OH-LGA
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"Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 7:35 am

Has anyone else flown Virgin America's "dark" A319?

I bought a ticket (my first in 6 years) to fly SFO-LAX on Wednesday to the Spice Girls concert in LA Wednesday night, and as we boarded they gave us this red envelope. Apparently, the aircraft was pressed into service so quickly that although the infrastructure is there, Red wasn't loaded on the aircraft. In addition, it lacks dividers throughout the aircraft. Sorta like Spirit's interior, but even without curtains. The envelope contained a form apology letter and a certificate for a free movie, premium tv or drink on your next VX flight.

I was totally excited and looking forward to the flight since I bought the ticket a couple months ago, flying down to see the Spice Girls in style  Smile so it ended up being kind of a letdown. The cabin does look snazzy, the black leather seats are stylish and comfortable, the mood lighting was working (and looked great) and the new PSUs on the A319s are really sharp looking. I just found it kind of weird that they didn't say anything at the gate other than handed out the envelopes and you pretty much found out when you a) opened the envelope or b) got to your seat.
Head in the clouds... yet feet planted firmly on the ground.
 
gkyip
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 8:01 am

This sounds rather dissappointing. I suppose as long as it was comfortable and all the soft service items were there then there is no real need to advise you any earlier. Remember that many airlines' aircraft have different interior specs and there is no idea of what sort of cabin you will be getting until you board and even then you will get little or no compensation for it.

Any idea of the reg of the aircraft?

Gary
The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee
 
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SANFan
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:02 am

It has been stated on this board (a couple of months ago, I believe) that the main reason for the slow expansion of VX (e.g., not starting their 6th "start-up" city of San Diego until 6 months after their inaugural flight) is the delay in availability of their new 319s (and 320s?) because of IFE installation problems. This thread seems to support that explanation and it looks like the problem may be even worse than originally thought if they have had to resort to introducing the a/c without the system installed at all!

I think the free drink chit is a nice touch; I recall many past trips when flights I was on had non-operational entertainment systems and all we got was a "sorry" by the f/a during the pre-departure flight summary. Of course in the case of VX, the IFE is cool enough and a big attraction in itself that they probably are smart to offer at least something to sooth the disappointed pax.

It doesn't bode well for the near future of VX since this (or "these") a/c are going to have to be pulled from service at some point to be finished, unless they can somehow do the work piece-by-piece at night.

The last time I checked the flight schedules (on the website) there were supposed to be 2 319s currently in service with a third being added in March. (BTW, the scheduled 319 flights are indicated with a 4-digit flight number starting with "1" while the 320s carry a 3-digit flight number.)

bb
 
jetblueguy22
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:36 pm

That doesn't sound good at all. I was wondering how it was on VX. Thanks for the information!
Blue
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Birdwatching
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 1:03 pm

I had a malfunctioning IFE on an Air France 772 in October 2004 and they gave me 30 Euro in cash as a compensation, and I didn't even ask for it. It was printed on a card similar to a ticket or boarding pass, and I had to go to a ticket counter at the airport to claim it. Very nice gesture of AF.

Soren  santahat 
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hoya
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 2:37 pm

Has Skybus started returning any of the aircraft it leased from VX? Maybe it could've been one of the planes returned, but there wasn't enough time to bring it to full VX standards.
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Vasu
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 2:44 pm



Quoting OH-LGA (Thread starter):
The envelope contained a form apology letter and a certificate for a free movie, premium tv or drink on your next VX flight.



Quoting Birdwatching (Reply 4):
and they gave me 30 Euro in cash as a compensation

At least in both experiences, compensation of some sort was offered... I have heard of situations where the passenger was just told something along the lines of "you paid for your flight, not the IFE" or something.
 
NASBWI
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 3:42 pm

This sort of thing tends to happen sometimes. There have been a few instances where B6 has pressed a new aircraft into service before the LiveTV satellite was installed (and there are pictures here to prove it!). It was a demonstration of good customer service to offer the free movie vouchers to the customers - regardless of whether their ticket included the IFE or not.

Quoting Vasu (Reply 6):
have heard of situations where the passenger was just told something along the lines of "you paid for your flight, not the IFE" or something.

