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Why Qantas cancels one-in-10 flights between Melbourne and Sydney 

Almost one-in-10 scheduled Qantas flights between Melbourne and Sydney are cancelled, but the airline says it’s not because they haven’t sold enough seats.

Data collected by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics has revealed an average of 9.5 per cent of the the Australian airline’s flights on the busy route were cancelled within a week of their departure date in the six months to November.

The cancellation rate on the route has almost doubled in two years.

But Chairman of Strategic Aviation Solutions, Neil Hansford, said the cancellation of flights on very frequent routes, like Melbourne – Sydney,  allows the rest of the Qantas flight network to operate more smoothly and reduces missed flight connections.

“Because they’ve got such a complex network, and you’ve got something like 40 odd flights scheduled a day, the main thing is to keep up the integrity of the rest of the network, like a Melbourne to Gold Coast, where there’s only two or three [flights],” he told 3AW’s Ross and John.

“To get those flights away you may take the equipment which would’ve done a Sydney – Melbourne or a Melbourne – Sydney to keep up the integrity of a service like the Gold Coast or Perth, to maintain all of those connections.”

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Image: Brendon Thorne / Stringer