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sw733
Topic Author
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Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 6:19 am

Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Wed Mar 03, 2004 1:18 pm

I feel like every thread on here praises Virgin Atlantic as the greatest airline in the world. I personally had the worst flight ever on Virgin a few years ago. Am I thinm only one who thinks Virgins seats are more cramped then a roller coaster, has terrible food, and rude f/a's?
 
RonE
Posts: 324
Joined: Sun Jan 28, 2001 12:31 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Wed Mar 03, 2004 1:21 pm

Perhaps you had a bad experience- I am not in a position to judge- I've flown with VS only once back in July 1995 EWR-LHR and it was a very comfortable flgiht- I was seated in the very first row in economy so legroom was not an issue, the F/A's were nice...

But again 1995 is 9 years ago, a lot has changed, so anything is possible....
 
chgoflyer
Posts: 312
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 11:16 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Wed Mar 03, 2004 1:25 pm

I took them from ord when they flew here in couch, to LHR. After sitting in the last row of an A340 Im glad they no longer serve Chicago. I did not enjoy my Virgin exerience at all.
Will someone please wake me up in 4 years
 
MEGAPTERA
Posts: 115
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2001 4:48 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Wed Mar 03, 2004 4:46 pm

Been with Virgin three times; LHR-SFO, LAX-LHR and JFK-LHR (all on G-VAST, strangely enough) and I think they're one of the best in the business.
 
IAD777
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2003 7:15 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Air

Wed Mar 03, 2004 5:06 pm

Virgin Economy has to be among the worst product's out there. I've flown their economy on numerous transatlantic flights (IAD 2x, JFK 2x, EWR), including their brand new A340-600, which was the most uncomfortable economy flight i've ever been in across the pond. Their service is ok, sometimes really rude, but at most only moderately friendly. Their ptv's are the among the best in the industry. But their economy seats are so intensely uncomfortable, I would rather go easyjet across the pond than Virgin economy!

Having said that, their upper class product is one of the best! A totally different flying experience up front, of course, but upper class beats almost any business class and most first classes!

cheers
History shall be kind to me; for I intend to write it -WSC
 
v2fix
Posts: 299
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2003 4:55 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Wed Mar 03, 2004 9:19 pm

SW733 -
Sounds like you had a bade flight - it happens ocassionaly, even to the best airlines.

I've flown Virgin about 6 time in 3 months to the east coas tof the US and every trip, without fail, has been good. One was superb, as I got an ugrade to Upper Class (old-style).

742; 744; DC10, DC3, 321, 320, 319, 170,190, 772, 773,333, 346, 343
 
ariegel
Posts: 102
Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2001 2:04 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 12:29 am

I think there's some major inconsistency in Virgin's Y product.. I've flown them 4 times across the pond (both A340 & 747) and the first 2 were good flights (not the best, but definately nothing major to complain about). The next two were, what has only been described as hell on earth, the seat pitch in the back felt like around 27 inches, and was further dramatically decreased by a large seat recline from the seat in front of me. Of course the IFE was good, but the in flight service was marginal at best, and even featured a rather heated argument between a FA and a passenger (very unprofessional).. At that point in time I would have rather been in an NWA CRJ going across the pond with no IFE than in the back of the VS plane I was stuck in for 6 hours.
 
Spike
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Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 1:08 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 12:35 am

Virgin are a stange beast. Undoubtably the best business class product in the world (its even called Upper Class so you don't know if its first or business). At the same time they have a LCC going on there in the back. Awful. But at least you get English snacks and good comedy.
 
aircadet
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 8:42 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Air

Thu Mar 04, 2004 12:36 am

I don't think BA like em much  Smile
Everyone i've spoken too speak quite highly of them, so i think its just an individual's point of view.
tlaqna hi
 
qqflyboy
Posts: 1635
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 1:47 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 1:50 am

I flew Virgin in May 2000 from LAX to LHR and back. I flew a 744 there and an A340 back. Although the flights were nice, they were not stand out fantastic as I've always heard. The flight attendants were just like any other airline, some attentive and others complacent. The coach amenity kit was a fun novelty and the food was ok. Inflight entertainment was about on par with any other airline. Although I must admit I loved the nonstop "Cow and Chicken" episodes on the cartoon channel.

