unpopularity contests

Apr 28, 2017

Jetstar v Choice, and a pox on both houses

Choice, the consumer news service, has totally lost the plot in its attack on Jetstar

Ben Sandilands — Editor of Plane Talking

Ben Sandilands

Editor of Plane Talking

[caption id="attachment_62324" align="aligncenter" width="610"] A 717, the last Jetstar jet into which the writer's rear end fitted[/caption] Long suffering flyers have an interesting spat to contemplate between Choice and Jetstar, the airline that forgot your kneecaps and hip bones, and sometimes tries to flog its miserable seats for more than Qantas, its esteemed full service owner, because it might just think consumers are lazy or stupid. Choice has published an unflattering, but ludicrously irrelevantly constructed consumer ratings survey in which Jetstar to quote "ranked dead last in a survey of international airlines, losing out to more than 70 rivals from eight different countries." Jetstar has published a somewhat telling, but also in some respects, dubious rebuttal. Since the Jetstar URL is one that gets overwritten, here is the guts of its response.

Consumer group Choice airline survey

28 April 2017
  • There are a lot of holes in this latest Choice survey, including leaving out our main competitor Tiger because they didn’t collect enough responses, so the veracity of the report is questionable.
  • Choice seem to enjoy criticising airlines without understanding the safety standards we operate to or recognising the role of low cost carriers in making travel more affordable for millions of Australians.
  • We know how important it is to get customers to their destination on time, and we recognise there is room for improvement and our team is doing a lot of work behind the scenes. Weather is often the source of delays, particularly in the more tropical destinations we operate to, and we’ll always put safety before schedule.
  • Jetstar has been named the best low cost carrier in the Asia Pacific for six years running by SkyTrax, an internationally recognised and accredited ranking.
Let's deal with the Skytrax bit first. In this reporter's opinion, Skytrax polls are the stuff of lazy reporters writing up listicles because they don't have the skills or editorial direction needed to engage in real news reporting. Unless or until Skytrax publishes intimate and thoroughly independently audited details as to how it makes its money each year and from which airlines, and explains at length how it prevents multiple voting and other means of rigging an opinion poll result, its claims should be treated with as much caution as the polling for pre-selection in inner city seats for Australian political parties. And that doesn't mean being audited by any of those high profile ratings companies or accounting enterprises that totally failed to get the Global Financial Crisis right either. Indeed, to complete the digression, the only airline preference polling that ought to be trusted should be done by the Australian Electoral Commission, or appropriately credentialed UN observers. Choice didn't even poll consumers in the UK, the US, Germany, or any country in Asia. It must think its readers in Australia are idiots. As must Jetstar in relation to its customers if it places even a shred of confidence in a Skytrax poll. The experiences of this reporter, and his much more widely travelled circle of friends and associates and family, point convincingly to value-for-money as being the only basis for choosing one airline over another.  Value-for-money includes of course frequency, punctuality, reliability, amenity, courtesy, and as always, safety.  But safety isn't front of mind for most flyers in Australia. It's a long time since TAA and Ansett-ANA flights crashed killing all onboard on various domestic flights in this country. That isn't to devalue the critical importance of safety, but to suggest that most of us fear acts of terrorism much more than we are influenced in carrier choice by doubts about safety standards. Jetstar is the Qantas bet on price being the prime determinant for airline choice for many flyers not only within Australia but across Asia where it has a trans border Jetstar branded low cost franchise. It's a bet on where newly minted middle classes in this hemisphere will spend their travel money. It's also yet to prove an abundantly lucrative bet, but it is clearly useful as a means of driving productivity or cost improvements in the industry in general, and in its worst manifestations, bloody uncomfortable as a flying experience. The low price thing is also at times more perception than reality, as anyone who inadvertently clicks on a Jetstar flight when making a booking on the Qantas website can sometimes discover, and its critical for consumers to keep in mind the cost of extras in low cost carriers in general when making bookings anywhere on the planet.  The fare differences in total between low cost and full service can be trivial, or even non-existent. The over arching problem with low cost carriers world wide is that they seem responsible for some full service brands undermining their own product standards by cramming the seats in tighter than ever in the history of jet airliners, cutting back on toilets, and insinuating extra or ancillary charges into the booking process. A more in depth and properly resourced reporting of relevant consumer issues was once a strong point of Choice. And the 'established' print media as well. But those of us in the media have fallen on hard times. The money isn't there any more. Maybe consumers don't really give a rat's either. The article in Choice is just a shabby piece of crap, and deeply disappointing. And Yes, flying with Jetstar isn't great either. Jetstar is trying to be a better airline, although at times it is just 'trying' in the other sense of the word.

