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'I too was a curious young boy': Qantas CEO Alan Joyce's reply to 10-year-old 'competitor' wins hearts

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce replied to a letter by Alex Jacquot, where the 10-year-old Australian boy sought advice about starting an airline of his own.

twitter-logo BusinessToday.In        Last Updated: March 11, 2019  | 20:48 IST
'I too was a curious young boy': Qantas CEO Alan Joyce's reply to 10-year-old 'competitor' wins hearts
Alan Joyce, who has been Qantas chief executive for over 10 years, received a letter from 10-year-old Alex Jacquot asking for advice to start an airline.

Qantas Airways CEO Alan Joyce is winning praise for his response to a letter by a 10-year-old Australian boy. Alex Jacquot wrote to the Qantas chief executive seeking advice for starting his own airline. To this, Joyce replied with positive enthusiasm.

The Sydney-based carrier recently shared the letter by Alex and Joyce's reply on its Twitter handle. "Our competitors don't normally ask us for advice, but when an airline leader reached out, we couldn't ignore it. Naturally, there was only one way to respond: CEO to CEO," Qantas wrote in its tweet.

In a handwritten letter undersigned CEO and co-founder of Oceania Express, Alex started by telling Joyce that he is ten years old, followed by "Please take me seriously". He goes on to tell that he has already "started some stuff" like the types of planes he will need, flight numbers, catering and more.

"I like working on my airline. Do you have any ideas of about I can do? Seeing as you're the CEO of Qantas, I thought I'd ask you (sic)," Alex wrote in his letter.

"First I should say that I'm not typically in the business of giving advice to my competitors. But I'm going to make an exception on the occasion, because I too was once a young boy who was so curious about flight and its possibilities," the reply from Joyce read.

The second question in Alex's letter asked about tips on starting an airline. His third and last question was about sleeping on long-distance flights.

"My number one tip for starting an airline is to put safety front and centre. And do everything you can do to make travel as comfortable and affordable as possible for your passengers," Joyce wrote in his reply.

"Now, to your troubles thinking about sleep on 21-hour flights. This is something we are grappling with too, as we embark on Project Sunrise. To help with sleep, we're looking at different cabin designs that give people spaces to stretch out and exercise," Joyce further wrote.

Project Sunrise is an initiative by Qantas under which the airline is planning to conduct non-stop flights between the east coast of Australia and London. Joyce even invited Alex to be the part of a Project Sunrise meeting. Joyce said that he will like to share notes with Alex on what it is like to run an airline.

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