This is true, and it's unfortunate if a FA actually tells a customer that. True, the ticket price does not reflect the cost of IFE that the airline incurs. If it's a complimentary service, that means that you paid nothing for it in your ticket. However, it's common knowledge that people tend to buy tickets on certain airlines for a particular reason: the IFE. To not have it would mean that they may as well have purchased a ticket on another airline that didn't offer it at all. There have been times when a TV or two was inop and a customer complained about it. Unfortunately, as we're not trained on fixing IFE systems  wink , there's nothing I can do to fix the individual TV inflight. So, a complimentary drink would be in order for that flight, and/or a free movie voucher for a future flight (which would be taken care of by customer service).
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PHXmd80
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 4:39 pm



Quoting Hoya (Reply 5):
Has Skybus started returning any of the aircraft it leased from VX? Maybe it could've been one of the planes returned, but there wasn't enough time to bring it to full VX standards.

Skybus signed a two year lease on the VX aircraft in 2006. Can't find a link though. Sorry.

PHXmd80
 
Mir
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 4:59 pm



Quoting NASBWI (Reply 7):
True, the ticket price does not reflect the cost of IFE that the airline incurs. If it's a complimentary service, that means that you paid nothing for it in your ticket.

No, you paid for it. If you buy a $100 ticket on B6, a certain portion out of that $100 (let's say $2) goes towards buying the IFE used for the plane, maintaining it, paying for the licenses, etc. If they didn't have IFE, then they wouldn't have to charge you that extra $2, and you'd have a $98 ticket.

There is no such thing as a free lunch. If you get something on a flight, it's because you paid for it. Perhaps not right then and there, but you definitely paid for it.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
MSYPI7185
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:11 pm



Quoting Mir (Reply 9):
No, you paid for it. If you buy a $100 ticket on B6, a certain portion out of that $100 (let's say $2) goes towards buying the IFE used for the plane, maintaining it, paying for the licenses, etc. If they didn't have IFE, then they wouldn't have to charge you that extra $2, and you'd have a $98 ticket.

This is not true! It is complimentary, period. There is absolutely no way to calculate how much of your ticket goes towards these items. The cost is the same to the airline whether anyone uses the service or not. It is not pay as you go, so to speak. If an airline compensates you, as AF did to someone on here, it is a nice gesture for the inconvenience, not a refund.

Look at it as having Cable TV, for an example. The cost to you is the same whether you watch TV or not.
 
SpencerII
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:30 pm



Quoting Mir (Reply 9):
No, you paid for it. If you buy a $100 ticket on B6, a certain portion out of that $100 (let's say $2) goes towards buying the IFE used for the plane, maintaining it, paying for the licenses, etc. If they didn't have IFE, then they wouldn't have to charge you that extra $2, and you'd have a $98 ticket.

this is not true at all, read the terms of your contract of carriage and I don't think you will find anywhere it says you are "entitled to that".
 
star_world
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:35 pm



Quoting OH-LGA (Thread starter):
to fly SFO-LAX on Wednesday to the Spice Girls concert in LA Wednesday night

I can't believe there were 11 replies without this particular fact being mentioned.....!  Smile

Quoting MSYPI7185 (Reply 10):
This is not true! It is complimentary, period. There is absolutely no way to calculate how much of your ticket goes towards these items. The cost is the same to the airline whether anyone uses the service or not. It is not pay as you go, so to speak. If an airline compensates you, as AF did to someone on here, it is a nice gesture for the inconvenience, not a refund.

This is correct. What Mir mentioned is technically the case, but the point is that you can't then go back to the airline looking for your $2 back if the IFE (or whatever else) isn't working. There are rules in many parts of the world that specify what compensation is due for more major events, such as being downgraded but in terms of the onboard product the only thing you're likely to get is a goodwill gesture (as in the case of this VA flight) in the event of something not working.
 
OH-LGA
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:44 pm

I wasn't really looking for any sort of additional compensation or anything, just rather if anyone else has flown the aircraft. I think that the letter in the envelope was really a nice touch. Certainly on that end it was really well done. It's also admirable that they are keeping the aircraft at the moment to their shorter stage length routes (SFO-LAX/LAS v.v). Looking at the letter, I didn't realize that the drink and snack (Clif Bar) were part of the compensation...

Definite kudos to Virgin America to be proactive about having part of their service not working. The only quirk was the lack of information from airport staff, even though they passed out the envelope as we boarded.

