It seems that “happy holidays” is more than just something to say at Christmas, with cheery staff and a quiet flight.
I really wanted to go away for a few days and treat myself to an extra-long weekend over Christmas. Having never been up to the Sunshine Coast, but constantly eyeing the destination’s stunning beaches and hinterland walking tracks, I decided this was where my next domestic holiday would be.
Knowing that all I needed to get Velocity silver status was two flight segments, I wanted to make sure I flew with Virgin on this trip.
Virgin Australia details
- Route: Sydney to Sunshine Coast (Maroochydore), return
- Duration: 1h 35m
- Flight number(s): VA479, VA484
- Aircraft type: Boeing 737-800
- Dates travelled: 22 December 2018; 25 December 2018
- Class: Economy
- Frequent flyer program: Velocity
- Points earned: 2,220
Alex’s Virgin Australia review: ★★★★☆
- Empty flight
- Little touches on Christmas
- Friendly staff
What did I like?
- Empty return flight: Likely because it was Christmas, it seemed like there were only about 15-20 people on the entire flight with most people having their own row. If only this could happen on long-haul flights!
- Christmas snack: Sometimes it’s the little things. We were served the usual Virgin Australia drink-and-snack combo, but a few minutes after the initial food service, flight attendants came around again and served a Christmas tree-shaped gingerbread cookie to each passenger.
- Friendly staff: I’m not sure if everyone was just in the holiday spirit, but the staff on my return flight were some of the smiliest and friendliest I’ve come across on any airline.
- Quickly reached status: With many partner airlines, or just sheer luck, I quickly earned the 250 status credits needed to get silver status and these two segments were able to seal the deal for me.
What didn’t I like?
- Few departure options: Flying to a small airport does often mean limited options when it comes to flight times. I like making the most of my travel days, so I was disappointed that the latest Virgin flight available from Maroochydore back to Sydney was only at 4:45pm.
- Price: For such a short flight, I don’t think the $400 fare was justified. That said, the only cheaper option was only about $50 less and I admittedly did want to get status.
Would I use Virgin Australia again?
Yes. The service was wonderful compared to my recent Tigerair experience and the little touches were much appreciated. Since I do want to retain my status with the airline, I will also be more likely to book with Virgin over another airline.
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