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jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 10:34 pm

Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 6:58 pm




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 photo map-3.gif
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Maps generated by theGreat Circle Mapper -copyright © Karl L. Swartz.


Videos related to this report

Virgin Australia | 737-800 | MEL-SYD | Economy : http://youtu.be/dYbcVDInEu0
Virgin Australia | E190 | SYD-BNE | Economy: http://youtu.be/seyemroiGgw


Hi there,

This is the fourth part of nine telling the tale of my trip down to Australia in April. The previous three parts can be viewed here if you’ve missed them:

Oz 2014 1: Positioning LGW-BCN With EasyJet (by jwhite9185 May 26 2014 in Trip Reports)
Oz 2014 2: Qatar Business BCN-DOH-SIN A333/77W (by jwhite9185 Jun 10 2014 in Trip Reports)
Oz 2014 3: Heading Down Under With MH 737/A333 (by jwhite9185 Jun 26 2014 in Trip Reports)

Once I’d sorted out actually getting to Oz, it was time to book some domestic runs. Being a One World sapphire card holder, it would have made most sense to fly all the sectors with QF – but where would the fun in that be? Instead, I turned to Australia’s other major player, Virgin Australia. From Melbourne, I decided to head up to Brisbane. I could have taken a non stop flight, but for just a few pounds more I managed to squeeze in a stop in Sydney. Completely pointless, other than to try out both the 737-800 and Embraer 190 of the airline.



One thing I did like was the free seat selection from booking.



And something I didn’t like was VA thinking my Visa debit card was a credit card, and applying a surcharge accordingly. Although I’ve since had a similar issue with SN – which you can read about in due course.



On the day of departure, I finally got to see a little bit of blue sky. I took a walk around the Docklands area after checking out of my hotel.


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As well as having a look around a shopping centre in the area.



I made my way to South Cross Station to grab the sky bus to the airport, although as I was a little early I grabbed myself a tasty lunch.



Before making my way through to catch the bus.


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I arrived around twenty minutes later.



Upon entering the terminal, I was immediately met with baggage claim. Seems this is popular in both the USA and in Australia but being from the UK it seems so strange.



I made my way upstairs to the Virgin Australia bag drop. During online check in, I'd opted to get my boarding passes sent to my phone, but they never turned up - so no souvenirs today, although as it turned out VA don’t rip their boarding passes so I was able to keep them in tact anyway.


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My bag was sent on its way after a little bit of a fuss over weather I had paid for bags or not, but it was sorted out with no issues. I took a brief walk landside, but nothing much was of interest.



I headed through security soon after and it was painless. Bag on the belt, through the metal detector and on my way within 20 seconds. Why can't everywhere be like this?!



I found out where my flight would be departing from before I perched myself by a window and watched the few movements outside.


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What’s that doing here?!



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My ride on stand


I hoped my bag wouldn’t stay dumped on the tarmac…


Boarding began at 14:30 and I made my way onboard via the rear stairs.


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jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 10:34 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 6:58 pm


VA849
MEL-SYD
April 2014
Boeing 737-800 / VH-YFK Long Beach
Seat: 24A / Economy
Scheduled: 15:00/16:25
Off Stand: 15:07
On Stand: 16:29


I was welcomed by name at the rear door and I took my assigned seat in the clean cabin.



Although there were armrests up and seatbelts not crossed from the previous flight.


.


The captain welcomed everybody and announced a flying time of an hour.


.
Doesn’t make much sense to me…


There was a bit of a wait for one last final passenger but it only delayed us by a minute or two.



We pushed back and made our way out to the active. Along the way, we passed a pair of A380's from QF and SQ and a 787 of Jetstar.


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We held in position at the end of the runway for a couple of minutes to give sufficient clearance between us and the QF 767 that departed just before us, before lifting off.


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As promised, we made a pair of right turns to send us in SYD's direction.


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The BSI makes the 737 look so much better


Shortly after, I noticed the in flight Wi-Fi had been enabled, but it was only to allow you to view the IFE, rather than access the outside world. It still allowed you to view the skymap though which was pretty interesting



Then the snack service began, which I'm led to believe is a relatively new concept on board.



Just as the drinks had reached my row, the flight deck announced we were a minute away from descent, the weather in SYD wasn't brilliant and that we should be landing in 25 minutes.


