Rex to fly between Australian capital cities

jase05

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What if you forget it, omit to charge it, leave it in your car/on the train/on the plane or far less likely, have your phone stolen?
I have a Apple Watch aswell.
Touch wood but nothing has gone wrong yet.
Probably been 2-3 weeks since I’ve taken my wallet anywhere and I’ve had a couple of interstate work trips and overnight stays in that time
 

henrus

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By my count, there are 8 business class seats and 162 economy class seats (27 rows x 6 seats). That's 170 seats in total. Am I missing something, or does Rex not know how many seats are on their own planes?
Yes, I just went and watched a lot of the review videos and they confirm it ends at row 29. Meaning you're correct with 170 seats, that being said there are a few things they say on their fleet page about their 737's that aren't quite correct firstly the seat count but also listing integrated IFE and wifi (the latter of which needs to be switched on although someone elsewhere pointed out that one of the aircraft doesn't even have a wifi dish).

Screen Shot 2021-03-07 at 9.37.05 am.png

Something I found interesting is VH-RQC actually has two different types of seats.

As you can see from 9min 50secs on this Paul Stewart video the front half of economy has the newer VA seats whilst the back half after the exit row has older seats.

Front half newer seats : Screen Shot 2021-03-07 at 9.40.28 am.png Back Half older seats : Screen Shot 2021-03-07 at 9.40.46 am.png
 

Mattg

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Yes, I just went and watched a lot of the review videos and they confirm it ends at row 29. Meaning you're correct with 170 seats, that being said there are a few things they say on their fleet page about their 737's that aren't quite correct firstly the seat count but also listing integrated IFE and wifi (the latter of which needs to be switched on although someone elsewhere pointed out that one of the aircraft doesn't even have a wifi dish).

There was no wifi dish installed on VH-REX, which is the aircraft I flew on.

Interestingly, "VirginAustralia" came up as a Wi-Fi option while on board, presumably to connect to the IFE streaming service. But the Virgin Entertainment App didn't work (obviously) and Rex has not provided an alternative.
 
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henrus

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Interestingly, "VirginAustralia" came up as a Wi-Fi option while on board, presumably to connect to the IFE streaming service. But the Virgin Entertainment App didn't work (obviously) and Rex has not provided an alternative.

The app didn't work but I wonder if the map would using the map.boardconnect.aero URL? I was under the impression that the boardconnect system could be turned off so either REX plane lazy (excuse the pun) or no idea when it comes to the equipment on their own aircraft. Either way both aren't a very good look for the new service.
 

Mattg

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When Rex announced they were launching 737 flights, their Deputy Chairman said this:

John Sharp said:
“This is an exciting opportunity for travellers. For the first time they don’t have to choose between low fares with minimal service and premium pricing for more reliable flights. Over the past 20 years Rex has been the most reliable passenger carrier in Australia and our domestic services will naturally enjoy this superior reliability at affordable prices.”

That's quite a high bar they've set for themselves in terms of reliability, so I thought I'd have a look how Rex's 737 operation fared during the first week. Notwithstanding that 67% of the flights originally scheduled to operate in the first week were cancelled before the launch, here's a breakdown of the on-time performance of the 40 flights that did operate:

rex-otp-first-week.png

The BITRE defines on "on time arrival" as a flight that arrives before 15 minutes after the scheduled arrival time. By that definition, 75% of Rex 737 flights in the first week were on time. The biggest delay was 179 minutes (ZL121 on 3 March).

During the last month for which stats are available (January 2021), an average of 88.3% of domestic flights arrived on time. During that month, Rex's OTP was 91.2% but they were only doing regional flights.

It's still early days and there could have been a few teething problems at the beginning, but Rex's reliability during the first week was below average.
 

Melburnian1

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When Rex announced they were launching 737 flights, their Deputy Chairman said this:



That's quite a high bar they've set for themselves in terms of reliability, so I thought I'd have a look how Rex's 737 operation fared during the first week. Notwithstanding that 67% of the flights originally scheduled to operate in the first week were cancelled before the launch, here's a breakdown of the on-time performance of the 40 flights that did operate:

View attachment 242697

The BITRE defines on "on time arrival" as a flight that arrives before 15 minutes after the scheduled arrival time. By that definition, 75% of Rex 737 flights in the first week were on time. The biggest delay was 179 minutes (ZL121 on 3 March).

