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Tigerair sets out to win Canberra over

By Charlotte Harper - 22 August 2016 13

Tigerair announcement

Will Canberrans forgive Tigerair for the delayed flights and cancellations so many of us experienced when they last flew in and out of the capital?

The low-cost carrier is set to return to Canberra five years after it was last here, offering daily discounted flights between Melbourne and the capital from December 9, coinciding with the beginning of school holidays and the opening of the National Gallery of Australia’s summer blockbuster exhibition from Versailles.

Fares and timetables will be announced later this week.

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority grounded Tiger in August 2011, putting an end to its flights between Canberra and Melbourne after about two-and-a-half years of operation.

Many of us will want to try to new Tigerair service despite having some bad memories from last time the airline was here. Existing flights are prohibitively expensive. There is no train service. The drive to the Victorian capital, whether by car or bus, takes several hours.

But many of us also recall the time a Tiger flight was cancelled leaving us stranded, or delayed by so many hours that we missed the event we were travelling interstate for in the first place. One friend missed a wedding. I doubt she’ll be flying Tiger again, though the story the CEO of Tigerair told at the announcement of its return to Canberra today was directed very much at people like her, and was convincing.

Rob Sharp spent much of his speech reassuring his audience that delays and cancellations were no longer an issue, emphasising the fact that Tigerair is now 100 per cent owned by Virgin Australia, and has rebranded from the Tiger Airways of old to a different beast, Tigerair.

“Those two milestones signalled a major transformation for the business,” the CEO said.

“We’ve invested heavily in the business. We’ve reviewed every part of the operation. The trick was to actually put the customer at the core of everything we’re doing.

“I’m thrilled to say that it’s working. Our customers are telling us consistently that they want affordable, reliable air travel, a friendly service, and we’re delivering.

Mr Sharp said the transformation had meant an investment in on-time performance.

“Everyone wants to get there on time. We have the highest on-time arrivals and departures within the low-cost carriers in Australia.

“We have the lowest cancellation rate of all airlines domestically, and we’ve invested heavily in the product to make booking with us and flying with us as easy as possible.”

He said all of this meant the airline’s customers were now happy.

“80 per cent of them are now saying they’re satisfied with flying Tiger, recommending us to their friends and family, and ultimately voting with their feet, saying that this is value for money.”

He said the company had set up a new call centre, a new website and mobile app and a special new iPad app to improve check-in procedures.

“It’s a new-look Tigerair that’s coming to Canberra, and we’re very confident the community here will embrace us when we start services.”

Will you give the new-look Tigerair a go?

Pictured are Tigerair Australia CEO Rob Sharp, ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr and Canberra Airport CEO Stephen Byron.

What’s Your opinion?


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13 Responses to
Tigerair sets out to win Canberra over
justin heywood 3:32 pm 25 Aug 16

dungfungus said :

What is the legroom like on Tiger compared to the mainstream carriers?

Like cattle class in almost all airlines these days, legroom is OK if you’re a very small person with sloping shoulders who lost both legs in the war.
For everyone else it’ll be a bit of a squeeze I expect, but thankfully most Tiger flights are short.

I recently did Aukland to LAX on Air New Zealand. 13 hrs. Man it was the pits.

dungfungus 12:23 pm 25 Aug 16

What is the legroom like on Tiger compared to the mainstream carriers?

justin heywood 10:45 am 25 Aug 16

TuggLife said :

Ugh, Tiger are just the worst. I had booked to fly them between Melbourne and Adelaide a few years ago, and the flight was delayed, and then delayed some more, delayed a bit longer, and then finally cancelled. Because they only had one flight a day, we were asked to be rebooked to the following day’s flight, but that was full. Ended up having to go back to the city and get on the overnight bus, and arriving in Adelaide the next morning. Never again.

But the main point emphasised in the article was that Tiger admit that they have lifted their game. I for one will give them another go, for flights that I have to pay for.

