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Virgin America Launches Y+ - Main Cabin Select  
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25377 posts, RR: 49
Posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 8711 times:

Somewhat clever suppose -driving a further revenue premium with its already existant bulk head and exit row seats by throwing in a few frills. As I recall VX previously charged $25/50 extra for the exit row anyhow.

Quote:
Virgin America Now Offering 'Main Cabin Select' Service

SAN FRANCISCO, July 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Virgin America, the California-based airline that is on a mission to make flying good again, today announced that guests now have a new option called "Main Cabin Select" (MCS), in addition to First Class and Main Cabin service currently available on every Virgin America flight. The new service is taking Main Cabin to the next level by offering guests the greatest available legroom within the existing Main Cabin configuration, at 38-inches of seat pitch in the exit row and in the bulkhead, as well as a host of perks that every traveler loves.

Main Cabin Select service will offer:
-- Complimentary food, cocktails, and beverages from the full in-flight menu, via the airline's unique touch-screen food ordering system

-- All-access pass to the Red In-flight Entertainment(TM) system's countless on-demand entertainment options, including premium TV and films (currently live TV, videogames, Google Maps, MP3s and music videos are complimentary for every class of service)

-- 38-inches of seat pitch
-- A dedicated overhead bin space for luggage

In addition to special features in the air, MCS also offers guests premium services before leaving the ground:
-- Priority check-in at airports
-- Priority security screening
-- Priority aircraft boarding

MCS will be available for purchase starting Sept. 15, 2008, for flights from mid-October 2008 on.

Full story
http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/080728/clm051.html?.v=101


From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
38 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineJetBlueGuy2006 From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1660 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 8632 times:

Clever idea. it almost seems like they will just add the previous extra cost into the price of the ticket and adding those perks. I think this will be somewhat successful


Home Airport: Capital Region International Airport (KLAN)
User currently offlineBigGSFO From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2924 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 8531 times:

Interesting point- dedicated overhead bins. Will the F/A's be policing this? We all know there are passengers who dump their bags in the first available spot even if their seats are well in the back.

User currently offlineLACA773 From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 4018 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8254 times:
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I hope this works out for them. It's a great idea. It's a shame it doesn't include more seats.
It sounds a bit like UA's Y+ but with some nice features that UA doesn't and never will offer.


User currently offlineDL767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8203 times:

this is actually a really good idea! They already charged I think $15 for these seats so an extra $10 and giving you some first class amenities like meals and priority security screening. Well worth the money in my opinion, especially compared to UA

User currently offlineRdwootty From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2005, 904 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8199 times:

I reckon it is because the First is so full and they want the clients to pay the extra for the perks that they would get in First. Great idea as First always seems so full, so you will get a load factor of about 20% above with the fares they are charging!! What a way to get above 100% load factor. I suspect this will book very well.

User currently offlineCuriousFlyer From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 694 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8148 times:

I cant wait for an occasion to fly with VX!

User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12110 posts, RR: 48
Reply 7, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8139 times:
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This is a lot of hype for what amounts to 12 seats on the plane.


You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlineLaxintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25377 posts, RR: 49
Reply 8, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 8130 times:



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 7):
This is a lot of hype for what amounts to 12 seats on the plane.

12 on the A319, but 18 on the A320.



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineKGAIflyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 4282 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 7870 times:
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At least out of IAD, Virgin's Y+ matches the competitive advantage United has with its economy+ product. And I am told Virgin has pretty good A320 loads flying out of Washington-Dulles to both LAX and SFO. Maybe it's time to think about expanding services from there to Seattle and San Diego -- perhaps with a smaller A319. For example, Alaska no longer flies out of Dulles to Seattle, but when they did, their 739's were full. At nearby BWI, Southwest already flies multiple non-stops to San Diego.

User currently offlineSevenheavy From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2004, 1156 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 7796 times:



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 7):
This is a lot of hype for what amounts to 12 seats on the plane.

Ultimately its a new product that you would expect them to market. You could also say it will equate to hundreds of seats per day - thats a lot of potential revenue.

On average it amounts to 10% of the economy seating. They have rightly (at least initially) restricted the product to existing Economy seats with more legroom so no costly reconfiguration is required. So far the feedback seems good and I would definately pay what they are asking for this kind of service.