During the last month for which stats are available (January 2021), an average of 88.3% of domestic flights arrived on time. During that month, Rex's OTP was 91.2% but they were only doing regional flights.

It's still early days and there could have been a few teething problems at the beginning, but Rex's reliability during the first week was below average.

'Reliability' typically refers to 'cancellations'.

'Punctuality' is 'on-time performance'.

I typically allow five minutes from touchdown to the gate, as many 'arrival' times shown on various websites are the time a flight touches down at the arrival airport, meaningless for passengers. Have you factored in this allowance?

While it seems to be an international standard, 15 minutes can be a very generous allowance before a flight is regarded as 'officially late', as (for instance) northbound the MEL - SYD sector is only 85 minutes from pushback to arrival at the gate (or the equivalent in the case of JQd and ZL). Defunct TT made its northbounds 90 minutes not 85, which magically improved its punctuality as reported by BITRE. Rail operators call inserting that sort of a buffer 'recovery time'.
 

milehighclub

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I typically allow five minutes from touchdown to the gate, as many 'arrival' times shown on various websites are the time a flight touches down at the arrival airport, meaningless for passengers. Have you factored in this allowance?
He is following the Government standard not the Melburnian1 standard.

Either way, to me, on time performance is meaningless without the real details behind it. Australia's airlines perform pretty consistently. Flights are not delayed for no reason. There are dozens and dozens of delay codes that airlines must use. BITRE should be getting that information and detailing flights delayed within the airlines control and those out of.

I note this particular sentence from the report:
"The Perth-Melbourne route had the lowest percentage of on time arrivals (42.0 per cent) and the Perth-Sydney route had the lowest percentage of on time departures (48.8 per cent)."

Should QF/VA be responsible for what is clearly an issue at Perth? This was probably COVID related no doubt. And the airlines take delays very seriously. It's changed over the years but even today, you still get a please explain when a delay is more than 2/3 minutes (when attributed to crew). Most of the systems can attribute more than 1 delay reason too.
 

Melburnian1

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He is following the Government standard not the Melburnian1 standard.

Either way, to me, on time performance is meaningless without the real details behind it. Australia's airlines perform pretty consistently. Flights are not delayed for no reason. There are dozens and dozens of delay codes that airlines must use. BITRE should be getting that information and detailing flights delayed within the airlines control and those out of.

I note this particular sentence from the report:
"The Perth-Melbourne route had the lowest percentage of on time arrivals (42.0 per cent) and the Perth-Sydney route had the lowest percentage of on time departures (48.8 per cent)."

Should QF/VA be responsible for what is clearly an issue at Perth? This was probably COVID related no doubt. And the airlines take delays very seriously. It's changed over the years but even today, you still get a please explain when a delay is more than 2/3 minutes (when attributed to crew). Most of the systems can attribute more than 1 delay reason too.

In relation to the Perth route, don't a lot of the delays result from late east coast departures?

PER is extremely busy with mining-related departures and arrivals, but if many of the delays are from aircraft starting their westbound journeys from BNE, MEL and SYD late, that's not Perth Airport's fault.

Mining is doing extremely well, especially iron ore, which will be increasing the number of flights from PER to the Pilbara and back, but to be fair as a partial 'balance', there are fewer mainstream airlines domestic flights operating to and to/from PER ex/to ADL and the east coast major airports. Latter is due to what often has been draconian quarantining requirements (still the case for Victorians arriving in WA) and many Australians' reluctance to travel given possible snap state border closures.

Do the domestic airlines allow sufficient turnaround time at PER given that fueling, for instance, may take longer due to the greater distances to be covered than on say a MEL - SYD return working?

'Australia's airlines perform pretty consistently?' In 'normal, pre-COVID-19' times, the punctuality was shockingly low even on 70-95 minute timed sectors like SYD-BNE and MEL-SYD.

On time departures might be important to airlines but the only thing critical for users is on-time, at gate arrivals.

The major airlines' east coast performance is consistently poor, and way below what high speed rail can achieve day after day in many overseas nations over similar distances.
 

Melburnian1

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He is following the Government standard not the Melburnian1 standard.

