VA irrops due to Sydney weather- shabby treatment

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basso

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I would note that Virgin doesn't have this clause in its own Guest Charter.
You mean this (when away from home port, etc...) My own experience is that even for weather they do it when away from home port
If you are delayed overnight in a port away from home we will arrange and pay for hotel accommodation, transfers and meals for you (limits do apply).:
The Virgin Australia Guest Charter | Virgin Australia
 

Mattg

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You mean this (when away from home port, etc...) My own experience is that even for weather they do it when away from home portThe Virgin Australia Guest Charter | Virgin Australia

The part of the Guest Charter you've quoted is the "events within our control" part. There is no mention of this in the "events outside our control" section, for which weather-related events seem to be included.
 

Nugget_Oz

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Totally different experence flying SYD ex-MEL. Email and SMS in the morning although the delay did not occur until I got to the airport. Seemed like an ATC issue with the delay as they wanted to make sure everyone was in the Gate Area at the usual departure time and were told that the flight could leave at any time once ATC clearance was given.

That being said I was told that they did have a systems meltdown on top of all the weather related carnage.
 

Supersonic Swinger

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I was meant to fly MEL-SYD on Sunday night on an award ticket. I'd already been receiving emails and texts from Virgin that flights might be affected by the weather the day before, but the actual cancellation happened at the airport. Easily rebooked on to a flight the next morning (without any Qantas-like "rebooking fee"/"convenience fee"/"because we like fees fee"), which experienced a slight delay because SYD was down to one runway.

Having lived for a period in the US and being used to the fact that airlines don't really provide accommodation for purely weather related delays, it was all handled professionally by Virgin. Which is more than I can say for some of the drama queens around at MEL airport on Sunday night.
 

mannej

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I was meant to fly MEL-SYD on Sunday night on an award ticket. I'd already been receiving emails and texts from Virgin that flights might be affected by the weather the day before, but the actual cancellation happened at the airport. Easily rebooked on to a flight the next morning (without any Qantas-like "rebooking fee"/"convenience fee"/"because we like fees fee"), which experienced a slight delay because SYD was down to one runway.

Why would QF charge a re-booking fee in this situation?
 

blankman

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I have never been charged a rebooking fee by Qantas under such circumstances. For me the main gripe is that VA cancelled all flights due to 'weather' from 7:30pm on Sunday night yet all Qantas services from 7:45pm onwards operated. At what point does it become an operational issue with VA than a weather issue outside of their control?
 

flydoc

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And in June Voyeur inflight magazine, Virgins general manager of network operations says, "Virgin Australia has always been a customer-led organisation" (debatable IMO) "and in times of disruption...we pride ourselves on timely communication to our guests..." Clearly this didn't happen consistently last weekend, but should it be a given or should passengers consider monitoring flight status on the airline website more routinely themselves?
 

Milefest

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Clearly this didn't happen consistently last weekend, but should it be a given or should passengers consider monitoring flight status on the airline website more routinely themselves?

Even if you were following conditions closely it wouldn't have helped, I was onboard my flight about to push back and the flight was cancelled. Nothing you can really do I guess.
 

andye

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Our VA CNS-SYD flight was delayed then diverted on Saturday to BNE.
Received regular updates via tripit (not from VA) about the delays. Didn't check in too early as knew it was delayed-just as we were standing by the kiosk, received a call from the VA lounge asking if we planned to check in.
No problems accessing VA lounge with Mrs andye and 3 sons
Was not at all surprised to be diverted given the estimated landing time at SYD was 2320.
Briefed in baggage hall on procedure. All 5 of us (across 3 PNRs) transported by coach to Rydges Fortitude Valley and put up in family room (felt high quality). Well worth getting the seats at front of coach as queue was long for rooms to be allocated.
Informed we would receive details of revised flights overnight and could spend up to $50 per person on food and non-alcoholic drinks. No restaurant service available by that time of night.
Received revised flight times by text and email for 2 PNRs but needed to call (long wait) to check the 3rd (an EY redemption) was on the same flight. Also a typed note under door which we din't see immediately
Very good breakfast at Rydges then coach transfer to BNE. Minibar bottle of wine did turn out covered by VA after all. Again no problems accessing lounge. A330 to SYD
Baggage came out of wrong carousel
Pretty reasonable irrops overall

SCs and points have credited spontaneously for both original routing and the extra flight. Not sure how they worked out the points for the BNE-SYD flight
 

pauly7

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Really interesting article in the Australian on the airlines ability to manage highly disruptive events.

