John Travolta becomes Qantas Ambassador-at-Large

Los Angeles, 05 August 2002

On the 25 June 2002, Australian-based international airline Qantas announced that international superstar John Travolta has joined the company and has become its "Ambassador-at-Large".

Qantas also announced that following extensive sessions at its Sydney headquarters and with Boeing in Seattle, Mr Travolta has successfully completed 747-400 First Officer simulator training.

Qantas Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Geoff Dixon presented Mr Travolta with his "wings" at Los Angeles airport. Mr Dixon said the airline was delighted to welcome Mr Travolta to the company as "Ambassador-at-Large".

Mr Travolta said that, as part of his new role with Qantas, he would pilot his own aircraft, an ex-Qantas Boeing 707 jet specially painted in its original Qantas 1960s branding and livery, across the globe to 10 countries on a Spirit of Friendship tour.

The Spirit of Friendship tour will include visits to 13 cities around the world between 1 July and late August this year.

Commenting on Mr Travolta's appointment, Mr Dixon said: "It's no secret that John is an avid fan of aviation. He is also a keen and talented pilot, and supporting his Spirit of Friendship tour is a fantastic way to showcase Qantas in its major overseas markets.

"The tour is also a unique opportunity for Qantas to underscore its commitment to international tourism."

Mr Travolta said he chose the Spirit of Friendship theme for the tour following the shocking events that the world has experienced in the past 12 months.

"The past year has been awful for our sense of security and goodwill and also for trust and friendship between different cultures and countries," he said.

"I'm undertaking this tour to extend the hand of friendship - to reach out, to cross borders, make contact, rekindle friendships and make new friends.

"That's why I've teamed up with Qantas, an airline which embodies the spirit of Australia and the spirit of friendship. I've always admired the Qantas safety record and culture and I've been attracted to its values of quality, openness and friendliness."

Mr Travolta will fly from Los Angeles to Auckland in New Zealand, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth in Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, London, Rome, Paris, Frankfurt and New York before returning to Los Angeles. The tour involves about 80 flying hours and covers more than 35,000 nautical miles (64,700 kilometres).

As "Ambassador-at-Large" Mr Travolta has become a Qantas employee and will, during the global tour, spend time with fellow Qantas employees in each market.

Mr Travolta purchased the ex-Qantas 707 four years ago and has been an enthusiastic aviator since his childhood.

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (2726)