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Surprisingly green down there




The rubbish from the snack service was hastily collected before we hit some mean clouds.


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On finals, there was a great view of downtown Sydney, before we hit the ground and screeched to a halt (not literally).


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A couple of minutes later we were on stand alongside a slightly more sunburned brother and I made my way to the terminal via the rear steps once more.


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I didn't have to go far for my next flight - just next door In fact. I hung around this area, as I needed to charge my phone up. Eventually I did go for a wander as my flight was showing a 15 minute delay.


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I could see the aircraft due to operate the flight wouldn't be long though, so I made my way back down to the gate.


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Quite a while after landing, it pulled on to stand.



One thing I did notice at both Melbourne and Sydney (and later on in Brisbane for that matter) were an awful lot of calls going out to passengers who were about to be offloaded. One, maybe two wouldn't be so much of an issue but these calls were coming every 5/10 minutes or so. People really do like to leave things to the last minute!

Boarding was announced at pretty much our STD. Despite the ground crew attempting to enforce some sort of order, it didn't work all that well.
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 10:34 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:00 pm


VA973
SYD-BNE
April 2014
Embraer E190 / VH-ZPE
Seat: 18F / Economy
Scheduled: 18:00/19:30
Off Stand: 18:41
On Stand: 20:06


I took my assigned seat of 18F, and the legroom was comparable to most other E-Jets I'd been on. Again, the armrest was up and the seatbelt was slung where the previous occupant had left it.


.


Despite the plane being pretty full, boarding was completed pretty quickly. However we still sat on stand for around thirty minutes while the paperwork was completed.



The crew announced a flying time of an hour and nine minutes.

We eventually did push back and made a pretty long taxi over to the active.


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Upon climb out there was some pretty heavy turbulence as we made our way through the rain. When the crew were given permission to start service, they got on with it pretty efficiently. Again, it was the enhanced snack service.


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I spent the flight browsing the inflight mag.

Pretty big fleet VA have now.



As the crew were passing through the cabin collecting the rubbish, the engines tone turned from a roar to a hum. Guess that means descent started. The flight deck confirmed this a few moments later, and apologised for the delay, blaming the bad weather in Sydney delaying things for them all day.



Luckily, there wasn't a lot of cloud around in Brisbane, so there were some good views of the city on approach. Unfortunately, as I’d developed a cold in the last couple of days (that would eventually take the best part of a month to shift…), I couldn’t appreciate it all that much as my ears popping made it a pretty unpleasant experience.


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Passing the brilliantly lit Gateway Bridge


We landed and exited to the left, arriving on to a remote stand a few moments later.

Nice divider between J and Y.




I followed the signs to baggage claim, where my bag was one of the first out into the humidity.



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I then made my way across the bridge to catch the train to the city.


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I arrived around twenty minutes later, and made the short walk to the Hilton CBD. I was pretty impressed at how fancy this place was, especially considering the price I paid!



Upon check in, I was informed that due to my status, they could definitely upgrade my room (about the fifth time that's happened now) and that if I wished I could have a late check out - great!



After this, I took a brief wander around the block to find something to eat.


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As Brisbane is a pretty busy place on a Saturday night, and nothing really took my fancy, I decided it would be room service for dinner.



Virgin Australia then… Well they did the job I guess and it seems like they’re starting to shift their focus away from being a LCC. Their planes were modern and clean. And that’s really all I can really say about them. One of those airlines that does what it says on the tin without being exceptionally good or bad really.

Look out for the following part of this series, due along in a week or two.

