Virgin Atlantic A340-600 Upper Class, Hong Kong Sydney return. Worst long haul flight I've had in years. Incredibly bad food, indifferent service, slovenly hostesses terrible pre-flight music etc etc. I would like to mention though that the single steward was calm friendly attentive and pleasant but sadly had nothing to offer to make up for the rest.
When I read all the bad reviews here and on other review sites what strikes me as particularly pertinent is that many are American ones. Whether you choose to believe it or not America has some of the worst airlines in the world with extreme shoddy service so for Americans to find Virgin Atlantic bad one has to realise just how bad that is in fact.
So I thought it worth mentioning here at start that In Europe and Asia we don't have to buy drinks both soft and alcoholic or food or movies on board they are free. We get priority speed service at customs with every business class ticket its not a particular single airline perk. Flat beds are a standard on business class long haul flights as are vanity packs duvets and covers.
All the above come in varying degrees of quality but mostly good to excellent.
The vanity packs or cosmetic bags are usually very nice and worth keeping for years of further use, not on Virgin Atlantic they are cheap ugly reinforced paper material things with nothing of particular interest inside. A cheap throw away pen the same in foot sock and not much else. The alcohol is very limited so forget it if you want Gordon's gin, there will be just the one kind usually the cheaper Bombay same as the tonic etc etc. The food is at best disgusting and at worst inedible and don't expect to see it all laid out for your perusal you get what you order blind and that's that. If it looks unlike the description in the menu like almost every VA product and unappetising expect the hostesses to get testy if you ask for something else. This applies to your pillow even if it was vomit encrusted as mine was.
I can go on and on and on but I reckon long reviews are boring even juicy bad ones.
What I fail to understand is how Virgin Atlantic can possibly hope to compete in the Asian region an already cut throat industry with such extremely bad service and with the likes of Cathay pacific , Singapore airways , Qatar, Thai Airways etc etc offering such superb quality flights and ones where your dollar actually gets what you what you expect it to?
I think VA has to stop pushing peripherals like pick up and lounge etc and concentrate on actually offering a quality product. The flight begins at check-in and then take off, this is where it counts, the rest is mere window dressing and hype. Everyone can feel tase hear the short cuts and penny pinching going on while the flights are not particularily cheap.
Upgrade the whole so called actual flying "experience" or slash the prices in half.
Bottom line VA is a budget airways charging quality prices whether you go economy, premium economy or Upper.