Unfortunately I tried to remember the rego but completely forgot it.
Here's a reproduction of the proactive apology letter:


November 2007

Dear Virgin America Guest,

Due to delays in the modification of our brand new planes, the inflight entertainment and select other in-seat services will not be available on your Virgin America flight today. This includes the Red Inflight Entertainment system, which normally features satellite TV, movies, games, Google Maps and a food ordering system. In addition, the plugs at every seat for electronic gear will not be switched on for the course of this flight.

We realize that one of the key reasons you travel with us is to enjoy these amenities and we sincerely apologize for this inconvenience. Because of it, we will be offering a free drink and a snack during the flight. In addition, we've enclosed a voucher good for a drink, premium TV or latest release film on a Virgin America flight in the future.

With moodlighting, custom-designed leather seats, and PCs at every seat -- we made millions of dollars in high-tech modifications to each one of Virgin America's brand new planes. We appreciate your patience with us as we finalize this modification process across our fleet.

So, please sit back, relax, enjoy a drink and a snack and have a wonderful flight. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at: 1-877-FLY-VIRGIN (877 359-8474). Thank you again for your patience and for flying Virgin America.

Sincerely,

/s/ Fred Reid

Fred Reid
Chief Executive Officer
Head in the clouds... yet feet planted firmly on the ground.
 
gkyip
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:28 pm



Quoting OH-LGA (Reply 13):
I think that the letter in the envelope was really a nice touch. Certainly on that end it was really well done. It's also admirable that they are keeping the aircraft at the moment to their shorter stage length routes (SFO-LAX/LAS v.v). Looking at the letter, I didn't realize that the drink and snack (Clif Bar) were part of the compensation...

Unfortunately, problems such as a faulty IFE system occur on a regular basis. The thing that makes one airline stand out from another is how they deal with it. Virgin has always been good at dealing with such problems and have an outstanding marketing department that reflects their focus on customer service and satisfaction.

Simply, if there is an aspect of the flight that is not as it should be, then fix it ASAP and give the PAX a suitable compensation for it. As simple as it sounds, many airlines get it wrong.

Gary
The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee
 
A340Spotter
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sat Dec 08, 2007 11:47 pm



Quoting Gkyip (Reply 1):
Any idea of the reg of the aircraft?

I was at LAX on Wednesday and the only A319 I saw all day was N524VA. Was on a lengthy ATC delay back to SFO around mid-day, as well. The 2 Skybus leases, as mentioned above, are on 2 year leases apparently (and thanks for that answer as I've been asking in numerous threads to no avail!)

JSD
"Irregardless, it's a Cat III airplane, we don't need an alternate!"
 
xtoler
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:10 am



Quoting NASBWI (Reply 7):
This is true, and it's unfortunate if a FA actually tells a customer that. True, the ticket price does not reflect the cost of IFE that the airline incurs. If it's a complimentary service, that means that you paid nothing for it in your ticket. However, it's common knowledge that people tend to buy tickets on certain airlines for a particular reason: the IFE. To not have it would mean that they may as well have purchased a ticket on another airline that didn't offer it at all. There have been times when a TV or two was inop and a customer complained about it. Unfortunately, as we're not trained on fixing IFE systems , there's nothing I can do to fix the individual TV inflight. So, a complimentary drink would be in order for that flight, and/or a free movie voucher for a future flight (which would be taken care of by customer

That is so true. We didn't have such nice ammenities on RJ or turbo flights, but, if the flight isn't up to standard, there is a compensation form pax can fill out. For Trans States itself, regardless of airline we were flying for we had our own forms. They may not have been comprehensive enough, but at least we had them. On United flights, though, we not only had our own form but United gave us a survey. I always encouraged my pax to fill those out. How well do we know we are doing, unless we get critisizm first hand. And the airline should know. If it weren't for pax we wouldn't be in business. I can't believe I just said that. 15 years ago, I'd refused to work pax service and stick with ops or pax. Dealing with pax ain't so bad, and I really enjoy teaching the general public about air transportation assuring them it's not a nightmare the media wants you to believe.

