The first of Qantas Project Sunrise test flights from New York to Sydney took place this weekend, lasting some 20 hours, on board a new 787-9.
It flew east to west – crossing the international date line in the last third of the flight.
Having read a few reviews from those on board it was an interesting but exhausting experience.
From the minute they got on board the 40 passengers all in business class for the trial, were told to adjust their time to Sydney, and that the flight would act at that time zone for the whole flight.
They kept the lights up, fed them twice in 6 hours (hi-carb sleep inducing food on the second meal)- at which time they only crossed the US Pacific coast, and then let them sleep for as long as 8 hours – with another 6 hours to go.
Exercise classes in economy were held for all, everything was monitored.
The verdict was that even in Business class it was hard going for most, nobody wanted to face the idea of it in economy.
Yet most said if it was the quickest way of getting there without a stop off, they’d take it. In the end it’s about where you’re going and why.
Qantas felt it was a success as a test. Let’s see how the West to East London-Sydney flights go…