Previous trip reports

Oz 2014 3: Heading Down Under With MH 737/A333 (by jwhite9185 Jun 26 2014 in Trip Reports)
Oz 2014 2: Qatar Business BCN-DOH-SIN A333/77W (by jwhite9185 Jun 10 2014 in Trip Reports)
Oz 2014 1: Positioning LGW-BCN With EasyJet (by jwhite9185 May 26 2014 in Trip Reports)
Salzburg With BA In Club On The 737-400.March 2014 (by jwhite9185 May 11 2014 in Trip Reports)
The Red Nosed Way To Faro. LGW-OSL-FAO-LGW DY/BA (by jwhite9185 Apr 28 2014 in Trip Reports)
New Year, New AA: LHR-ORD-BOS-JFK-LHR 772/738/77W (by jwhite9185 Apr 1 2014 in Trip Reports)
To Fly, To Serve: BA LGW-VCE-LCY 737/E170 Dec.13 (by jwhite9185 Mar 22 2014 in Trip Reports)
Alicante With BA In J: LHR-ALC-LGW A319/734 Nov.13 (by jwhite9185 Mar 16 2014 in Trip Reports)
The EZY Way To Catch A LAN 787 LGW-MAD-FRA-ARN-LHR (by jwhite9185 Feb 21 2014 in Trip Reports)
Trains, Planes And… Boats? ZRH A.net Meet (by jwhite9185 Feb 5 2014 in Trip Reports)
Asia 4: Heading Home On An A380 KUL-LHR (by jwhite9185 Jan 20 2014 in Trip Reports)
Asia 3: JAL 767 To Kuala Lumpur NRT-KUL (by jwhite9185 Jan 10 2014 in Trip Reports)
Asia 2:Catching A Cathay Pacific 747 To Tokyo In F (by jwhite9185 Dec 22 2013 in Trip Reports)
Asia 1: A Journey Of Epic Proportions LHR-KUL-HKG (by jwhite9185 Dec 8 2013 in Trip Reports)
Comparing The Competition Again: VS/BA LHR-ABZ-LHR (by jwhite9185 Nov 24 2013 in Trip Reports)
Across The UK With Flybe SOU-EDI-MAN-SOU E195/Q400 (by jwhite9185 Nov 5 2013 in Trip Reports)
An Impulse Buy To Catch BA's 787 In C LHR-ARN-LHR (by jwhite9185 Oct 18 2013 in Trip Reports)
BA,The DB, AB And A Bit Of DAT LHR-STR-NUE-DUS-STR (by jwhite9185 Oct 6 2013 in Trip Reports)
Jettime To Scandinavia: LHR-CPH-BHX 733/SAS CR9 (by jwhite9185 Sep 28 2013 in Trip Reports)
Arabia & Thailand 2013 5: Catching A Whale To LHR (by jwhite9185 Sep 3 2013 in Trip Reports)
Arabia & Thailand 2013 4:Back To DXB With Oman Air (by jwhite9185 Aug 20 2013 in Trip Reports)
Arabia & Thailand 2013 3: BKK-DXB-MCT With EK/WY (by jwhite9185 Aug 6 2013 in Trip Reports)
Arabia & Thailand 2013 2: Two TG Classic's To HKT (by jwhite9185 Jul 20 2013 in Trip Reports)
Arabia & Thailand 2013 1: LHR-DXB-BKK EK A380/77W (by jwhite9185 Jul 9 2013 in Trip Reports)
USA 2013 Pt 5: AA & BA's New WTP MCO-MIA-ATL-LHR (by jwhite9185 Jun 25 2013 in Trip Reports)
USA 2013 Pt 4: Heading South On A Mad Dog ORD-MCO (by jwhite9185 Jun 13 2013 in Trip Reports)
USA 2013 Pt 3: Almost A Disaster With AA DCA-ORD (by jwhite9185 May 29 2013 in Trip Reports)
USA 2013 Pt 2: BA A320/744 WTP CDG-LHR-IAD (by jwhite9185 May 14 2013 in Trip Reports)
USA 2013 Pt 1: The Beginning BA LHR-ORY (by jwhite9185 Apr 20 2013 in Trip Reports)
Comparing The Competition: BA/VS Inaugural MAN-LHR (by jwhite9185 Mar 31 2013 in Trip Reports)
Taking TAP To Portugal: LGW-OPO-LIS-LHR Feb. 2013 (by jwhite9185 Mar 10 2013 in Trip Reports)
Poland On The Dream)liner - LOT LHR-WAW-LHR In C/Y (by jwhite9185 Jan 1 2013 in Trip Reports)
A Speedbird & Titan 767 – LHR-LCA-LHR In C…ish (by jwhite9185 Feb 1 2013 in Trip Reports)
British Airways LGW-AGP-LCY 737/E190 Nov. 2012 (by jwhite9185 Dec 1 2012 in Trip Reports)
Part 2: 5 Flights 3 Airlines MXP-ZRH-DUS-LHR LX/LH (by jwhite9185 Nov 14 2012 in Trip Reports)
Part 1: 5 Flights 3 Airlines LHR-BRU-MXP In Theory (by jwhite9185 Oct 29 2012 in Trip Reports)
Cancellations, Widebodies And Iberia LHR-MAD-LHR (by jwhite9185 Oct 17 2012 in Trip Reports)
Virgin Atlantic's New A330 LHR-JFK-LHR (by jwhite9185 Sep 21 2012 in Trip Reports)
A Night In Amsterdam - KLM F70/738 LHR-AMS-LHR (by jwhite9185 Aug 28 2012 in Trip Reports)
Trying Out Flybe - LGW-BHD-GLA-BHD-LGW (by jwhite9185 Jul 11 2012 in Trip Reports)
A Day Trip To MAN (by jwhite9185 Jun 21 2012 in Trip Reports)
Nice, Monaco And The Great British Lounge With BMI (by jwhite9185 May 13 2012 in Trip Reports)
EI237/182 LGW-DUB-LHR And 2 Lounges (by jwhite9185 Apr 18 2012 in Trip Reports)
LGW-FRA-BRU-LHR With LH And SN (by jwhite9185 Mar 27 2012 in Trip Reports)
BA906/8735 LHR-FRA-LCY (by jwhite9185 Mar 13 2012 in Trip Reports)
VS015/016 LGW-MCO-LGW June 2010 (by jwhite9185 Jan 20 2012 in Trip Reports)
VS006 MIA-LHR A340-642 June 2008 (by jwhite9185 Feb 10 2012 in Trip Reports)
Virgin Atlantic 747 To BGI - October 2007 (by jwhite9185 Aug 3 2012 in Trip Reports)
 
