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A toast to Virgin Australia, some fond memories

stevenaus

Intern
Joined
Aug 4, 2010
Messages
52
I hope they make it through the process and come out a stronger player. Lots of talk about becoming a budget airline. Not a fan of that personally. I think that 2 class domestic is the way to go. Keeps Qantas in check.
 

BNEFlyer

Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2012
Messages
214
Virgin
Gold
I think one of the best things to do is not
I hope they make it through the process and come out a stronger player. Lots of talk about becoming a budget airline. Not a fan of that personally. I think that 2 class domestic is the way to go. Keeps Qantas in check.
I haven't heard anything official about going back to an LCC and I highly doubt that would happen. VA are a strong player in the Australian aviation market with their current product and have a loyal base of flyers who prefer their current offering to QF, particularly their business class and lounge offerings. It would be in the best interest of VA and/or the new owner to keep things as they are.
 
Joined
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VA as DJ was not the best but not hopeless, as has been proven by its later success. Virgin Blue challenged QF, and VA was just as good - especially after Sydney John left the scene
 

guesswho2000

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Oct 26, 2017
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Admittedly I've been married to Oneworld for years, between AA, BA and now QF, but VA were always my first choice MEL-HKG. Flew The Business on that route I think six times in the last couple of years, last trip was 8/12/2019 on VA68, which I remember sadly thinking would be my last flight with them in J for the foreseeable.

I actually have a Y domestic booking with VA in a couple of weeks, which has just had the timings altered to match the new schedule. Can't see me taking it sadly.
 

flyingfan

Active Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2010
Messages
998
Qantas
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I really hope this isn't the end of VA as we know it. I loathed DJ (I really, really felt like I was in a bus). WhY was marginally worse than QF due to what passed for catering. But J was great. The service was better and also different (which mightn't be to everyone's taste), and the food blew QF away.

I took advantage of fly ahead many times, this was apparently tightened up but it never failed me.

My fondest memories are being approached as a WP in Y and being offered a new seat in J, and on a separate occasion using my free upgrades for The Business MEL-PER.
 

AustraliaPoochie

Established Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Messages
4,205
ExecutiveTraveller has a bit about VA mark2, that it will be very different.
Wonder if we will ever see VA mark2 have a J class anymore, or even if lounges will still play a part in the business.
I had quite high hopes with AN mark2 at that time, so many years ago.
VA mark2 has to keep costs down, so we would probably loose the cheap ways of getting status, VA mark2 might even stop the FB SC earn.
Will probably have to get use to VA mark2 being a LCC, which would be the best way to save $.
Guess what the old VA had for us, was very very good, but those days are ((probably/most likely)) gone.
 

BNEFlyer

Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2012
Messages
214
Virgin
Gold
ExecutiveTraveller has a bit about VA mark2, that it will be very different.
Wonder if we will ever see VA mark2 have a J class anymore, or even if lounges will still play a part in the business.
I had quite high hopes with AN mark2 at that time, so many years ago.
VA mark2 has to keep costs down, so we would probably loose the cheap ways of getting status, VA mark2 might even stop the FB SC earn.
Will probably have to get use to VA mark2 being a LCC, which would be the best way to save $.
Guess what the old VA had for us, was very very good, but those days are ((probably/most likely)) gone.
My guess is that VA will remain as is, a mid-full service carrier. Not only to retain their market share and FF base, but to continue to be a viable competitor to QF.
 

AustraliaPoochie

Established Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Messages
4,205
(Maybe)... that will be down track later.
Have to wait and see if they are still flying in a few days/weeks first.
Then maybe look at it in a month/2 months/3.
 

clipped_wings

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Feb 7, 2016
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Highlight for us was flying SYD-LAX in J on our 20th wedding anniversary in 2016. The crew called us into the Bar at exactly 1430 AEST (the moment we got married). They all cheered and toasted us. Then they wrapped up some salt+pepper shakers, a new bottle of vintage Ayala in a PJ's bag and presented us our "gift" as we deplaned in LA.
David - you were an impeccable CSM and you always remembered us each time we flew long haul. I am glad we got to see you once more in January and hope our paths cross again one day.

Moments like that may have been frowned upon as cost-prohibitive by the VA accountants. But it was incredible PR and provided solid repeat custom - we became loyal VA flyers who invested just under $80,000, according to my records. That $100 bottle of free champagne paid off big time Virgin!

Thank you for the memories.
 
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Whilst I had flown DJ in the past, I was a QF SG. Then AJ grounded the airline, and VA got us home during one of those volcano ash cloud incidents, and we decided to switch. An NZ double status promotion catapulted me to WP, and I never looked back. Loved the service on the old 777, but was blown away on the new J 777 from LA. Loved row 3. Loved family pooling. Loved the partners - NZ one of the best J flights I've had; sitting in the nose of DL 747 NRT-JFK in J, EY Business suites before the cost-cutting, the F lounge at AUH, SQ J, best steak ever had in the sky on VA 777 row 5 from LA.

But the biggest difference to QF - the staff, who loved their job and loved looking after people like me, just an ordinary bloke who gamed the system to maximize what flying could offer.

I finished flying for business a couple of years ago so don't fly as much, but we desperately need VA to survive, at least to keep QF honest.
 

openseat

Active Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2006
Messages
683
Grateful for all the wonderful staff I've encountered with Virgin. From the kind greetings at the lounge. The smile and welcome when boarding, especially in Honiara. The crew who went above beyond. Particularly on the trans-Australian and trans-Tasman flights. The upgrades, the lounge entries in Sydney and Brisbane. So much, so sad that it's going.
 

kyle

Established Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2006
Messages
1,053
Still have 4 x pyjamas from a MEL-HKG return flight from 2018 with three still unused. Will definitely remember how great the crew was when I eventually wear them at home.
 

BNEFlyer

Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2012
Messages
214
Virgin
Gold
Grateful for all the wonderful staff I've encountered with Virgin. From the kind greetings at the lounge. The smile and welcome when boarding, especially in Honiara. The crew who went above beyond. Particularly on the trans-Australian and trans-Tasman flights. The upgrades, the lounge entries in Sydney and Brisbane. So much, so sad that it's going.
It's a bit premature to say that it's going.
 

KarenR

Newbie
Joined
Feb 26, 2020
Messages
9
Have flown with Virgin a few times and couldn't fault anything, be sad if they don't survive.
 

Major

Established Member
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Jan 21, 2011
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I really enjoyed Row 5 on BNE-LAX. It was your own little private compartment. Initially MrsMajor thought it would be claustrophobic but after the first glass of champagne the subject was never raised again.
I thought we might be troubled by noise from the bar area however it was never a problem.

The crew were always bright and happy to help in any way which made for an enjoyable flight.

Thanks VA, I hope we see the great J service on the 777's again.
 

Mexpirate

Junior Member
Joined
Apr 14, 2019
Messages
30
28th October 2018 I took my first ever domestic flight in Australia after arriving in 2014 and driving around the entire country (every state, mainland territory and capital city at least) in a Hyundai Getz. Has been great to revisit and discover new places in the 18 months since then I have only flown VA and completed 29 sectors including 7 in business.

No matter what happens business PER-HBA return on lie flat A330 on my gf's birthday at virtually no cost has made this entire endeavour worth it, even if they do end up taking my $1500 ticket and 190k points with them.
 

AustraliaPoochie

Established Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Messages
4,205
Don't ever forget Ansett Mark2, we all thought that salvation had happened, I did hope so, when they (AN) began flying that 2nd time, and then, kaput, it all ended.
Yes, the sale process is still ongoing, and speculating is a disservice, but it took VB 5 years from start of operations to having a VFF program.
New owner might decide, no FF program, no VFF, no VGW...
Would have been nice if AN had been able to carry on, all those years ago.
 

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