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36 thoughts on “Jetstar v Choice, and a pox on both houses

  1. Resolute

    Jetstar deserve what they got !
    Like the interstate bus but with wings – The Pits
    Singapoer Airlines is the Gold Plated Standard.

  2. Deano DD

    If you want conformation of the poor quality of the Jetstar brand, have a look at Seat Guru and in particular the comments section
    The long haul 787 seems to cop the biggest berating from passengers

    1. comet

      But Qantas’ long haul 787 to London is going to be even worse!

  3. nonscenic

    On several occasions including a flight from Mel to Japan I have found Jetstar to be more expensive than QF or VA flights for the same sector and dates once you compare flights with “food”, baggage and seat allocation. I have also found Jetstar’s web booking so unworkable that I have booked elsewhere.
    The only times where JQ might be worth considering would be Mel to Hba where the Qf 717s have been unreliable and are often cancelled or where there might be a direct JQ flight (eg TSL to MEL) instead of two flights.
    To me JQ tries to make your experience feel more budget than it needs to. I realise that all commercial flights are really cattle trucks with wings but JQ goes out of its way to make the preboarding and baggage experience (no transfer for connecting flights) more painful for its victims without really saving any money.

  4. Zipper

    Look I realise JQ is a stinker, no argument from me on that one, but to say it’s the worst in the world is a huge stretch, it’s a shabby effort by choice here, it’s not fair to hang an airline out to dry if you can’t do these things properly..

    1. Dan Dair

      please go on to give an equally disdainful response to SkyTrax for putting JQ at the top of their list.? “it’s not fair to…” ridiculously praise “….an airline…… if you can’t do these things properly”.

  5. Zipper

    Resolute.. your comparing a government backed premium airline with privately owned budget one?? Yeh that’s fair lol, And SQ ain’t the gold standard, things are easy when the government are paying the bills, would love to see SQ do the same without that..

    1. Dan Dair

      Of course, you’re right Zipper,
      why the rest of Australia can’t see that is beyond me.?

      All those nasty foreign governments, just thinking of themselves & their own citizens & never giving a flying-squirrel for the Australian citizens who never voted them in.?
      It’s just not bl00dy fair that these foreign governments value their airlines & what they do for their domestic economy, so much more than Australia’s government does.?

      But no, let’s not get cross with Australia’s government for being lax, let’s just have a big wild rant about those nasty, cheating foreigners instead.?

    2. Nick

      SQ – no amenity packs in business and still angled beds on many planes in their fleet – not what I’d call gold standard.

  6. Creeper

    Someone has it in for Jetstar at CHOICE. This was evident in a media conference held last year at Sydney Airport by Tom Godfrey (in regards to surcharges) who used nothing but Jetstar as an example and bad mouthed them right through the conference (in trying to find the video).

    100 entries on the survey. Says it all. CHOICE just lost their credibility. Bring out the lawyers Jetstar, crush them.

    1. nonscenic

      I agree that Choice must have it in for Jetstar. The 9 News reporting failed to mention the type of survey or its scope. Survey respondents were probably those more likely to have a complaint. I’m not sure how many respondents using African or Russian airlines there were. Jetstar might arguably be a poor Australian airline but it sure beats Precision Air in Tanzania!

  7. comet

    But Jetstar is the airline that has had pilots send SMS messages in the seconds before landing.

    It’s also the airline that didn’t know how many people were on board, and estimated the incorrect takeoff weight.

    Quote: “But those of us in the media have fallen on hard times. The money isn’t there any more. Maybe consumers don’t really give a rat’s either.”.