Luxair747SP
Posts: 648
Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 2:24 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:11 pm

Hi James,

Nice part of your series!
Virgin doesnt look bad, i especially like the look of their cabins, very clean and fresh.
And the catering seems to be quite interesting, reminds me a bit of LH where you also never know what to expect.

Thanks for sharing.
Cheers,
Johannes
 
ab486
Posts: 179
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2014 12:26 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 10:00 pm

Hi James,

Another enjoyable instalment of your trip. VA look pretty decent here. How were the loads?

Looking forward to more!
 
ben123planes
Posts: 93
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 07, 2014 11:45 pm

Hi James,

Great report - I sending out my report on the QF domestic service tomorrow; the battle of the Australian trip reports :P Not that I have much chance against your mammoth series compared to my tiddly 3 parter :P

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
I took a walk around the Docklands area after checking out of my hotel.

From where these pictures were taken, my apart hotel was along that path giving a very similar view to what you've given there - I found it to be a very nice part of Melbourne.

Looking forward to Part 5,

Ben
 
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allrite
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Jul 08, 2014 4:03 am

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
I made my way to South Cross Station to grab the sky bus to the airport, although as I was a little early I grabbed myself a tasty lunch.

That pluto pup/dagwood dog/... looks overcooked!

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 1):
A couple of minutes later we were on stand alongside a slightly more sunburned brother and I made my way to the terminal via the rear steps once more.

Love the description!
I like artificial banana essence!
 
MIAspotter
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Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 1:57 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Jul 08, 2014 9:12 am

Hi James!

Once again, an enjoyable read with lovely pics,

VA looks like a nice carrier, are their fares considerably cheaper than QF? or better said... is flying within Australia cheap?
I am starting to do my OZ research... hehe.

Looking forward to the other parts  

MIAspotter.
Nos vamos de Vueling?
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 10:34 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Jul 08, 2014 6:11 pm

Johannes,

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 3):
Nice part of your series!

Thanks,

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 3):
Virgin doesnt look bad, i especially like the look of their cabins, very clean and fresh.

Yeah they were pretty clean - I guess their one marketing point over QF is their fresher fleet.

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 3):
And the catering seems to be quite interesting, reminds me a bit of LH where you also never know what to expect.

From what I could gather, some routes were BOB, others were free. Seems like a slight identity crisis to me.

Adam,

Quoting ab486 (Reply 4):
Another enjoyable instalment of your trip.

Thanks.

Quoting ab486 (Reply 4):
VA look pretty decent here. How were the loads?

Both flights were pretty full. There may have been the odd spare seat around, but the load was over 90% on both flights. Saying that, I'm led to believe the MEL-SYD-BNE corridor has the busiest flights in the world.

ben123planes

Quoting ben123planes (Reply 5):
Great report - I sending out my report on the QF domestic service tomorrow;

Thanks - QF will feature in my next report, so good to compare your experiences.