TuggLife 11:18 pm 24 Aug 16

Ugh, Tiger are just the worst. I had booked to fly them between Melbourne and Adelaide a few years ago, and the flight was delayed, and then delayed some more, delayed a bit longer, and then finally cancelled. Because they only had one flight a day, we were asked to be rebooked to the following day’s flight, but that was full. Ended up having to go back to the city and get on the overnight bus, and arriving in Adelaide the next morning. Never again.

dungfungus 2:49 pm 24 Aug 16

aleayr said :

John Moulis said :

As far as cheap and nasty airlines are concerned, Jetstar seems to be the best of a bad bunch.

Tiger’s on time departures and arrivals are an order of magnitude better than Jetstar, with Tiger also having the lowest cancellation rate of the 4 main carriers:
https://bitre.gov.au/statistics/aviation/otp_annual.aspx

Here’s a Capital idea:
If it’s Quick And Nasty Try Another Service.

aleayr 1:59 pm 24 Aug 16

John Moulis said :

As far as cheap and nasty airlines are concerned, Jetstar seems to be the best of a bad bunch.

Tiger’s on time departures and arrivals are an order of magnitude better than Jetstar, with Tiger also having the lowest cancellation rate of the 4 main carriers:
https://bitre.gov.au/statistics/aviation/otp_annual.aspx

John Moulis 10:35 am 24 Aug 16

“Delayed flights and cancellations”. If I’m not mistaken, Tiger are also the company which charges you extra for luggage, both carry-on and in the hold. As far as cheap and nasty airlines are concerned, Jetstar seems to be the best of a bad bunch.

creative_canberran 1:33 am 24 Aug 16

Welcome the competition, won’t be using it.

You don’t undercut the full service airlines without making sacrifices. Some of those are sacrifices people are fine with, in-flight meals, even checked baggage. And even if you pay to add those back in, you might still save 30%. But it’s the behind the scenes stuff that’s harder to accept. Budget airlines have rough rostering, use less experienced pilots. I don’t go to an inexperience hairdresser or a trainee dentist to save a buck, won’t be doing it for flying.

watto23 8:23 am 23 Aug 16

The issue with LCC like Tiger is they are often point to point. The new tiger flight is really only of benefit for those flying to from Melbourne, which I assume would be quite a lot. I do often fly international via Melbourne, but I can’t risk a tiger air flight unfortunately. Yes they have lately been on time, but while the risk is small, the losses could be much bigger and annoying. The new Singapore air service though I’ll be trying out. single hop to anywhere in Asia and also Europe appeals to me.

joingler 11:10 pm 22 Aug 16

I travel to Melbourne semi regularly but go via bus. It’s 8 hours (including a 40 minute stop at Holbrook) on the Greyhound which goes thrice daily. That’s in addition to NSW Trains which go daily and VLine which goes 10 times per week (3 of those trips are via Bombala and Bairnsdale). These trips are from as little as $55 one way for an adult.

It’ll be interesting to see how the cheap flights affect these services. The bus is full between Canberra and Melbourne most weekends

MERC600 6:07 pm 22 Aug 16

Charlotte ?. Just several hours to the Victorian capital? You have a Bentley Bentayga ! Lucky you. Well deserved.
Takes me about 10 in the Ford, but I do stop at Hollbrook for the book shops (and possibly several other stops, depending on the mood of the prostrate)
But it is good news to see some competition to the two other airlines. I wonder when they will start flying to Sydney from here.

Charlotte Harper 2:45 pm 22 Aug 16

aleayr said :

Yes, will definitely be giving them a go. Now to get Jetstar to fly here too, I hope that is on the cards as well.

The Chief Minister said he had been in talks with Jetstar for some time also, and speculated that once one player was in, others were likely to follow. Fingers crossed!

aleayr 2:26 pm 22 Aug 16

Yes, will definitely be giving them a go. Now to get Jetstar to fly here too, I hope that is on the cards as well.

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