Virgin to lose A330's and B777's - become mid range airline - really? | Australian Frequent Flyer
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Virgin to lose A330's and B777's - become mid range airline - really?

Moopere

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I got hooked by this blog post:


If that ends up proving true and VA fly a fleet of 737's with ticketing cheaper than QF but more expensive than JQ how much interest is left here at AFF to even bother?

As a Western Australian I've about had my lifetime fill of 737's - cramped and noisy beasts that they are. Longest trip I ever did on one with VA was 6.5 hours HKT->PER and though it was in the 737 version of J it was, frankly, a nightmare that didn't seem to end. I'm not up for 4-5 hours transcon in one of these any more ... perhaps I'm just getting old and soft.

The associated problem is what to do with a million VA FF points? VA J in the 737 is not even close to being worthwhile imho. Even if they halved the points cost to fly in J I'd still have to think long and hard and see what alternatives existed. I've done a bunch of flying in 737 J up and down the east coast, its ok for that, if they labelled and priced it more sensibly as Y+ I'd have a lot less to say. Mid last year, well before all the current problems I held onto the hope that the 737's were going to be refitted as 1+1 or 1+2 seating, with capsules similar to the A330 'the business' ... but alas ...

So, not to rant on and on about things that no longer exist: Who here is likely to keep flying VA once we all get back to normal living and the airline is back up in the air with a new owner? If the subject/blog is to be believed, I can't see it gaining my interest. If I want cheap and (possibly) nasty, well, JQ, if I want to reduce nastiness levels (again ... perhaps), then spend a few dollars more and QF. If I want to spend more and get a different level of nasty .... the new VA???

I used to fly VA a bit and exchange points for J fares where possible and reasonable - that will be gone for me once the 330's are out of the fleet. So, I really _really_ hope that the points transfer arrangement with SQ will still hold up after the new owners come on board. I need to move my stash! Domestically, I can't see I'll have much choice but to move to QF and if I'm going to do that, then it follows I should renew my efforts with QFF points ... essentially disconnecting from the VA world entirely.
 

muppet

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I can’t see QF flooding transcon market with empty A330s anytime soon ....

Narrow bodies will be the reality. Without VA competing with lie-flat J on transcon .... who knows.

Remember, before VA - QF gave us 7 across business class in an A332!!

I hope you enjoyed the good times during the capacity wars ... the dream is over I’m afraid. :(
 

kamchatsky

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I always think that lie flat Domestic J is a luxury, even for transcon flights. VA only implement those only because of mining boom in the 2000s. All of these are over and with COVID-19, maybe even QF would switch to 737s and Put all those 330s to the long term storage.

you can always use those VA points to book SQ J flights directly. No need to convert to Krisflyer.
 
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drron

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Though there are those of us who now have to face the reality of diminished travel.If Covid lasts another 12-18 months it is likely that I have had my last paying job.That means falling back on my life time status as earning it will be out of the question.
So VA if it is cheaper than QF but dearer than JQ may be quite OK.Especially as today VA had a direct ADL-MCY flight. If they keep that sort of stuff up likely we will use them more than in the past.
 

oz_mark

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I am not going to make any huge decisions on moving allegiances etc, until it becomes clear what the future is across all airlines. We have an indication of what VA will look like for the next few years. I'd expect that other airlines will also shrink down.
And as VA goes downmarket, expect that QF may make some cuts it thinks it can get away with....
 

antycbr

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I am not going to make any huge decisions on moving allegiances etc, until it becomes clear what the future is across all airlines. We have an indication of what VA will look like for the next few years. I'd expect that other airlines will also shrink down.
And as VA goes downmarket, expect that QF may make some cuts it thinks it can get away with....
QF will have no choice but to cut. Their cash burn will still be continuing and being a much larger international airline they will take a long time to recover. For both airlines the path to profitability will be long while consumers lack confidence to travel and business travel will be replaced to some extent by conferencing software.
While domestic 737s aren’t that exciting our fleet is well maintained and they provide frequency. Unfortunately PER people who are used to larger aircraft will have to adjust to lower expectations.
 

