Netherlands: IATA claims airport prices hikes will damage recovery

The International Air Transport Association has warned that a proposed 37% increase in airport charges in the Netherlands risks significant damage to the recovery of air connectivity in the country.

Following a formal review in which IATA and several airlines participated, the regulator for airport charges at Schiphol, ACM, released a decision on 21 April which accepted the airport’s position that due to losses incurred during the Covid-19 shutdown, it must raise airport charges by a cumulative 37% over the next three years.

Air travel has still not recovered from Covid-19, the greatest shock in aviation history. The impacts in the Netherlands were acute: at its height, Covid-19 caused passenger numbers to fall by more than 70%, at a cost of around 200,000 aviation-supported jobs. A gradual recovery is underway, but the foundations are weak.

IATA represents
290 airlines comprising 83% of global air traffic.

IATA’s Connectivity Index shows the Netherlands is still 35% below its 2019 peak. At this crucial time, for the benefit of the Netherlands as a whole, air connectivity should be supported. Unfortunately, ACM’s decision puts the country’s position as one of the most competitive European air transport hubs at risk.

The Dutch regulator’s stance is in sharp contrast with the position taken by other independent regulators in the region, which are trying to fulfil their duties to protect the consumer.

In Spain, the regulator rejected the claims from the airport operator that it needed to recover its pandemic losses. The Spanish regulator calculated that the airport operator had sufficient cash reserves to cover the shortfall and that it would benefit from growing traffic in coming years – and it has frozen charges for the next three years.

Schiphol is in a similar situation, and the regulator should be similarly robust.  Pre-pandemic, Schiphol declared €742 million of dividends over the 2015-19 period, and it has several options to cover its losses. Schiphol can easily finance short-term losses without increasing costs to its customers.

Rafael Schvartzman, IATA’s Regional VP for Europe said

Rafael Schvartzman: ‘Schiphol airport and its regulator have failed’.

Schiphol airport and its regulator have completely failed to consider the exceptional circumstances that were created by Covid-19. The cost recovery system was never expected to operate in circumstances where demand would totally collapse for an extended period due to government- imposed travel restrictions. It cannot be reasonable to dump a 37% increase on airlines and their passengers. Nor is it sensible to put such costs onto air transport in the Netherlands at a time when other cost pressures, including rising environmental taxes, are already damaging the competitive position of Dutch aviation.

IATA is considering an appeal of the decision.

Qantas Group announced major aircraft order to shape its future

The Qantas Group has announced several major fleet decisions that will reshape its international and domestic networks over the next decade and beyond.

These decisions will also improve journeys for millions of people every year, and create over 1,000 jobs as well as many career progression opportunities at the national carrier.

Project Winton

Domestically, Qantas will start the renewal of its narrow body jets as part of ‘Project Winton’ with firm orders for twenty Airbus A321XLRs and twenty A220-300s as its Boeing 737s and 717s are gradually retired.

The first of these aircraft will start to arrive in late 2023, with the order including purchase right options for another 94 aircraft for delivery through to at least 2034.

Project Sunrise

Internationally, twelve Airbus A350-1000s will be ordered to operate non-stop ‘Project Sunrise’ flights from Australia to other cities including New York and London.

These aircraft will feature market-leading passenger comfort in each travel class with services scheduled to start by the end of calendar 2025 from Sydney.

Major aircraft order:
Airbus A350-1000, A321XLR and A220-300 included

All of these next generation aircraft – through their lower emissions, longer range, less noise and better economics – will improve how people travel around Australia and overseas.

Qantas customers can expect more direct routes and therefore less total travel time. They can expect higher levels of cabin comfort. And, particularly on domestic and regional routes, they can expect more choice of flights at different times of day due to different size aircraft for peak and off-peak times.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said:

Alan Joyce:
A structurally different company

New types of aircraft make new things possible. That’s what makes today’s announcement so significant for the national carrier and for a country like Australia where air travel is crucial.

Throughout our history, the aircraft we’ve flown have defined the era we’re in.

