Virgin Australia review: Sydney to Melbourne
A short and ever-so-sweet trip flying the world's second-busiest flight route.
We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!
Having been invited to fly the inaugural Cebu Pacific flight out of Melbourne, I booked myself on a one-way flight from my hometown Sydney at midday on a Tuesday to make the connection.
Were there any bumps? I'd call them hiccups, but overall everything went very smoothly – and I even scored free in-flight Wi-Fi!
Virgin Australia flight details:
- Route: Sydney to Melbourne
- Duration: 1 hour 35 minutes
- Flight number: VA838
- Aircraft type: Boeing 737-800
- Date travelled: 14 August 2018
- Class: Economy
- Frequent flyer program: Velocity
- Points earned: 800 base points and 5 status credits
My review, in short:
- Online check-in allowed me to bypass the counters and go straight to security.
- Free in-flight Wi-Fi meant I could work in the air.
- Velocity points and status credits accrual.
- Flight was slightly delayed with no announcement on how far away boarding was.
- Free drinks were limited to tea, coffee and water.
- Plane was packed despite being a mid-Tuesday flight.
What did I like?
- Online check-in. Admittedly I was running late, having only ordered my Uber to Sydney Airport for 11am (I live around 20 minutes away). By the time I arrived it was close to 11:30am but I'd managed to check in and receive my QR code while in the car. This allowed me to skip the check-in counters, as I was running purely on hand luggage, and head straight to security, which was quick as could be. I arrived at my gate at 11:40am and my plane hadn't even arrived yet.
- Free in-flight Wi-Fi. This was announced at the start of the flight and a card in the back of seat pocket provided succinct instructions on how to connect. It's absolutely free, although limited to general search and select chat apps like Facebook Messenger. For faster speeds and capabilities you have to pay a fee. Still, it was more than enough for me to use my hour flight to do a little admin and work.
- Velocity points and status accrual. Velocity's earn rate is based on the cost of your seat. Essentially you earn 5 points for every $1 you spend and I managed to come away with 800 Velocity points and 5 status credit points from my flight.
What didn’t I like?
- Flight was delayed. This worked in my favour as I was running late anyway, but there was no announcement at the gate as to when the flight would arrive or that it was delayed at all. On a positive note, the flight left around 15 minutes late but still arrived on time.
- Limited free drinks. For my short flight a snack was provided as well as a drink, however I was surprised to discover that this was limited to tea, coffee and water. Beer, wine, cider and even soft drinks cost extra, unless you're flying from 5-7pm Monday to Friday, which I found quite stingy.
- Packed flight. By the numbers, midweek flights are the cheapest days to fly and the quietest to travel. This didn't translate on my flight, which was almost sold out. I was hoping not to have a neighbour beside me but I acquired two. This was not the airline's fault at all, it just would have been nice to stretch out.
Would I use Virgin Australia again?
In a heartbeat. Aside from a super minor delay and the limited refreshment options, mine was a smooth ride from Sydney to Melbourne that I'd take to zip between both cities any day.
Curious? Try Virgin Australia yourself with these hot deals:
More guides on Finder
Amazon Prime Day top beauty buys: 40% off FOREO, GHD, L’Oreal
From makeup to skincare to haircare, these are the hot beauty offers we're expecting to see this Prime Day.
Paul Gallen vs Justis Huni: Fight time and how to watch live online
Undefeated heavyweight Justis Huni and former NRL star Paul Gallen will square off in what's being called Termination Day.
eBay kitchen EOFY sale: 75% off with these discount codes
Score up to 75% off cookwares and kitchen appliances when you add these 'hidden' discount codes during the eBay EFOY sale.
Why did the Coca Cola (NYSE:KO) share price drop?
Shares in the beverage maker had lifted nearly 15% since February.
Amazon Prime Day 2021 Australia: Early deals on now
Amazon Prime Day 2021 officially starts on June 21 - or does it? Here's a stack of early-bird deals you can get right now.
Amazon Prime Day: Top hacks for Australians in the 2021 sales
From when to shop to how to split the cost of your purchase, we’ve got you covered this Prime Day.
How to invest in the Charger Metals IPO
Everything we know about the Charger Metals IPO, plus information on how to buy in.
Editor’s Picks from the Nasty Gal x We The Wild Ones new edit
Ultimate cool gals Lucy and Nikki just dropped the rock n roll edit of our dreams and here's how you can get 60% off at the checkout.
Finder Daily Deals: The 5 best Prime Day deals in Australia today
Today's best Finder Daily deals include: Amazon Prime Day early-bird deals, 25% off Lenovo Chromebooks, Bose audio clearance.
How to invest in the PEXA Group IPO
Everything we know about the PEXA Group IPO, plus information on how to buy in.
Ask an Expert