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Air Canada changes seat configuration on 777's

Discussion in 'Flights' started by robbo mcs, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. cqen2l

    cqen2l Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Nup, Will pass.
     
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  2. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    At least Air Canada business class has decent seating; 1-2-1 on all aircraft. Not like the Qantas crap 2-3-2 (lower deck) or 2-2 (upper) on the 747, and 2-2-2 on the 380, and they droop in bed mode. That might have been acceptable last century, but any DECENT airline has direct aisle access for ALL business class seats, with comfortable flat beds for long haul flights.
     
  3. robbo mcs

    robbo mcs One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I do not rate air canada business class compared to qantas (380) at all. I find the qantas seats more comfortable and the bed wider at the head end. The sound quality is better on the entertainment. Qantas food is miles better, as is the service. Unfortunately there is very little qantas YVR direct, and that is not on 380, so I still tend to fly AC.

    The middle seat thing on qantas is not such a problem for me, as the leg room is absolutely huge on the 380, and it is not hard to get out. The weirdest business set up I have used is the BA 4 across. There are 2 centre seats facing backwards, with one on either side facing forwards. The centre seats give great privacy for a couple. However, you have to climb over someone to get out, and the crew have to lean right across the person on the outside to serve you.
     
  4. cqen2l

    cqen2l Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yes the BA set up is weird. Strange sensation taking off looking backwards. :puke:
     
  5. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    The comparison is really between the Qantas 747 and Air Canada 773. Qantas have their MKII skybed which droops and doesn't have direct aisle access for all seats, and it isn't all that easy to get out. We flew on this 2 years ago, and came back on Cathay via New York and Hong Kong. We found it almost impossible to sleep on the Qantas flight, and slept soundly nearly all the way on Cathay. Despite the huge difference in flying times, I would ALWAYS go with Cathay over Qantas.

    I'm not a fan of Qantas food offerings either. The stupid small plate, big plate system seems to be more of a cost cutting exercise than a real business class offering. Qantas are nowhere near the airline they were 20 years ago when they were a real full service carrier. Now they seem more like Jetstar+.
     
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  6. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    UA used to have backwards facing business seats in the upstairs section on the B747. There wasn't the facing someone else thingo, so it was private, and being upstairs had a more intimate feel. Although taking off backwards was a bit unusual they were the best seats in terms of sleeping when laid flat. Reason for that is the aircraft flies in a slight nose up attitude so a lie flat forward facing seat means your head is lower than the feet whereas the rear facing seats meant your head was just ever so slightly higher than the feet, for a much better sleep and reduced jet lag on arrival.
     
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  7. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    And the other trick with Qantas FF is to be very wary of any Business points seat involving BA. This isn't about the various merits or not of BA but about the fact that almost invariably the Australia-UK sector is in Economy, despite one being hit for the full complement of points for that class of travel. Mouse over the seat icon which you might click to select that combination of flights and it will give this warning, otherwise there is no indication except for some very small font text to that effect when the flights are displayed in more detail, easily overlooked if you were expecting business and had confirmed to go ahead and apply the full complement of Business points..
     
  8. cqen2l

    cqen2l Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    The earlier Qantas business class beds weren't lie flt however they've all been upgraded. But I had no problem sleeping after in them after 6 beers and a few wines. New ones are good. Easy.
     
  9. cqen2l

    cqen2l Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Same booking to say NYC or any point beyond LAX, first sector will usually be economy.
     
  10. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    ^^^
    Nice warning. Lucky then that we are using points on Cathay SYD->JFK next Sept. Both sectors are business and CX's business some say is one of the best.
     
  11. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    They may be be supposed to lie flat, but on most of them, the bottom half droops.
     
  12. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    I really enjoyed it. The seat is nowhere near as wide as Singapore's, but it is a hell of lot softer. FA's tend to leave you alone, but respond immediately to the call button. Food on our 3 flights was very good, and you have decent choices (not like Qantas stupid small plate, big plate).
     
