Virgin Australia 'Noodlegate' Sparks Concerns Over 'Americanisation Of Business Class'

This "appalling cost-cutting" could be reflective of a broader trend, experts warn.

Virgin Australia 'Noodlegate' Sparks Concerns Over 'Americanisation Of Business Class'

Image: Flight Hacks

There are political scandals, economic f*ck ups, then this: Virgin Australia has been sprung serving two-minute noodles to business class passengers.

Perth Now reports “a passenger took to social media to complain against the budget meal offering, which can cost less than $2 a serve, after shelling out $2500 for a ticket.”

“The tongue-in-cheek post read: Two course offering on VA today: Course 1 – Red Wine, Coke no sugar & Snack Bar. Course 2 – fantastic noodles.”

Other social media users chimed in too.

“Omg I thought this was a joke but then realised that’s actually on a plane.”

“I know it’s ‘first world problem’ but if you are paying for a premium product then you should receive a premium product.”

Frequent flyer expert and Flight Hacks founder Immanuel Debeer told DMARGE this is “appalling cost-cutting in VAs business class.”

“I think Bain is on a cost cutting spree and these days you can get away with almost anything in the name of Covid.”

“Virgin used to have (in my opinion) the world’s best domestic business class product in terms of food, service and seats. Now we’re seeing the (don’t take offense) ‘Americanisation’ of business class.”

“Aussies are used to getting better so it’s no wonder the Bain ‘budget carrier’ approach won’t go down well unless the prices of the tickets reflect the actual service.”

Adele Eliseo, founder of The Champagne Mile, told DMARGE, “With all Virgin Australia lounges closed indefinitely and economy grade hot meals served in Business class, unfortunately there’s [now] very little to differentiate between the Virgin Australia’s onboard business class experience and the economy cabin.”

According to The West Australian, some passengers even had to take their own snacks on-board after the beleaguered airline, which went into voluntary administration earlier this year, ran out of supplies.

RELATED: Business Class Passenger’s ‘Infuriating’ Complaint Sparks Crucial ‘New Normal’ Debate

Virgin has said the limited onboard service was part of its plan to minimise interactions between flight crew and passengers.

“As travel demand begins to increase we are exploring the possibilities for our onboard business class offering, whilst continuing to prioritise the safety and wellbeing of our guests and crew,” a spokesperson said.

“We are also re-imagining what our onboard catering offer will be longer-term, and are looking forward to developing a new experience to suit customer needs.”

Storm in a noodle cup? Part of 2020’s growing branch of absurd business class literature? Or reflective of a deeper issue set to plague Australian airlines in the years to come? You decide.

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