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How long until VA pulls out of DPS?

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smit0847

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With the recent announcement of Indonesia Air Asia X (XT) launching direct MEL-DPS flights (and I understand they will soon be announcing SYD-DPS) there will be 4 different carriers offering direct flights on this route.

GA offer full service for a reasonable price.
JQ and XT offer absolute bargain basement prices, as low as sub-$200 return but still on a new or new-ish widebody.



VA offer neither.



With the 4 carriers offering varying flights from all major capitals there will be something like 100+ flights a week from Australia to DPS. I certainly wouldn't pay twice the price of JQ/XT to fly a VA 737 in Y there just to collect the SCs. If I wanted to be comfortable I would spend a little bit extra and go with GA. VA's FB page and airlinequality pages are filled with people complaining about the DPS flights with a common theme being 'for the price we paid we expected more' and 'its too long for a 737'. I can't imagine someone on a $99 B787 JQ fare expecting the beers to be free.

I don't think there's room for 4 different carriers on this route and I think VA will pull out within 12 months - they're the obvious loser in this war. If they considered sending the A330s to DPS it would be a different story but I doubt there is the J demand to make it work.

Thoughts?
 

eastwest101

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Its really a question of whom will blink first, your point about the market being crowded with XT A330 services, JQ 787 services, GA running a mix of A333 and B738s and VA with B738s the rational economist would guess that the higher unit cost producer would give up first (i.e. VA B738 out followed by the JQ B787s then maybe the GA A330s). But airline economics and strategies are not always rational as there are alliance/competitive motivations at work along with the moveable feast that is the outbound Australian tourism market into Bali, exchange rates, fuel costs, spending patterns, the demand stimulation effect of low fares. We just don't know how things work on the inside of the Garuda, Air Asia Indonesia, Virgin or Qantas boards and management team as to whom (if anyone) will no longer tolerate the losses that sub $200 fares must mean. Maybe its just a matter of whom will run out of money first, but even that is difficult to determine sometimes.

I still see the Bali/DPS flights as a viable option to simply escape the high fares out of Australia and to nest itineraries into and out of Bali to take advantage of lower fares to other places in the world. From some of the threads here I would think that I am not alone in considering this as at least an option, albeit a problematic option for some. Obviously a lot of people have been to Bali, and it has been popular and there are various stories about whether the Bali to Australia market will grow more or shrink.
 

Justchecking

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I still see the Bali/DPS flights as a viable option to simply escape the high fares out of Australia and to nest itineraries into and out of Bali to take advantage of lower fares to other places in the world. From some of the threads here I would think that I am not alone in considering this as at least an option, albeit a problematic option for some. Obviously a lot of people have been to Bali, and it has been popular and there are various stories about whether the Bali to Australia market will grow more or shrink.
The thought has crossed my mind more than once.
 

markis10

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With the 4 carriers offering varying flights from all major capitals there will be something like 100+ flights a week from Australia to DPS. I certainly wouldn't pay twice the price of JQ/XT to fly a VA 737 in Y there just to collect the SCs. If I wanted to be comfortable I would spend a little bit extra and go with GA. VA's FB page and airlinequality pages are filled with people complaining about the DPS flights with a common theme being 'for the price we paid we expected more' and 'its too long for a 737'. I can't imagine someone on a $99 B787 JQ fare expecting the beers to be free.

I don't think there's room for 4 different carriers on this route and I think VA will pull out within 12 months - they're the obvious loser in this war. If they considered sending the A330s to DPS it would be a different story but I doubt there is the J demand to make it work.

Thoughts?

VA may be the obvious loser under your criteria but that does not mean the same applies to all who fly, for many, Garuda is not an option for those with a bit of aviation knowledge for instance. As it stands, I am sure they are happy with load averages of 70% plus.
 

