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Woe to Qantas as reviewer inadvertently praises Virgin Australia

Poor Qantas Group. Someone, PR or reviewer, tries to make a joke but only ends up praising Virgin Australia. First there was Jetstar and seat colours and now it is espresso.The Sun-Herald review of Qantas’ (over-hyped) 747 service to Perth concludes: Sky Report’s only black mark was our flight attendant’s (albeit gentle) mocking when we […]

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Trip report: what the Qantas spy would have gleaned from Virgin’s A330 business class service

As hard as I tried, I could not identify the Qantas “spy” on Virgin Australia’s first Airbus A330 flights, although I have my suspicious (I’m looking at you, woman in the gray suit). Failing a firsthand conversation with the spy (or spies–Qantas dispatched managers to economy and business class), here is what I think the […]

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Virgin Australia’s first A330 flight will have one special passenger on board

In this edition of quirky news, the first Virgin Australia Airbus A330-200 flight, DJ663, is due to depart Sydney for Perth at 8 a.m. this morning with one very special passenger on board. Virgin group founder Sir Richard Branson? No. Chief executive John Borghetti? No. Yours truly? Aww shucks, I am flying on it but […]

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Musings on Qantas’ declining service standards and Virgin’s opportunity

Qantas’ Centre of Service Excellence. A lot of good that’s done? Much is said by many people of declining service standards at Qantas. But rarely is systematic, not anecdotal, evidence presented.“Service” is the keyword in the business today as Virgin Australia seeks to woo Qantas passengers based on both price and experience. As Virgin Australia […]

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Fly on a DC-6 in 2011 in Australia

Namibia Commercial Aviation Next February Namibia Commercial Aviation’s DC-6B (above) will arrive in Australia for a two-month long tour to commemorate Australia’s centenary of powered flight. (Historically speaking, I presume they mean the centenary of Australia’s powered passenger flight–which occurred in 1911–as Australia’s first powered flight was in 1909.)The DC-6B, V5-NCG serial no. 45564, was […]

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AirAsia X Says Buh-Bye to Its Non-Reclining Seats

I first flew AirAsia X in July 2008 not knowing what to expect. It was a low-cost carrier but flew long-haul. After a few hours on my flight from Australia’s Gold Coast to Kuala Lumpur (disclosure: it was a complimentary ticket) I was sold.The flight felt like any other. The main difference was that when […]

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Can Leather Seats Give Tiger a Boost?

I’m not normally moved when airlines boast they are installing leather seats, but Tiger Airways’ announcement that it plans to do just that has got me jumpy.Why?Ask me one bad thing about Tiger and I would respond: it feels like a low-cost carrier.Well gee wiz, you say, it is one.True. But when customers fly on […]

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Tonight: A380 Inaugural Flight to Antarctica

Antarctica, as seen from a previous Qantas 747-400 sightseeing trip. (Croydon Travel) In two hours at 6:10 PM Australian eastern time, a Qantas A380 charted by Croydon Travel will depart Melbourne as QF 2903 for a 12 hour sightseeing trip to Antarctica. It will be the first time an A380 has been in the south […]

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