Virgin Partners dropping like flies

By asbindia | Sep 30, 2018, 08:38 AM

As a VA FF Platinum its quite disheartening to see that Borghetti and the team are that stubborn not to join a proper alliance like Sky Team or Star Alliance, in the past 18 months we have seen Air Berlin go into Administration, Alitalia struggle with interests for it to be sold off, Etihad on its major losses and cost cutting, HNA selling off assets due to its MAJOR debts and SAA filing for bankruptcy now.

At the moment it seems that SIA and Delta are the only somewhat stable partners Virgin have, the only reason I am still with Virgin is because they family pool points and SC's and I have been able to get my partner Platinum out of that but other than that with their confusing alliance I wonder why anyone else is still a FF with VA?

Please feel free to list why you are a FF with VA and if you are happy or unhappy with their alliance

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By TJS | Sep 30, 2018, 10:13 AM
And don’t forget Air NZ gave them the flick as well’
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By mspcooper | Sep 30, 2018, 11:35 AM
I have been a big supporter of Virgin for a long time now, they are a “decent” competition for Qantas. They brought in Premium lane entry, free upgrades to business, affordable business class fares. Ofcourse, they have struggled with decent lounge offering and partner relations, however, they do not a have major international network themselves, which means they can get away with this.
To compete over the next years, they need to find an alliance so their business customers find some consistency!
Otherwise, they are better off being a great domestic airline and worry less about international network and concentrate on the US and hong kong.
I have decided to keep KrisFlyer gold and let go Virgin Platinum this year because of this.
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By DanV | Sep 30, 2018, 11:41 AM
Virgin doesn't exactly have spare money lying around to join an alliance considering their financial situation.

Plus VA are 'persona non-grata' to the Star Alliance thanks to NZ and UA, both will use their veto to block VA's entry into the Star Alliance should SQ (or someone else) try to sponsor VA. I can't see SQ or anyone else pandering to NZ's alleged demands to scrap VA's entire international network and feed all traffic to NZ or UA.

SkyTeam is VA's ONLY alliance option available to them, considering their long time BFF relationship with DL.




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By Mitchd31 | Sep 30, 2018, 12:24 PM
Joining one of the alliance wont assist its pure advantage is to the guest experience.VA needs to have its remaining shares fully brought by SIA or Nanshan group.
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By deegee93 | Sep 30, 2018, 05:57 PM
For me it’s 737 jets on flights that Qantas fly Q400-8 such as NTL-BNE. This means business class although I wouldn’t pay it for just NTL-BNE but have when it’s part of a bigger trip such as NTL-BNE-LAX. But mostly because even on regional flights on VA turboprops you can pay a fee for baggage up to 32kgs unlike Qantas on their dash 8 services which are 23kgs no exceptions even with status (officially anyway)
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By djtech | Sep 30, 2018, 07:01 PM
Virgin’s international partners certainly aren’t up to scratch with others but i accepted the fact long ago. The only reason I continue to fly virgin and earn velocity gold is because of their often cheaper domestic fares, great domestic network and easy to earn yet excellently treated gold and platinum status. I view virgin as a great domestic airline and since basically all my travel is domestic, that’s all that matters. Earning gold is super easy with family pooling and that is a plus. Their domestic lounge offerings with premium entry and exit, domestic lounge are on pare with Qantas domestic business lounges. Happy to fly virgin domestically and partners don’t matter as such. But, i do fly with Singapore to enjoy their partnership and hope they join Skyteam at least to have more flexibility when I am planning an international trip and redeeming my velocity points.
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By Saab34 | Oct 01, 2018, 10:44 AM
Dropping like flies?. Etihad, Alitalia, HNA have they all gone? Hold on they are still there! Please stop creating fake news and getting emotional.
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By stmaus | Oct 01, 2018, 02:27 PM
From your list, only Berlin and Alitalia have actually dropped like flies, and I never flew with them and never would have. The others are fine.

Most of my travel is domestic and Pacific islands, so VA is far superior to QF for me in terms of the overall package of FF benefits (eg free Econ X), friendly service, product, lounges, priority boarding that works, and routes.