I am following the 'Government standard', as BITRE defines an 'on-time arrival' as 'arriving at the gate before 15 minutes after the scheduled arrival time shown in the carriers' schedule'.

As many websites tracking planes only show touchdown times, I add five minutes to that to account as a median for taxiing to the gate.
 

milehighclub

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In relation to the Perth route, don't a lot of the delays result from late east coast departures?
Well looking at VA. SYD-PER was 94.4% for both departure and arrival. Yet PER-SYD was a shocking 22%
MEL-PER was at 70% but at about 34% for the other way.

But again, we should know the reasons for delays. Was it something the airline could have reasonably prevented.
'Australia's airlines perform pretty consistently?' In 'normal, pre-COVID-19' times, the punctuality was shockingly low even on 70-95 minute timed sectors like SYD-BNE and MEL-SYD.
I didn't say it was great, but just that for the most part the airlines tend to hover at the same averages. If one airline dips, the others tend to as well usually because they have been subjected to the same issue like weather, runway closures etc.
 

Melburnian1

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Well looking at VA. SYD-PER was 94.4% for both departure and arrival. Yet PER-SYD was a shocking 22%
MEL-PER was at 70% but at about 34% for the other way.

But again, we should know the reasons for delays. Was it something the airline could have reasonably prevented.

I didn't say it was great, but just that for the most part the airlines tend to hover at the same averages. If one airline dips, the others tend to as well usually because they have been subjected to the same issue like weather, runway closures etc.

In an ideal world, it'd be good to separate 'airline' and 'airport'-caused delays. However there'd be innumerable arguments prior to publication, with resultant to-ing and fro-ing. Airlines no doubt regard it as 'not their fault', understandably, if users go for a wander in the terminal (or to the 'barrrrr' as JohnPhelan famously commented on AFF) and stupidly delay the plane as their hold luggage must be removed for security reasons, but again, that's part and parcel of operations.

It's akin to a suburban rail operator on one trip having five wheelchair users front up at different stations with most boardings delaying a train by a minimum of 40 additional seconds as a ramp is deployed if the platform isn't built up at that point.

Airlines are a mix of government-owned, public companies and private, sometimes 'family' companies. In surface transport where there are franchises and payments to operators vary according to how they perform with punctuality and cancellation rates against set KPIs, there are 'discussions' with government prior to figures being agreed. Often, government caves in and sometimes it's because operator(s) threaten to bring in solicitors to enforce what the company claims is the contract as it sees it.

Airlines and airports exist (in theory) to serve passengers, who only care about what time their flight arrives, not which entity is responsible. We have a responsibility not to delay a flight by stupid behaviour such as being so inebriated that the captain quite rightly kicks us off, but airlines also have a responsibility to be efficient. Boarding is often inefficient with passengers blocking the aisles as they search for space for 'all but the kitchen sink' that they bring on board.

Maybe airlines ought allow extra time at PER, although this may mean additional costs.

Are delays there due to being unable to receive the OK from ATC to depart (too much 'competing' air traffic and insufficient runway capacity), is it due to FIFO workers being slack in their boarding or connecting flights running late, are there delays with ground operations such as a tanker being slow to arrive that the airport will say with proper planning were foreseeable or are they due to occasionally, airline staff going off sick over there and hence at short notice another staff member has to be called in?

Getting back to Rex, my hypothesis is it will have a lot of trouble being punctual as it expands its network to other locations such as ADL and MCY, but has a tiny number of flights to each. We'll have to see in a few months how wrong I am.
 

mubd1234

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So I flew from Sydney down to Melbourne and back over the weekend with Rex. The late Friday evening flight (7:30pm) to Melbourne was about 80-90% full (I had a free seat next to me), the return trip (5pm) was completely full up.

We got a choice of coffee, tea or water and a sweet or savoury snack. The snacks were the same on both flights – some soya crisps or a Byron Bay cookie (coconut lamington with rosella jelly, apparently). You could buy a can of soft drink for $4, beer for $6 or something stronger for $7.

The boarding pass from Sydney was your standard Rex boarding pass, but on the way back it was a flimsy paper receipt which I promptly lost. The agent at the Rex lounge was happy to re-print one for me.