The 707 introduced the jet age, the 747 democratised travel and the A380 brought a completely new level of comfort.

The A350 and Project Sunrise will make any city just one flight away from Australia. It’s the last frontier and the final fix for the tyranny of distance. As you’d expect, the cabin is being specially designed for maximum comfort in all classes for long-haul flying.

The A320s and A220s will become the backbone of our domestic fleet for the next 20 years, helping to keep this country moving. Their range and economics will make new direct routes possible, including serving regional cities better.

These newer aircraft and engines will reduce emissions by at least 15 per cent if running on fossil fuels, and significantly better when run on Sustainable Aviation Fuel. This order brings us closer to our commitment to reach net zero emissions by 2050. Project Sunrise will be carbon neutral from day one.

We have come through the other side of the pandemic a structurally different company. Our domestic market share is higher and the demand for direct international flights is even stronger than it was before COVID. The business case for Project Sunrise has an internal rate of return in the mid-teens.

The Board’s decision to approve what is the largest aircraft order in Australian aviation is a clear vote of confidence in the future of the Qantas Group. Our strategy for these aircraft will see us generate significant benefits for those who make it possible – our people, our customers and our shareholders.

The phasing of this order means it can be funded within our debt range and through earnings, while still leaving room for shareholder returns in line with our financial framework.”

Norse Atlantic Airways launches ticket sales between Norway and the United States

Norse Atlantic Airways has opened ticket sales for flights between Norway and the United States marking what the airline calls ‘a new era for consumers seeking good value, choice and friendly service when choosing to travel across the Atlantic’. 

Fares will start from $129 one-way, including all applicable taxes. The first flight departing from Oslo to New York (JFK) will take place on 14 June.

The airline will also serve Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Orlando (MCO) and Los Angeles (LAX) from Oslo.

Bjorn Tore Larsen, CEO of Norse Atlantic Airways said,

This is a major milestone for all of us at Norse Atlantic Airways and a testament to the dedication and determination of colleagues from across the airline who have made this possible.

Norse now offers the lowest one-way point to point transatlantic fares in the market.

Whether travelling on business, leisure or simply wishing to explore the world, Norse now makes it possible for everyone to explore for less.

Our modern, comfortable and more environmentally friendly Boeing 787 Dreamliners are ready to take to the skies and our pilots and cabin crew are looking forward to welcoming customers on board from June.

Customers are now able to book flights between Oslo, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Los Angeles. 

  • Flights from Oslo to New York will commence on 14 June 14th ramping up to daily flights from 4 July.
  • Flights from Oslo to Fort Lauderdale will commence on 18 June operating three weekly flights.
  • Flights between Oslo and Orlando will commence on 5 July operating three weekly flights.
  • Flights from Oslo to Los Angeles will commence om 9 August operating three weekly flights.
Bjorn Torre Larsen: ‘The introduction of affordable Norse Atlantic Airways point-to point flights between Europe and the United States, will benefit both local tourism and businesses’.

Norse Atlantic offers two cabin choices, Economy and Premium.

Passengers can choose from a simple range of fares, Light, Classic and Plus, that reflect the way that they want to travel, and which options are important to them.

Light fares represent Norse’s value option while Plus fares include the maximum baggage allowance, two meal services an enhanced airport and onboard experience and increased ticket flexibility.  

The large, spacious Boeing 787 Dreamliner cabin offers passengers a relaxed and comfortable travel experience with each seat including a personal state of the art entertainment experience.

The Premium cabin offers an ‘industry leading’ 43” seat pitch and 12” recline allowing passengers to arrive at their destination feeling refreshed and ready to explore their destination.

  • Routes and fares from London and Paris to the United States will be announced ‘soon’.
  • More destinations in the United States will be announced soon. 

A new Air France La Première comfort kit

Air France is offering a new comfort kit to each of its La Première customers.

Inspired by a writing set, this elegant and timeless gift box is available in two colours that are characteristic of this prestigious travel suite – Air France red and pearl grey. The topstitching and embossed winged seahorse emblem, the company’s historic symbol, are a discreet nod to the designer codes of the La Première suites.

