Sinking feeling about VS

Old Dec 16, 12, 7:05 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: 14.66m NbW of PHL
Programs: HH Diamond
Posts: 847
Sinking feeling about VS

Does anyone else have a bit of a sinking feeling about VS?

I dunno, just the fact that there seems to be quite a lot of changes at the top lately, operating at a loss, delaying new aircraft etc. The Delta purchase of the SQ shares doesn't fill me with confidence either.

I am a gold with VS, but I'm really starting to think about using other airlines and picking a new one to go with, as looking long term, I can't say I'm confident about the chances of VS actually surviving.
jeffers is offline  
Old Dec 16, 12, 7:40 am
  #2  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 10,709
The Virgin brand is still very strong. I think it has the legs to be developed into a major airline brand. We shall see in the spring, is the Scots will want to travel south on a Virign. But I feel there is no reason not to.

However I said previously on some reports that the name would drop. Delta only purchased 49% and you need to be a Euro resident to own shares in a Euro airline.

It would be a shame to see the brand die. We need the brand to develop as they have done in the past. Lie flat beds and the clubhouse are good examples.
origin is offline  
Old Dec 16, 12, 7:52 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Programs: VS Au, Skywards Au, BA Exec Ag, HH Diamond, Taj Au
Posts: 1,389
Au contraire, I see the DL relationship to be one that significantly boosts VS's future and will bring a great deal of opportunity. Thinking about your other points:

- Well the top mngmt have been there a long time.
- The loss is regretable, but for example Air France, American Airlines, Iberia, even Lufthansa have made recent losses.
- BA have deferred their A380 deliveries, does that make you feel less confident in BA, or many other airlines that have deferred deliveries in recent years?

Glass half full perhaps?
slinky09 is offline  
Old Dec 16, 12, 8:05 am
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: 14.66m NbW of PHL
Programs: HH Diamond
Posts: 847
Originally Posted by slinky09 View Post
- Well the top mngmt have been there a long time.
- The loss is regretable, but for example Air France, American Airlines, Iberia, even Lufthansa have made recent losses.
- BA have deferred their A380 deliveries, does that make you feel less confident in BA, or many other airlines that have deferred deliveries in recent years?

Glass half full perhaps?
Good points.

I do think differently about national carriers like those you mentioned though, rightly or wrongly. It's just a gut feeling really on this I guess.

I really don't want to switch because as many do, I love the Virgin brand, the clubhouse, the upper class experience in general.

But I've been looking around a bit, and because I do a lot of travel between London and Melbourne, I'm sorely tempted by SQ - operating the A380 on that route with the sumptuous business class seats. I also do London-New York, which they obviously cover too.

Perhaps I'm just ready for a change.
jeffers is offline  
Old Dec 16, 12, 8:09 am
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: 14.66m NbW of PHL
Programs: HH Diamond
Posts: 847
Don't want to make this an SQ discussion, but my mistake, it seems they don't fly LHR-JFK/EWR
jeffers is offline  
Old Dec 16, 12, 10:41 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Programs: Enough to travel better
Posts: 2,020
Originally Posted by jeffers View Post
Don't want to make this an SQ discussion, but my mistake, it seems they don't fly LHR-JFK/EWR
But SQ stated: "Commercial arrangements between Singapore Airlines and Virgin Atlantic, encompassing codesharing, frequent-flyer programme ties and reciprocal lounge access, are expected to remain in place after the divestment."

http://www.singaporeair.com/jsp/cms/...s/ne121212.jsp

This means, SQ codeshare flights on VS metal TATL will continue even after SQ sells their stake in VS.
tonywestsider is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 12:45 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Australia
Programs: QF LTS, QF GOLD, Marriott LTG, Marriott PLAT
Posts: 2,431
Originally Posted by jeffers View Post
I dunno, just the fact that there seems to be quite a lot of changes at the top lately, operating at a loss, delaying new aircraft etc. The Delta purchase of the SQ shares doesn't fill me with confidence either.
The CEO is retiring and he has been with Virgin for something like 23 off years - so hardly jumping ship.

Don't forget that they have only delayed the A380.

in the last 2 years 10 x brand new A330's have been delivered and from 2014 they have 15 or so brand new 787-9's arriving in the fleet.