The flights were totally fine. A pretty good middle ground between low-cost carrier and full service airline. The included luggage allowance was nice, though beware they do weigh your carry-on bag to ensure it's 7kg (they don't tag your bag, though).

We were late departing Sydney on Friday (we started boarding at 7:25pm and were in the air at around 7:40pm). Ended up being very close to on time arriving.

The only bit that left me with a sour taste in my mouth was the antiquated and dysfunctional online booking system. They simply must fix this if they want to remain in the game. I was bumped off my original flights and had to ring the call centre twice - once to choose my replacement flights, and the other to lock in my assigned seat after I found they didn't transfer it over. Even then I wasn't sure if my booking had been confirmed properly, as I received an email immediately after my phone call with the correct itinerary, and then another one at 9:30pm that night with the wrong itinerary (which were the flights that I'd been automatically bumped to on late Saturday morning, not the flight I requested to be transferred to on Friday evening). Not being able to even see what flights I was booked on to REALLY irritated me.
 
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Melburnian1

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So I flew from Sydney down to Melbourne and back over the weekend with Rex. The late Friday evening flight (7:30pm) to Melbourne was about 80-90% full (I had a free seat next to me), the return trip (5pm) was completely full up.

We got a choice of coffee, tea or water and a sweet or savoury snack. The snacks were the same on both flights – some soya crisps or a Byron Bay cookie (coconut lamington with rosella jelly, apparently). You could buy a can of soft drink for $4, beer for $6 or something stronger for $7.

The boarding pass from Sydney was your standard Rex boarding pass, but on the way back it was a flimsy paper receipt which I promptly lost. The agent at the Rex lounge was happy to re-print one for me.

The flights were totally fine. A pretty good middle ground between low-cost carrier and full service airline. The included luggage allowance was nice, though beware they do weigh your carry-on bag to ensure it's 7kg (they don't tag your bag, though).

We were late departing Sydney on Friday (we started boarding at 7:25pm and were in the air at around 7:40pm). Ended up being very close to on time arriving.

The only bit that left me with a sour taste in my mouth was the antiquated and dysfunctional online booking system. They simply must fix this if they want to remain in the game. I was bumped off my original flights and had to ring the call centre twice - once to choose my replacement flights, and the other to lock in my assigned seat after I found they didn't transfer it over. Even then I wasn't sure if my booking had been confirmed properly, as I received an email immediately after my phone call with the correct itinerary, and then another one at 9:30pm that night with the wrong itinerary (which were the flights that I'd been automatically bumped to on late Saturday morning, not the flight I requested to be transferred to on Friday evening). Not being able to even see what flights I was booked on to REALLY irritated me.

That's a really important tip that "they" weigh one's cabin bag. We all need to take note.
 

AIRwin

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Looks like VA is also matching the fares on the new Rex routes with a "For the Fans" sale starting from $67:
 

oz_mark

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Airlines and airports exist (in theory) to serve passengers, who only care about what time their flight arrives, not which entity is responsible. We have a responsibility not to delay a flight by stupid behaviour such as being so inebriated that the captain quite rightly kicks us off, but airlines also have a responsibility to be efficient. Boarding is often inefficient with passengers blocking the aisles as they search for space for 'all but the kitchen sink' that they bring on board.

Maybe airlines ought allow extra time at PER, although this may mean additional costs.

There is no way you could predict the turnaround time on aircraft in Perth over the last few months with the border processing that has been going on. Given snap border closures and everything, getting people off aircraft has sometimes blown out to over an hour.

You would need to add a "WA Government Border Policy" to the list of reasons for the delay.
 

jakeseven7

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Looks like VA is also matching the fares on the new Rex routes with a "For the Fans" sale starting from $67:

Poor old VA2....

There were a lot of battered Velocity tags on the Rex flights that is for sure....
 

Melburnian1

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There is no way you could predict the turnaround time on aircraft in Perth over the last few months with the border processing that has been going on. Given snap border closures and everything, getting people off aircraft has sometimes blown out to over an hour.

You would need to add a "WA Government Border Policy" to the list of reasons for the delay.

The 'pleasure' of that, for the most part, has not been available to locked out Victorians, and is not yet on ZL's interstate agenda as it has yet to announce any plans to fly from Oz's east coast to Perth.
 

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