To create this kit, Air France has teamed up with the French beauty brand Sisley, already present in the company’s La Première lounge, to offer guests a genuine moment of well-being during the flight. Intended as a customised and tailor-made offer for guests, the kit encloses a range of five products carefully selected by the pioneering phyto-cosmetology company to offer a choice of two beauty care rituals –

  • an anti-age replenishing beauty care ritual;
  • an anti-age moisturising beauty care ritual.

The kit contains the following beauty products (sample size) –

  • A black rose cream mask;
  • A hydrating booster serum;
  • An anti-age hydration booster moisturising serum;
  • A black rose water balm;
  • An All day, All year anti-age day cream.

This kit also containing a La Première pen, a wooden comb, earplugs and a night mask can be taken home after the flight.


Global Travel Management on social media

You can follow Global Travel Management on social media. This page explains where to find us, what we post and how to engage.

We like to make sure our customers, suppliers, partners and friends keep up-to-date with what is happening in the world of business travel. So we share information on our social media channels.

Sometimes it’s crucial information, alerts and warnings. Other times it’s news about the industry. And we also like to share fun, funny and bizarre stories.

Weekly email: subscribers receive an email every Thursday, helping them to keep up to date with the latest business travel information

Every Thursday we send out an email to our subscriber list.

It’s a mixture of news and information about Global Travel Management and the business travel industry. It’s often backed up by an odd news story, a survey or a competition.

And it’s designed to keep people informed about what to look out for when they travel on business.

The weekly email is a great way for our subscribers to find out more information about business travel. But it’s also a great opportunity for customers to share their experiences and to give us feedback on what we’re doing right, what we need to improve and how we can best serve all of our customers, every day.

It’s free to subscribe to – simply click here and ask to be put on the mailing list.


Business Travel News LinkedIn newsletter

We publish a newsletter called Business Travel News every Thursday morning.

This is one of the very first newsletters devoted to the business travel industry to be published within the LinkedIn business network.

It’s a summary of what’s happening in the business travel industry and it appears on your LinkedIn feed.

Subscribers get first-access to the newsletter every Thursday morning, giving a short, essential precis of the week’s news and information in the business travel industry.

Click here to subscribe, free of charge.


YouTube: Global Travel Management provides videos in several playlists

We have a YouTube channel, called Global Travel Management Matters.

We update the channel every week with a news clip, covering the most prominent news stories in the industry.

You can see past episodes of Business Travel News in the playlist.

The Business Travel Interview playlist shows interviews with leading individuals in the business travel industry.

The Business Travel Tools explains how some of the leading products and tools available to Global Travel Management customers are used.

And the COP 26 Challenge playlist is used by airlines and travel suppliers to explain how they intend to meet their carbon targets.

Click the Subscribe button on the Global Travel Management Matters channel to subscribe, free of charge. And hit the ‘bell’ icon to receive alerts each time a new video is posted.


Global Travel Management Twitter account @GlobalTravelMgt

Our fast-growing Twitter account, @GlobalTravelMgt provides updates throughout each business day.

Our increasingly-popular Twitter account posts tweets on

  • the latest business travel industry news;
  • airline, airport and travel supplier announcements;
  • and breaking news items that affect travel

Global Travel Management has more than 1,200 followers on Twitter.

Followers can see links to the most important news items in the business travel industry, either on external sites or in the news pages of Global Travel Management’s website.


Facebook: Like Global Travel Management’s page @globaltravelmanagement

You can ‘like’ our Facebook page and keep up to date with everything that makes us tick.

We post information about Global Travel Management and Baxter Hoare Travel on our Facebook page, as well as information about the business travel industry, new fares, additional routes, offers from travel suppliers and everything else to ensure people who like our page keep up to date on business travel.

We also post the weekly Business Travel News video onto our Facebook page, so that more people get to see it there, as well as on YouTube.

You can reach our Facebook page by navigating to facebook.com/globaltravelmanagement.


