter distances regularly. I think QF just wants to know that should the whole Sunrise project fail, they can reconfigure the airplane and it can do shorter distances economically then.
Zeke also pointed out an interesting thought that I think hasn't been explored fully. What about QF operating LHR-JFK to increase aircraft utilisation? Sure it's a very overcrowded market, but we're talking about one or two flights a day, which would be almost negligible capacity in the grand scheme of transatlantic flying. And I'd say QF probably has enough loyal customers and nostalgic Aussie expats living in London and New York that might just make that flight viable.
If they have the rights to fly, and they already have crew bases in both locations, and it would help with aircraft utilisation, then why not?
Or is that LHR-JFK the shorter flight that AJ mentioned the Sunrise aircraft should do?