For international destinations not served by VA, SQ is fantastic and is a good VA partner. So what's not too like compared to the Stockholm Syndrome that is QF?
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By StuParr | Oct 01, 2018, 03:57 PM
I tend to agree with stmaus. I find their domestic product excellent and their key partnerships with SQ and DL sufficient for my needs. I doubt that SAA will go under and I am hoping for the AC partnership to be deepened. There appears to be a gap in Europe due to Air Berlin falling over, however I'm sure that they, knowing the true internal position of the airline and PAX travel habits, are looking at a way to cover that off.

Whilst they are not in an Alliance and there are sometimes issues for others that I have seen, I have not had a problem in having my status recognised and always been looked after as a Premium passenger.

Again on Alliances, given the size of the airline I'm not convinced that an Alliance is the best way to go. There could be a business case, however it appears that it is not compelling enough for VA management as yet and it could be too expensive. Lets see what happens. Either way I'll continue to use the airline into the future.

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By Neil R | Oct 02, 2018, 01:14 PM
I would like to see SQ allow seat selection on VA issued tickets, along with better lounge access across the entire SQ network (Where SQ is not operating the lounge, velocity gold/platinum do not have access). The tie up with Delta is sensational and never had any issues, nor with Eithad (it can take some time to get points credited to your account). However, we will see what happens with Eithad if they merge with EK.
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By stmaus | Oct 02, 2018, 03:21 PM

Yes, better lounge access for VA gold/plat when travelling SQ Y would be good. Eg, SilverKris where available (for VA Platinum) and third party lounges to which SQ status passengers have access. But that is just nit-picking, really, because the SQ product is excellent in all other areas so the alliance is positive for VA customers.


VA also has the Etihad alliance, and VA Platinum have access to the EY first lounge in AUH - how good is that!!!

Last edited by ChrisCh at Oct 03, 2018, 09.18 AM.
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By asbindia | Oct 02, 2018, 09:32 PM

Yes, better lounge access for VA gold/plat when travelling SQ Y would be good. Eg, SilverKris where available (for VA Platinum) and third party lounges to which SQ status passengers have access. But that is just nit-picking, really, because the SQ product is excellent in all other areas so the alliance is positive for VA customers.


VA also has the Etihad alliance, and VA Platinum have access to the EY first lounge in AUH - how good is that!!!

Last edited by stmaus at Oct 02, 2018, 03.24 PM.


The limited lounge availability with SIA is FRUSTRATING! But yes the first class lounge in AUH is AMAZING!


I actually stopped traveling SIA and started to travel Etihad but then the Etihad cost cutting began so back to SIA it is!

Last edited by ChrisCh at Oct 03, 2018, 09.19 AM.
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By BJ01 | Oct 03, 2018, 07:08 AM
Two things for me - the service on VA I find consistently very good and the J Class across the Pacific is excellent


If Virgin could do just one thing with their myriad of partners and the service offering I would be suggesting 'simplify' - I do find I have to invest too much time in keeping up with what I am entitled too on what airline/what class/what destination. 'Lounge Lotto', as we all like to call it, does become frustrating. I miss the *A lounge in LAX but the EK lounge is still pretty good. I would go as far too say that I would rather they reduce their number of partners if that means an improved and consistent service offering


SQ covers my international trips to Asia and Europe (despite the average Gold Kris lounge experience in SIN when travelling Y). They do need to plug that hole in Europe though - Alitalia does not cut it - too few intra European services for me.


We are pretty spoilt here in this small country when it comes to airlines.....

Last edited by ChrisCh at Oct 03, 2018, 09.19 AM.
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By Andrew Barkery | Oct 03, 2018, 07:50 AM
Cheap Y(X) with VA, without having to book J/phone up to buy a comfort seat request.
That is the only reason I am sticking with VA & VFF.
Y(X) is not that expensive.
Stretching legs forward in row 3 is nice.
Granted you and I in Y(X) will still have man spreading partner in those rows.
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By ChrisCh | Oct 03, 2018, 12:53 PM
One other partner airline not mentioned here was Virgin America, which was folded into Alaska Airlines: a Qantas partner. At least that was in North America where Virgin Australia's partner Delta provides a good network, though.

In the same token though, Qantas has also lost some airline parners which are now in the 'Velocity' camp, such as South African Airways and Alitalia - and in the years gone by, Emirates and Malaysia Airlines, which were Velocity partners many years ago, are in the Qantas fold today.
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