Quoting ben123planes (Reply 5):
Not that I have much chance against your mammoth series compared to my tiddly 3 parter :P

Quality vs quantity!

Quoting ben123planes (Reply 5):
From where these pictures were taken, my apart hotel was along that path giving a very similar view to what you've given there - I found it to be a very nice part of Melbourne.

Yeah it was a pleasant area. Aided by the first sun I'd seen down under...

allrite

Quoting allrite (Reply 6):
That pluto pup/dagwood dog/... looks overcooked!

Either way it tasted good!

Christian,

Quoting MIAspotter (Reply 7):
Once again, an enjoyable read with lovely pics,

Gracias!

Quoting MIAspotter (Reply 7):
VA looks like a nice carrier, are their fares considerably cheaper than QF?

I wouldn't say considerably cheaper. This trip cost more as I added in the stop in SYD, but I think the direct route was comparable to QF. Don't make any final decisions until you've read the next part though... you'll be surprised at the differences between the carriers! I know which one I'm more likely to fly again...

Quoting MIAspotter (Reply 7):
or better said... is flying within Australia cheap?

I'd say comparable to flying in Europe, depending on the length of the flights.

Quoting MIAspotter (Reply 7):
Looking forward to the other parts

Guess were over halfway through now...
 
pokfur
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Joined: Sat Aug 03, 2013 2:35 pm

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Wed Jul 09, 2014 4:09 am

Hello James!

Thank you for this TR. It was a joy to read   

I've never tried at Virgin group products before, since they don't fly to Singapore, but I would love to one day. They sound like a nice airline to fly with!

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
and watched the few movements outside.

What happened to that SQ tail?! It looks like it got sawed off!!

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 1):
I was welcomed by name at the rear door and I took my assigned seat in the clean cabin.

The cabin looks very modern indeed. I like.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 1):
The BSI makes the 737 look so much better

Agree with you 110%. Will be on one is 6 days' time!   

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
A couple of minutes later we were on stand alongside a slightly more sunburned brother and I made my way to the terminal via the rear steps once more.

Lol I believe the ozone layer above Australia is still a bit broken I think.

The e-jet looks like a nice little thing too. Unfortunately, it is completely uncommon in Asia so I've never sat one. Hope to be able to try them some day!

Thanks for all the sharp, clear photos as well.   

pokfur
 
aflyingkiwi
Posts: 434
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Wed Jul 09, 2014 6:06 am

Hi,

Thanks for the nice read. It's been 2.5 years since I last flew VA domestic and it looks like they've gone a bit more upmarket. They didn't have any meal service than. Pretty cool that you got an E190, sadly I've yet to log an E-jet yet.

Thanks,
aflyingkiwi
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Wed Jul 09, 2014 5:43 pm

pokfur,

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
Thank you for this TR. It was a joy to read

Thanks, no problem.

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
I've never tried at Virgin group products before, since they don't fly to Singapore, but I would love to one day

You'd think VA would fly SYD-SIN... Or VS LHR-SIN now the SQ tie up has now gone.

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
What happened to that SQ tail?! It looks like it got sawed off!!

Deflected rudder!

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
The cabin looks very modern indeed. I like.

Most Virgin cabins are. Even the VS little red jets have mood lighting and purple leather seats.

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
Unfortunately, it is completely uncommon in Asia so I've never sat one.

Guess they are pretty uncommon in Asia aren't they...

Quoting pokfur (Reply 9):
Hope to be able to try them some day!

They're pretty roomy for regional jets.

aflyingkiwi,

Quoting aflyingkiwi (Reply 10):
Thanks for the nice read

No problem

Quoting aflyingkiwi (Reply 10):
t's been 2.5 years since I last flew VA domestic and it looks like they've gone a bit more upmarket. They didn't have any meal service than.

They do seem to be shifting from LCC to full service.

Quoting aflyingkiwi (Reply 10):
Pretty cool that you got an E190, sadly I've yet to log an E-jet yet.

The whole reason I routed through SYD. If it would have been a pair of 737's I probably would have taken the direct route.
 
The777Man
Posts: 6147
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 1999 4:54 am

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Wed Jul 09, 2014 8:20 pm

Hi James !

Nice report again with nice pictures !