HS-TQE

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I used to fly VA a bit and exchange points for J fares where possible and reasonable - that will be gone for me once the 330's are out of the fleet. So, I really _really_ hope that the points transfer arrangement with SQ will still hold up after the new owners come on board. I need to move my stash! Domestically, I can't see I'll have much choice but to move to QF and if I'm going to do that, then it follows I should renew my efforts with QFF points ... essentially disconnecting from the VA world entirely.
Expect to be disappointed. The point swapping arrangement was due to SQ being a (former) part owner of VA. The new owners are largely expected to get rid of it as it is considered "unsustainable" in the longer term in a post-COVID world.
 

serfty

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Expect to be disappointed. The point swapping arrangement was due to SQ being a (former) part owner of VA. The new owners are largely expected to get rid of it as it is considered "unsustainable" in the longer term in a post-COVID world.
Are you indicating specifically that the "point swapping" arrangement was unsustainable?
 

codash1099

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I have a feeling that I’ll be pushing up daisies before the are any wide bodies on the transcontinental routes, and that becomes more certain when looking at international.
 

kamchatsky

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Are you indicating specifically that the "point swapping" arrangement was unsustainable?
I think that VA/SQ arrangement is the only major airline that allows you to directly swap airline points with each other, even with a point penalty on each way. That was only done because SQ part owned VA.

With SQ no longer an owner, why would Bain even do this, when all VFF members has to do is to redeem SQ awards using VA points? Any point swapping to SQ would mean cash out from VA, which is not what Bain wants.
 

Matt_01

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Expect to be disappointed. The point swapping arrangement was due to SQ being a (former) part owner of VA. The new owners are largely expected to get rid of it as it is considered "unsustainable" in the longer term in a post-COVID world.
Although no one knows what will happen in the future I would like to suggest that SQ into and out AU is far from over. SQ would be one of the biggest feeders into and out of AU apart from QF and sure there are other players however most of these are already part of a formal alliance (partnership) e.g. JL, CX, QR, BA (EK, MU etc.) When it comes to VA no matter how convoluted the alliance program the main stayer (to the best of my knowledge) was SQ and EY with others been marginal.
 

dajop

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With SQ no longer an owner, why would Bain even do this, when all VFF members has to do is to redeem SQ awards using VA points? Any point swapping to SQ would mean cash out from VA, which is not what Bain wants.
It depends on if they want to compete with QF, and if so, how. QF has a huge global network with oneworld. Velocity's partnerships are limited, but the SQ transfer is a backdoor to the star alliance network. Of course at the moment, it's all moot, but looking longer term, I guess it would depend on various parameters and assumptions.
Post automatically merged:

When it comes to VA no matter how convoluted the alliance program the main stayer (to the best of my knowledge) was SQ and EY with others been marginal.
I would have thought SQ and DL were the mainstays in the end, with the shrinking of the EY network.
 

odysseus

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With SQ no longer an owner, why would Bain even do this, when all VFF members has to do is to redeem SQ awards using VA points?
Even that's not a certainty.

Alliances will need to be reestablished under the new owners. Given the established relationships and noises so far, it's proabably likely, but it's not a given.
 

jb747

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Given that the only markets we're likely to see in Australia any time soon (measured in years) will be internal state routes, I can't see any need for anything larger than a Cessna.

My bet is that the ongoing border closures will ultimately kill both major airlines, with the airports not being far behind.
 

flyer89

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Given that the only markets we're likely to see in Australia any time soon (measured in years) will be internal state routes, I can't see any need for anything larger than a Cessna.

My bet is that the ongoing border closures will ultimately kill both major airlines, with the airports not being far behind.
On the Australian Aviation podcast they talked about how Qatar was essentially operating as Australia's flag carrier. Perhaps they are wise beyond their years. At least the name change wouldn't be a huge leap.
 

dajop

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Given that the only markets we're likely to see in Australia any time soon (measured in years) will be internal state routes, I can't see any need for anything larger than a Cessna.

My bet is that the ongoing border closures will ultimately kill both major airlines, with the airports not being far behind.
I said months ago that Rex (in its current form) had the right sized fleet and right aircraft to serve the domestic market. But I was wrong. Their fleet is too big and the Saab is to big for the Mission. Sharp Airlines may have the right fleet though.

When people, who are already being tested every 7 days now can’t cross the border to travel 20km from their homes for specialist medical treatment (from Victoria to Bordertown), I can’t see a future for domestic air travel -vaccine or not. It seems 1 case is 1 case too many.
 

Moopere

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I always think that lie flat Domestic J is a luxury, even for transcon flights. VA only implement those only because of mining boom in the 2000s. All of these are over and with COVID-19, maybe even QF would switch to 737s and Put all those 330s to the long term storage.

you can always use those VA points to book SQ J flights directly. No need to convert to Krisflyer.
Granted on the lie-flat, its lovely to have but not a deal-breaker. However, the recline on the 'J' seating of VA's 737 is no were near enough and they never got around to installing foot rests either ... which seems a small thing, but can help to stop you sliding down the seat.

Thanks for the reminder on booking direct with SQ using points. I have tried this before and can't remember why I stopped ... are traditional reward seats able to be booked this way? Or only Any Seat rewards? I have a feeling that I balked at the point-cost when booking via VA.
 

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