Brief synopsis of article if you don't have access is that Qantas have invested in an Amadeus automated delay recovery system (installed in Oct 2015) that uses big data analytics to shuffle landing and take off slots around the entire group (Domestic, Qlink & Jetstar) to respond quickly to adverse events.

Subsequently they managed the storms much much better than VA who use.... blue tack and post it notes? (jokes), the article calls it a 'time consuming manual system'.

QF cancellations for the storm affected weekend: 3.4%. VA a whopping 22%
QF OTP Sat 86%, Sun 62%
VA OTP Sat 74%, Sun 48%

Clearly echoes the experiences of those commenting, that VA really struggle with managing disruptive events.


Full in depth article:
Nocookies | The Australian
 

flydoc

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Very informative pauly7 - Thankyou. The QF investment in the recovery system perhaps gives an indication of the respective airlines priorities in this area. Given that fares are now quite similar one wonders what VA has put the equivalent bundle of cash towards
 

eastwest101

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Brief synopsis of article if you don't have access is that Qantas have invested in an Amadeus automated delay recovery system (installed in Oct 2015) that uses big data analytics to shuffle landing and take off slots around the entire group (Domestic, Qlink & Jetstar) to respond quickly to adverse events.

Thanks - very interesting reading, I guess the Amadeus automated delay recovery system is an added feature of Amadeus (or maybe partly customized by Qantas itself?) but with the ability to manage and juggle slots and aircraft in a slot constrained hub of Sydney when the weather goes to poo is a job just designed for big data and complex computer generated solutions. It must have taken a lot of work because the system has to keep track of all Qantas group aircraft, slots available and possibly even keep track of duty rosters and crew times to manage the dreaded out of crew hours and aircraft out of position situations. I bet that system saved a couple of hundred hotel room bookings around Australia, crew overtime and excess fuel and aircraft ferry flights due to out of position at Qantas's expense so may have already gone part way to paying for itself on that one particular day.

This part was pretty interesting:

“Improving our operations with Schedule Recovery has been enormously successful for us,” Mr Fraser said. “We were able to quickly make a plan to spread our flights out across the day, combine flights together, swap aircraft around and distribute slot times between Qantas, QantasLink and Jetstar to minimise the impact."

The ability to juggle slot times around the whole Qantas Group must be a natural advantage over the VA people who were probably so busy with their sticky tape/white boards and post-it notes that they probably wouldn't even have time to talk to their Tiger colleagues.

I flew through Brisbane and Sydney on Monday on VA and noticed that VA were still ferrying around an unusually large numbers of crews whom were probably out of position or had disrupted rostered hours.
 

Milefest

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Thanks - very interesting reading, I guess the Amadeus automated delay recovery system is an added feature of Amadeus (or maybe partly customized by Qantas itself?) but with the ability to manage and juggle slots and aircraft in a slot constrained hub of Sydney when the weather goes to poo is a job just designed for big data and complex computer generated solutions. It must have taken a lot of work because the system has to keep track of all Qantas group aircraft, slots available and possibly even keep track of duty rosters and crew times to manage the dreaded out of crew hours and aircraft out of position situations. I bet that system saved a couple of hundred hotel room bookings around Australia, crew overtime and excess fuel and aircraft ferry flights due to out of position at Qantas's expense so may have already gone part way to paying for itself on that one particular day.

This part was pretty interesting:

“Improving our operations with Schedule Recovery has been enormously successful for us,” Mr Fraser said. “We were able to quickly make a plan to spread our flights out across the day, combine flights together, swap aircraft around and distribute slot times between Qantas, QantasLink and Jetstar to minimise the impact."

The ability to juggle slot times around the whole Qantas Group must be a natural advantage over the VA people who were probably so busy with their sticky tape/white boards and post-it notes that they probably wouldn't even have time to talk to their Tiger colleagues.

I flew through Brisbane and Sydney on Monday on VA and noticed that VA were still ferrying around an unusually large numbers of crews whom were probably out of position or had disrupted rostered hours.

Looking at those incredible numbers at cancellations, VA really needs to get their act to gether with disruptive events. They were even recommending flying with other carriers and providing refunds. There were backlogs of pax from Sunday well into Tuesday. Some of the routing they tried to offer me instead of flying direct was crazy.
 
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