Virgin Australia is reinventing itself as a mid-market carrier, and that transformation is almost complete with the return of the Economy buy onboard retail menu from today.

As of Thursday 25 March 2021, complimentary snacks are not included in Economy fares (although those who booked beforehand can technically still ask cabin crew members for one).

Instead, you’re now able to buy a range of snacks and beverages from the retail menu, which comes into effect now. Virgin is also re-evaluating its fares, with cheaper tickets expected to launch later in 2021.

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Virgin’s buy onboard menu [March 2021]

Here is the current buy onboard menu in PDF form:

Prices are fairly reasonable across the board, with discounts when you purchase multiple products. Water, tea and coffee remain complimentary.

However, more filling food items are not yet present. The airline promises those will be ‘introduced later in the year when travel demand is expected to resume to near pre-COVID levels’.

Finally, note that cash is not accepted onboard and you’ll need to pay with a physical Visa, Mastercard or American Express; not a digital card on your device.

Summing up

Virgin’s Economy buy onboard menu is definitely a step in the right direction, as long as the airline makes good on reducing fares further across the board, and is consistently priced cheaper than Qantas.

Today’s customers are more conscious about what they consume than ever before.

By removing snacks that aren’t valued by our guests we’re able to structurally reduce airfares making it even cheaper to fly. We’ll continue to offer complimentary tea, coffee and water on all flights and the opportunity for guests to purchase their favourite menu items at a reasonable price.

– Jayne Hrdlicka, Virgin Australia CEO, 25 March 2021

Of course, the menu is noticeably missing healthy and filling options such as sandwiches, wraps and salads. These will be in high-demand on longer flights, such as the transcontinental treks to and from Perth. We hope this is fixed as soon as possible, particularly if travel demand remains high.

Virgin Australia’s new Economy buy onboard menu was last modified: August 25th, 2023 by Brandon Loo