QF has high loads on the JNB flight because of NO competition. Every other route on the QF netwrok has competition (Asia, Middle Easter, North & South America). This reminds me of the early 1990's when only QF & UA were on SYD-LAX.
BNE-LAX has VA. But you could add future state BNE-ORD/SFO. But in this day and age it’s not just about single city markets. I’d argue QF does have competition one stop form SA,SQ,EK who always come up as options when I fly to JNB annually.
I wonder if JNB can support a 380 and a 330 ex-PER. I’d be surprised as I’d have thought QF would capture a lot of MEL/BNE from SYD that they’d have looked to move over PER to support a new service.
Any update on the PAPL QF agreement? I wouldn’t be surprised if once an agreement is announced a 789 top up order occurs in the same announcement perhaps with a deal with the WA government- CDG,FRA? QF negotiates hard, they will have all this bundled together with both deals contingent on many behind the scenes variables.
Long time lurker here, and frequent user of the QF63/64. I'd have though that a 380 would be too much capacity on this route - certainly daily, even being a monopoly. Scaling it down to 4-5 pw also presents its own problems. I was lucky enough to sit up front in the days when these flights had an F product, and loads were never consistently great. Fares are also considerably high on this route even in the lower seasons.
Given QFs now premium focused approach I'd think a 789 SYD-JNB, once equipment becomes available, would be perfect to cover the premium end of the market. Then add in a PER-JNB 332 (once PAPL dispute settled) to pick up the O&D and the lower yields that get left behind in SYD. That would likely decimate SA, whose passengers are flying mostly out of necessity.
CPT is another consideration, and I know this is slated for PS sometime. There is always (anecdotally anyway) a large number of passengers connecting to CPT services on SA/BA from QF63. If the fares really are that high yielding, perhaps PER-JNB could seasonally extend to CPT and be timed to feed from QF63. SQ have done this daily for a while, and with relatively short turnarounds (~ an hour in each port). CPT gets huge bumps in capacity over summer, granted mostly from EU3 & ME3, though SQ and CX do feature direct options. Wesgro have been pushing hard to provide incentives for carriers to start new services, as they have with UA from EWR this summer, so I'm sure QF could find some support there.