Hard to find Virgin Australia Airbus A330 business class on BNE-PER

By Rod H | Dec 29, 2018, 09:47 AM

Just made some bookings on VA from Brisbane to Perth and return.

What a difficult time I had finding any A330 flights across to Perth and Reward seats are non existent so it's full fare..

After much searching and date changing managed to go via Sydney to fly VA 555 A330 service to Perth.

Also managed to get VA 467 A330 direct from Perth to Brisbane.

Because I am paying full fare there's no way I was going to fly on the B737 that is so inferior a product to the A330 Business Class.

After many years of travelling this may well be my last Business Class flight for a long time so even though It cost a bit more to go via Sydney I was going to make sure I enjoyed it.

I guess the VA A330 is quite busy on the Asian run so there aren't very many seats across the continent on the A330.

Perhaps we might see the proposed B737 Business class seat upgrade soon as that could quite OK.

First world problems I know but when one pays so much one must get the best bang for his buck!!

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Chris Megaw

By mannej | Dec 29, 2018, 10:23 AM
Keep an eye out on your bookings, as with the limited A330 fleet you may well end up on a 737...
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Frank

By Rod H | Dec 29, 2018, 11:01 AM
Thanks mannej.
That’s something I will be monitoring very closely given VA’s limited A330 Australian operations.
One can only hope it stays as scheduled.
It’s a great pity VA didn’t go ahead with the B737 business seat upgrade for their trans continental flights.
Would have made things easier..
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By Rod H | Dec 29, 2018, 11:02 AM
djtech.
That’s why I booked via Sydney.
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koji

By jch | Dec 29, 2018, 01:55 PM
Managed to upgrade full economy to business both ways SYD/PER for Xmas booking a few months in advance. Even dodged an aircraft change and got an earlier A330 flight. Was lucky to get an award booking HKG MEL about a month before back in June. Only criticism is I wish the flight was two hours longer!
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By Buzzloch | Dec 29, 2018, 07:58 PM
Been to Perth 3 times in 2018, every time Sydney-Perth return. Managed to get A330 business class reward seats on every flight.
From both Sydney and Melbourne is easy, Brisbane less than half the flights are A330's.
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Frank

By Rod H | Dec 30, 2018, 07:10 AM

Brisbane to Perth has only 1 flight / day with the A330 and it gets to Perth a bit too late for my preference.

Did some further searching and did find some reward seats that I did not notice before so obviously did not search properly (" should have gone to Specs Savers" !!!!). I guess it does not matter anyway as I don't have anywhere near enough points to even purchase points using the " points booster scheme ". Used most of them last time I travelled about 8 months ago so it was full fare .

Apologies to all as my original post is not very valid , further research should have been done.

Moderators: I think my thread should be deleted as it's not valid given my further searching- Apologies.

Last edited by Rod H at Dec 30, 2018, 07.17 AM.
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By jch | Dec 30, 2018, 10:46 AM
You can get a flexible economy ticket and should be able to upgrade it for 10k points.
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Frank

By smoothsilver | Dec 30, 2018, 07:48 PM
Rod, here in Brisbane sadly we only get 1 flight per week on the A330.

Saturday night it flies PER-BNE VA469, then after a run to Fiji and back on Sunday it turns around that night and flies BNE-PER VA470.
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By stompsy | Dec 30, 2018, 10:39 PM
All these down votes - I agree with him - I'd be pissy if I booked full fare and ended up on a 737 in J... it's sub par.
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By Rod H | Dec 31, 2018, 06:52 AM

smoothsilver

VA's web site shows 1 flight per week for Jan & Feb but then a daily service VA 474 8.50PM from March onwards. Still a very poor number of flights and as stopsy has said the B737 is sub par.

If only VA would " extractus digitatus " and refit a few B737 with the proposed much better Business Class seats they say would be used for Transcontinental flights then that would be far better value. I guess we are rather spoiled with the A330 seating and service.

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By Red Cee | Dec 31, 2018, 11:18 PM
Earlier this year I booked an A330 flight BNE to PER. Around a month prior to the flight, it was changed to a 737. These things happen, I am afraid. Happy New Year to you all.
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Frank

By qf789 | Jan 01, 2019, 07:47 AM

smoothsilver

VA's web site shows 1 flight per week for Jan & Feb but then a daily service VA 474 8.50PM from March onwards. Still a very poor number of flights and as stopsy has said the B737 is sub par.

If only VA would " extractus digitatus " and refit a few B737 with the proposed much better Business Class seats they say would be used for Transcontinental flights then that would be far better value. I guess we are rather spoiled with the A330 seating and service.


A couple of things need to be cleared up. As someone who works on the ramp for VA at PER proposing that a few 737's have an upgraded Business class is not that simple. Firstly an upgraded business would compromise capacity on the 737's, economy seats would have to be reduced for an enhanced business class product. Furthermore operating a subfleet does not guarantee that you will get one of these aircraft. VA474 in particular is no stranger to having rego swaps at the last minute. I have seen in some instances the registration of the aircraft being swapped 3 times in less than an hour, this is usually due to the actual aircraft planned being delayed which can lead to other problems like crew timing out which can cause then lead to flight cancellations.

Over the next month at least VA will operate 2 A330 services a week, one on Friday VA469/474 and Saturday VA469 returning on Sunday as VA470. The Friday service operates most of the time however does get operated with the 737 from time to time, it normally comes at the expense to MEL as that is where the A332 is needed. I am not sure where you are getting your information about VA474 being a daily A332 service. VA474 only operates 5 days a week currently, it doesn't operate on Wednesdays or Saturdays. Both VA and QF use mainly the 737 on PER-BNE, business class on the 737's sells far better than what it would do on an A332, better yields can be made operating the 737.
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Frank

By Rod H | Jan 02, 2019, 11:49 AM

qf789

Some months ago John Borghetti from VA announced that VA would introduce new Business Class seats and service on some B737 to use trans continental. On Dec 5 there was an article in Aust BT saying it was now on hold. Based on this I am simply saying that I hope they will do the upgrade sooner than later.

Also if you look at VA's booking system in March you will see that VA Flt 474 is shown as " the Business " every day. However if you click on the flight # itself it does come up as a B737. If one makes a booking using the displayed information on VA's web site and just selects the " The Business" as displayed then almost complete the booking at no time does it say it's NOT the Business. This is very misleading and should not be there if the flight is NOT " the Business ". To my way of thinking that appears to be false advertising and completely misleading and a very poor show.

I was in the Airline Business for 40 years and completely understand the need for changing aircraft types if necessary so will keep a close eye on things and change flights if needed and available.

Last edited by Rod H at Jan 02, 2019, 03.08 PM.
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By Jazzop | Jan 08, 2019, 03:41 PM
My last two SYD - PER flights on A330s have been changed to 738s.
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By Rod H | Jan 09, 2019, 06:52 AM

Jazzop

What flight numbers were those?

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