Qantas expects to start international flights in October

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Qantas Airways chief executive Alan Joyce says he doesn’t expect his airline will resume international travel except for New Zealand until late October, after the Australian population is vaccinated for COVID-19. The Sydney-based airline had been selling seats on international flights from July 1. Those have been refunded. But Joyce says there has been a huge surge in COVID-19 cases around the world since those July flights went on sale in early January. There were also new coronavirus variants emerging. Australia’s immunization program began this week. The government expects vaccine will be made available to anyone who wants it by October. Joyce expects a “material increase” in Qantas flights between Australia and New Zealand by July.