Okay, Okay. Maybe I was a little harsh, but re-read most of the original respondents answers and there are quite a few points made that were inaccurate! I am the last to deny anyone's freedom of speech or views, however views/thoughts are far different to "facts", and some of the "facts" that others were presenting as deadset truths were far from it.
Cedarjet - matey. Impulse is VQ - Virgin Blue is as yet uncoded AFAIK - VB sounds good for them though - certainly very Aussie!!
So far, AN & QF have offered nothing more than their normal "sale" specials prices to counter VQ - $189-$199 returns advance purchase. If they had gone under that, then there is a problem as it's under what they've been charging on these specials for the past few years. VQ is a winner for the last minute (within 7 days) must travel group who would be gouged if using the big two. I really don't think AN/QF are stupid enough to go under what they've been charging the past few years.
My own gut feeling really feels that VB and AN are actually going to work closely together and feed each other. I wouldn't be surprised to see VB virtually act as a AN low cost carrier. Again, it's nothing but a hunch based on certain things that have happened since VB's announcement.
DNalor - I accept that you have flown from UK to USA for a cheap price. This route is known as one of the most heavily discounted routes in the world and the competition trans-atlantic is enormous with charter carriers added to the fray. However - I would like to ask what you paid for the return trip as it must have been about GBP200 return to beat the best advance purchase PER-SYD return fare level.
To give an example of what I was stating in my original post let's compare LHR-FRA to SYD-MEL : LHR-FRA is 420 mls and SYD-MEL is 408 miles. The cheapest *fully refundable* fare on either LH BA or BD is AUD1,163.00 whereas the cheapest fully refundable fare on both QF and AN is at AUD598.00. These comparisons are repeated all over Europe.
In America - the home of the discounted and cheap fares - it's just as staggering.
LAX-ORD is 1745 miles, 300 miles *less* than SYD-PER. The LAX-ORD route has massive competition, not just between AA and UA who both hub in ORD but with many other carriers who can get you there with a one-stop etc. The cheapest *fully refundable* fare is AUD3,357.00 on either UA or AA. The cheapest *fully refundable* fare on AN or QF on SYD-PER is AUD1502.00.
These samples I've used are the fares freely available on 3 web sites (I checked 3 sites to get an accurate fare reading)and are based on the normal purchase conditions in each country used in the sample. Sure - there are discounts to be had and advance purchase fares that will differ, but this is a comparison between the same rules, same fare type and same distances in each country, which is the only way to fairly compare the different fares available.
Aussiemite - matey, please don't hesitate to add your thoughts/views on any topic as we all bounce off each other with different trains of thought and it is enlightening and educating to read the various thoughts of all concerned. As you yourself have admitted in your follow up though, please be careful when putting things up as "facts". I normally let things slide by in here, but after seeing all of the misinformation given out in the first few posts, I "snapped" and replied as I did.
Cheers to all - hope this post has helped to explain my reaction in my original post in this thread.