LinkedIn: there are pages for both Global Travel Management and Baxter Hoare

We use LinkedIn, the business network, to share information about the business and our views on what’s happening with airlines, government regulations, industry issues and travel suppliers’ information.

LinkedIn is used to research companies, so we have pages for Global Travel Mangement and Baxter Hoare on LinkedIn – please follow these accounts to keep up to date on what we’re doing and how the industry is moving forwards.

And, as LinkedIn is used to create connections between individuals, many of our employees have their own LinkedIn accounts, such as Scott Pawley and Paul Baker.

And you can subscribe to our weekly LinkedIn newsletter, Business Travel News here.


And finally, our website, gtm.uk.com.

We regularly update this website, in order to bring the most up-to-date, relevant information about Global Travel Management and the business travel sector.


By checking out the website so you can:

  • read regularly-updated news items on the News pages;
  • find out all about the Team here at Global Travel Management;
  • discover how to get here;
  • learn more about some of the products available to Global Travel Management customers in our Toolbox;
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  • see how your company can benefit from Global Travel Management’s mobile app;
  • check out videos demonstrating GTM Online, the award-winning, single sign-in online booking tool

easyJet partners with GKN Aerospace to accelerate adoption of hydrogen

easyJet has announced it is working with GKN Aerospace, the world’s leading multi-technology tier 1 aerospace supplier, to work toward reducing carbon emissions in aviation through the adoption of zero carbon emission technologies.

easyJet will support the development of GKN Aerospace’s Hydrogen Combustion (H2JET) and Hydrogen Fuel Cell (H2GEAR) technology, including exploring the options for flight demonstration, as part of the airline’s ambition to de-carbonise aviation.

easyJet will provide insights into operational requirements and economics.

H2GEAR is a GKN Aerospace led UK collaboration programme aiming to develop a liquid hydrogen propulsion system for sub-regional aircraft that could be scaled up to larger aircraft.

Liquid hydrogen is being converted to electricity within a fuel cell system. This electricity efficiently powers the aircraft, eliminating carbon emissions and creating a new generation of clean air travel.

The H2GEAR programme is supported by £27m of ATI funding, matched by GKN Aerospace and its industrial partners.

H2JET is a Swedish collaborative two-year programme led by GKN Aerospace to push development of key subsystems for gas turbine-based hydrogen propulsion of medium range civil aircraft. 

David Morgan, Director of Flight Operations, easyJet, said:

At easyJet, we are committed to working towards a future with zero carbon emission flying. We know that technology is a key driver to achieve our decarbonisation targets, with hydrogen propulsion a frontrunner for short-haul airlines like easyJet.

Cross-industry partnerships are key to developing these promising new technologies and we look forward to collaborating with GKN Aerospace to support bringing this technology to maturity as early as possible.

Max Brown, VP Technology, GKN Aerospace, said:

At GKN Aerospace sustainability is at the heart of our business. Hydrogen-powered aircraft offer a clear route to keep the world connected, with dramatically cleaner skies. The UK is at the forefront of this technology.

We look forward to working with easyJet and our partners, to develop and industrialise the breakthrough technology to fly aircraft with zero CO2 emissions.

Championing the development of a zero carbon emission aircraft to de-carbonise aviation is a key focus for easyJet, and the airline is working with partners across the industry like GKN Aerospace, as well as Airbus, Rolls-Royce, Cranfield Aerospace Solutions and Wright Electric, to accelerate the development of zero carbon emission technologies and supporting infrastructure. The airline is optimistic that it could begin flying customers on planes powered by hydrogen-combustion, hydrogen-electric or a hybrid of both by the mid to late-2030s.

In November 2021, easyJet joined Race to Zero, a global UN-backed campaign to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 at the latest. In joining Race to Zero, the airline committed to setting an interim science-based target for 2035 and to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, for which technology for zero carbon emission flying will play an important part.

Beyond carbon, easyJet is focusing on reducing plastic – more than 36 million single-use plastic items were eliminated – as well as reducing waste within its wider operations and the supply chain. The airline also introduced new crew uniforms made from recycled plastic bottles. With 45 bottles in each uniform this has the potential to prevent 2.7 million plastic bottles from ending up in landfill or in oceans over the next five years.  

