Hello Flight-Report #Avgeeks. After a brief but enjoyable visit to Cairns it was time to make the slow and multi-stop trip back to the US, the wrong way of course. Originally this trip had almost a week in Australia, Cairns and Brisbane being the choice cities. My return home was on Singapore and ANA in first class using a no longer available 125K point redemption, which was a grand steal. When I booked it a year out there was rumor the new A380 would fly the SYD-SIN route. Singapore flies 2 A380s between these cities. BOTH were available when I booked it. But I picked the wrong one, and by the time I realized it, the new A380 was not available.
So for months that gnawed at me. Then SQ started publishing routes for their new B787-10. Reward Flying wanted to fly that plane. And I found Malaysia A350 too. And I found a waitlist on the new SQ A380. And I found space on Cathay's A350-1K. So I blew up the trip and ultimately had tickets on all these aircrafts.
Proud of my accomplishment I became tired just looking at the travel I was facing.
So I blew it up again. However all these aircraft are booked for travel in the next few months, as well as some others (hint: QR Qsuites, QR A350-1K, SQ URL) And the good news is CX swapped out the A350-1K on my flight and MH had an aircraft swap as well.
And in the end I lucked into QF's 787 plus an incredible dose of first class to return home.
Virgin Australia CNS-BNE B737 Business Class - This Report
Qantas BNE-MEL B787-9 Business Class - to come Qantas MEL-SYD A300-2 Business Class / MEL 2nd day open Business Class Lounge - to come Singapore Airlines SYD-SIN Suites Class / SYD Krisflyer First Class Lounge - to come Singapore Airlines SIN-PEK First Class / SIN Private Room - to come Lufthansa PEK-MUC First Class - to come Lufthansa MUC-FRA A321 Business Class / MUC First Class Lounge - to come Singapore Airlines FRA-JFK Suites Class - to come JetBlue JFK-ORD E190 Economy Class - no report
Cains has a quant airport. Both Qantas and Virgin Australia board front and rear which allows for super fast boarding. You can see the rear jetway in the photo above.
I was anxious to compare Virgin Australia 737 service to Qantas. Previous I had compared their A330 long haul domestic service and Virgin blew the doors off Qantas. A comparison was not worth writing about as in the end it was pretty equal.
Business Class seat in 737-800 operated by Virgin Australia.
VA only has 8 seats up front. Row one leg room seems pretty good.
Row 2 leg room is fair, with the obvious extra room under the seat in front.
Northern Cairns area on departure.
Courtney was the upfront FA. She was extremely nice and had a bubbly personality. Shortly after take-off she presented this pork pie and salad.
The quality and presentation of the dish are superior to the lunch served by Qantas.
I passed on dessert. (and the wine)
It was a beautiful day to fly. This is the Great Barrier Reef area.
And a cruise ship probably headed to Cairns.
Virgin uses Samsung tablets for entertainment. I tracked the flight.
Overall I would rate this flight a bit better than the Qantas domestic to Cairns. The differences were the quality of food and the IFE on VA.
Another example of how Australian domestic business class is so much better than US domestic. The food was creative, attractively presented and quite good. Flight attendants were extremely nice (not to imply all US FA's aren't) and a wide, comfortable seat. Nice flight.
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