Qantas CEO Alan Joyce says international travel in 2022 could be up to three times normal levels due to “pent up demand”.

“And I’m sure there’ll be a lot of visitors around the world that want to come into Australia given how well we’ve handled the pandemic,” he said.

Mr Joyce told Sky News Australia international reopening was the “best news” Qantas has had in two years.

“All 22,000 of our employees get back to work in the first week of December,” he said.

“We’ve had to make tough decisions of standing down 11,000 of those employees at the moment, 6,000 related to international, 5,000 to domestic with the closedown of NSW and Victoria.

“Those 6,000, most of them have been stood down since last March, so this is great news that they’re all back working before Christmas.

“We now have confidence with the light at the end of the tunnel that we won’t need to stand people down in the future given the really high vaccination levels that we now have in Australia.”

Mr Joyce also indicated Qantas has a plan to increase domestic travel to 120 per cent compared to pre-COVID levels.

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