VA looks okay but I really don't like the interior colors. The 777-300/ERs looked very different inside when I flew on V Australia but not sure what they look like now.

V Australia LAX-SYD 8May10 In Y With Pics (by The777Man May 19 2010 in Trip Reports)

Great that you tried two different kinds of aircraft types rather than going nonstop!

Looking forward to the next report !

The777Man
Boeing 777s flown: UA, TG, KE, BA, CX, NH, JD, JL, CZ, SQ, EK, NG, CO, AF, SV, KU, DL, AA, MH, OZ, CA, MS, SU, LY, RG, PE, AZ, KL, VN, PK, EY, NZ, AM, BR, AC, DT, UU, OS, AI, 9W, KQ, QR, VA, JJ, ET, TK, PR, BG, T5, CI, MU and LX.. Further to fly.. LH 777
 
gabrielchew
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:12 pm

Nice report James. VA seem like a good domestic airline.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
Before making my way through to catch the bus.

That is one of the most expensive airport buses on the planet

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
Doesn’t make much sense to me…

Huh? So you can only get a coke on flights leaving between 5 and 7pm?
http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights: AMS-RIX-BUD-VDA,ETH-TLV-FCO-LHR,STN-TXL-LCY,LTN-CPH-LTN,LGW-SZG,MUC-LHR
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:50 pm

Lars,

Quoting The777Man (Reply 12):
Nice report again with nice pictures !

Thanks,

Quoting The777Man (Reply 12):
The 777-300/ERs looked very different inside when I flew on V Australia but not sure what they look like now.

Cant say I've seen much from the 777's, but I'm assuming the only difference between now and then is the paint.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 12):
Great that you tried two different kinds of aircraft types rather than going nonstop!

Yeah, I'm glad I got to try two different flights, with one on a regional jet. There was pretty good consistency across the two.

Gabriel,

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
Nice report James.

Thanks,

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
VA seem like a good domestic airline.

They were, but I was more impressed with QF, which will feature in the next part.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
That is one of the most expensive airport buses on the planet

The other being the Woking-Heathrow National Express... Although I have recently discovered that its cheaper to buy a ticket on board rather than either in advance online or from the ticket machine at the station - figure that one out!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
Huh? So you can only get a coke on flights leaving between 5 and 7pm?

I couldn't figure it out... at first I thought you could select anything from the menu, until I saw the bags of cookies being handed out, with nothing else offered.
 
RobMEL
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Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:01 am

RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Fri Jul 11, 2014 12:39 pm

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
Huh? So you can only get a coke on flights leaving between 5 and 7pm?

It means you can only get a complimentary coke between 5 and 7. At other times you can purchase one if you want to.

I do agree it is somewhat confusing; as a relatively frequent VA flier, I still get confused about what I may or may not get in terms of snacks/drinks etc.
 
roberts87
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Fri Jul 11, 2014 7:28 pm

Hello James,

Excellent report as always, accompanied with some great pictures.
Nice to read about Virgin Australia, good comparison on the 738 and E190.
Looking forward to reading more as always!
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
Posts: 1586
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sat Jul 12, 2014 11:09 am

RobMEL

Quoting RobMEL (Reply 15):
It means you can only get a complimentary coke between 5 and 7. At other times you can purchase one if you want to.

Good to know.

Robert,

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 16):
Excellent report as always, accompanied with some great pictures.

Thanks,

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 16):
Nice to read about Virgin Australia, good comparison on the 738 and E190.

Yeah, I got what I'd hoped for on this trip

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 16):
Looking forward to reading more as always!

Thats good, as I have plenty more to come.
 
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OA260
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Jul 13, 2014 5:53 pm

Hey James  

Interesting Domestic report. They seem better than I thought although maybe its because they are becoming what I call a ''Friendly LCC''.

I like the moving map via wifi on personal devices. Pretty nice ! The divider is nice too as you said.

Look forward to the next TR.

Regards

Philip  
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Jul 13, 2014 6:45 pm

Hi Philip,

Quoting OA260 (Reply 18):
Interesting Domestic report.

Thanks,

Quoting OA260 (Reply 18):
They seem better than I thought although maybe its because they are becoming what I call a ''Friendly LCC''.

