Virgin Blue Premium Seats

Discussion in 'Virgin Australia Velocity' started by scibo10, Mar 3, 2007.

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  1. scibo10

    scibo10 Member

    Jan 19, 2005
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    Did anybody else see the article in the Fin Review Friday which said that if Virign go ahead with plans to commence an ultra low cost carrier, they will consider putting premium class seats on domestic Virgin Blue flights to take further market share from Qantas in the business and government sector. Wonder if there will be a price war occurring at the top end of town and not just between Jetstar, Tiger and Virgin ULCC :)
     

  2. Mal

    Mal Enthusiast

    Dec 25, 2004
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    Would be nice.

    Qantas needs competition in J class seating within Australia.
     
  3. If this transpires, DJ should immediately apply for membership of *A. Australia desperately needs some *A earning opportunities on domestic routes. I, for one, would probably never have to fly QF again.
     
  4. Evan

    Evan Established Member

    Dec 26, 2006
    3,168
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    NYCguy, i share your thoughts re *A, i would still fly QF since i prefer one world, but i would be more inclined to use DJ as well. But then that would make them full service rather than 'new world'.
    E
     
  5. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
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    Somewhere in Sydney
    Doesn't it cost a fortune for DJ to join *A? Like 10 million dollar annual fee (something like that?) plus all those expensive IT upgrades to support *A compatible booking system etc etc etc Not to mention introducing Business/first class seats and maybe meals etc etc etc ....... Looks like will cost a fortune for DJ.

    Why would DJ want that? I don't see much advantage for DJ at all (well it is not their business model anyway), since they are not truly international (well not yet to USA/Asia/Europe etc). Actually it would just help all other *A airlines instead like UA, SQ, AC, OZ etc
     
  6. #6 NYCguy, Mar 4, 2007
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2007
    The benefits of seamless, interline operations with other *A carriers would surely more than make up for a $10M annual fee. I imagine they would recoupe the fee many, many times over.
     
  7. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
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    Would imagine if the planned US flights go ahead it would be important to have some alliances with other carriers, but that doesn't necessarily mean joining an alliance. VS do have partnerships with various carriers, but are not part of an alliance. (Indeed DJ already have arrangements with other carriers). I wonder whether SkyTeam, which aren't that strong in this part of the world, would be an option - looking at AUS-USA routes, there are already multiple *alliance and 1world flights daily, but no SkyTeam.
     
  8. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    AFAIK no annual fee. However there will be costs associated with maintaining compliance with alliance requirements (mainly IT-related).

    As for value - they would get more business than currently. Especially NZers (who are mostly *A).
     
  9. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
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    I'd be very surprised if an LCC like VB were ever invited to join *A. It would lower the standards considerably.

    VB would have to fire its entire staff from Godfrey down to the lowliest FA before it would have the slightest chance of working.

    Until then VB will remain the battlers' airline.
     
  10. crazydave98

    crazydave98 Active Member

    Oct 25, 2005
    603
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    Sydney
    Poor Clifford, can't resist a single opportunity to have a mindless rant at Virgin Blue. One of these days he might make a positive suggestion, but I'm not holding my breath.
     
  11. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
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    It could always join as a regional member (which has lower requirements). Anyway US Airways markets itself as being low(er) cost (even to the extent of it's ticker code).
     
  12. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
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    Based on on my two*A flights in the US, return coach flights from STL-ORD on UA, apart from free pretzels and a soft drink I did not notice any significant differences between DJ & UA in Y. Maybe on trans-continental the service and experience would be better? (I also note that the audio IFE on DJ is superior to the non-existent IFE on moost oneworld flights in the US - ie. those on MD80's).

    And isn't "The Lounge" a superior product to USA style lounges where alcoholic drinks and food are not free (unlike "The Lounge").?
     
  13. SeaWolf

    SeaWolf Active Member

    Jan 24, 2007
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    Sydney
    I would think that *A would be reasonably keen to get an AU airline on board since the collapse of Ansett left them without an AU carrier. It doesn't look good to have holes in a large part of the world, especially when they used to have coverage.
     
  14. #14 NYCguy, Mar 9, 2007
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2007
    Rather than an airline of 'toffs and businessmen', as TN was called by (then) PM Paul Keating?