    How many people here view the Sydney Morning Herald or The Age without paying the fee? Meanwhile, the journalists working on those stories are getting layed off, and the result is the quality of the articles declines.

    Who would have investigated Eddie Obeid if paid newspapers didn’t exist. Who?

  8. Zipper

    Dan Dair.. what are you rambling on about? I didn’t go on a wild rant, I was simply pointing out that comparing JQ to SQ is an unfair comparison, put them against Tiger, Scoot, Ryan Air etc, not a premium govt owned SQ, that’s ridiculous, it was you that went on a wild rant mate, I stopped reading halfway through due to lack of interest..

    1. Deano DD

      I tend to agree with Dan Dair
      Most airlines cry poor
      Thing is, a good quality and cost competitive airline can do wonders for the tourist economy of any country, and Australia earns a lot of dollars from tourism
      A government owned and even subsidized by $1 billion per year would earn back many times that subsidy in
      Taxes on airline employees
      Taxes on more tourist related jobs
      Savings on unemployment benefits for new tourism jobs

      A government owned airline with quality corporate management would do an awful lot for the Australian economy
      Not focused on making mega millions to keep shareholders happy, it would be free to act in the Australian interest by flying routes that bring tourist to Australia rather than being concerned with making every route a cash cow

      In the last 20 years Australia has let so much go off shore like manufacturing and call centers, why not take back something for once FOR AUSTRALIA
      For the cost of about 15% of the NBN the government could take over QF and VA and offer up
      High quality business and economy flights at very competitive pricing on international and domestic sectors
      Double international routes and destinations
      Create 10s of thousands of high paying top quality jobs in the airline industry
      Move maintenance back to Australia and employ more Aussies
      Create thousands of jobs in tourism

      Even if they just bought back the international divisions and let QF and VA concentrate on domestic routes, Australia would still be miles ahead

      1. Ben Sandilands

        Deano DD,
        Your reference to the NBN is a reminder that both sides of Government couldn’t successfully run an ice cream and chilled drinks van on Bondi Beach in mid summer.

        The NBN catastrophe is only just becoming apparent in its magnitude in terms of cost overruns and failures to deliver on its promise to deliver to this country even the second rate internet service the current Government declared to be all that Australia deserved or needed.

        1. Deano DD

          I yer I get the failings of the NBN
          Are you saying that Qantas is a better airline under private ownership ?
          If comfort, service and reliability are important to the traveler, then look to flying on government run or supported airlines over private any day of the week

          Kindly name one government entity or mutual company that has been privatized that now offers better value for money
          Australia Post bzzz
          Insurance companies bzzz
          Airports bzzz
          Banks bzzz
          Electricity bzzz
          Water bzzz
          Freeways or tollways bzzz
          The list goes on, with the possible exception of Telstra that had more to do with technology advancements than anything else

          For the one off cash grab when the government cashed in on the sale every one has been made pay the price there after
          Massive executive salaries
          Profits and dividends to shareholders
          The cost of buying and paying interest for the money needed to buy the business
          And the need for growth at any cost
          All being paid for (around 20-25% on top of what we used to pay) by us, the mug punter, for ever…..

          If a government was to run Qantas as a business and appoint a qualified manager, with the same checks and balances, what difference would it be than to be owned by shareholders ?

          The state bank and CBA used to keep the other banks in check, as did the GIO with other insurance companies
          All of which are now writing their own rules and upping fees and premiums ruthlessly, even health insurance is raising fees at 3x CPI

          I am not a commie, but some things should stay in government hands

          1. Deano DD

            And just a thought
            Who owns Qantas
            Investment banks, super funds etc
            Do they have an interest in a pleasant experience for the customer, of quality service, or new destinations, or worlds best practice, or jobs for Aussies???
            Or do they care about the bottom line, fudging billion dollar write downs followed by rubbery massive profits, dividends and increased share prices
            Who is really running Qantas and what is their real mission or direction
            Where are their game changers
            Copy Ryan Air = Jetstar
            Copy seat layouts at Jetstar into QF
            Then use 9 across in 787s Per-Lhr non stop
            Are you serious…..

