Monday, 24 September 2007

Qantas? JetStar? Who the f@$% am I flying with?

Just a short missive to Qantas about a flight experience I had with them recently. I must admit, I wasn't exactly "on" when I wrote this, and anger tends to dissipate over time.

Rule number 1 when writing a good complaint: Write it as soon as you possibly can. Anger is a creative force.

Dear Sir/Madam,

I wanted to bring to your attention a mild dissatisfaction that I had recently with flights bearing your flight numbers.

Recently, my wife and I flew from Tullamarine to Bangkok. We were advised when we booked the flights that these would be on JetStar, and this is perfectly understandable, given that it makes perfect business sense to operate code-sharing arrangements.

Our problems, however, started there.

Whilst our flights were on JetStar planes, the flight numbers we were given started with QF, meaning that for all intents and purposes, they were Qantas flights.

So you can imagine our surprise when we took our seats to find that all the normal things that we would expect on a Qantas flight were not there. On Qantas flights, we expect to find meal services, drinks as well as a blanket and pillow.

It, therefore, came as a bit of a rude shock to us to find that we had to pay extra for these on the flight. This is not what one expects when flying what is expected to be a Qantas flight.

While I am doing my best in this not to harp on about what is expected when operating a code-sharing agreement, the following should be noted: It is the duty of Qantas to ensure that where a code-sharing arrangement exists, an equivalent level of service is received by the paying passengers. The fact that JetStar was operating the service should in no way be any different than if the flight was operated by British Airways, Aer Lingus or Burkina Faso Air.

On top of this, at the end of the flight when we went to try to get food, we were told that this was for passengers who had ordered this in advance and that there was nothing for any other passengers, even if they were prepared to pay.

Given all this, we decided to pre-order for our return flight, and were pleased with the results, however as we were, as has been mentioned before, flying what was in effect a Qantas flight, this should not have been necessary.

JetStar operates clean, new planes with what is probably the most attractive cabin staff I’ve ever seen. This says more about JetStar’s recruitment policies than it does about me, but they were competent and did their jobs with a smile. It is a shame, then, that Qantas doesn’t ensure that JetStar provides the rest of the package.

Given that Qantas owns JetStar, one would think that you are in a box seat to ensure that Qantas passengers on JetStar flights are treated with an equivalent level of service to what they would be if they were on a Qantas flight. This would be a no-brainer with any other company where this sort of thing exists.

I hope that this email has been of some assistance. Please feel free to contact me if you require further information.

Yours sincerely, Dikkii.

Oh well, I'll see what I get back.

Disclosure: This blogger owns shares in Qantas.

Monday, 10 September 2007

The Age response

I hope I also get a response from Catherine - If she's got the guts!

Dear Cameron

Thank you for taking the time to contact The Age. I have recorded it in Reader Feedback.

I have also forwarded it to Catherine Deveny.

Kind regards

Helen Barnett
Reader Services

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

The Age Online 5 Sept - Annoying sarcastic writer!

Dear all,

It would be nice if there was the capability to leave comments on particular articles that aren’t a part of the ‘Blog’ section.

Today I read an article by Catherine Devery titled “Why do some wives still change their names?”. After reading the article I felt like giving Catherine a few pointers as to ‘why’, but found myself lost for a place to post these pointers.

So here goes….

Dear Catherine,

Thank you firstly for pushing your ideals and beliefs on everyone else through your commentaries like some unwanted religion. Although I don’t believe that wive ‘must’ change there names I think that it does make things a little easier in the future. Let me give you an example as I’m sure you are currently about to delete this email as I’m not sure you take advise well.

The logical reason why it is still within the realms of sanity to change names at marriage is for the children that usually follow in the future. Firstly the issue of what last name to give your children is the first hurdle. Under the regular system that 90% of the public use, the child/children are named after their father. Simple. Under your devised system, firstly there would be bickering as to the last name of the 1st child followed by further bickering as more children are born. Your solution I would assume would be to take on both parent’s last names in a hyphenated way. Like Micheal Devery-Davidson for example if we were to have children together (trust me this is a hypothetical as you’re not my type, and visa versa).

Although Michael Devery-Davidson is a great name (maybe a little long if a middle name were added, but non the less). Of course there would be more bickering as to whose last name is first and whose was second. Now this form of name naming is fine for first generation kids, but it becomes a concern down the track (as I’m sure as a mother you would also push your narrow beliefs on your children as well).

Let’s go to the next generation assuming hypothetical Michael didn’t become a life long bachelor, seeking to rid the world of capitalism and poverty. Michael weds Kate Smith with the same feelings and beliefs and they have a child Joan. Joan then would take on the name Joan Devery-Davidson-Smith, and adding a middle name would now mean that Joan would need the bank to design a wider credit card to accommodate her ridiculous surname.

Let’s now just flow forward a couple of generations, when you and I have long been divorced are pushing up daisies. We now have created relatives with names like Jeffery Devery-Davidson-Smith-Bond-Gatting-Everitt-Samuels-Jackson-Laycock….You get my drift.

So next time you think wives change there names solely because they are weak or there husbands are chauvinistic pigs, think again, look outside your tiny square that you call reality, and be at peace that it will continue for a long time.