Qantas Turns 100, Here’s A Bunch Of Retro Pics Of Australia's National Airline To Celebrate

Who doesn’t love vintage travel vibes?
Qantas celebrates its 100th birthday.
Qantas celebrates its 100th birthday.

Qantas has marked its 100th birthday during its toughest year yet.

Australia’s national carrier, which is the third-oldest airline in the world, turned 100 on Monday as top boss Alan Joyce said the airline was looking to the future with positive vibes.

“Qantas every decade has literally reinvented itself,” Joyce said in a recorded message. “That is why it has survived as long as it has.”

Due to COVID-19-related travel restrictions, Qantas cut nearly 30% of its workforce this year and grounded the bulk of its fleet. It doesn’t expect a return to most international travel until the second half of 2021 as Australia’s borders remain largely closed.

The airline was founded in the outback as Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services in 1920 with Dutch airline KLM and Colombia’s Avianca the only two airlines that have existed longer.

Qantas will celebrate its centenary with a 100-minute low-level flyover of Sydney’s famous harbour at sunset on Monday for 100 employees as well as frequent flyers.

Here are some vintage images of Qantas’ bygone travel era from the archives. Happy 100th birthday, Qantas.

Queen Elizabeth boards a Qantas flight during her royal tour in 1954.
Queen Elizabeth boards a Qantas flight during her royal tour in 1954.
An interior view of a Boeing 707-138, operated by Qantas in 1965.
An interior view of a Boeing 707-138, operated by Qantas in 1965.
Qantas empire Airways advertisement circa 1939.
Qantas empire Airways advertisement circa 1939.
The First Class Lounge of a B747 operated by Qantas in the 1970s.
The First Class Lounge of a B747 operated by Qantas in the 1970s.
Qantas hangars in Eagle Farm, Brisbane, Australia are seen in the late 1920s.
Qantas hangars in Eagle Farm, Brisbane, Australia are seen in the late 1920s.
Qantas' first mail and passenger flight in November 1922.
Qantas' first mail and passenger flight in November 1922.
A view of Qantas Empire Flying Boat "Cooee" in 1938.
A view of Qantas Empire Flying Boat "Cooee" in 1938.
The QF Constellation VH-EAD, which operated the first through flight from Sydney to London on December 1, 1947.
The QF Constellation VH-EAD, which operated the first through flight from Sydney to London on December 1, 1947.
A Qantas A-380 plane flies past the Sydney Opera house in central Sydney, Australia March 11, 2013.
A Qantas A-380 plane flies past the Sydney Opera house in central Sydney, Australia March 11, 2013.
A Qantas jet (R) flies past the tail section of a Boeing 737-800 painted in Qantas' 1959 retro colour scheme during an event marking the 95th anniversary of the Airline at the Qantas Hangar at Sydney International Airport, Australia, November 16, 2015.
A Qantas jet (R) flies past the tail section of a Boeing 737-800 painted in Qantas' 1959 retro colour scheme during an event marking the 95th anniversary of the Airline at the Qantas Hangar at Sydney International Airport, Australia, November 16, 2015.
The Beatles wave as they depart on a Qantas flight in 196.
The Beatles wave as they depart on a Qantas flight in 196.
The interior of a Lancastrian, converted to the first Qantas in-flight beds.
The interior of a Lancastrian, converted to the first Qantas in-flight beds.
Movie director Alfred Hitchcock departs Australia by Qantas at Sydney Airport at Mascot on 15 May 1960.
Movie director Alfred Hitchcock departs Australia by Qantas at Sydney Airport at Mascot on 15 May 1960.
Australian entertainer Barry Humphries holding koala bear and Qantas bag waving on arrival in Melbourne, September 1965.
Australian entertainer Barry Humphries holding koala bear and Qantas bag waving on arrival in Melbourne, September 1965.
An air stewardess serving food to passengers on board a Qantas Boeing 707 plane at London airport, August 1959.
An air stewardess serving food to passengers on board a Qantas Boeing 707 plane at London airport, August 1959.
Qantas First Woman Passenger Makes Second Flight (in 40 yrs) -- Mrs. Ivy Coates, of Indooroopilly, Brisbane, who was the first woman Passenger carried by Qantas in 1922, today met her pilot for the first time since the historic flight. He is Sir Hudson Fysh, now chairman of Qantas Mrs. Coates is travelling by V-Jet to Vancouver on a world tour seen here May 1962.
Qantas First Woman Passenger Makes Second Flight (in 40 yrs) -- Mrs. Ivy Coates, of Indooroopilly, Brisbane, who was the first woman Passenger carried by Qantas in 1922, today met her pilot for the first time since the historic flight. He is Sir Hudson Fysh, now chairman of Qantas Mrs. Coates is travelling by V-Jet to Vancouver on a world tour seen here May 1962.
The Australian Basketball Olympic team at Mascot today board their Qantas plane for Hong Kong. September 11, 1964.
The Australian Basketball Olympic team at Mascot today board their Qantas plane for Hong Kong. September 11, 1964.
Luggage for the King of Thailand's royal tour of Australia arrived by Qantas plane from New Zealand tonight.Here security police guard the trolley loads of luggage. August 25, 1962.
Luggage for the King of Thailand's royal tour of Australia arrived by Qantas plane from New Zealand tonight.Here security police guard the trolley loads of luggage. August 25, 1962.

With additional files from Reuters.

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