Gold Coasters are being urged to keep their eyes on the sky this morning, with Qantas expected to treat residents to a flyover of their much-loved Boeing 747 before it heads into retirement.
Today’s flight is scheduled to take off from Brisbane Airport at 10.30am before flying over the city for the very last time.
Destination Gold Coast chairman Paul Donovan told 1029 Hot Tomato the beloved “Queen of the Skies” will circle over the Gold Coast Airport and the Coolangatta area around 11.00am before flying back up the coast.
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“It will be a spectacular sight because it’s flying down at 2000 feet, so for the Gold Coast today is a symbolic day seeing the 747 for the last time,” Mr Donovan said.
The Queensland flight is the second last of a series of 75-minute scenic ‘Jumbo Joy Flights’ which were offered to aviation fans who wanted to enjoy one last trip on the iconic aircraft.
The first joy flight took place in Sydney on Monday, with another taking off from Canberra on Friday, July 17.
“Your one-hour joy flight on ‘Wunula’ takes in key highlights of each city, including a low level flyby over the coast,” a description of the flight reads.
“Our pilots and cabin crew will roam the cabin during the flight for chats and photo opportunities.”
Tickets for the farewell flights went on sale on July 8 at a price of $400 for economy and $747 for business and sold out straight away.
The final 747-400 in the fleet will depart Sydney at approximately 2pm on 22 July, bound for storage in the Mojave Desert in the United States after almost 50 years of service.
— Isabelle Mullen (@ijmullen) July 14, 2020
Qantas 747 Fleet Captain Owen Weaver said the 747 has a special place in the hearts of many Australians.
“The 747 has been a magnificent aircraft and it’s fitting that we celebrate the end of five decades of history-making moments for the national carrier and aviation in Australia,” Captain Weaver said.
“Since the first 747 joined the Qantas fleet in 1971, these aircraft have operated numerous rescue flights to bring Australians home during times of crisis and provided a safe passage for many travellers taking their first international flight to or from Australia.
“There is an enormous amount of nostalgia and affection associated with our 747 and for those who miss out on a seat on the flight, they will at least be able to catch a glimpse of the aircraft as it takes to Australian skies for the last time.”
— Brisbane Airport ✈️ (@BrisbaneAirport) July 15, 2020