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  13. travelislife

    travelislife One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    United still have these in most of their planes.
     
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  14. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    Thanks for that post. It reminded me to get onto the Cathay site and select seats so we can be together - went for the double pod in the middle on both sectors.
     
  15. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    Well guess what. I found somewhere on AC's web site a feedback page so basically put in the review of our experience as the feedback and the other day received a form email thanking me for the opportunity to improve and offering 25% off the next booking for two to make amends.

    That would make AC's poor attempt at PE about OK value, not that I will be able to take advantage of it though, as it is only good for a year.
     
  16. robbo mcs

    robbo mcs One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Mmm, got lucky I think. I also filled out a feedback form and got nothing, apart from a form letter :(
     
  17. luvthabumps

    luvthabumps A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Flew back to Melb with Air NZ in Business Premier on the weekend. This was a great flight. Timing was excellent, departs YVR at 6.40pm - couple of pre dinner drinks and a movie, then dinner, a few glasses of wine, another movie, a couple of sleeping tablets and I got about 6-7 hours sleep on a pretty turbulent flight when I don't usually sleep well at all. Flight gets in to AKL at 6.00am and then a couple of hours layover then direct to MEL. I have no issue with the MEL-LAX-YVR route itself, but not having to do the whole doing changing terminals, picking up luggage etc in LAX really makes the whole experience better, even if the flight time is same

    I rate it better than QF for sure. The whole experience was great - herringbone seat layout so everyone has aisle access, the ottoman so you can relax and put your feet up even when you're sitting up, or someone can join you for dinner or a drink as the ottoman doubles as a seat. The bed is absolute lay flat, great mattress and two fluffy pillows. Tiny issue with the ottoman is that it has a "seat back" lip so for me at 6'4" ! couldn't quite stretch out completely so slightly bent legs meant a little adjusting from time to time but still a great sleep for me.

    Food service was great as well, they don't just dump everything on your tray, it kind of flows like a restaurant meal almost, same with the breakfast as well.

    I had actually bought some cheap PE seats and then bid low on Air NZ's One Up for YVR - AKL and got the call up a few hours before departure so am a big wrap for this system . We just flew PE from AKL - MEL in the 777-300 and this was an excellent experience. Heaps of legroom, very roomy seat and good pitch - I would have been very happy with the 777-300 PE seating for a long haul flight - it's a shame they don't use this aircraft AKL-YVR

    We had already purchased Air NZ Bus Prem seats for the fam as a Chrissie present for our flight back to Vancouver when the whole family moves on Dec 30th so now I'm really looking forward to it. Good timing again - lunch flight out of MEL and then after a couple hours in AKL, the long haul departs at 8.30pm and gets in to YVR around midday so really good for the body clock.
    Big ups for Air NZ from me :cheers:
     
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  18. luvthabumps

    luvthabumps A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Interestingly I was speaking to my FIL about this last night and he said he hated the herringbone layout because he felt like he was completely separated from his travelling companion ( his GF who is 25 years younger than him.........)

    Mate I love it because of that. 14 hours of not having to talk to anyone else if I don't want to - ME ME ME time. LOL
     
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  19. benchives

    benchives Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Is business premium just business or is it s level above?
     
  20. Ozgirl

    Ozgirl A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    I just checked - its their top level - although only have premium econ and then 'business premier' no first.

    but seems like normal business to me - just talking it up as it looks like they don't have first product on any aircraft
     
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  21. luvthabumps

    luvthabumps A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    I was speaking with a friend yesterday who is a serious traveller and has travelled in Bus and First with loads of airlines and she said she feels that airlines who don't have First do a slightly better job in their Business class cabins.
     
  22. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    North American airlines are full of this bullshit. United have First which is something like Australian domestic business on domestic and real First on lon haul, BusinessFirst which is something like squashed long haul business class (ranges from 2-1-2 on 767 to 2-4-2 on 777) and Global First which is really just long haul business class.
     