On the way to LHR we sat in the back of coach on the 744, but had great seats. We sat right where the fuselage starts to narrow, so there were only two seats, with lots of room between us and the window. It made for some great extra room, and no third seat mate. I was traveling with my mom at the time, and we enjoyed having that bonus.

Instead of using our ability to nonrev, we got a great package from Virgin Vacations. That was probably the best thing about the whole deal. They did a great job. The agents at LAX were willing to upgrade us (since I was an airline employee) but Upper Class was full. Coming from London, there was room in Upper Class but the agents couldn't/wouldn't upgrade us since we were on regular tickets. I guess I should have used the cheaper nonrev ticket.

In all it was a pleasant experience, but it didn't stand out from any other airline I've been on.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
cadet93
Posts: 132
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2003 12:56 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:00 am

I had a bad experience with them also. They didn't seem to care either.
We flew to Heathrow, but were diverted to Cardiff. The plane slid off the runway and became stuck in the mud. It took over 2 hours to get everyone off the plane. ( a full 747-200 yuck) Then they put us on a bus and drove us to London. That was an all day affair in its self. They took us to Heathrow to collect our bags. (they flew the plane back empty while we were on the bus) It took at least 3 hrs after we got to Heathrow to get our bags. They gave us 5 British Pounds each to get something to eat. That was like a bottle of water and a cracker at airport prices. The entire first day was gone. I was taking my parents to London on their first ever over seas trip. We had tickets to a show, and missed it.
I contacted VS about it. They never once got back to me about it.
I WILL NEVER FLY WITH THEM AS A PAYING CUSTOMER AGAIN !!!!!!!!!!
 
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Richard28
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RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:06 am

I am a VS frequent(ish) flyer (both J and Y class), so am probably biased, but have flown other airlines long-haul as well.

food and service on VS I have found to be excellent, but I agree with comments that Y class seat pitch should be better.

having said that, it is the same pitch as BA.....
 
dc-10 levo
Posts: 3376
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2001 3:22 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:08 am

Flown with VS two times and couldn't fault them. Maybe I'm being a bit biased here but they are one of the best airlines around today.

DC-10
 
IntheKnow
Posts: 321
Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2001 7:32 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:51 am

New Y class product on the way! Very secretive but expect our reputation as an innovator to be re-justified, starting with a blank sheet of paper. Seating and service like nothing in Y class ever, very clever stuff!!!! Totally agree on some issues here about cabin staff, we have taken on some truly dreadful people based on just looks (Richard still insists this is the most important thing which is infuriating to those of us who want to deliver a grown-up service).

We will change, got some great people in management now and they dont come from airline backgrounds so no pre-concieved ideas! "We WILL be the leader again, taking lots of people with us but leaving a lot behind" Said one of the board....bring it on!!

ITK
 
Shamrock_747
Posts: 1499
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RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:57 am

I've flown on Virgin Atlantic four times. An experience on my second flight with them impressed me a lot... my PTV (Nova system) wasn't working so I was given an individual video player for Upper Class, a 750ml bottle of Virgin Vodka and a £25 Virgin Holidays voucher, as well as a personal apology from the head of cabin crew (I can't remember what the proper title is at VS!).

Every time I've flown with them the IFE has been excellent, the crew were friendly and professional and the food was good. Nothing at all to complain about!
 
amhilde
Posts: 628
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:01 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 04, 2004 3:06 am


Im a VS frequent flyer and have flown them almost exclusively for 7 years now ( once tried UAL and had things thrown at me, rudest experience i EVER had on a plane!) and can say that its definitely hit or miss. Sometimes its the passengers you are stuck with and sometimes its the crew and sometimes its the IFE going haywire, but if you figure that can happen in most Y class and are prepared for it then well, you can tolerate almost anything  Smile That being said I have ridden up front and it was utterly amazing, definitely worthwhile.