Regards



So long 701, it was nice knowing you.
User currently offlineGoomba From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 309 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 7782 times:

this is actually a really good idea! They already charged I think $15 for these seats so an extra $10 and giving you some first class amenities like meals and priority security screening. Well worth the money in my opinion, especially compared to UA

And absolutely well, well, well, well, well, well worth it compared to DL and the non-existant leg room, Carbon 14 dated and very mean spirited FA's and the little blue snack box with stale crackers, plastic cheese, and a box of raisins.

I love Virgin America...really do.

BUT!

I'll take UA over DL any day of the week.


User currently offlineLH4116 From Sweden, joined Aug 2007, 1714 posts, RR: 18
Reply 12, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 7696 times:

Is this really profitable? Will the airline really make any big profits by offering food, extra legroom and priority boarding for $25?

I remember that JK used to have a similar Y+ product called Avant Option. By paying an extra €50 in the ticket price you will get a meal served on real china, lounge access and an unoccupied middle seat.
This service was discontinued a couple of months later, mostly because it was too unprofitable, instead of people buying a C ticket for €500-600 they paid €200+50 for an Y ticket with the same service as in C.



SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25377 posts, RR: 49
Reply 13, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 7670 times:



Quoting LH4116 (Reply 12):
for $25?

It wont be $25.

They currently charge $50 for the exit rows(used to be $30), so it will definately be more then that.

Anyhow - Jetblue seems to be doing a good business offering such a section with additional legroom, while United states its Economy Plus product generate $200mil in upsell revenue annually.



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineSteex From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 1654 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 7662 times:



Quoting LH4116 (Reply 12):
Is this really profitable? Will the airline really make any big profits by offering food, extra legroom and priority boarding for $25?

I remember that JK used to have a similar Y+ product called Avant Option. By paying an extra €50 in the ticket price you will get a meal served on real china, lounge access and an unoccupied middle seat.
This service was discontinued a couple of months later, mostly because it was too unprofitable, instead of people buying a C ticket for €500-600 they paid €200+50 for an Y ticket with the same service as in C.

In reality, they're already offering the extra legroom in those particular seats and priority boarding adds virtually no cost of any kind. The additional cost (above what was already charged for bulkhead/exit row) is solely for the meal.

It is possible, in theory, that some customers will now opt to purchase Y+ before they would go for F on VX. However, VX's F product is already in such high demand that they are just trying to play catch-up on the supply. Even if customers all tried to book the new Y+ first, I'm sure they expect to have enough premium demand to continue filling the F seats as well. As that seems to be the case, this should be a good move for VX.


User currently offlineRunway23 From US Minor Outlying Islands, joined Jan 2005, 2194 posts, RR: 35
Reply 15, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 7531 times:



Quoting Steex (Reply 14):
The additional cost (above what was already charged for bulkhead/exit row) is solely for the meal.

The meal will be a little bit, say $2-5. The thing which will make it or break it is how much alcohol people drink. Complimentary Alcohol is almost always a larger cost than the meals themselves for airlines.


User currently offlineLuv2cattlecall From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 1650 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 7491 times:
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Quoting BigGSFO (Reply 2):
Interesting point- dedicated overhead bins. Will the F/A's be policing this? We all know there are passengers who dump their bags in the first available spot even if their seats are well in the back.

Wouldn't priority boarding more or less solve this though? I'm sure they won't object to other pax putting stuff in the "dedicated" bins after the Y+ have put all their stuff in them. Plus, they already have an FA sitting guard at the exit row to make sure only people who have paid the extra fee sit there before push back.



When you have to breaststroke to your connecting flight...it's a crash!
User currently offlineDanny From Poland, joined Apr 2002, 3509 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 7466 times:



Quoting LH4116 (Reply 12):
Is this really profitable? Will the airline really make any big profits by offering food, extra legroom and priority boarding for $25?

Extra legroom has to be there anyway, priority boarding cost them nothing and I doubt they will serve food costing them $50 so yes it is very likely profitable idea.


User currently offlineSteex From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 1654 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 7377 times:



Quoting Runway23 (Reply 15):
The meal will be a little bit, say $2-5. The thing which will make it or break it is how much alcohol people drink. Complimentary Alcohol is almost always a larger cost than the meals themselves for airlines.

Yes, thanks for adding that clarification. I was essentially lumping all food/drink service together as the "meal," but you're certainly correct that they're far more likely to get hit in the wallet by alcohol consumption on a SFO-JFK flight than they are by the actual food itself.