  23. Gimped

    Gimped One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Any updates on this?
    All the airlines flying Sydney to Vancouver seem to have a 3-4-3 configuration in economy. Does it make any difference between Air New Zealand, Qantas, Air Canada??
     
  24. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    There are differences. AC has width 17" pitch 31", NZ has width 17.8" pitch 31-33". and QF width 17.5" and pitch 31. Also, thw last few rows in all 3 are 2-4-2 if you don't mind a rough ride. You can also do the BNE transit with AC to get the 789 with 3-3-3 in cattle class.
     
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  25. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    Qantas isn't comparable as they fly to YVR only during peak months, and using a B747 so 3-4-3 is OK.

    However Air Canada and Air NZ are using the considerably narrower B777. The early configuration from Boeing was 3-3-3 allowing for a reported 18.5" and the experience was comparable with the 3-4-3 on the A380s (about 18.3" between inside arm rests, 20" seat squab). But most B777 operators are squeezing in 3-4-3 which is very tight. Even Cathay Pacific is switching to 3-4-3, probably on account of their recent financial performance. Delta and Virgin are making a point of sticking with 3-3-3 on their B777s but unfortunately do not fly to YVR.

    It is hard to see how AirNZ could get 17.8" with 3-4-3 on their B777s. That would mean they are wider than the 17.5" which Qantas has on the B747, in a narrower tube. So the Seatguru figure of 17.1" seems closer to the mark, with AC being reported to have just 17".

    Same thing is happening on the B787. I met a guy from Seattle years ago on a number of Sun Peaks ski trips. He was an interior design engineer with Boeing at Everett and the B787 was the last aircraft he worked on before retiring. In 2007 on a non-ski trip I and OG1 visited Everett and he took us over to the plant tour and the tourist display building where there was a mock-up of the B787 cross section. He explained a couple of design considerations: The B787 was designed to serve a point-to-point network in contrast with Airbus which was developing the A380 for the hub-and-spoke network. So the B787 was small and had longer range capabilities, not so much as that being the primary requirement but that P2P necessarily meant there would be longer ranges. The other thing which was where he was involved was that the interior design was meant to provide a fresh start from the way interiors had evolved to become claustrophobic tubes and the idea was the create a sense of space and reduce stress. This was encapsulated into the 'Dreamliner' tag. So economy was envisaged to be 2-4-2 across with seats about 18.5" (as per the initial B777, and comparable with the A380), and no passenger more than one seat from an aisle). However gradually operators have squished in another seat and thus run 3-3-3, with two passengers more than one seat from the aisle and the seats are typically listed on Seatguru as being 17.3".

    Naturally the B787 operators are being less than honest in that they have pulled the rug out from under the 'Dreamliner' concept but have kept the tag prominently before public eyes. Some have distracted attention from this sleight of hand with a kind of bait and switch as per Qantas which trumpeted that fact that they had increased pitch by 1" on their upcoming B787s compared with the A380s but neglecting to mention they had reduced the seat width by over 1". The one doesn't compensate the other and beside gain from the seat pitch increase is compromised once the seat in front reclines.

    JAL is the exception sticking with the original 2-4-2 Dreamliner concept in some of they B787s and significantly do not have a PE section, the B787 is just two small to include it and it distorts the pricing structure necessitating turning economy into Sardine Class to protect the prices for PE and Business.

    In brief:
    1. the B787 economy seat width is about the same as in a B737 domestic aircraft, less than on the B777 and considerably narrower than on an A380.

    2. the B777 economy seat width is about the same as in Dash-8 and ATR-72 etc short haul domestic turboprop aircraft. A slim person next to a slim person might find it OK for 14 hours or so but otherwise it is Sardine Class with bodies overlapping bodies and thighs pressed hard up against each other.
     
  26. Gimped

    Gimped One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Thanks (I think)...I am wondering if it is just better to stay home.
     
    #176 Gimped, Aug 29, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2017
  27. absentskier

    absentskier Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Lel.
     