            Emirates uses a 1/2 way hub to Europe with planes 80% full of Aussies and flies at least 9 loads a day from Aus
            So QF cans an A380 Mel Abu Dabi Lhr and flips in a 787 crammed tight with 1/2 the seats available for a stop at Perth and an 18 hour torture trip
            You gotta be kidding

          2. Dan Dair

            Deano DD,
            I’m not a commie either, though I am a ‘free-market socialist’.

            I believe in the positivity of the free-market, for creating competition, leading to cost & efficiency savings, which in-turn leads to price-reductions & innovation.

            However, I also know that the unconstrained free-market will let you die before it concerns itself with doing something to help you which affects it’s bottom-line.
            The free market itself is a concept & concepts have no social-conscience.

            IMO, the free-market, directed by government, regulated by government or (perhaps most significantly) taxed by government is the best balance.
            Businesses are free to pursue their business & profit goals, within a framework of laws agreed across the nation. Government taxes businesses on their profits in order to provide the things for it’s citizens, which the free market would not provide because it can’t make a profit on it.

            You only have to look at the abject poverty of some parts of the USA to know how the unconstrained free market behaves.? The city of Detroit going bankrupt, in some cities monthly water bills the equivalent of a weeks wages.?
            The unconstrained free market is just a howling werewolf. Put a collar & lead on it & it can be mans best friend.?

    2. Dan Dair

      “I stopped reading halfway through due to lack of interest”

      ‘Course you did mate, that’s why Australia has the kind of government it has & probably why you hold the opinions you do.?
      I can’t possibly be any fault ‘at home’, so it must be outsiders cheating & ruining it for us.?

      SQ is owned by the Singaporean state, which also owns Changi & seaports and obviously has a vested-interest in the well-being of their nation.
      They know that trade, be it goods or services is vital to the economic future of their nation & they are doing what they can to ensure;
      that their national airline is there to transport people into & out of their nation,
      & that their major airport presents a satisfying experience for travellers & remains relevant as a hub, generating further business for their nation.?

      What has the Australian government done to promote travel through Australia’s ‘gateway’ city.?
      Sold-off the one airport into a private monopoly,
      Sat on it’s hands for 25 years over a second Sydney airport,
      Shut it’s eyes & stuck it’s fingers in it’s ears for the last couple of years & shouted “I’m not listening, I’m not listening” as the owner of the monopoly Sydney airport has buggered-about & obfuscated over whether it’ll take-on the new airport, deliberately delaying the decision to begin work still further.

      You’re right to suggest it was more me than you that went on a ‘wild rant’.
      You said SQ wasn’t the gold-standard & that comparing JQ to them was unfair.
      I’m saying that SQ is far more relevant to Singapore than QF or JQ is to Australia.
      If Qantas & JetStar closed, someone else would step-in to fill the space. Maybe Emirates, but much more likely to be VA/Tiger, Scoot & ANZ.
      If QF & JQ closed, apart from the job-losses, who would really care.? AND these airlines would still need crew & maintenance, so it’s not as if all the QF jobs would be lost overseas, there’d just be a change of employer for most.?

      It’s high-time you woke-up to the reality of the modern world.
      In a global economy, it’s every nation for themselves. That’s why you build political & economic alliances. to create rules so that it becomes every ‘alliance’ for themselves & there’s more safety for each nation.
      (Don’t say you’re anti-globalisation but pro-air travel. That is an oxymoron.
      If anything is completely intertwined, it’s aviation & globalisation)
      You can’t ban SQ without them banning you.
      You can’t ban ME3 without affecting the $billions generated in Australia by travel through those nations airlines.
      You have to roll with it, get better & more competitive……. & that doesn’t necessarily mean cheaper.
      It might mean more frequency, new routes, better cabins…….
      SQ isn’t usually cheaper than QF, but it’s usually better & it’s usually as full.?

