I am "almost" completely fed up with Qantas, whats it like on the "Dark side" ? | Australian Frequent Flyer
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I am "almost" completely fed up with Qantas, whats it like on the "Dark side" ?

GPH

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So, here I am , (very) close to LTG with QF and frankly have not been feeling the love for quite a while now, many of you here are high status flyers with both airlines, I have flown VA only a handful of times in the last 10 years and therefore cannot make a comparison based on experience. I will persevere with QF to get my LTG, but beyond that I am open to alternatives. Currently (for at lesst the next 12 months anyway) WP with QF, admittedly not doing a lot of flying in the foreseeable future, but then the family pooling thing sounds attractive. interested to know what makes VA a better proposition for those who have changed over.
 

BAM1748

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I think I remember an announcement earlier in 2019 they were going back to the roots, well some of them anyway. Considering the basic offerings of their roots I can only take it as they want to cut a few costs. So I won't be changing.

But if you do, please let me know how if it worked out.

cheers
Matt
 

moa999

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What love have you been missing out on?

My perspective, VA is very good on the Perth routes (if you get a widebody), select international routes are good, domestic J is good, points earned on expensive fares is very good, redemptions $ cost is an advantage as is family pooling.

Other than that they struggle somewhat, Y catering on the 737s worse, lounges generally poorer, international network and partners poorer
 

ozstamps

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Given the large loses reported by QF today, and the CEO of course blaming everyone except himself for those, things are not going to brighten on that side. :)
 
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serfty

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If you travel a lot domestically and trans tasman in the pointy end, VA catering is generally better and more consistent that QF, plus the priority boarding tends to work far better than on Qantas.

I get the best the better of both worlds being Platinum with both QFF and Velocity.
 

GPH

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If you travel a lot domestically and trans Tasman in the pointy end, VA catering is generally better and more consistent that QF, plus the priority boarding tends to work far better than on Qantas.

I get the best the better of both worlds being Platinum with both QFF and Velocity.
Good to know, I suppose my situation with QF is that there seems to have been a fall in overall performance, yes the FA's are great, the website is rubbish, so no surprise there ! I get the feeling that every time QF announces something , a little more benefit is eroded away.
 

eastwest101

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Good to know, I suppose my situation with QF is that there seems to have been a fall in overall performance, yes the FA's are great, the website is rubbish, so no surprise there ! I get the feeling that every time QF announces something , a little more benefit is eroded away.
Yes - both airlines websites are rubbish, increasingly difficult to get a A330 on transcon for both airlines, VA's strong points are family pooling, its J class and maybe slightly better catering in J and perceived better protection of J class cabin from Y class interlopers, VA has a successful implementation of priority boarding but has issues with lack of international partners/alliance. Both QF and VA Y class domestic product is underwhelming and looking over priced but hey - its a cosy duoploy now so not much anyone can do about it. QF's lounge network and slightly better frequency and regional route network may swing it in QF's favour for some domestic frequent travellers, once you are away from the capital cities the VA route network and lounge coverage fades away somewhat into Y only Alliance F100 fleet and a few remaining ATR's.

For me - the family pooling and better availability of upgrades to Economy X and J makes Velocity a slightly better option for my travel patterns.
 

jase05

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From experience the Dom J meals are miles ahead of QF and I find they do the little published benefits much better ie Priority boarding, the magic rope to stop loo invaders, Pre departure drinks (not a choice of water or water). I do think the lounges are generally better at QF but as long as the beer is cold and the seats are comfy I’m fine and I find the VA lounges perfectly fine if not a little cramped sometimes (Hello ADL!)
 

SeaWolf

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One other major advantage I've found with VA is that the call centre queues are generally quite short. It's rare that I need to talk to a person but when I needed to with QF about a year ago I was waiting about an hour each time and it took three calls to resolve the issue. I've no status with QF but I also noticed that flying J didn't help the situation, dunno if status gets you shorter queues.
With VA I can't remember ever having to wait anything like that length of time.
 

serfty

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Good to know, I suppose my situation with QF is that there seems to have been a fall in overall performance, yes the FA's are great, the website is rubbish, so no surprise there ! I get the feeling that every time QF announces something , a little more benefit is eroded away.
See here for experiences with Business class VA meals going back a couple of months:

 

ozstamps

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[/QUOTE]
Erm, actually QF reported large profits...
Yes, only saw the headlines - I guess a 17% fall is a great result to the spin doctors - was watching the scrolling news headlines which said the following

Qantas has reported a 6.5 per cent fall in full-year profit as higher fuel costs and weak domestic travel demand bit into its bottom line.

The airline on Thursday said its profit after tax for the year to June 30 was $891 million. On an underlying basis, Qantas' profit before tax was $1.3 billion - a fall of 17 per cent.

Profit from Qantas' domestic operations, its biggest earner, were down 3.3 per cent. It cut capacity on domestic routes by 1.5 per cent during the year while its seat factor - a measure of how full its planes are - was flat.
 

ozstamps

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From experience the Dom J meals are miles ahead of QF and I find they do the little published benefits much better ie Priority boarding, the magic rope to stop loo invaders, Pre departure drinks (not a choice of water or water).

