Review of Virgin Australia flight Townsville Sydney in Economy

Airline Virgin Australia
Flight VA1520
Class Economy
Seat 3A
Aircraft Boeing 737-800
Flight time 02:20
Take-off 11 Apr 15, 13:20
Arrival at 11 Apr 15, 15:40
VA 65 reviews
flywunala
By 2967
Published on 14th April 2015
This report covers a family holiday to Magnetic Island, North Queensland, which is located near Townsville. It comprises of 3 sectors:

737-8FE VH-VUJ VA909 4 -Apr -15 SYD/BNE 1D BUS VIRGIN AUSTRALIA
737-8FE VH-VUD VA367 4 -Apr -15 BNE/TSV 4C VIRGIN AUSTRALIA
737-8FE VH-VUG VA1520 11 -Apr -15 TSV/SYD 3A VIRGIN AUSTRALIA

Most of the photos have been taken with my iPhone 6 plus. Travelling with the family does not allow me a lot of time to take pictures…:-(

Very early morning departure out of Sydney. After dropping the luggage at the bag drop off in the main terminal, we head to the Virgin Lounge which has a dedicated kerb access and where passengers can clear security checks. However you can not check luggage in via this facility. Without luggage this is a fast and comfortable way to access the lounge and be airside
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The lounge is very quiet. Very comfortable. A healthy range of food is available. There is even a barista that does great coffee!
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Another part of the lounge. No tarmac view sadly
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Checking the board. Virgin operate from T2, but it shares it with Jetstar and Tigerair. We are off to Townsville via Brisbane as the direct flight was not available at the time of booking.
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Virgin IFE is available on your portable device (IOS and Android). Which I find pretty funky. The air show is pretty cool too
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Our SYD/BNE plane at the gate in Brisbane.
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We only have one hour on the ground in BNE and we continue on to TSV on board a different 737. A quick glimpse of the flight deck.
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This is what I like about Virgin. Repositionning (or paxing as they say in Australia) pilots travel in economy… no princess treatment. This is what I call showing leadership !
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On route to TSV following the coast. The inbound flight path is still showing….
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The ramp at TSV airport
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The terminal where we disembark
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A few bonus pictures. Car ferry from Townsville to Magnetic Island (40 min). We rented a car at the airport, which makes it much easier with kids as the island is pretty spread out.
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Leaving Australia mainland
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Magnetic Island is a true gem, under rated and under the radar of many tourist. Not sure why as it is a magnificent holiday destination



This is the property where we stayed. Balinese style bungalow
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Sadly our Easter holiday are over. Back to Townsville on the car ferry and now at the departure area of the Townsville airport terminal. This is the Virgin side of the terminal. With kiosks and tradtional counters.
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The view outside the terminal
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A large board promoting Air North, small domestic carrier based in Darwin
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Departure and arrival display
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The arrival zone, on the opposite side from the departure area
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This is what I call a customer friendly airport…
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As usual I am tracking the inbound aircraft as much as I can. Today's inbound plane is well ahead of schedule
which means that the likelyhood of our flight being delayed is slim.
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Departure area and security
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Stairs to the gates
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Departure gates
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View of the TSV tarmac
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Our plane for the day
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The forward cabin, we are seating in the first row, just behind business class. The pitch is great and there is a dividing wall, which is great when travelling with kids
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The back of the plane
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The first row in economy (row 3)
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Only one pax in J that day
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The flight deck…
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Plane spotting…not much to report. However TSV will get international flight later this year with Jetstar launching a route to Bali
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Some flight information.


The IFE. Screen shot of my iPhone, a decent selection of movies and documentary, and of course music.


Newcastle area from a distance
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We are travelling off peak yet we have to slow down and zig zag due to traffic congestion…
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A pretty funky coffee shop at the arrival hall in the Virgin terminal
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Verdict

Virgin Australia

8.4/10
Cabin9.0
Cabin crew8.5
Entertainment/wifi8.0
Meal/catering8.0

Townsville - TSV

7.2/10
Efficiency5.0
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness8.0

Sydney - SYD

6.8/10
Efficiency5.0
Access8.0
Services6.0
Cleanliness8.0

Conclusion

Very pleasant little domestic trip. We do not know how lucky we are in Australia as domestic travel is easy, convenient, comfortable and is most of the time an enjoyable experience.
Icing on the cake we were upgraded to business class between SYD and BNE, most likely due to my FF status. Always nice when it happens unexpectedly.
Virgin Australia economy (and business) class product is robust, the crew is friendly. On time performance was impeccable, despite the busy Easter Week-end. We would have arrived well ahead of schedule back in SYD however ATC did slow the plane down (not sure why as the airport looked empty when we arrived and the weather was fine).
SYD T2 is plaisant and offers many facilities, shops, cafes and Virgin has a very comfortable lounge, which is accessible from kerb and offer passenger the possibily to clear security in a very smooth way, avoid the traditional big queue in the main terminal.
TSV is a very small airport, with limited catering and activities/facilities. However due to its small size, it provides the traveller a very enjoayble casual and informal experience.

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8 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 135796 by
    Mathieu 2081 Comments

    Hey :)
    Thanks for sharing this very nice reports.
    I really appreciate too the captain seated in the Y class.
    I hope you've Enjoyed your holidays with your family.

    See you,

  • Comment 136184 by
    KévinDC TEAM GOLD 5656 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this report to a this exotic destination--well, at least for me :-) I'd never heard of Townsville. It looks beautiful! I'll definitely have to add a stop in Queensland on my trip to Australia at the end of the year.
    I can imagine that it's not very easy to do a flight report when travelling with kids so thanks for making the effort! I really like the interiors of VA's 737 cabins. Very sleek and modern. The Business cabin looks really nice as well. I've taken note that the first row of Y is a good place to be in case I have the opportunity to fly VA. Is it reserved only for Elites or can you pay a premium to get the row. Interesting that repositioning crew is called paxing in Australia. Here in the US we call that deadheading...which sounds morbid, lol. Paxing sounds better. Thanks for sharing, see you soon for another report!

  • Comment 136257 by
    NGO85 1622 Comments

    I'm late to the show, but thanks for the FRs.

    The cabins of VA are a little too colorful for my tastes (I like uniform cabin colors, the old regional CX Y-cabins make me shudder). I like how they cut out the bulkhead for the first row of economy, really helps with that extra legroom for a 2-hour flight. Catering is simple drink/snack offerings on these flights?

    no princess treatment
    - Good observation, I had a deadheading pilot on one of my MU flights. He sat in the cockpit for take-off/landing, then was an unwelcome seatmate during the middle of the flight in J.

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