Intheknow- I hope to see a new Y class soon- seems like theyve stripped it pretty bare to the bone back there- you need to bring back some innovation for us poor folk! I bet you would get more people just with more seat space!
Hang on tightly, Let go lightly
 
crewrest
Posts: 89
Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2001 12:14 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:03 am

Cadet 93

So, you happened to be on the -200 which taxied off into the mud in Cardiff, it isn't the sort of thing that exactly happens everyday is it? Hardly a reason to never fly Virgin again. When something like that happens, you are sadly in for a bad day, at least Virgin tried, I suspect they did care very much. I can imagine what it would have been like with a US major, with the diabolical customer service they give across the pond.

The -200 only does MCO-MAN now and they are pretty OK inside.

I would have thought a few more letters to customers services would have got you a bit of recompense.

Virgin is worth a go across the Atlantic in my opinion.



 
anstar
Posts: 3349
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 3:49 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:20 am

Hehehe

I had a mate of mine write a letter to Virgin actually praising them for the service.

He received a reply...

Dir sir,

We are sorry you didnt enjoy your flight here's a xxx voucher for Virgin

lol
 
ba757
Posts: 2707
Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2003 10:31 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:34 am

ANstar:
We are sorry you didn't enjoy your flight here's a xxx voucher for Virgin

You sure it was an XXX voucher?! I must start flying Virgin  Smile/happy/getting dizzy (Ironic I have to use XXX and Virgin in the same sentence  Smile)...only kidding.

Adam
 
JAFA
Posts: 740
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2003 1:31 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

crewrest-
Normally I don't reply to the silly topics like this one in the forum, but your remarks about the "diabolical service" across the pond are about as informed as this anti-Virgin topic. Most of my customers leave my aircraft thanking us for doing a good job. I have not had a problem or complaint from any customer in many many months. In fact the complimentary letters outweigh complaint letters 2/0 since Jan.
I haven't flown Virgin Atlantic but anyone with half a brain can see through the complaints posted above. Like any business, some airline customers will be less than satisfied or unhappy. That doesn't mean that the airline is bad.
 
APP
Posts: 507
Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2000 7:11 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 8:56 am

No, I think they're pretty good.
Although I don't work in the airline industry (unfortunately), I have spent many years in the retail trade, and it doesn't matter how good a job you do or how good a service you provide, there are always customers who aren't happy unless they can have a whinge about something.
Sadly this will not change, in fact it's probably getting worse as 'compensation culture' takes an even tighter hold.
It's a shame SW733, that you felt the need to try to accumulate negative responses, when you could have got a good balanced thread going with a different title, How about 'What's your opinion on Virgin Atlantic?'
It's annoying for you, that you had a bad experience with them, but as the saying goes - 'sh*t happens', and if you get chance give them another go!
APP.
 
mauilono
Posts: 43
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 1:23 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 9:05 am

Flew BOS-LHR-BOS the first week of Feb on Virgin, Y-class, and had the most wonderful experience. I left both flights full and happy. The cabin crew on both flights were pleasant and accomodating. I bought one of their Vacation Packages which made my first trip to London unforgettable.
 
Leezyjet
Posts: 3544
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2001 7:26 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 9:48 am

" Coming from London, there was room in Upper Class but the agents couldn't/wouldn't upgrade us since we were on regular tickets. I guess I should have used the cheaper nonrev ticket."

No chance of other airlines staff getting an upgrade, even VS staff are not entitled to Upper until they have done 3 years service and LHR upgrade people strictly by the book.