Quoting OH-LGA (Thread starter):
was totally excited and looking forward to the flight since I bought the ticket a couple months ago, flying down to see the Spice Girls in style

I hate to sound unpoliticaly correct, man or woman. You were really pumped up to fly to LA to see the Spice Girls? Dude, I lived in Germany during their heyday and couldn't stand 'em there either. What the hell, early to mid '90's there were stupid "boy" bands. The bloke chicks gotta have their way too. BTW, I had dibs on Scarey Spice, but Eddie Murphy done knocked her up (impregnated, not to wake up by knocking). Spice Girls? You paid a ticket to see them? Oh my achin' ass! Oh well, I'd go that far to see Led Zepplin in London, but wife won't let me and now she can't see Ludacris in Vail.
EMB145 F/A, F/E, J41 F/A, F/E, because my wife clipped my wings, armchair captain
 
OH-LGA
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:29 am



Quoting A340Spotter (Reply 15):
I was at LAX on Wednesday and the only A319 I saw all day was N524VA.

That was the one... N524VA... apparently there is only one A319 operating at the moment, because the other A319 had some sort of incident (fueler pulled away without detaching the fuel hose so tore out an underwing fuel coupling) so it's on a fairly long-term mechanical delay...

Quoting Xtoler (Reply 16):
You were really pumped up to fly to LA to see the Spice Girls?

It's all about different strokes for different folks, no?  Smile I went with a few friends of mine, one from the SF area and two from Calgary. After the concert, I ended up being out until 230am - getting an hour and a half of sleep before a full day at school and work. My weekend ended up being midweek apparently  Smile
Head in the clouds... yet feet planted firmly on the ground.
 
xtoler
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:55 am



Quoting Gkyip (Reply 14):
Unfortunately, problems such as a faulty IFE system occur on a regular basis. The thing that makes one airline stand out from another is how they deal with it. Virgin has always been good at dealing with such problems and have an outstanding marketing department that reflects their focus on customer service and satisfaction.

Simply, if there is an aspect of the flight that is not as it should be, then fix it ASAP and give the PAX a suitable compensation for it. As simple as it sounds, many airlines get it wrong.

That's why I carry a book when I commuted from IAD to DEN and back. Actually, when I still lived in Germany as a DoD civilian, I flew back from leave on a brand spanking new 777 on UA with PFE's and I couldn't put down my book "Dirty Jokes and Beer" by Drew Cary. I was LMAO all the way across the Atlantic. The last chapter was kind of a bummer though.

Curtains to separate pax from one class to another on US airlines is a thing of the past, thanks to 9/11. I remember my USAir flight from RIC to PIT to SAT going to BASIC. The F/A was snooty enough to look at me and my guys from NC to quickly shut that curtain. As I was a PA and did JROTC in high school the F/A's went out of their way to not be nice to us. I flew TAP from FRA to LIS on leave to meet Dad and Mom for a NATO conference. I showed up early and TAP automatically gave me an upgrade to Navigator class and paid coach. I was on a 733, but when the beer, food, and champaigne came and all the people on the back side of the curtain just got sandwiches. I thought I was a big timer. Oh yes, and got to spend time in the Navigator lounge in FRA before my flight.

Yep, good things do happen if you are nice and wait, and what comes around goes around! But to go see the Spice Girls reunion concert... I'm not too sure about that one.

Oh, can't forget the thanks I give for the Portuguese Army Transportatoin for getting me from the airport to my hotel. Oh yes, and the fun we had in Figuero de Faz. I only wish my wife could have been on that trip. I digress, as I watch the snow fall, I'd much rather be in Caiorevo.
EMB145 F/A, F/E, J41 F/A, F/E, because my wife clipped my wings, armchair captain
 
Mir
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:14 am



Quoting MSYPI7185 (Reply 10):
It is complimentary, period.

Ok, so where does the money to provide it come from?

Quoting MSYPI7185 (Reply 10):
Look at it as having Cable TV, for an example. The cost to you is the same whether you watch TV or not.

And you pay for the IFE on the flight whether you actually use it or not.

Quoting SpencerII (Reply 11):
read the terms of your contract of carriage and I don't think you will find anywhere it says you are "entitled to that".

I never claimed that one was entitled to compensation if the IFE is broken - as you said it's not in the contract of carriage. But since you did pay for it in the cost of the ticket, it is nice when airlines compensate you if it isn't working.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
xtoler
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:43 am



Quoting OH-LGA (Reply 17):
I went with a few friends of mine, one from the SF area