I do think the lounges are generally better at QF but as long as the beer is cold and the seats are comfy I’m fine and I find the VA lounges perfectly fine if not a little cramped sometimes (Hello ADL!)
We flew out of Cairns yesterday and had forgotten there even was a lounge there! Cairns can't get many flight surely? Pretty large too for some reason - as you say, larger than ADL. Very charming Desk Warden too.

Breakfast was smoked Salmon which was really nice. (Unless you were in row 2 where it had ran out by then.) It was a 10am flight and was pretty surprised they offered Bubbly as a choice, and rather than offend ...... :) :cool:

BNE-SYD for lunch they had a lamb option which I took as the salad sounded pretty uninteresting - and looked just so too. The lamb was in really lean pulled pork type strips if that makes sense - absolutely amazing, lots of it, and a world class meal all round, for short one hour domestic flight.

Now I think on it, all 4 biz cabins were 100% full in recent days. There was a time only a few years back when J cabin was often empty, so something must be going OK, and as above, Qantas has just reported big profit drop over last year.
 

Pleb Status

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So, here I am , (very) close to LTG with QF and frankly have not been feeling the love for quite a while now, many of you here are high status flyers with both airlines, I have flown VA only a handful of times in the last 10 years and therefore cannot make a comparison based on experience. I will persevere with QF to get my LTG, but beyond that I am open to alternatives. Currently (for at lesst the next 12 months anyway) WP with QF, admittedly not doing a lot of flying in the foreseeable future, but then the family pooling thing sounds attractive. interested to know what makes VA a better proposition for those who have changed over.
As a QF LTG and ex multi year QF P1, I submit the following -

Who is paying for your travel?

As I pay for my own travel, the $40,000+ in actual cash savings I have made over the past four years flying VA and partners over QF and partners makes any 'perceived' lower level of service in Y pretty insignificant. This is a clearly measurable criteria versus other 'opinion' based criteria. Remember that the QF $1B+ annual profit comes straight from the pockets of their customers.

Is seat comfort important when you travel?

Free domestic YX seating for VA WP, selectable at the time of booking, makes travelling in Y a lot more tolerable. This is a must have being based in PER but still very advantageous on shorter sectors. No rushing around at T-80 (even as a QF WP) trying to scavenge a decent seat. Standard seat pitch on a VA 737 is 31" versus 30" on a QF 737. I have flown in a preselected YX seat on every flight when booked in Y.

Do you travel in domestic J often?

On board, the domestic J experience on VA is superior to QF (no asterisks required). Enhancements include a sparkling wine PDB, far better food, the 'pantry', a six wine selection, hot towels on transcons, the 'magic rope', FA protection on departure, a better seat on A330 services etc. VA WP also receive four free upgrades a year (from a Freedom fare) and can cancel/modify points J upgrades at no cost (when changing flights etc).

Do you want elite status?

Retaining WP on VA is 800SC versus 1200SC on QF. VA has family pooling as well.

In summary, saving tens of thousands of dollars, whilst getting the best possible Y seats at the time of booking, the best domestic J product and retaining WP status with the least number of flights (and cost) is 90% of the 'battle'. Everything else is just noise.

When I made the switch to VA, I was intending to move forward wih a double QF/VA WP strategy. This has changed however as I cannot justify paying more to fly on QF to get less. I miss the OW F lounge access, but then think about the cash in my pocket and then just slum it in the J lounge instead...
 

ozstamps

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Retaining WP on VA is 800SC versus 1200SC on QF. VA has family pooling as well.
I retain Virgin Plat easily each year, and right now am 500 over, and have never bothered to look at Qantas, but must confess 1200 v/s 800 surprised me.

Do QF and Virgin Domestic SC more or less align?
 

Pleb Status

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I retain Virgin Plat easily each year, and right now am 500 over, and have never bothered to look at Qantas, but must confess 1200 v/s 800 surprised me.

Do QF and Virgin Domestic SC more or less align?
Getaway SC are slightly lower than QF, Elevate and Freedom SC are higher than QF. So on a reasonable mix, on average, they are similar.
 

ozstamps

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Interesting.

I easily got Virgin Plat requalified just this week with our return flights to Cairns on Freedom fares, under the Double SC deal. And all easily upgraded in advance using Plat upgrades.

Virgin of course is not for everyone, and it is not perfect, but I never saw anything overly enticing to me at Qantas, as we have Lifetime Gold Star Alliance which for us balances out Virgin's clear lack of strong foreign partners.
 
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amaroo

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I'm a P1 and LTG... the love I get from QF directly collates with the money I spend with them. No different to any other company I do business with.

VA doesn't look that flash - financially or otherwise. Depending on your travel patterns maybe try another OW airline.

I've strayed outside my lane and have started flying and accumulating with SQ, but that's manly points based. Luckily points and miles are very easy to accumulate.
 

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