Yeah the service was pretty good - I was expecting it to be completely BOB. I think they're trying to shift away from being a LCC, but they still have some areas that are - like having to pay extra for baggage, and others that aren't - such as free seat selection. Interesting airline.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 18):
I like the moving map via wifi on personal devices.

I think more airlines are moving towards this as it saves cost and weight against having seat back IFE. Also, no big IFE boxes under the seat in front.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 18):
The divider is nice too as you said.

Looks better than a curtain - although less flexibly if the cabin is empty/full.
 
ba319-131
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Thu Jul 17, 2014 7:57 pm

Hi James,

Another good read!

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
From Melbourne, I decided to head up to Brisbane. I could have taken a non stop flight, but for just a few pounds more I managed to squeeze in a stop in Sydney. Completely pointless, other than to try out both the 737-800 and Embraer 190 of the airline

- Well why go direct when you can go indirect?

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
there were armrests up and seatbelts not crossed from the previous flight.

- Interesting that on both flights this was the case, I don't recall seeing this elsewhere.

By the looks of it they are as good as QF domestic, however I last flew QF domestic in 2007.

Cheers

Mark
111 732 733 734 735 736 73G 738 739,7M8 BBJ 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 764 772 77L 773 77W L15 D10 D30 D40 AB3 AB6 312 313 318 319 320 20N 321 21N 332 333 342 343 345 346 359 351 388 CS1 CS3 I86 154 SSJ CRJ CR7 CR9 CRK 145 170 175 220
 
jwhite9185
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Fri Jul 18, 2014 2:00 pm

Mark,

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 20):
Another good read!

Thanks,

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 20):
- Well why go direct when you can go indirect?

That was my reasoning.

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 20):
- Interesting that on both flights this was the case, I don't recall seeing this elsewhere.

In the case of the SYD-BNE sector it was understandable as the flight was late coming in, but on the MEL-SYD sector there were no excuses as the plane was sat there for a good hour or so before we boarded.

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 20):
By the looks of it they are as good as QF domestic

I thought QF were better - you'll be able to find out why shortly...
 
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sultanils
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Jul 20, 2014 7:51 pm

James,

With a delay I devoured another piece of your Down Under reports. 2 solid flights on VA and as you said, the LCC spirit they once had - or still partly have - looks like gone?

Quote:
And something I didn’t like was VA thinking my Visa debit card was a credit card, and applying a surcharge accordingly.

Strange. Even Ryanair doesn’t do this  Wow! With a debit card they do get their money directly so I don’t see a point in charging extra for this.

Quote:
Although there were armrests up and seatbelts not crossed from the previous flight.

A bit sloppy from the maintenance folks? And also on the 2nd flight    How long or short is the turnaround?

Quote:
as I needed to charge my phone up.

These damn smart phones are real battery killers...

Quote:
Nice divider between J and Y

Stylish   

Sultanils
In thrust we trust.
 
FLIEGER67
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 21, 2014 6:11 am

Hi, J.,

really good to follow you´re domestic down under experience. Never been on the Virgin there.
Should I do another try for Australia?. Well, who knows!.
Nice pictures, too.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)
Tripreporter.net
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Jul 22, 2014 3:41 pm

Nils,

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
With a delay I devoured another piece of your Down Under reports.

I do hope it tasted good.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
2 solid flights on VA and as you said, the LCC spirit they once had - or still partly have - looks like gone?

Not completely gone, but definitely on its way out.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
Strange. Even Ryanair doesn’t do this   With a debit card they do get their money directly so I don’t see a point in charging extra for this.

I had a similar issue with SN.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
A bit sloppy from the maintenance folks?

Maybe its not company policy?

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
And also on the 2nd flight    How long or short is the turnaround?

The turnaround wasn't too long due to the late arrival, but still, how long does it take to cross a seatbelt?

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
These damn smart phones are real battery killers...

That and the fact I'd been texting PalmJet for most of the afternoon...

Quoting sultanils (Reply 22):
Stylish

Better than a curtain.

Markus,

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 23):
really good to follow you´re domestic down under experience.

Thanks

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 23):
Never been on the Virgin there.

The lack of alliance means they're not the most attractive option. I didn't even get any VS miles from these flights!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 23):
Should I do another try for Australia?. Well, who knows!.

Sure why not?!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 23):
Nice pictures, too.

