12.10.2014

Free Beer

I am on a 747 at this moment, pretty much directly over Honolulu HI. If my phone were not on airplane mode, I could probably get cell service.

I was once again lucky to have an aisle seat and pleasant seat mates on a QANTAS flight, a nice young couple from Perth Australia named Tim and Holly. Holly is an off duty QANTAS cabin crewmember. It was a good oportunity to get some questions answered about flight crews. In the course of discourse, I asked who the main competing airlines were with QANTAS. She said mainly only one, Branson's Virgin Australia (VA).

I had always admired QANTAS for being one of the few - maybe the only - airline to serve free beer and booze on flights. It turns out this was, at least in part, driven by competition with VA, who charge for just about everything.

High marks for QANTAS for free beer. Even if it was driven by their competitiveness in the airline marketplace and not out of the kindness of their hearts, the "race to the top" benefits us consumers, jammed into economy class like sardines.

Holly also verified that Australians get free healthcare, pensions, and six (6) weeks of vacation. She and Tim both seem happy, like most Aussies do.

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