  9. Rais

    The last time I flew with Jetstar was Perth to Lombok just before that route was discontinued. Obviously the seating isn’t spacious but my wife and I fitted in OK and managed to get a row with a vacant seat between us on the way out. We bought a snack which was OK. Coming back, with more luggage due to gift purchases for relatives, I went on line in Indonesia to increase my luggage limit to 30 kg. That worked and our host in Lombok was surprised to find that our heavy bags were not questioned. On the way back we had a meal that had been loaded in Lombok, which was acceptable if not wonderful. All in all we had an economical and satisfactory trip both ways and would have considered Jetstar again had the Lombok route not been discontinued. For a low cost carrier, I think Jetstar is acceptable. I wouldn’t pay Qantas fares for a Jetstar flight though.

  10. Ben Sandilands

    Deano DD
    Had Qantas continued to rely on government ownership it wouldn’t have survived. When the industry was deregulated the ‘killer’ feature common to every market important to Australia was the end of fares fixed by agreements between governments. The need to compete in what is one of the freest markets for a consumer service over most of the planet left airlines that relied on government licensed shares of the market (as in the Two Airline Policy) or across the Pacific totally unprotected in ways their bureaucratic managements had never contemplated, and for which they had no answer. Just my opinion, but I think the key to airlines leveraging product quality to make good money lies in how smart they are in designing their product and running their operation. Ministerial or Government intervention or approval for such micro-management of the likes of Qantas would kill it stone dead. Something it also risks if it doesn’t look after its brand value and customers, which is true of all airlines.

    1. Deano DD

      Like all legacy carriers Qantas needed to undergo some changes under deregulation
      This happened in the US with mergers, acquisitions and plenty of chapter 11s
      Qantas on the other hand was privatized, which at the time seemed logical
      TAA was rolled into the Qantas group to make it a more “profitable” asset to sell
      Selling Qantas allowed “private” owners to cut costs and rationalize with the threat that the airline may not survive unless it did, something which under government ownership was never going to happen
      Airline investors pulled out and private equity firms pick up the shares and are now pushing for more profits, more job cuts, more efficiencies, more code sharing etc
      Investment firms will drop QF when there is no more to gain as you can only cut and outsource so much

      Under a government owned model, the biggest advantage is that QF would only need to break even

      And this point can not be emphasized enough because if the requirement was only the need to break even, any profits could be directed into the following
      Bringing maintenance back to Australia along with the jobs and professionalism and safety that goes with it
      Opening up new international routes that would be marginal, but beneficial as they feed into QF domestic and provide more jobs for Australians
      Provide better service to regional destinations, again feeding into both the domestic and international networks
      Subsidizing targeted inbound tourist routes, bringing more jobs into the tourist industry

      The result would read something like this
      Government picks up QF for $4-7 billion
      $500 million annual profit rolled back into QF
      $500 million annual government top up subsidies
      This $1 billion pays for all of the above
      Extra 20 daily international routes averaging 250 pax @ $800 (low est) return sectors
      This returns
      $20 million GST on tickets
      $30 million on fuel tax
      $45 million on income tax for 1000 in air jobs
      $30 million on income tax for 1000 in maintenance jobs
      $50 million GST on new hotel bookings
      $40 million on income tax on 4000 new tourism jobs
      $120 million savings on unemployment benefits
      $120 million on new visas and departure taxes
      Plus loads more on top
      Basically self funded with overs

      But QF would needed to be run as a corporation
      No difference if the owner is the government or shareholders, there is still a GM
      Only difference is that the government would write up a different constitution

      1. Dan Dair

        IMO there isn’t anything inherently wrong with the aims of this model.

        However, there is always an issue about the benefits of competition, reducing prices & improving efficiency.
        In a global market, it’s not inconceivable to imagine that a state-owned QF would be operating services at much higher prices, due to their higher cost-levels than other domestic or international operators.?

        I’d be happy to see a state-owned Qantas, run for the mutual benefit of passengers, staff & nation.
        Unfortunately, I don’t actually believe such a thing would achieve all of those aims effectively.?