Thanks.
 
signol
Posts: 2652
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:37 am

Hi James,

Great report, detailed and plenty of photos as usual!
Nice too that Virgin offer connecting flights for a similar price to direct. Makes it easier to log more and see more   Did you get to see more of Sydney at another stage of the trip?

Thanks again

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
jwhite9185
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Jul 28, 2014 5:51 pm

signol,

Quoting signol (Reply 25):
Great report, detailed and plenty of photos as usual!

Thanks,

Quoting signol (Reply 25):
Nice too that Virgin offer connecting flights for a similar price to direct. Makes it easier to log more and see more

Thats the way I saw it!

Quoting signol (Reply 25):
Did you get to see more of Sydney at another stage of the trip?

Yeah, I flew back to SYD the following day for a longer stay.
 
PlaneHunter
Posts: 6538
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Aug 24, 2014 12:47 pm

Hi James,

nice report about Virgin Australia. Qute disappointing that PTVs were removed again - and I still don't like that white scheme.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Thread starter):
Pretty big fleet VA have now.

Operated by different airlines...


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
jwhite9185
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Aug 24, 2014 3:15 pm

PH,

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 27):
nice report about Virgin Australia.

Thanks,

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 27):
Qute disappointing that PTVs were removed again

Really? Never knew they had them installed.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 27):
I still don't like that white scheme.

I quite like it. The red one reminded me too much of Virgin Express, which in my view made it quite dated.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 27):
Operated by different airlines...

True... Still shows how much they've grown though.
 
adamspotter
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Sun Aug 24, 2014 8:24 pm

Hi James,

Another nice report you made here, well done!
Good to see you try VA out while in Aussie land. They actually look quite good here despite the slight delays. Love the interiors and the snacks also look sufficient for such short flights.  
Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 1):

Although there were armrests up and seatbelts not crossed from the previous flight.

How dare they 
Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 1):
Doesn’t make much sense to me…

Doesn't make much sense to me either haha..

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 2):
Again, the armrest was up and the seatbelt was slung where the previous occupant had left it.

I guess this is to be expected as the plane was already late and all they want to do is get out of there ASAP..

Thanks for another entertaining report!

cheers,

Brendan
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:34 am

Brendan,

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
Another nice report you made here, well done!

Thanks

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
Good to see you try VA out while in Aussie land.

Yeah, I figured I may as well try them out whilst I was in the area.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
. Love the interiors

That was one of their strongest points I found. Great interiors.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
Doesn't make much sense to me either haha..

Glad I wasn't the only one.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
I guess this is to be expected as the plane was already late and all they want to do is get out of there ASAP..

Possibly, but then we sat around for 30 minutes going nowhere.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 29):
Thanks for another entertaining report!

No problem.
 
VapourTrails
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:59 am

Hi jwhite9185

Thanks for a great read, plus videos and photography - quality supreme! Impeccable trip report and presentation write up of.    Your journey has lightened my day!

I haven't flown Virgin Australia for the best part of a decade. So much so, I still think of them as DJ. They have really consolidated during that time, and I would find quite a different airline now, flying on those domestic routes. I found on last fare check that QF was for me, easier to book with when it came to checked baggage combined with choice of fare $ so that is one reason why I have delayed going (back) to them or interchanging. The E190 now that is a good reason too for giving VA a go!

=
 
jwhite9185
Topic Author
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RE: Oz 2014 4: Oz Domestic, VA MEL-SYD-BNE 738/E190

Tue Aug 26, 2014 6:32 pm

VapourTrails

Quoting VapourTrails (Reply 31):
Thanks for a great read, plus videos and photography - quality supreme! Impeccable trip report and presentation write up of.    Your journey has lightened my day!

Thanks, glad you liked it.

Quoting VapourTrails (Reply 31):
So much so, I still think of them as DJ.

Guess its hard for a no frills airline to shake its reputation.

Quoting VapourTrails (Reply 31):
I found on last fare check that QF was for me, easier to book with when it came to checked baggage combined with choice of fare $ so that is one reason why I have delayed going (back) to them or interchanging.

Thats one issue I had with these flights. Initially I wasn't planning on checking any bags, so booked a fare without any included. Later these plans changed and there wasn't an easy solution to add them to my booking. I had to phone up in the end. Even then, there were still a few questions asked at check in.

Quoting VapourTrails (Reply 31):
The E190 now that is a good reason too for giving VA a go!

Worth giving them a shot at least once.

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