    Unfortunately the term 'Aussie battler' has been so perverted by the likes of Alan Jones and Sydney's 'Daily Telegraph' (ugh) that any family which doesn't have an ensuite off every bedroom and 4 cars in every garage seems to fit the mould. My definition of 'Aussie Battler' doesn't include anyone who is financially secure enough to go flying around in jet planes, no matter how little they paid for their ticket.

    Anyhoo, DJ will never be taken seriously in the airline market until their product matures significantly. No UA crew member has ever said to me "Hi Peter! Wow, row 1! You scored well!". Also, the lack of a premium front-cabin is a major problem for DJ if they wished to join *A. Who wants to pay US$20K for a JFK/PER/JFK ticket, only to find out that they have to transfer from row 1 on the 744 to row 21 on the 738 - not only do you lose 56" of seat pitch in one fell swoop, you're expected to pay for everything that you want to eat, drink or watch (at least they aren't charging to have the window-shade up, but watch this space).

    I know some New Yorkers who fly to PER for family visits a few times a year - they connect from UA to QF in SYD, because DJ's product does not meet their expectations. And unless that is fixed, don't expect to see the *A logo appearing on the DJ website, etc anytime soon.
     
  15. d15.in.oz

    d15.in.oz Member

    Nov 28, 2006
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    Well, if Blue1 gets to join as a regional *A member - offering Economy Extra as a premium product, then DJ could change overnight. (e.g. first few rows become "economy extra", with a buy on board credit of $20 to use as guests see fit. Done, simple.)

    And a deal with a newspaper supplier, would see a cost-effective introduction of newspapers for guests.
    That seems to cover off all they need to do to join as regional, from an in-air product view point. (Maybe wouldn’t get away with just that on PER flights, but DJ doesn’t seem as interested in PER?!)

    I would have to say that it has been maturing… I am very much looking forward to visiting their “The Lounge” at some stage this year, the pics on their website make it look fantastic! And as much as I disagree with an
    11am bar opening, I am likely to grudgingly take advantage if the opportunity presents. (Importantly, I would never have even considered stepping foot in the over-sized, child-care centre they called the “Blue Room”.)

    As an aside, to that stupid captain on my JQ flight the other day, who greeted "ladies & gentlemen, boys & girls", it’s over – no one anywhere in Australia says that anymore!

    I would assume both other global airline alliances are concerned that they have under representation south of the equator. Indeed UA themselves appear so worried, they actually codeshare with DJ, as is! Amazing what desperation may bring.


    While I also fly in Y, I understand that the major reason these alliances are in place is for those in the forward cabins. We in the back get all the benefits of interconnect, only because it is what those in the front demand (and pay for).:)
     
  16. NM

    NM
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    Aug 27, 2004
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    Perhaps they could call it Blue Zone seating?
     
  17. d15.in.oz

    d15.in.oz Member

    Nov 28, 2006
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    No way, "1st class" for all that leg room plus a free feed! LOL
     
  18. d15.in.oz

    d15.in.oz Member

    Nov 28, 2006
    452
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    Actually speaking of colour coding… Blue on JQ is considered second class. Surprisingly Orange outranks it, with Silver coming in last. (Is this some subtle colour marketing warfare game?)

    Interesting to me, because as I boarded a very full JQ flight the other day (with my Blue colour coding attached to my boarding pass), the FA took a double look at my seat allocation. Obviously all the Orange passengers had boarded, and the flight attendant though that the first few rows were now full (well with some blocked seats taken into account) and everyone else would be jammed up the back.

    With surprise in her voice she directed me to my row 1 position, complete with adjacent blocked middle seat of course…and then you could hear the penny drop, as she suddenly decided to hold back all the other customers boarding behind me, while I found a place to shove my wheelie bag.
     
  19. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

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    True- some full members of * don't even offer premium products on domestic flights (NZ). In Europe in the (admittedly oneworld) premium cabins I've been in (BA, IB) "premium class" was just Y seats with the middle seat blocked out. Would be very easy for DJ to do this, and perfectly adequate for East Coast routes anyway. And as you say they could even call it "1st Class" :D
     
  20. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
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    Plenty of cases this already applies to. Fly from say SYD or AKL to LAS on a business or first class ticket, and see what you get on the SFO/LAX to LAS leg. That's right, Ted. No better than DJ. Or JFK to WLG. Etc.
     
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