"I had a bad experience with them also. They didn't seem to care either.
We flew to Heathrow, but were diverted to Cardiff. The plane slid off the runway and became stuck in the mud. It took over 2 hours to get everyone off the plane. ( a full 747-200 yuck) Then they put us on a bus and drove us to London. That was an all day affair in its self. They took us to Heathrow to collect our bags. (they flew the plane back empty while we were on the bus) It took at least 3 hrs after we got to Heathrow to get our bags. They gave us 5 British Pounds each to get something to eat. That was like a bottle of water and a cracker at airport prices. The entire first day was gone. I was taking my parents to London on their first ever over seas trip. We had tickets to a show, and missed it.
I contacted VS about it. They never once got back to me about it.
I WILL NEVER FLY WITH THEM AS A PAYING CUSTOMER AGAIN !!!!!!!!!!"

Why did the a/c divert ?? Sounds like it was due to weather.

How could Virgin predict that you were A. going to divert and B. the a/c would slide off the runway ???. There are no VS staff at CWL, so the staff that dealt with you there not only had to deal with a plane load of passengers from an unfamilier airline, but also with an emergency situation caused by the a/c sliding off into the mud. You also cannot be allowed off the a/c in that situation until it has been assesed by the emergency services and all the necessary equipment is in place.

You were put on a bus - well how else are they supposed to get you from CWL-LHR when no other airline flies the route ??? and it would take 2 hours to call crew out on standby to arrive at LHR, then 3 hours to travel to CWL, then another 2 hours to prep the a/c and thats if they had a full crew on standby which they don't, so the bus was the only option and the quickest - it's also a standard practice in the UK to do that if an a/c diverts and terminates at an airfield that is not the passengers final destination.

The a/c would have been ferried back empty as there would only be a minimum crew on standby and the origional crew would have been out of duty hours.

You had to wait 3 hours for bags, well if the a/c was in the mud then how were they supposed to unload it until they got it out of the mud ???.

You were given £5, if it was a problem caused by weather you ain't entitled to diddly squat so £5 isn't bad. Also £5 will get you a meal from most of the airport outlets.

So now you will not fly on an airline that caused you a delay through no direct fault of their own !!!. Makes sense.  Insane

 Smile
"She Rolls, 45 knots, 90, 135, nose comes up to 20 degrees, she's airborne - She flies, Concorde Flies"
 
airjampanam
Posts: 243
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2003 3:06 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:06 am

First rate IFE, but, and this is a MAJOR but..Unless u plan to fly other than coach, be prepared for a Greyhound experience in the air!!
Very cramped experience seating wise.. They pack em like sardines back there!!!
To be fore warned is to be fore armed!
Suing is the new Lotto... if u wanna win u gotta sue!
 
airtangora
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2000 2:50 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:23 am

I've only flown VS once. ORD-LHR economy. LOVED IT! Bright colors in the cabin, extremely good looking flight crew, PTV, don't remember the food, but the attendant kept the wine flowing, I think the winglet paint job is nifty and I loved the amenity kit they provided. As an American, I am a sucker for a British accent, I love it, so that was great too.

I get to fly BA in a week and a half, so I look forward to comparing the two carriers.
A bad day on the road is better than a good day in the office.
 
warren747sp
Posts: 988
Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2004 7:51 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:34 am

Upper Class: definitely
Premium Economy: okay
Regular Economy: avoid it at all cost.
747SP
 
AM772
Posts: 133
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 2:34 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:08 pm

I think Virgin, has a very nice fleet, but they have no idea how to get their acfts nice, its like flying in an old A300 while you're in a A346
 
worldoftui
Posts: 1054
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:34 pm

Not a fan of VS either. Think that their service is mediocre, their food terrible and their seat pitch poor.
Had several flights on 742's, 744's and their old A340's. The A340's were terrible flights, but the Boeing flights were a little more pleasurable.
My airline of choice is UA, but where VS definitely win is very very clever marketing.

GO UNITED!


Mark
 
concordeboac
Posts: 70
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 9:04 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Fri Mar 12, 2004 12:26 am

My first ever flight was on Virgin, G-VLAX from Gatwick to Orlando International.

As a very excited ten year old boy, obsessed by anything that flew, I wrote a letter to Sir Richard beforehand to tell him how much I was looking forward to flying on his plane and would he send me some information about his aircraft and some photos.