I think the Delta JV will massively help VS grow profitably.
ANstar is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 2:42 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 634
I actually think Virgin is looking stronger than ever and finding focus after about 3-4 years of service decline and identity confusion.

Please don't abandon them - the UK needs two strong long haul airlines!
cazoz is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 11:19 am
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: 14.66m NbW of PHL
Programs: HH Diamond
Posts: 847
Originally Posted by cazoz View Post
I actually think Virgin is looking stronger than ever and finding focus after about 3-4 years of service decline and identity confusion.

Please don't abandon them - the UK needs two strong long haul airlines!
I guess! I'm not planning on jumping ship that soon, but just looking around given my small concerns above. The SQ A380 business class to Melbourne is just very tempting!
jeffers is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 11:38 am
  #10  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Outside of the Asylum
Programs: 1K, *G for "life", Global Entry, Hertz PC, and my wallet
Posts: 19,260
I guess that is the problem. No one major thing, just a lot of little niggly things that make you start to look around.
Silver Fox is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 12:29 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: UK
Programs: BA | VS | UA | DL
Posts: 270
Originally Posted by cazoz View Post
I actually think Virgin is looking stronger than ever and finding focus after about 3-4 years of service decline and identity confusion.
I wouldn't worry.

Look at the points though. The CEO, as said, has been around for yonkers and is retiring. He has his own business' and he knows it's time to bow out.

The company has taken delivery of all it's 10 A330's. Next up, 787's. From what I understand, the A380 isn't a type that fits with VS anymore. It was in ten years ago when the orders were placed. If anything, deferring or cancelling orders for it before parting cash is probably a good thing!

Don't forget, they have just upgraded all their LGW 747's. A heck of an investment.

As for showing losses - we don't know what's going on at the top. Maybe something to drive down the price of the 49% so Delta can jump in at a price they wanted? I sense some forced movement.

I also know that SQ is an island of an airlines and prefers to stand alone. They never really leveraged anything in VS. The majority of people at VS are supportive and excited about the DL JV and believe it will help get the airline back in direction.

As said above, VS kicked back in glory and realised that everyone else had overtaken them. There is a lot of investment to get back up to par...it takes times, losses, movement of people etc...
phunc is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 7:15 pm
  #12  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Paris, Chicago, Rome, London, St John
Programs: DeltaPrivateJet, Ritz PP, Delta 4 million miler - Flying Colonel; AA Exec Plat (3 million + USAir)
Posts: 796
I am hoping that Delta does not screw VA as they have done Delta. Delta used to be the best loyalty program and it now the worst
BeatCal is offline  
Old Dec 17, 12, 10:51 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Programs: Enough to travel better
Posts: 2,020
OTOH, as some on FT knows, the VS Flying Club is not a loyalty program. VS FC is a "frequent flyer scheme". Let's see how that works with the new DL partnership.
tonywestsider is offline  
Old Dec 18, 12, 1:30 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: London, UK
Programs: VS/BA/CX/EK
Posts: 885
I was VS Gold for 7 consecutive years from 1999 - 2006, having flown with them regularly since 1995. The early part of my gold tenure felt like the heyday of Virgin Atlantic with revolutionary seats (first the slanty lie flat, then the herringbone) and great service innovation like the on-board massages.

Having recently returned to VS for some Upper Class transatlantic flights (using up some orphaned miles in my FC account) I've found good and bad parts: the service seems rather poor in comparison with yesteryear, the food decent (it went into a horrible decline around 2005), the wine dreadful (no change there), the amenity kit rubbish (I still use an Upper Class keyring from the days the kit included a gift), the clubhouses still wonderful but the A330 'Dream Suite' really poor - so much so that I will avoid the plane in the future.

I think it's good for BA to have some competition, and although the shine and uniqueness may have gone from some aspects of VS they are still a decent airline whether SQ or DL owns 49%. Just avoid the A333 and drink the single malt, not the wine!

BC
BlackCat is offline  
Old Dec 18, 12, 10:24 am
  #15  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Paris, Chicago, Rome, London, St John
Programs: DeltaPrivateJet, Ritz PP, Delta 4 million miler - Flying Colonel; AA Exec Plat (3 million + USAir)
Posts: 796
Black cat
You forgot to list no more on-board massages. I loved them

Their BC beds are still great (although not as good as SA first)
BeatCal is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread