Originally posted by Philip76
If the airline does not provide the carriage specified in the ticket (which in this case was a return to the Brisbane international terminal) then it has breached the contract and should refund the fare.
Firstly I want to address this by Philip76. Let me guide you to the Terms and Conditions of Carriage that Virgin Blue have when you purchase a ticket. Here are 2 points in particular that you should pay attention to:
8. The Guest acknowledges that the Carrier may need to cancel or delay and reschedule flights or services due to industrial action, landing restrictions, airport loading restrictions, unsuitable weather conditions, technical problems or any event beyond the Carrier's reasonable control, and scheduled flight times or destinations are not guaranteed. In no circumstances will the Carrier be liable for any Losses which a Guest may incur as a result of any such delayed or rescheduled flight or service.
9. If the Guest is landed at a destination other than that specified in the Booking, the Carrier will make all reasonable endeavours to convey the Guest to the specified destination, but undertakes no obligation to the Guest as to time or means of transport.
This means that the airline didn't break its contract, because this is what is agreed to when a guest purchases a ticket.
I want to say to "blundeni" that this above still is no excuse for bad service. However, tell me an airline, department store, utility company, or any customer service business that doesn't have bad apples.
In regards to the Virgin Blue conditions of carriage, you will also notice that QANTAS have one also. Found here: http://www.qantas.com.au/info/flying/beforeYouTravel/conditionsCarriageLong
Virgin Blue do have provisions in place for dealing with displaced guests when there are unforeseen issues like weather and unplanned engineering issues. They see the safety of their guests as paramount.
I am not here to convert those who don't like Virgin Blue because as far as I am concerned, no airline is perfect, in fact I have had my fare share of bad service with QANTAS both on the ground and in the air. I have also encountered the occasional bad apple with Virgin. All I'm saying is that the airlines would not purposely annoy, anger or pi** off their guests (or passengers) who keep their airline flying and profitable. Who would do that????
I did read though somewhere on this thread that if it weren't for DJ, then there would be no competition and QF would have the monopoly and no-one could afford to fly. All I am asking, is that remember that a few people who are bad apples in a company aren't indicative of what the entire airline is all about.
I actually congratulate the airport staff who can work at an airport, when a flight has gone US (unserviceable) or flight cancelled due to weather and have to deal with up to 180 angry or upset people. Remember, try putting yourself into their position and think how you would handle the situation. Don't just say "Well, I would handle it better than them." because trust me, it isn't the easiest job in the world, but it does have its rewards and thats why these people do that job.
"blundeni" I really hope that you get a suitable response from Virgin Blue and I am sure that you will.
In closing, there will always be "die-hard" QANTAS fans, and "die-hard" Virgin Blue fans, and no matter what anyone says, they will never be convinced to think anything other than good things about their alliance, but let me just say, consider the condition to which you are buying your ticket, they are practically the same for every airline. Each airline has a duty of care to return you back to your origin regardless of the mode of travel or airlline they wish to use to get you home (that is in their terms and conditions). And finally, don't let the experience of one upset staff member tarnish your experience of the whole airline....all you will do is just end up chasing your own tail rather than going on holidays and enjoying it for what it is.
I have had plenty of experiences where I was either delayed, was on a cancelled flight etc in lots of places around the world. I was even delayed by 2 days last november when there was massive storms up and down the east coast. Stuck in Melbourne for 2 days, but in the end I got home safely (which is my preferred method to return home) and it is all in the past. I have moved on. The airline isn't at fault, it was mother nature.
Anyway all, happy flying and I do encourage people that if they have bad experiences to forward to airlines Guest or Customer Relations for them to be notified. They can't do anything to fix it if they don't know about it. Any feedback is good feedback to an airline, its what helps them to improve.