  11. Zipper

    “If QF & JQ closed, apart from the job-losses, who would really care.? AND these airlines would still need crew & maintenance, so it’s not as if all the QF jobs would be lost overseas, there’d just be a change of employer for most.?”
    What a stupid and ignorant statement, I think many people in this country would care if Qantas went under, try telling the 30,000 staff that, not to mention all the many businesses that rely on Qantas, the fall out would be huge, most jobs would go overseas so don’t kid yourself, and I know for a fact that the staff work there backsides off to make it the airline it is today, it’s highly respected around the world, it’s the safest in the world, and to this day, hasn’t had a single hull loss in the jet age which is an extraordinary achievement, it’s an Aussie icon and one of the oldest airlines in the world, many people care, it’s just buffoons like you who want to trash it..

    1. Dan Dair

      Yes, Qantas is an icon to be proud of & no I’m not trashing it.
      I’m just asking a question.?
      I never suggested that Australia would be better-off without it.

      Let’s not be blinkered though, Qantas ‘bought’ their hull-loss record.
      They chose to pay well-over the actual value of the B747, VH-OJH to repair it, in order to keep their “extraordinary achievement” of a zero hull-loss record.?
      & I do agree that it IS an extraordinary achievement.
      But equally, let’s not forget that they would have had that loss, if they weren’t protecting that record.?

      It clearly is a safe airline,
      but is it really, actually the safest though, or is that just marketing-speak.?
      Are all the recent close-calls & similar, the actions of the airline that’s “the safest in the world”.? It might be, but it’s not so obvious that a series of ‘near-misses’ are the actions of an airline with a safety-priority culture.?

      You were the one taking issue with SIA.
      I was the one pointing-out their asset-value to the Singaporean nation.
      Qantas has no similar value to the Australian nation.
      QF definitely IS an ambassador for Australia & renowned all around the globe.

      But if QF & JQ closed their doors, someone would replace them to make profits on the profitable routes. There are plenty of existing Australian carriers which could take-up the routes.
      Do you really think that foreign airlines would fly-in empty every morning to operate the domestic QF & JQ routes.?
      Do you really think that every maintenance job would be lost if was foreign airlines which flew in with the late last-leg & then sat in Australia overnight for the first early flight of the day.?

      As for QFi, it makes a loss according to Mr Joyce. Perhaps it would make more financial sense to let Emirates take-over.?
      (On the other hand, Qantas trying the new Perth-London route next year is exactly the kind of innovation which might generate new & profitable openings for them.?)

      Since I absolutely made a point of saying “apart from the job-losses”, there’s no point in throwing that back at me.!
      Yes, I don’t doubt that Qantas staff work hard & are mostly very proud of their airline, even if they’re not so proud of their CEO.?
      (much was made by Qantas staff a couple of years ago about their striving to succeed in spite of, not because of, the management culture at the airline)

      (& I stress only IF)
      QF were to close, there are as I said, many existing Australian airlines which would undoubtedly be at the front of the queue to replace them.
      A good employee should always be valued & I would hope that Qantas staff would be equally valued by a QF replacement.

      All I’m doing is asking hypothetical questions. I’m not wishing it should be.

      Are Qantas too iconic for you to even use them as a comparison.?
      You poor little lamb.!

  12. Zipper

    Dan Dair.. Qantas IS the safest airline in the world, it wins this award year after year, it’s not good marketing, it’s a fact, in 97 years only 100 people have died in accidents and all them before 1951, not a single person in the jet age, now let that sink in for a bit, it’s an impeccable record, now name me an airline that can match that record??.. good luck with that because there ain’t one! You also talk rubbish about if Qantas goes under then someone else will just step in and resume just like that, business as usual? Then what about the domestic market, do you think Virgin or Tiger are going to all of a sudden cope with the huge hole left by Qantas? They can’t just order 150 planes overnight, It would be chaos! domestic travel would crumble here, the fact is Qantas plays a massive part getting people around in this country, it’s in the national interest that’s it survives another 100 years, it’s a company that you should be proud of, I guess if it was a foreign carrier you would be..

    1. Dan Dair

      Of course you’ve thought this through haven’t you.?………

      In your head,
      Qantas ceases trading & presumably then the scrap man instantly turns-up & squashes all the aircraft flat on the spot.?

      In my purely hypothetical scenario,
      Qantas ceases trading & collectively all the smaller airlines pickup the routes AND the aircraft to fly them, from the defunct Qantas.?
      (Possibly the first of these would be Cobham, who already own the aircraft they actually fly on behalf of QF.!)

