Today kicks off an extremely exciting few weeks for travelers and aviation geeks based in North Texas, beginning with the arrival of Qantas flight QF7 from Sydney, Australia.
Although the flight has been operating into Dallas/Ft. Worth on a scheduled basis since May 2011, it will be the first time that Qantas is sending in the Airbus A380-800 series into its DFW station.
It will also be the first time that an Airbus A380 will operate into DFW airport. Even though the Airbus A380 has been in service for over seven years now, fewer than 10 US airports receive A380 services from foreign operators.
The fanfare will continue on Wednesday when Emirates will also up-gauge its daily flight from Dubai to Dallas/Ft. Worth to an Airbus A380 from a 777-200LR, representing an increase in daily seats by roughly 220 each way.
DFW airport has spent nearly $3 million to upgrade gates D15 and D16 in the international terminal to be able to accomodate the massive plane.
The good news doesn’t stop at DFW airport, however. In fact, a highly-anticipated chapter in the history of Love Field airport, located a few miles from downtown Dallas, is set to occur in mid-October once the Wright Amendment restrictions are lifted and largest tenant Southwest Airlines commences nonstop service to cities across the country. The carrier will be able to transport fliers to and from Baltimore, Chicago Midway, Las Vegas, Orlando, Atlanta, Fort Lauderdale, Los Angeles, New York LaGuardia, Orange County, Nashville, San Diego, Tampa, Phoenix, San Francisco, Oakland and Washington National airports.
Then, starting on October 13, Virgin America will commence nonstop service from Dallas Love Field airport to Los Angeles, Washington National, New York LaGuardia and San Francisco, followed by Chicago O’Hare in early 2015. Terry Maxon’s excellent Airline Biz Blog from the Dallas Morning News has some photos of the new counter space at Love Field.
As a native Dallas-site, I can say that I have never felt more proud of my hometown airports. Let the fun begin!