When the earthquake struck Christchurch it devastated the central city, has killed hundreds and left many people without homes, relatives and busineses. It is a time for mates and a time for stepping up.
Air New Zealand stepped up. They immediately put on 747s and charged bare minimum prices to get people home or out of the region. They are a good corporate citizen. They are our Mates.
Our nearest neighbours Australia reacted immediately sending rescue folk, troops and Police from across the country.
From my sources on the ground I hear that the Australian cops have been extremely professional and effective in Christchurch. Great people doing an excellent job. Australia has fronted up above and beyond. We tried to help Queensland where we could and when you do send help you hope that one day, should it be needed that the help is reciprocated. Australia has delivered, they are so generous and supportive. You can’t speak higher of them. 300 plus cops AND the USAR teams, who are world class. The Australian military support has been brilliant too. I understand we have also¬†received¬†donations from all Aussies states. Give Gillard her due, she has fronted. They are our Mates.
They are heroes and mates that we salute.
However we now turn to Not Our Mates.
Qantas and Jetstar reacted far differently.
Jetstar has decided that people travelling to and from Christchurch with a bag (and it has to be an evac) is $99. Anyone else is normal fares. I think it is fair to say that we can call that profiteering.
Jetstar’s owner Qantas also seems to have¬†forgotten¬†how many customers come from NZ. They made a $1000 a ticket getting the outstanding Australian cops into Christchurch. The spirit of ANZAC and mateship does not apply to Qantas. In the darkest day, you remember. Qantas made their views known and we accept their decision.
Qantas has failed to recognise that have a choice of airlines to cross the Tasman. ¬†”Anyone But Qantas” is the new call.
We remember our mates and Qantas are not our mates. That’s fine, you made the call Qantas, now take the lumps.
Apart from not being our mates, they are idiots and the shareholders should be annoyed.
Option A : Stick a pack of cops on a plane for three hours.
Glory of press statement and stories across your home markets saying:
“Qantas makes plane available at short notice to help Christchurch”
“Qantas has been flying to Christchurch for X years. It is an important part of our network. Qantas was proud to help 120 top Aussie cops to keep the people of Christchurch safe. Kiwis cops have been working tirelessly for the community. In the spirit of Australia, we were proud to help give them a break. We put on a free flight for the police. We also took x pallets of bottled water to help out Christchurch in its darkest days. Qantas is there for Christchurch”
Result : Glowing Trans-Tasman media stories, endorsment and brand enhancement by a major factor. Whaleoil endorsement. Major political figures in NSW and NZ say “good guys”. Customer base takes pride in their airline.
Value : Millions. Kiwis talk for years about Qantas being “our mates”. NSW Government pleased. Australians proud of their airline.
Cost : A$120,000
Option B : Be a pack of tight bastards.
Value : A$120,000
Cost & Result : Crap media across Australia and New Zealand. Immeasurable brand damage. Make an enemy of Whaleoil. Negative Media. NSW Govt has to ask Federal Govt for cash, embarrassing both Govts.
Message to Shareholders of Qantas : Seriously? You let these clowns look after your money? REALLY????
Remember folks, remember well who our mates are in times of need and then when you make a choice for where you will spend your dollars, spend it with our mates. As we hear more of donations and assistance I will create a Mates and Not Mates list. Qantas is now Not our Mate.