  28. jgm

    jgm Addicted

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    Not all seats and layouts are created equal. NZ have narrower armrests and aisles, which enables them to user wider seats than the opposition. Also, the extra 2" in pitch make a HUGE difference.
     
  29. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    I'm going to get to the bottom of the B787 3-3-3 economy seat width measurements in a few weeks. We are doing a Fall Colors vacation coming home on ANA from Chicago via Hands on Aeroplan air miles. I got Business on the 787 to STD but when I went back to do OG1's ticket while I was able to get her in 1st with me ORD to HND there was no Business seat offered, just Economy (for same number of miles :(). So I shall take my tape measure down the back when I go to say hi, and measure up, and compare with Seatguru. Interestingly ANA kicked off the B787 order book and economy was 2-4-2 but they have refitted to 3-3-3 reportedly to avoid showing up their Star Alliance partners United (and AC) to be the low cost carriers they have turned themselves into down the back.
     
  30. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    MrsOG told me not to come down the back to check the ANA 3-3-3 seat width on the B787. However she did report it as being adequate in terms of the measure of whether or not on returning to one's seat in the dark one could sit down and then reach for the seat belt. On the 3-4-3 B777 that was impossible - one had to half stand up then reach around and grab the seat belts then sit back down. However in the 3-3-3 B787 she had enough of a margin between the seat neighbour thigh to be able to get to the seat belt.
     
  31. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Might have had more to do with seat neighbours thigh width ;)
     
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  32. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    Not too impressed with ANA, although 1st was nice from Chicago to Haneda, as it should be, but Business on the overnight flight down to Sydney was crap. OTOH Cathay Pacific in Business from Sydney to Hong Kong overnight was excellent as it was on to JFK. Sadly though it will be back to down the back for us next time on anything but a 3-4-3 B777 to Canada even if it means a longer trip with stopover.
     
  33. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    I am recovering after a 16 hour return flight with Air Canada from Vancouver to Sydney. As per @robbo mcs original post, the seating is terrible. I am fairly small (160cm tall and not overweight) but I felt like a sardine in a can. Very little leg room and narrow seats does not make for a comfortable flight! My +1 is 180cm tall; he was quite definite after disembarking that he would not fly with Air Canada again if he could help it. Rather ironically, there was significantly more leg room on the little Dash 8 that we caught from Sydney to Canberra - a blessed relief after the earlier flight. The space on the Air Canada 777 was noticeably more cramped than on the same model of plane we used to fly to Japan two years ago (with ANA); the service was also pretty average. On the plus side, we didn’t get hit with excess baggage fees for our large double ski bag ...
     
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  34. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I tried this and as a result I'm serving 12 years in jail
    I thanks God every day I still have internet access
     
  35. Gimped

    Gimped One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    We came back on one of the Qantas aging 747-400.
    Seat pitch was ok, but seat width was terrible (none of us are particularly overweight).
    The only thing that made it ok was that we had the 4 middle seats as a family, so cuddling up didn't matter too much.
     
  36. toxicfox

    toxicfox Hard Yards

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    Sitting at Vancouver Airport waiting to board our Brisbane flight AC35. Lots of people with seating issues. Families not together or not in seats they have paid extra $ for. Including us.
    Some passengers have told us that the direct flight to Melbourne was cancelled and they are now flying to bne for a 4 hr lay over then virgin flight from Brisbane to Melbourne. I don’t know that there is a direct Melbourne flight ?
    Air Canada tells us that the travel agents check in systems don’t talk to air Canada’s system. Or the other line is that because of the plane change all the seats get jumbled. Sounds like bs to me.
     
  37. Marty_McSly

    Marty_McSly Backwards to the future! Ski Pass: Gold

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    3 or 4 times a week, as of a few months ago.
     
  38. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    Call me a cynic, but this suggests to me two half full flights consolidated into a single full shitflight.
     
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  39. sly_karma

    sly_karma Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yep sounds like AC. A lot of Canadians avoid AC at almost any cost. Friend of mine is about to sue them for damages from a flight they cancelled and then refused to refund tickets.
     
