New Virgin chief takes the reins

JAYNE Hrdlicka says Virgin Australia will “continue to be Australia’s most loved airline for customers who want the most important premium touches without the full premium price”. Taking up her role as CEO of the newly privatised carrier last month, she laid out her vision for Virgin Australia which will compete in its mid-market heartland, serving the entire market but building its proposition around its long-standing and most loyal guests, including price-conscious corporate travellers, premium leisure travellers, holidaymakers and small to medium businesses.

Hrdlicka’s plan for Virgin Australia includes a commitment to retain a one-third domestic market share, with a network of lounges in key capital cities and a “more accessible business class offering to better align to the expectations of the cabin’s core customers”. Technology is also on the agenda, with new self service and assisted check-in and baggage drop facilities to open at mainline airports and an updated and more integrated Virgin Australia app.

She will also restructure Virgin Australia Regional Airlines to become a more sustainable and profitable business, mainly focusing on the WA resources sector. Other significant changes are likely to see the elimination of in-flight entertainment and the introduction of an “exciting and fresh buy on board menu”.

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