United kicks off largest transatlantic expansion in its history

United Airlines has kicked off the launch of its largest transatlantic expansion in its history, in anticipation of a strong recovery in European travel.

Patrick Quayle: We have long anticipated a strong demand recovery

In total, United will launch or resume 30 transatlantic flights from mid-April to early June. This includes adding new nonstop flights to five destinations no other North American airline serves including Amman, Jordan; Bergen, Norway; Azores, Portugal; Palma de Mallorca, Spain and Tenerife in the Spanish Canary Islands.

The airline is also launching five new nonstop flights to some of Europe’s most popular business and tourist hubs including London, Milan, Zurich, Munich and Nice. United is also resuming fourteen Atlantic routes the airline has historically served and adding frequencies in six others.

United’s transatlantic route network will be more than 25% larger than it was in 2019.

With this expansion, United will serve more transatlantic destinations than every other U.S. carrier combined and will be the largest airline across the Atlantic for the first time in history.

Patrick Quayle, senior vice president of international network and alliances at United said,

We have long anticipated a strong demand recovery, evidenced by our large, strategic expansion in Europe, and with these new flights, we’re proud to offer our customers more options and access than ever before. United continues to leverage its leading global network in new and exciting ways to help our customers make meaningful memories and experience new cultures around the world.

In light of the increased demand for European travel, United is also launching new services to some of Europe’s most iconic cities, including:

  • New daily flights between Boston and London Heathrow, which began on 14 April, and is United’s only trans-oceanic point-to-point flight from Boston. This flight complements United’s nonstop service to London Heathrow from all seven of United’s hubs.
  • New daily flights between Denver and Munich, which began April 23 and joins existing service from Denver to Frankfurt and London. United is the only U.S. airline to offer transatlantic service from Denver.
  • New daily flights between Chicago and Zurich, which began April 23. United now offers more nonstop service between Switzerland and the U.S. than any other U.S. airline, and is the only U.S. airline with nonstop service to Geneva.
  • New daily flights between New York/Newark and Nice, beginning April 29. United will offer more premium seats to Nice than any other U.S. carrier.
  • New daily flights between Chicago and Milan, beginning May 6, joining existing seasonal flights between Chicago and Rome. United will be the only airline to offer nonstop service between Chicago and Milan, adding to its existing service between New York/Newark and Milan.

In addition to these new flights, United is increasing service to popular European travel destinations, including:

  • Second daily flights between New York/Newark and Dublin, which began 23 April.
  • Second daily flights between Denver and London Heathrow, beginning 7 May.
  • Second daily flight between New York/Newark and Frankfurt, beginning 26 May.
  • Second flight between New York/Newark and Rome five times weekly, beginning 27 May.
  • Adding a third daily flight between San Francisco and London Heathrow and increasing service between New York/Newark and London Heathrow to seven daily flights, beginning 28 May. With this additional service, United will offer 22 daily nonstop flights from the U.S. to London Heathrow.

To help generate excitement about these new routes, earlier this month United launched two unique out of home campaigns, including digital billboards in downtown Boston to highlight the airline’s new Boston-London Heathrow service. United also teamed up with Saks Fifth Avenue for a series of window displays featuring fashion inspired by United’s five unique transatlantic routes.

In addition to these European routes, United is also growing its presence in Africa as part of this transatlantic expansion. On 8 May, United will increase its service to offer daily flights between Washington/Dulles and Accra, Ghana. The airline will also extend its existing seasonal service to Cape Town to year-round, with nonstop flights from New York/Newark resuming 5 June, subject to government approval.

Behind the scenes with Virgin Atlantic’s new advertising campaign

Virgin Atlantic has launched a new brand and advertising campaign – the first in more than two years since the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

The campaign has been created with newly appointed advertising agency Lucky Generals and introduces the end line “See the world differently”, a line that draws on the airline’s heritage of challenging the status quo – as well as recognising that the travel industry is entering an exciting new era, after the disruption brought on by the pandemic.

