We are very excited to announce that Michael West Media will be starting an airline. We haven’t set a date yet, nor do we have any planes, pilots or stewards, but watch this space, tickets will be on sale soon!
We made this decision after Qantas – an actual airline with planes, pilots, stewards, and some very clever finance people, revealed to the world (and the ACCC) that although it is an airline, it doesn’t really sell airline tickets as such. Its customers are:
not buying a specific flight when they book to travel but instead a ‘bundle of rights’ to fly.
As clearly stated in 6px font-size on page 13 (or thereabouts) of their ‘ticket’ terms and conditions, “that bundle of rights includes alternative options to which consumers become entitled in respect of cancelled flights, but does not include any promise to provide a ‘particular flight’ or to operate to a particular schedule.”
Moreover, if Qantas decides to cancel the flight that the unsuspecting traveller thought she or he had bought a ticket for, then Qantas is under no obligation to inform the unfortunate traveller, because that is apparently incredibly difficult when one runs an airline with a complex computer system but are rather short of staff (because many of them were sacked, but that’s another story).
Nor does Qantas think it is obligated to refund the traveller in a timely manner. That too is very, very complex, and may take months.
All this and more can be found in Qantas’ defence of allegations by the ACCC in August this year that Qantas cancelled 15,000 of 66,000 scheduled flights between February and May 2021. For 10,000 cancellations, it took on average 18 days and up to 48 days to notify ticket holders, some of whom are still waiting on their refunds.
So we figured we’d set up West Air, sell a few bundles of future flight rights (aka. tickets), cancel said rights, but take a while to tell anyone (we haven’t even got a computer system), put the cash received in a high interest account, pay some dividends and bonuses, and chuff off to Ireland for a while. We hear they have some lovely (unscheduled) canal tours there, with a bloke called Alan as the guide.
Kim Wingerei is a businessman turned writer and commentator. He is passionate about free speech, human rights, democracy and the politics of change. Originally from Norway, Kim has lived in Australia for 30 years. Author of ‘Why Democracy is Broken – A Blueprint for Change’.