That explains it right there. My aunt and her boyfriend live in Oakland and back in '90 they kept trying to get me into listening to Erasure. I sort of grooved on it a bit, especially after I got to the UK. But when Erasure did the ABBAesque album, I had to revert back to rock. Dammit, now I want to listen to New Order.
EMB145 F/A, F/E, J41 F/A, F/E, because my wife clipped my wings, armchair captain
 
warszawa
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 4:51 am

Mir,

Your analogy is not correct nor is it incorrect. It's specific to the airline whom operates the IFE. Some airlines may figure in the cost, some airlines may not. I ship packages daily as part of my job and I use a hell of a lot of packing material throughout the week, all which costs money. However, my shipping costs are what i'm exactly charged from say, UPS, DHL, Fedex, etc. The packing material is complimentary and I dont figure in those costs, which allows me to offer competitive shipping rates, thereby giving me a more favorable customer base (better shipping prices, better or equivalent packing job than competitors, overall better for the customer, which in turn yields more sales). You could apply the same logic to the airlines.

Lets say, B6 vs NW, in terms of IFE, nothing else.

Both with a matched price of $200. B6 is eating the '$2-$3' cost per passenger for IFE, NW has no IFE therfore isnt eating anything. However, using the logic I described above, the B6 passengers will have a much more enjoyable, and favorable experience than on NW, for the same price. B6 decides that the $2-$3 neglible loss per passenger will be more than made up for in volume of ticket sales when people choose them over NW in the future, because of the more favorable in flight experience.

The alternative viewpoint would be B6 priced at $203, NW priced at $200. B6 decides, 'we'll figure in the $3.00 IFE costs per passenger'. However, will they still get as many ticket purchases at $203, or more of a loyal customer base at their higher costs, than NW at $200? [Input ones business decision here]

Some airlines offer complimentary, some airlines figure it in. Its a decision a company, business, or person makes and what they see in their eyes will lead to more sales and profit.

Of course, to each their own, and the same applies to any business or airline.
Flying a plane is no diff. from riding a bicycle. Its just a lot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes. -'Airplane'
 
Mir
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 5:40 am



Quoting Warszawa (Reply 21):
I ship packages daily as part of my job and I use a hell of a lot of packing material throughout the week, all which costs money. However, my shipping costs are what i'm exactly charged from say, UPS, DHL, Fedex, etc.

Do you pay to get the packing material? If you only charge what FedEx charges you to ship a package, where do you get the money to operate the store, pay employees, etc.?

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
cschleic
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:30 am

While you may not be able to separate the cost of the travel from the cost of the IFE, most airlines that have extensive IFE services advertise it to attract customer business. Just like advertising a business class section, certain flight times, etc. If they're saying fly with us and we'll include X, Y and Z (and buy a ticket to do so), then it's part of the service that I've purchased. If it's not working, then they haven't delivered on their advertised end of the deal, and should compensate in some way. It's that simple.

IFE systems seem to have all sorts of problems. Why is beyond me, considering how complicated the planes are, but they're incredibly reliable. Maybe the airlines should get IFE right before offering it on flights.
 
warszawa
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:54 am



Quoting Mir (Reply 22):
Do you pay to get the packing material? If you only charge what FedEx charges you to ship a package, where do you get the money to operate the store, pay employees, etc.?

Of course, I pay for the packing material, boxes, and even online services I pay a monthly fee for, and other associated costs. I think you're thinking i'm in a pack-and-ship business, such as 'The UPS Store', or 'Pak-Mail', etc. I'm not. If I was, that'd never work unless I did have some overhead on the actual charges (aside from selling packing supplies). Most of those pack and ship stores have it rough as it is  Wink
Flying a plane is no diff. from riding a bicycle. Its just a lot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes. -'Airplane'
 
ikramerica
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:30 am



Quoting Vasu (Reply 6):
I have heard of situations where the passenger was just told something along the lines of "you paid for your flight, not the IFE" or something.

On my last CO flight, the last leg IAH-LAX, our 738 had faulty IFE. Now, CO does not even offer IFE on every bird so there is no assurance that you will have it on your plane, but what was interesting with this flight was that they tried to get the video screens to drop, only to have them immediately pull back up. After a few times, they gave up.

But they didn't ever mention it. They just failed to give the pre-flight safety video (and didn't do a manual version either) and when airborne, never mentioned that there was IFE or headphones or anything. They only mentioned the drink services we should expect during the flight (it was one of those flights that didn't overlap any "mealtime" so there was no meal...).

And since they never mentioned the broken IFE, nobody seemed to notice or complain about it! Yet, had they pointed out it was broken, you'd have gotten a lot of griping.

Quoting OH-LGA (Reply 17):
It's all about different strokes for different folks, no?