Steelo

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I still see the Bali/DPS flights as a viable option to simply escape the high fares out of Australia and to nest itineraries into and out of Bali to take advantage of lower fares to other places in the world. From some of the threads here I would think that I am not alone in considering this as at least an option.
Agree, the options available out of DPS are worthwhile pursuing. As long as you have the time and flexibility, fares from DPS into many places are amazing value - this is the only way we can afford to fly J on one world carriers. If JQ pulls out would be disappointed - as use them to build up status credits. The reviews on VA flights to DPS tend to be pretty poor, I'd predict they may be the first to fold.
 
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notzac

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I expect this route to be given to TT.
Exactly. As soon as that $1 sale completes, they will be considered a flag carrier and will be able to operate International services .. I imagine purely leisure destinations (with no or limited J pax) will be handed over to TT, DPS being one of them.
 

dajop

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Exactly. As soon as that $1 sale completes, they will be considered a flag carrier and will be able to operate International services .. .
It depends on who ends up owning TT, VA, or VAi. Not an issue but there would have to be some (on paper) restructuring of the company to ensure its ownership is at least 50pc Australian. Like VAi.
 

smit0847

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Exactly. As soon as that $1 sale completes, they will be considered a flag carrier and will be able to operate International services .. I imagine purely leisure destinations (with no or limited J pax) will be handed over to TT, DPS being one of them.
What, in an A320? I dont think there's room for 3 LCCs on the same route, especially for one only operating narrowbodies?!
 

LonePine

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I hope they don't. We flew there last year from ADL, stayed a few days and took advantage of the cheap flights into Thailand. Came back, stayed a few days and flew back into ADL.

Planning to do something middle of next year
 

notzac

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It depends on who ends up owning TT, VA, or VAi. Not an issue but there would have to be some (on paper) restructuring of the company to ensure its ownership is at least 50pc Australian. Like VAi.
Pretty sure there was mention of TT doing leisure international routes, so I'm sure they'll set it up in such a way that it can operate international flights. They'd be crazy not to, really.
 

mlob

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I hope not as well. Virgin have a great afternoon flight that arrives around midnight into Brisbane. Beats all those other late night departures.
 
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eastwest101

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I hope not as well. Virgin have a great afternoon flight that arrives around midnight into Brisbane. Beats all those other late night departures.
Good point - with lots of competition and inevitable low fares then 'civilised' flight timing is maybe the only other way to remain competitive when you have other LCC operators operating A320s, A330s and B787s with OMG-o'clock departure times and tight seat pitches. I can see other peoples comments about the possibility of maybe VA pulling out and using TT A320s instead, and the pro and cons of this approach.
 

Clivem

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I hope not as well. Virgin have a great afternoon flight that arrives around midnight into Brisbane. Beats all those other late night departures.
I don't know if it is normal but yesterday's VA44 flight (late afternoon) had the lightest load I have seen in all my years of flying .... Ms clivem and myself were the only J PAX ......every single Y PAX could of had 3 seat to themselves if they choose...... and then there would of been seats to spare.
 

smit0847

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I don't know if it is normal but yesterday's VA44 flight (late afternoon) had the lightest load I have seen in all my years of flying .... Ms clivem and myself were the only J PAX ......every single Y PAX could of had 3 seat to themselves if they choose...... and then there would of been seats to spare.
I think early Dec is low season for Bali. On NYD it will be a different story.
 

Melburnian1

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smit0847, wouldn't the MEL - DPS flights already be quite busy now (mid December) due to many schools having finished (particularly for older secondary students who have completed their HSC/VCE/variant) and some travel from adults (regrettably including bogans) wanting to celebrate Christmas in Kuta?

I agree with all the other comments about a route like this being incapable of sustaining four carriers year round. Seasonal flights may be sensible, but every day? Mind you, MEL now has about 4.5 million residents, and Tullamarine also serves the 500,000 who live in the Apple Isle plus another 1.25 million or so in country Victoria, and a few more from southern NSW who may have a closer cultural affinity with Victoria than NSW despite living north of the Murray.
 

Pablo

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Having said all above, I believe October and November were the biggest, or one of the biggest, months ever of Australian arrivals into Bali. So there is increasing demand for seats on flights.
 
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