Flight review: VA1537 – HBT – SYD

It is like a yo-yo flying with Virgin. Some days are great and unexpected like my upgrade last week. Others are just ridiculous. This flight was one of those…ridiculous…

Row 3 has no personal video screens so at the start of the flight I am offered a portable iPad per-installed system which I receive with a pair of standard black headphones. I eagerly find a program that interests me, plug in the headphones, rank up the volume, and press play. But the volume through the headphones is not strong enough over the hum of the plane, and it is difficult to hear.

I ask for another pair – try them, and the same issue. I then request a pair of the white ear-bud headphones from Business class and am swiftly told that they are for business class passengers only. The flight attendant now seems as if I am now distracting her from her tea/coffee service. I state on a number of occasions I have received them for the same issue and she says she needs to ask her supervisor (she is obviously not empowered to make the decision herself). After a discussion with the supervisor who is somewhat pretentious, she comes back stating it is against company policy and ‘…the board won’t allow it’. I suggest it is inconsistent with other times I have requested them and she says sorry she can’t. Dumbfounded I reach for my phone to ask for and record the supervisor’s name and as I do so, find a brand new unopened pair of the white headphones in the seat pouch! As I open them up the flight attendant reaches out her hand to collect them and I ask, ‘Are you seriously going to take them off me?’ – to which she looks up to god and carries on with her tray service.

Would it not have been so much simpler from the very start for the flight attendant to simply say with a smile, ‘Certainly, let me get a pair for you’?Instead, it unnecessarily turned out to be a very unpleasant experience for all involved.

Rating: 2/10 – flight was also delayed, and I felt uncomfortable asking for a coffee after the debacle
so missed out.

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