I've worked with Mel B. She's very nice, and a decent actress...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
Mir
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:45 am



Quoting Warszawa (Reply 24):

My point is that nothing is truly complimentary. Somewhere, someone is paying for it. And since the airlines have no real sources of income except for their passengers, it is the passengers who pay for the drinks, the food, the IFE, the refurbishment of the seats, etc., either as part of their ticket costs or on a pay-as-you-go scheme like Skybus or Ryanair have. The latter means cheaper base fares, but higher costs for the extras, which would otherwise be subsidized by the passengers that don't use them.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
MSYPI7185
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RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Sun Dec 09, 2007 10:19 am



Quoting Mir (Reply 26):
My point is that nothing is truly complimentary. Somewhere, someone is paying for it. And since the airlines have no real sources of income except for their passengers, it is the passengers who pay for the drinks, the food, the IFE, the refurbishment of the seats, etc., either as part of their ticket costs or on a pay-as-you-go scheme like Skybus or Ryanair have. The latter means cheaper base fares, but higher costs for the extras, which would otherwise be subsidized by the passengers that don't use them.

The vast majority of the income for airlines is passengers, however we get income from Freight Forwarders, other carriers like UPS & Fed Ex, the USPS, The US Government via contracts whether used or not. Some routes are subsidized by the Govt to offset the cost of ops especially very small markets, Some routes are subsidized by corporations so the service would be available. (Ex. US had flts MSY-BPT subsidized by Entergy Corp. These were reg scheduled flts to be booked by anyone, but would not exist had Entergy not subsidized a substantial portion of it.), We get money by contracting out our services to other airlines and other businesses, such as maintenance, ground handling, deicing, for a few examples. Some airlines such as US have an aircraft leasing division, I believe it still exist, but could have been sold off, I just do not remember for sure. UAL used to own parts of a rental car company and a hotel. They have since divested themselves of this a long time ago, but the point remains the airlines do have other streams of revenue, not just ticket sales. Notice you hear AMR - parent of American Airlines, UAL Corp. - parent of United Airlines, and there are many others. Granted the majority of their revenue 90%+ is the airline operation.

However I truly wish that your statement were factually true, or should I say literally true. Then the airlines would rarely lose money. Passengers do not truly pay for everything as you state, many of these items are a cost of doing business. The airline decided that to offer this service would hopefully give them an advantage over a competitor all things being equal. If B6 did away with their IFE their ticket prices will not drop at all! The same applies to VX and others as well.

For a time US had an inflight phone system on their planes in the late 80's - early 90's. US did not pay for them, they were supplied by the company who marketed them (the first vendor we had IIRC). When you paid the exorbitant cost for making that call, US got a percentage, but the retrofitting and the system itself cost US next to nothing, if anything at all.

But I will concede this, nothing is free, someone somewhere is paying for it. I am pointing out it is not necessarily the passenger buying the ticket.
 
VirginAmerica
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2005 7:14 am

RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Wed Dec 12, 2007 5:27 am

I also flew the "dark" A319 on Thanksgiving morning from LAS to SFO. I was going to SFO from MCO to spend the holiday with family and I flew into LAS the night before specifically to fly on VX. I could have flown on WN but I wanted the full VX experience. I boarded the flight and received the envelope as well and I must say it was the most professional announcement of an IFE not working I have ever received. I used to be a F/A on N7 and our IFE worked less time than it actually did and we never offered anything. I understand that the Non-RED equipped planes are only being used on the short haul flights of LAS-SFO and SFO-LAX. The flight is less than 2 hours so it wasn't really that big of a deal. The friendliness and professionalism of every team mate more than made up for the lack of RED. On my flight back to LAS that Saturday afternoon I upgraded to FC for only $50 and RED was fully functional so it made up for the lack of it. The VX experience is the best out there and this momentary growing pain will be forgotten soon enough.

--Ayr  spin 
 
FlyingAY
Posts: 416
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 2:26 pm

RE: "Dark" Virgin America A319?

Wed Dec 12, 2007 6:13 am



Quoting SpencerII (Reply 11):
This is not true at all, read the terms of your contract of carriage and I don't think you will find anywhere it says you are "entitled to that".

What else during the flight is complimentary then? If you pay for an international first class flight but get served an economy meal, is that ok, because the meal is "complimentary" and not mentioned in the contract of carriage? Or if the reclining seat in F/C doesn't work?

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