You can see a behind-the-scenes view of the filming of the commercial which took place over five days, in three locations and starred Virgin Atlantic pilots, crew and front line team, below:

Shai Weiss, Virgin Atlantic CEO explained what is at the heart of the campaign: 

At the core of our business is the understanding that every one of our people can be themselves at work and that they belong. They truly are the thing that sets us apart and the reason customers choose to fly with us.

We know that the touchpoints that matter most and the experiences that differentiate Virgin Atlantic, are driven by our people and that’s why it was so important they’re at the heart of this campaign.

Annabelle Cordelli, Vice President, Brand & Marketing at Virgin Atlantic said,

It’s more important than ever that we reimagine the world and lead the way with fresh ideas. Virgin Atlantic is uniquely placed to do this because of the rich individuality of our people and our customers: the unique people who march to their own drumbeat, fly their own path, see things from a different angle.

So it makes sense to start by championing them – and then apply this spirit to everything we do. After two challenging years when life has been on pause, it’s time to see the world differently.

Virgin Atlantic was founded by Sir Richard Branson in 1984, with innovation and amazing customer service at its core. In 2021, Virgin Atlantic was voted Britain’s only Global Five Star Airline by APEX for the fifth year running in the Official Airline Ratings. Headquartered in London, it employs 6,500 people worldwide, flying customers to 27 destinations across four continents.       

£117m investment in refurbished Pendolinos

Avanti West Coast’s first refurbished Pendolino has returned to service after being transformed as part of the UK’s biggest train upgrade.

The tilting, electric powered Pendolinos are among the most iconic trains in the UK, and transformed train travel between some of Britain’s biggest cities when they were introduced nearly two decades ago.

Customers onboard a recent 05:05 service from Manchester Piccadilly to London were the first to travel on the upgraded Pendolino. They experienced the new, more comfortable seats, a revamped shop and better on-board customer information.

After reaching London, the refurbished train made a quick round trip to Liverpool before being welcomed into Euston by invited guests and Avanti West Coast colleagues. It will visit other destinations such as Birmingham, the Lakes, Glasgow and Edinburgh during its normal course of work.

Rail Minister Wendy Morton said,

The iconic Pendolino is back and better than ever before. This refurbished version of the classic fleet is a fantastic example of our cutting-edge rail network and how our railways are leading the way in creating a cleaner, more environmentally friendly and modern transport system.

The £117m upgrade programme was two years in the making and involved experts in technology, customer information and ergonomics.

Customer improvements include:

  • 25,000 new, ergonomic Standard Class seats
  • Conversion of one First Class carriage on each of the 35 eleven-carriage Pendolinos to provide more than 2,000 extra Standard Class seats
  • The introduction of a new onboard shop
  • Improved lighting and new interior carpets
  • Greater use of technology with customer-friendly passenger information screens
  • Additional luggage space in Standard Class
  • Power points at every seat
  • New carpets throughout using sustainable British wool
  • Refurbished toilets
  • New First and Standard Premium seats
Widely regarded as the UK’s ‘hardest working train fleet’, Pendolinos have served towns and cities along the West Coast Main Line for nearly twenty years, clocking up more than 270 million miles – enough to go to the moon and back more than 500 times.

Managing Director of Avanti West Coast, Phil Whittingham, said:

This investment has been one of the key promises to our customers and they will see a dramatic transformation of our well-loved fleet. The refurbished Pendolinos look and feel like new trains with state of the art technology as well as brand new seats that promise best-in-class comfort.

The remaining 55 trains are to receive the same treatment as part of the £117m programme with the second set due back in service early in May 2022. Rail manufacturer Alstom is undertaking the work at their new depot in Widnes in the North West, helping to secure 100 skilled jobs.

Peter Broadley, Managing Director Services, Alstom said:

We are delighted with the launch of the newly modernised Pendolino. Working closely with our partners at Avanti West Coast and Angel Trains, we have created something truly special for the customers travelling on the West Coast Mainline. Our team at Widnes have created something amazing and we are incredibly proud of the final product. We hope it secures the future of the Pendolinos on the West Coast for many years to come.

