Lifehacker Awards 2011: Best Domestic Airline Nominations

Lifehacker Awards 2011: Best Domestic Airline Nominations

Yes, another 12 momths have gone by and it’s time once again to select the best of the best in our reader-voted Lifehacker Awards 2011! As we did last year, we’ll be asking for nominations from readers to build shortlists everyone can vote on, and we’re starting with a new travel category: best domestic airline.

Sure, there are some obvious contenders in this area, including the “big four” who dominate the market even if they’ve all had a few bumpy spots this year: Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Tiger. But there are also well-regarded smaller contenders. If you feel a particular airline deserves inclusion on the shortlist, tell us and tell us why on the comments.

Throughout this week, we’ll be asking for nominations in additional categories relating to technology, organisation and productivity — so keep tuning in to see when you can nominate your favourites. And make sure you’re back when online voting proper starts next Monday.


  • definitely jetstar – as a regular flyer (twice a month for past 2 years) the price beat guarantee is amazing, carry on luggage is not as stringently weighed and the sms boarding system is a breeze. Cheap/Easy/Painless for the most part – I’ve ditched tiger.

  • Virgin.

    Travelling 2 or 3 times a month over the last year, I’ve had a better experience with Virgin than other airlines.

    Clearly they’re not without fault, however they have handled mistakes well and when it all works, I find the journey marginally less objectionable than the alternatives.

  • Regional Express (REX) – Because they use smaller SAAB 340 planes, they can really provide person to person service and everyone from REX that I met had been very friendly and helpful.

    On a few occasions while running a bit late on my way back to Sydney, they would call me on my mobile to see if I was coming and waited for me before taking off.

    On a number of occasions when I was sitting on the front row, the stewardess would sit down and had a bit of a chat with me when she finished with the inflight services, which had always been very pleasant.

    Being on a SAAB 340, which is a twin propeller plane, they always fly at a lower altitude, which is nice because of the scenery and is fantastic when arriving at Sydney during evening/sunset hours.

    Many fond memory with this airline, highly recommended.

  • Virgin because they have better service, nicer planes, and make an effort to care of their staff and passengers. That and Beardy Branson looks a little bit like Aslan from Narnia.

  • Qantas may be inferior internationally, however it’s the best to fly with in Australia domestically, with the best entertainment and food. I flew with Jetstar once and it was terrible, my first and last budget airline experience.

  • I only fly domestically three or four times a year, but I’ve never had a really bad experience. You just have to sort of chill out. If money wasn’t an issue I’d go for Qantas, but generally I end up choosing Jetstar (points) or Virgin. When Tiger has cheap flights at the right time, I fly with them. Sure, they are delayed sometimes, but when the cost of the flight is less than the cost of two drinks, it’s pretty hard to complain!

    • Why do people still believe QANTAS is more expensive than the other airlines?
      I’ve done a little experiment using a well know website that aggregates airfares.
      To fly from Sydney to Melbourne next Tuesday (22 nov) (arrive 8:50AM) will cost you $158 on Virgin and $117 on QANTAS, add in you included luggage allowance and refreshments and it is even better value.
      Retern at 5:30 PM and you will pay $199 on QANTAS and $185 on Virgin, but add in luggage and QANTAS’s free beer and wine after 4PM and the national carrier is still cheaper

      • That’s only one example though Brad. I check Qantas, Virgin, Jetstar and Tiger, and I choose whatever is cheapest at the most realistic time (to leave after work if its leisure, or to arrive by 8am if it’s for business).
        I agree that sometimes Qantas wins out, but in my experience (maybe it’s just the times I need to fly at) they’re more expensive about 80% of the time. Perhaps also booking flights further in advance, the low cost carriers represent a better saving too. Not sure – would need to check.
        So to answer your question, the reason I believe it is because it is what I have seen 🙂

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