Dec 1, 2012

Qantas and the A330 biz class seats

Several readers have drawn attention to stories elsewhere in which a Qantas spokesperson says it is not replacing the controversial workspace plastic bin lid domestic business

Ben Sandilands — Editor of Plane Talking

Ben Sandilands

Editor of Plane Talking

Several readers have drawn attention to stories elsewhere in which a Qantas spokesperson says it is not replacing the controversial workspace plastic bin lid domestic business class seats shown as new in the newly minted Oneworld liveried A330-200 that was on display at the Qantas jet base in Sydney last Sunday.

The spokesperson whomever it was is wrong.

On Wednesday at the National Aviation Press Club luncheon in Sydney Qantas CEO Alan Joyce told me precisely what was reported by Plane Talking within the hearing of several of his team, and as is always the case with any one-to-one conversation with the senior management of any company, I asked Mr Joyce if this was on the record and he said it was.

This is not a criticism of Mr Joyce, who was interested in putting to rest the concerns of a particular influential frequent flyer when they were mentioned to him as the luncheon drew to a close.

We had a conversation, he conveyed information, and it was confirmed that his intention to take to his board a comprehensive fix to the diversity of the offerings in business class in the A330s was on the public record which is the step professional reporters always take at the end of meetings in order to avoid confusing matters that may be mentioned on background with matters that are reportable.  He also took the story further, by including long haul A330s in the intended course of action, which was very, very interesting, and welcome.

This is how news reporting is done. It seems that some people in his company, and indeed in the peanut gallery, don’t get it.

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3 thoughts on “Qantas and the A330 biz class seats

  1. Ronnie Moore

    Thanks for reporting this Crikey. It is perfectly clear that Dixon promoted Joyce as the obviously acceptable but fatally flawed successor to run the K-tail. Tragedy has played out and not only has Joyce presided over the crash and burn of the ‘tail (eg who else in history has actually grounded an airline with no notice – is that rational or what?) but goes on with the most outrageous ineffective strategy compared to their prime competitor. Joyce’s performance is pathetic and he has to go.

  2. Ronnie Moore

    Why is it good to have a plastic table between seats in the centre of Business Class? This smacks of a short-cut, no time, no money to put a 2-2-2 configuration, like it clearly should be.

    And as for Joyce reported to Crikey that Qantas will change this and do it properly – well just let’s say believe it when we see it, and don’t hold your breath.

    How pathetic this premium carrier is now behaving, under Joyce’s leadership. But then – he grew up running two LCC’s so why should we expect anything else. He has alienated staff, alienated passengers, alienated frequent flyers, alienated stakeholders, alienated the public, alienated Government. The only question for me is how much more Qantas value can he destroy before the Board wake up to the problem?

  3. patrick kilby


    I presume by their competitor you mean Virgin. Let us see, partners in the US; Delta with smaller LA hub (rather than it Atlanta hub), or AA with both LA and its main Dallas hub. Europe Etihad with a Abu Dhabi hub or Emirates with a Dubai hub. One LCC in Australia and four in Asia (one struggling Vietnam)versus one strugging LCC in Australia (Tiger) and one in Asia. The only place where the Virgin strategy maybe stronger is Asia with SQ but then VA has few Asian flights so that may be even on points, but QF I suspect is not sitting on its hands on this one either. Ronnie the evidence doesn’t exactly support your case. By the way I would prefer a large palstic table between seats rather than the narrow drink space they have so not all are against it

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