User currently offlineLive2fly83 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 151 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7353 times:

"This service was discontinued a couple of months later, mostly because it was too unprofitable, instead of people buying a C ticket for €500-600 they paid €200+50 for an Y ticket with the same service as in C."

good point, thats exactly what I would do (esp in this economy) and customers/corporate travel will do the same

first class cabin may be reduced to day-of-departure upgrades
especially on short-medium hauls



"come fly with me"
User currently offlineScottB From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 6764 posts, RR: 32
Reply 20, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7342 times:



Quoting Danny (Reply 17):
Extra legroom has to be there anyway, priority boarding cost them nothing and I doubt they will serve food costing them $50 so yes it is very likely profitable idea.

...only if it doesn't cause people to book away from First Class and doesn't significantly reduce the number of customers paying for those exit/bulkhead seats. If they charged, say $100 more on long-haul for MCS but saw the number of customers paying for those seats drop by half, then they'd be making less money.

One other thing is that on a flight where F is full and all the "select" seats are occupied by paying customers, the flight attendant workload (for serving meals & drinks) would probably increase by quite a bit.


User currently offlineSAN787 From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 616 posts, RR: 1
Reply 21, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7297 times:

Quoting BigGSFO (Reply 2):
Will the F/A's be policing this?

They won't have to if MCS passengers receive priority boarding.

Quoting Runway23 (Reply 15):
Complimentary Alcohol is almost always a larger cost than the meals themselves for airlines.

I would say even VX's thirstiest load of MCS passengers on any given flight wouldn't average more than 3 alcoholic beverages. Let's say those vodka shooters cost VX $3 x 3 = $9. Unlimited snacks/food at VX's cost let's say not more than another $10 on average. And a $0 cost for priority boarding and designated bulkhead. We'll be generous and say all this together will cost VX on average an additional $25 per seat...how much are they charging for this upgrade? Likely much more than $25!

I love Virgin's value-added positive spin on "extra fees"!!

Very intelligent business move. Will be very profitable!

Kudos Virgin America!!!!

[Edited 2008-07-28 15:46:59]

[Edited 2008-07-28 15:47:50]


those who don't get carried away should be.
User currently offlineSAN787 From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 616 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7260 times:

They don't want to make MCS "too compelling" in turn down-selling F passengers.


those who don't get carried away should be.
User currently offlineTsaord From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7214 times:

I hope they can get into MDW. Even thought I work at ORD MDW is closer to my house and I have come to detest flying out of ORD unless I'm going to be doing an international flight.

User currently offlineScottB From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 6764 posts, RR: 32
Reply 24, posted (6 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 7176 times:



Quoting Tsaord (Reply 23):
I hope they can get into MDW.

They could fly into MDW tomorrow if they wanted to. MDW is not slot-controlled and there are city-owned gates which could be used. They don't want to go up against WN there.


25 Tsaord : People flip loyalties just as fast as they switch sex partners lol. I love WN and choose to fly with them. But I would love to give VX a try if they
26 Luv2fly : Could this be a stop gap measure to keep premium pax happy as they redo the planes to add more actual 1st class seats?
27 BrianDromey : This sounds like a really good idea, I like it. Perhaps F will be see an upgrade, perhaps complementary use of the VS clubhouses, or something like th
28 SAN787 : The last time I flew I VX (last month), the 2 gate agents in San Diego told me they had laid the foundation to be at ORD by November. Obviously, time
29 LACA773 : Will the meals served be what they already offer in coach or will this be an expanded offering, i.e., full meal service? They had been talking about o
30 Reality : Does anyone know what the actual price will be????? $25, $100?, $200? No way of knowing if this will be popular an/or a money maker unless we know wh
31 Aviators99 : Nobody knows what it will be, but I agree it will probably be more than what it currently is. All of the flights other than transcon are $15 now, and
32 Aviators99 : Yes, but fare wars with WN can be deadly!
33 Aviators99 : It will be the existing options available in Red. They started a new menu in there on 7/17: Main Cabin (prices range between $7.00 and $9.00): Breakf
34 LAX20531 : They will have to police those free drinks carefully, since some have a tendency to over imbibe when they believe they have an unlimited supply .... I
35 BigGSFO : I love hummus but that can make for one garlicky plane on arrival.
36 A342 : This is the case all over the world, you better get used to it.
37 SAN787 : That's really a good point. I can't imagine all 12 or 18 MCS passengers get completely lit on a given flight...but it is kinda like going out for dri
38 LACA773 : Thanks for the information Aviators99. It would be nice if they offered a warm meal or a salad with some chicken on it. I like hummus very much mysel
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