      I didn’t think I’d disguised my opinion when I said;
      “It clearly is a safe airline”.
      But, I also questioned how QF will fare in the future, bearing in mind the number of ‘incidents’ not accidents in their recent history.?
      (They aren’t the only domestic airline with an iffy record of ‘incidents’, but we are only talking about Qantas at the moment)

      I did say;
      “Qantas is an icon to be proud of & no I’m not trashing it”.
      “All I’m doing is asking hypothetical questions. I’m not wishing it should be.”
      ….and I meant it.

  13. Zipper

    “Qantas ceases trading & collectively all the smaller airlines pickup the routes AND the aircraft to fly them, from the defunct Qantas.?”

    Your taking complete nonsense now Dan, Tiger for example, cannot all of a sudden start flying all the Qantas aircraft around the next day, who’s going to crew them? Or pay them? Mate just except it would be a disaster if it were to happen, remember the chaos when Joyce grounded the airline? And the huge cost to the country in just 2 days or so, the reality is the government would never allow Qantas to go under, if it was ever close to happening then they would step in, it’s just too important for the overall economy, if you think Virgin and Tiger could just pick up the slack overnight, then you need to lay off whatever it is your smoking..

    1. Dan Dair

      Since you were the one to mention government………
      Why wouldn’t the government smooth the way for other (specifically) domestic airlines to take over QF routes & aircraft.?
      Should Qantas ever actually go pear-shaped, it would be in the national-interest to ensure that air services were maintained.

      Equally, why couldn’t the airlines taking-over the routes & the aircraft also take-over the crew.?
      This was exactly what I was talking about in my 29 April @ 7.06pm post, when I said “these airlines would still need crew & maintenance, so it’s not as if all the QF jobs would be lost overseas, there’d just be a change of employer for most”.

      Not necessarily overnight, but possibly over the course of a month, pretty-much everything might be ‘normalised’
      & key services linking Sydney & Melbourne and those two cities to the rest of the major population centres could probably have some level of service restored within a couple of days

      And again, since you mentioned it;
      “the chaos when Joyce grounded the airline? And the huge cost to the country in just 2 days or so”
      I sure you agree that it was a stupid & wholly unnecessary thing for the CEO to do.?
      It cost QF $millions & the country even more
      & all at a time when the unions were only asking for reasonable assurances about their members futures.
      And it then led to the dispute going to the fare wage commission,
      who then gave the unions MORE than they’d been asking for before the shutdown.
      It cost the company much more than if they’d just sat down in the first place & sensibly negotiated with the staff. Hardly a perfect world, is it.?

      Since you enquire, I’m not a smoking man myself,
      though I am partial to a nice glass of wine or cold beer.?

  14. Zarathrusta

    Skytrax said that pre grounding Tiger Airlines Australia was as good as Virgin at the time!

  15. Deano DD

    Does no one remember the Ansett collapse
    No one did much to step in and help out
    Ansett mark 2 flew A320s for a few months on main routes and the RAAF threw a few hercs in for a while, but that was about it
    If QF or VA were to fail the government has to step in and take over the carcass, re-brand and operate the airline, long term

  16. Dan Dair

    Deano DD,
    It’s only a thought-exercise Deano,
    but I’d expect the government to keep as much of the services running as they were able to, by guaranteeing the finances to stabilise QF short-term.?
    (With the emergence of VAH, Tiger & JetStar, Australia is very much a different place than it was when Ansett went-under & QF were happy to see-off their only competition.? Had it been Qantas going to the wall & just leaving Ansett as the major-player, I imagine the government would have done a lot more.?)

    Beyond that, I’d expect the existing domestic airlines to either voluntarily take-over certain routes which fit in with their existing network or fit-in with their expansion-plans
    by asked/required by government, to take-over routes which the government regarded as ‘vital for the good of the country’.?

    Either way,
    should such a thing happen, I wouldn’t perceive as automatically a disaster for the country.? Though quite clearly, it would present major problems.

