Qantas was the third airline to receive the Airbus A380 and has 12 of the superjumbos in its fleet with a further eight on deferred order.
The carrier took delivery of its first A380 – which it named Nancy-Bird Walton, after the Australian aviation pioneer – in September 2008.
It deployed the superjumbo on its daily Melbourne to Los Angeles route the following month.
Qantas now also flies the A380 between Sydney and Hong Kong (on selected flights); between Melbourne and London via Dubai; between Melbourne and Los Angeles; between Sydney and Los Angeles; and between Sydney and London via Dubai.
On September 29, it launched the world’s longest superjumbo service, a 15-hour and 30-minute journey between Sydney and Dallas/Fort Worth.
Until July 2013, the airline operated the superjumbo in two configurations – the first, now withdrawn, seated 450 and had four cabins with 14 first class suites, 72 business class seats, 32 in premium economy and 332 in economy.
Qantas was the first airline to include a premium economy cabin on an A380.
The second, and now only, configuration seats 484. Fourteen first class seats are located on the main lower deck at the front of the aircraft in a 1-1-1 layout.
Behind that, there are 341 economy seats split across three cabins and mostly configured 3-4-3.
A further 30 economy seats are located at the back of the upper deck. In front of this area is premium economy, with 35 seats in a 2-3-2 configuration.
The rest of the upper deck is made up of two business class cabins, both configured 2-2-2 and seatign a total of 64 passengers. The first cabin has three rows and the second has seven with two further pairs of seats on each side at the front.
There is also a self-service bar area and, right at the front, a lounge area with sofa seating for five people.
In November 2010, Qantas grounded its fleet of A380s, which then numbered six aircraft, following an incident with one of its Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines. In June 2013, Australia’s transport safety regulator laid the blame at Rolls-Royce’s feet, attributing the failure to a fatigue crack in an oil feed pipe in the engine.