Jetstar To Hnl - Better Than Qantas?

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Jul 17, 2006
I am no fan of Jetstar, but.......

Yesterday, I returned from a return trip to HNL on JQ, redeemed with QF points, on the QF code-shares. SYD-HNL-MEL-SYD

Both flights were less than half full. On the way over, many of us in the rear cabin had a row of 3 or 4 seats to ourselves. Everybody had at least 2 seats, and there were a couple of the 2-seat rows that went empty the entire flight. It was an overnight flight, and I managed a good 6 or so hours of sleep.

On the return flight (daytime), in the middle cabin, I shared a row of 4 seats with my travelling partner. I probably could have managed a row of 4 to myself (many did) but it was a daytime flight, so I was happy to watch movies. Again, a couple of 2-seat rows went empty.

I really wonder how long Jetstar will be able to manage these light loads to Honolulu. I think that there are 3 flights a week to each of MEL and SYD, as well as 2 or 3 QF flights to SYD.

As a bonus the QF lounge is practically empty in HNL before the JQ flight. Last December I took a QF flight HNL-SYD and the lounge was crowded and horrible, with a line to get in. No food at all. Seems that few of the JQ passengers have QF access, and the lounge had only 10 or so people in it.

As to the rest of the JQ experience:
- wasn't happy that I couldn't check in at Qantas First, as a QF Platinum (a big thankyou to the QF checkin lady who walked me to the JQ checkin, and took me to the front of the line)
- quite liked the leather seats - the leather seemed quite nice
- was peeved that, as a QF passanger, I only got a blanket, but no pillow. I had to purchase a Comfort Pack for $9 to get this
- the mainscreen shows are terrible. We had a loooooong Jetstar ad to begin - it lasted over a half hour. Then a flight map for about 45 minutes. The first programme, a Rick Stein cooking adventure (!!!!) did not begin until 2 hours into the flight. On the return flight, I paid the $12 on the Video on demand and it was worth it.
- the food was okay, but the way the staff kept asking to see your boarding pass to see what you were entitled to was a pain. And made it feel really cheap. And meant the meal service took forever, as staff spent half of their time checking their lists and boarding passes. I'd hates to see how long it takes when the flight is full.
- same again with handing out the blankets - took forever, and feels cheap!!
- as a QF passenger, non-alcoholic drinks were unlimited, which was better than I expected.

All up, Jetstar Y is okay - I'd say it is about 80% of QF Y.

But, because the loads are so light, if you are thinking of travelling to HNL any time soon, I would probably recommend the JQ flight over the QF flight
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