  17. Ken Borough

    Deans wrote
    “Does no one remember the Ansett collapse
    No one did much to step in and help out
    Ansett mark 2 flew A320s for a few months on main routes and the RAAF threw a few hercs in for a while, but that was about it”

    The poor bloke (or blokette) has a poor grip on what actually happened. Qantas sent a number of 737s to NZ to pick up a hole left by Ansett’s domestic flying. They wet-leased an Air Canada B767 for several weeks to operate Tasman services so that Qantas 767s could be deployed within Australia. They deployed 747s on trans-con routes to cope with demand. They also acquired a number of 767-300s from BA to provide additional and required domestic lift. I can’t comment on Virgin’s efforts but I imagine they were quite insignificant when compared to those of Qantas.

    1. Deano DD

      I was referring to help outside QF and other airlines within Australia at the time

  18. Zipper

    Why wouldn’t the government smooth the way for other (specifically) domestic airlines to take over QF routes & aircraft.?
    “Should Qantas ever actually go pear-shaped, it would be in the national-interest to ensure that air services were maintained.”

    Well maybe because these other domestic carriers are foreign owned?? why on earth would the government pump tax payers money into foreign government owned airlines to take over from a local icon that’s been around for nearly 100 years who provides way more employment for this country then the rest do combined!?.. Come on Dan start thinking about things before posting, I know your bitter about Qantas for some bizarre reason but your talking garbage, like I’ve said the govt will never let Qantas to go under, and they certainly won’t be helping Singaporean or Middle Eastern govts taking over our domestic market.. Any how Qantas isnt going anywhere, so all these hypertheticals are pointless..

  19. Dan Dair

    Bless you Zipper.!!!!
    Next time you make any point on here which isn’t actually grounded in the solidest fact, I’ll be sure to remind you that “all these hypertheticals are pointless”. (I might even use that spelling.?)

    So let me try to comprehend the bulk of your posting;
    Should it ever come to pass that Qantas was unable to continue trading you would expect the government to nationalise it & commit to the Australian taxpayer bailing-out the failed company,
    before you’d see the government put some short-term money in to ensure the smooth transition from Qantas operated routes, to other existing domestic carriers taking-over some or all of those schedules.?

    Wow, you really are nothing but a Qantas fanboy aren’t you.!!!!!!

    You’d rather Qantas was retained by the government, no matter what it cost, than allow the domestic carriers to find their new, natural level, should the major player cease trading.?
    All I ever advocated was the government help the existing domestic airlines to step-up. I never suggested that the government should help Emirates or Singapore.
    God knows, the current CEO has already made enormous inroads into helping Emirates take-over as much of Qantas extra-Asian routes as he could, without making it look too obvious where his share portfolio was invested.?

    Qantas ceased trading, a large proportion of the existing routes, aircraft & staff would be required to maintain those services.
    Assuming the government deemed those services necessary, it would be in the national interest to ensure that short-term money was put in to keep the services operating.
    Beyond that, it would be up to each operator to make a profit & if they can’t, to convince government that a subsidy is in order.
    Qantas currently receives a substantial subsidy to operate certain services (as does REx, for example, but they’re not the subject of this discussion). It doesn’t seem a great stretch to imagine that other domestic carriers would receive the same subsidy for the same routes if QF wasn’t operating them.?
    Or is your mind so closed that you’d rather communities were cut-off from aviation links rather than subsidising Virgin (for example), who as we all know are foreign-owned;
    so consequently, they don’t employ anyone in Australia.
    No-one they employ pays Australian taxes &
    the company doesn’t pay any taxes at all to the Australian nation for trading there as a wholly domestic entity.?
    You’re completely right Zipper…. I can’t imagine what I’ve been thinking.?

    Oh yes, I remember…. It was a thought-exercise….. a what if.? I can’t remember ever saying; “oh, wouldn’t everything be so much better if Qantas wasn’t around spoiling it for everyone else”.? Though I’m certain that people on this forum could have read the things I actually wrote & then made-up completely different things in their heads, about what I actually MEANT.?

    So Zipper, what did the voices in your head tell you I really meant when I said;
    “If QF & JQ closed”.?
    (notice that: ‘IF’…..not ‘When’, or ‘Oh, I really want’….?).

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