  40. zac150

    zac150 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    A mate had an absolute horror time on AC recently, kids throwing up (got his shoes) and staff not cleaning up just throwing a spare blanket on the mess. Blanket then got caught in the trolley so food got sent flying over him.

    Weeks after he was still so pissed that when his partner was telling the story he had to walk away!

    I’ll never fly AC again yeah the flights are direct but that’s the only thing going for them.
     
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  41. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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  42. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer One of Us

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    First time I flew to Canada was on AC and chatting to a flight attendant he confided how Vancouver based staff still had something of the former Canadian Pacific hospitality but once Montreal took them over then things changed. Montreal had over borrowed so came the bankruptcy period and the densification strategy pursued by many airlines would have been hard to for the bean counters to resist. Overselling was a very common experience even before densification and now Jetstar (and presumably Rouge) style flight cancellations / consolidations feature. Densification has probably impacted cabin crew more than passengers, turning their workplace into the pits so no wonder they just tune out as a stress coping mechanism.
     
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  43. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    Sounds like our flight over :p
     
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  44. 1dayasalion

    1dayasalion Hard Yards

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    Just got back from a couple of weeks in Canada and it was my first and last experience with Air Canada.

    Flight from Sydney to YVR was very uncomfortable for someone that is 190cm/90kg but that is pretty standard for me. Food was absolutely atrocious, easily the worst airline food I have had in 15 years of overseas travel.

    The flight back however was pure hell; loaded on late Saturday night during a moderate snowstorm and proceeded to sit on the plane for the next 4 hours doing nothing, FAs did a couple of trips down the aisle handing out water but that was all. After the snow let up we got the all clear to go de-ice the plane but there was another 4 in front so there wasn't going to be enough time for the flight crew due to the 14hr flight. We all had to disembark and wait in the terminal for another 5 hours while a new crew were rounded up, f&b vouchers were handed out but at that time of night the only place open was A&W which had a massive line.

    Once we got on the new flight we waited on board for another 2hrs while they loaded new food onto the plane queued for de-icing. There were fights breaking out between passengers as people wanted to be unloaded to go with a different airline which would have obviously ****ed us over with flight crew hours. Finally we got to the runway and took off, once we were in the air people started clapping to which I loudly responded, 'don't applaud them, they don't deserve it!' which raised a few cheers.

    The thing that really pissed me off about the whole experience was as we were disembarking the first time, the FAs were apologising to all of the business and premium guests as they got up. Once we started leaving not a ****ing peep out them.
     
  45. sly_karma

    sly_karma Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    What an awful experience. One more AC mess.
     
  46. 1dayasalion

    1dayasalion Hard Yards

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    Clearly the snowstorm in Vancouver wasn't anyone's fault but the organisation afterwards was shocking.

    The real kicker was when our replacement flight from Sydney to Queenstown was cancelled due to Cyclone Gita crossing land over the south island and Virgin couldn't find any overnight accommodation due to Chinese New Year and Mardi Gras. :crap::crap::crap:
     
  47. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    @1dayasalion, that sounds dreadful. I’m usually pretty forgiving of airlines but as per my earlier posts I was extremely unimpressed with Air Canada. Hope you all get some sleep now you’ve finally gotten home.
     
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  48. Jacko4650

    Jacko4650 One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Yes, I thought most of the complaints about AC previously had been a bit 'precious', but the evidence is starting to overwhelm. Shame, the idea of a direct flight to Vancouver was very appealing.
     
  49. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    All I can say is, as the best voted airline in north America, the rest must be truly atrocious.

    Recent flight on a Q400, YVR to YKA they called for two to unload for payment.

    The plane seriously looked very tired.

    Yes we got there, but how long till one doesn’t get there..........

    As for the US airlines they are even worse.
     
    #199 Taipan, Feb 22, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2018
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  50. sly_karma

    sly_karma Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Most Canadians don't like AC either. In a year two Westjet will be flying their new 789s to Australia, much more friendly.