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Further to this morning’s update, Virgin Australia has been working today to schedule additional services to assist affected Qantas passengers over the next few days.
The airline will use Virgin Australia aircraft to offer more than 3,000 extra seats tomorrow between the ports of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra and Mackay.
This is in addition to around 3,500 seats added today and the 40,000 seats that Virgin Australia has recently added to its domestic network for travel between 14 October 2011 and 31 January 2012.
As of this afternoon, Virgin Australia has helped over 20,000 affected Qantas passengers with special discounted fares.
Discussions are advancing with alliance partners Etihad Airways, Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand and Delta Air Lines in regards to adding extra capacity.
Virgin Australia is working with Etihad Airways on plans to add additional services between Melbourne and Sydney on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday which would introduce a further 600 seats per day via an Airbus A340-600 aircraft.
The airline is also working on plans to:
·Operate Singapore Airlines aircraft on key domestic routes; and
·Operate extra Air New Zealand aircraft on the trans-Tasman route in order to release Virgin Australia Boeing 737s for use domestically.
A range of other measures are also being taken to ensure Virgin Australia is well-placed to assist affected passengers, with the airline increasing staffing levels at airports and contact centres thanks to hundreds of staff volunteering to work extra hours.
Virgin Australia will provide further updates via media release and on our website: http://www.virginaustralia.com/servicedisruption/
Special Fares for Stranded Passengers
Virgin Australia is offering special “Stranded Passenger” recovery fares for passengers who are currently at a port away from home and hold a Qantas ticket to return home within the next 5 days.
The fares are offered at a 20 per cent discount to available “Saver” fares on Virgin Australia and Pacific Blue flights, for travel through to Thursday, 3 November 2011, subject to availability. They are available via a dedicated web page: http://www.virginaustralia.com/qantasgrounding/