“We’re not shonky,” says Qantas at Choice – Australian Aviation

A Qantas A330-300 photographed by Victor Pody

Qantas has accused consumer group Choice of using outdated data to give the company a joking ‘shonky’ award for poor performance.

It comes after the airline faced a series of problems this year, including huge delays at Easter, hours of waiting for calls and even the revelation that the cabin crew of a Qantas A330 had to sleep in multiple seats in economy class.

At its low point in April, less than half of departures from Sydney and Melbourne airports were on time, well below any of its major competitors.

On Thursday, Choice CEO Alan Kirkland said the airline was so bad that it appeared it “did everything on purpose to win a shonky.”

Qantas responded that it had been “very transparent” with its data, but that Choice’s numbers were “just plain wrong”.

“We’ve beaten Virgin on on-time flights eight times in the past 12 months and in some months that has been significant,” it said in a statement.

“Our call wait times are less than half of what Choice claims.

“Our customers have redeemed more than $1 billion in COVID-related flight credit. The conditions for this are the same or better than before COVID and we actively encourage our customers to use them.

“Nobody disputes the fact that we had issues earlier this year and we apologize for that, but it’s disappointing that Choice hasn’t acknowledged the impact of COVID and border closures on the broader airline industry.”

In October, Australian Aviation reported how Qantas’ performance has improved, with the airline now overtaking Virgin to fare better on delays.

New official figures backed the national carrier’s latest claims, showing that 69 per cent of its Qantas and QantasLink flights arrived on time in September, compared to 68 per cent for Virgin and VARA combined.

Qantas said its improvement was due to both holding capacity in reserve for difficult times and investing in staff training and recruitment.

A total of $200 million was invested over the remainder of the fiscal year to hire additional crew members, train new recruits and pay overtime at contact centers.

It also said its new “conservative” approach to planning means 20 per cent of its available seats will remain in reserve.

Leave a Comment