The newly refurbished Pendolinos offer a range of new, comfortable and useful services. From top left – Standard Premium seating; wireless charging points; water dispensers; table power options; passenger information screens; onboard shop
From top left – seat occupancy information; seat occupancy cameras; First class seating; at-seat power sockets


Virgin Australia opens secret, invitation-only lounges

Virgin Australia has lifted the curtain on the airline’s long awaited invitation-only private Beyond Lounges in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, reserved for corporate partners, some high-status Velocity Frequent Flyer members and key opinion leaders throughout the country.

The re-opening of the highly anticipated lounge network – previously known as The Club – signifies a major milestone in the airline’s transformation plan and follows a long list of significant customer improvements since Virgin Australia was relaunched in 2020.

Virgin Australia Beyond is now the highest tier of loyalty for Virgin Australia customers and sits alongside the airline’s award-winning Velocity Frequent Flyer loyalty program which continues to offer Red, Silver, Gold and Platinum status.

Beyond member benefits include:

  • 12-month annual membership for the primary member with the option also to nominate a spouse/partner for Beyond membership to enjoy the same benefits. Membership is reviewed each year.
  • Access to dedicated Beyond Lounges in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane with a relaxed à la carte menu offering.
  • Dedicated phone concierge service to make or change bookings.
  • 4 x complimentary upgrades to Business Class each year*.
  • 1 x complimentary Velocity Gold membership for the primary member’s executive assistant.

With capacity for hundreds of Virgin Australia’s most valued frequent flyers across the three capital city private lounges, members will enter via a discreet door with access granted through a sustainable digital membership card only given to Virgin Australia’s most loyal flyers.

Privacy pods

Locations of the entrance doors will continue to remain unmarked but are located in close proximity to Virgin Australia’s existing domestic lounges in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. In a survey of Beyond members conducted last year, privacy was found to be one of the most important attributes of the invitation-only lounges. Once through the discreet entrance, members will experience a quiet and welcoming space, with design elements including feature leather clad and oak timber walls, plush ‘Chester-style’ armchairs, bright greenery and secluded privacy pods.

The privacy pods are a member favourite in the lounges and contain timber cabinetry with built-in charging stations, making it easy for members to work or relax on the fly. Transparent frosted glass surrounds the pods allowing for natural light to enter while maintaining discretion for those seated inside.

Numerous seating zones are spread throughout the lounges, providing members with different spaces to dine, relax, refresh and recharge in a delightfully Virgin Australia way. End of day facilities such as showers (available from 1 July 2022), towels and premium bathroom amenities by Appelles Apothecary Lab are also available for members.

Private offices and board rooms are also available in each Beyond Lounge and can be booked by members ahead of or on the day of travel.

New menu launched

To coincide with the opening of Beyond, Virgin Australia has launched a new and fresh à la carte menu for Beyond members, featuring light and substantial fresh menu options using ‘the finest Australian produce’. All food is freshly prepared on site and can be ordered with the airline’s dedicated Beyond Lounge Hosts who are on hand to deliver a personalised service experience.

The breakfast and all-day dining menus will rotate regularly based on supply and seasonality, and include the following dishes:

  • Breakfast options including eggs made to order:
  • Superfood salads;
  • Sandwiches and healthy wraps;
  • Seafood and meat pastas;
  • Decadent desserts;
  • Cheese boards featuring some of the best Australian cheesemongers; and
  • Virgin Australia’s signature truffle fries, a firm favourite members insisted on retaining.

To complement the menu, Virgin Australia Beyond members will have access to a wide range of carefully selected beverages, including spirits, Australian wine (pink, white and red), cocktails, freshly squeezed juices, sparkling and still water, tea and coffee.

Virgin Australia Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said,

We are continuing to write a new chapter at Virgin Australia and this is the next wonderful edition of our transformation journey. Virgin Australia is dedicated to providing exceptional service experiences and product offerings at great value prices, and Beyond is a great example of Virgin Australia investing in the products and services our guests value most.