Within less than a week I had a full fleetlist with histories of each aircraft, A comprehensive history of the Virgin Group from it's humble beginnings, and, to top at all off, the covering letter was signed personally by Sir Richard Branson himself and had a rather nice, personally dedicated and autographed photograph attached to it.

On boarding the flight, my dad mentioned my love of aircraft to the Attendant who was welcoming the passengers onboard. I thought nothing of it and just concentrated on watching cartoons (as most ten year olds do) until about three hours into the flight when a (very pretty, I still remember that much) member of the cabin crew came and invited me to the cockpit to meet the Captain and his flight crew, where I got to sit in the jumpseat and wear the Captains hat, I just remember sitting there in total amazement and awe.

As a result of the fantastic service and care the Virgin Atlantic staff gave me and my family, we have never flown over the pond on any other airline and have never experienced service like they give from any other company, let alone any other airline.

Now I have grown up, I still look back at that flight, it was as special as can be.

I take my hat off to Virgin Atlantic and, more specificity, their entire workforce.
 
JGPH1A
Posts: 15079
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 4:36 pm

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Fri Mar 12, 2004 1:29 am

I haven't been on VS often, and its been a bit hit and miss. Did LGW-BOS back when they still had "Spirit of Sir Freddie", a sad old B747-100 which had definitely seen better decades - it was cramped down the back and the PTV (OK, kudos for even having PTV) was the size of the screen on my phone these days. Back was on a 747-200, which was a bit better, but still no picnic in terms of legroom. Food was good though.

I did get to go Premium Economy once, LGW-MCO, owing to be the last to check-in (not because I was late, I got there in plenty of time, only there was a single queue for all flights and it took for ever). Anyway, they ran out of seats down the back, so the chap phone a mysterious 'Er Upstairs who authorised an upgrade - it was really very pleasant, upper deck on a 744 (always a fave).

Coming back, no such luck, it was pretty cramped. Not really a lot worse than others, but still, one feels VS with their flair for the unexpected could do a little better than bog ordinary. Lets hope the new Y product is an improvement.
Young and beautiful and thin and gorgeous AND BANNED ! Cya at airspaceonline.com, losers
 
Spoon04
Posts: 179
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 11:15 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Fri Mar 12, 2004 2:50 am

From my experience, flying commercially is basically a numbers game. If you fly a particular carrier enough times, sooner or later you're going to experience a gnarly cabin crew, delayed/cancelled flights, lost baggage and sub-par service. Conversely, if you fly a particular carrier enough times, you'll ALSO experience superb cabin crews, on-time arrivals and excellent service. All it takes is one employee having a bad day to tarnish a flight. In the past when I've incurred a less-than-savory in-flight experience, almost always the service is great on the next flight on the same carrier. There are just so many variables that can come into play when determining the type of service passengers receive. I NEVER pass judgment on an airline based on a single bad flight. If however, I fly a particular carrier on a repeated basis and incur lousy service (which has never happened) I would then utilize my common sense and choose another airline. Again, flying is a crap-shoot... you just have to hope that the employees on the ground and the F/A's in the air are happy with their lives and their jobs. But in this day and age, who knows?
 
Jetstreamer
Posts: 324
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2001 5:52 am

RE: Anyone Else Think Virgin Atlantic Is A Bad Airline

Fri Mar 12, 2004 4:51 am

"I think Virgin, has a very nice fleet, but they have no idea how to get their acfts nice, its like flying in an old A300 while you're in a A346"

Of all the comments on this topic, the above really takes the biscuit (as well as contradicting itself!).

I had the misfortune to fly on an A300 recently. I'm confident that the interior had not been changed since the aircraft came into service. There was certainly no comparison with the VS A346 which is bright and modern.

Back to the original topic, I was hooked on Virgin Atlantic when I first flew with them (as a passenger) in 1996. That first flight was the only incentive I needed to join the company. I still believe we offer an outstanding product and service. This opinion is reinforced by the many positive comments we receive on every flight as well as my experiences when flying with the "competition".


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