Qantas grounding brings ups and downs for small business

Qantas’ decision to ground its fleet has hurt small business, but one entrepreneur we contacted has found some upside in the airline’s outage.

Qantas' decision to ground its fleet has been bad news for some small businesses.

“The impact Qantas has had on my business over the last five days has been near comical,” said Max DeLacy of Barefoot Inc, a company that sells specialist ‘barefoot’ shoes.

Virgin just made
themselves a new repeat
business customer.

A mechanical problem unrelated to the industrial strife meant DeLacy was unable to attend a Brisbane conference he had sponsored. DeLacy therefore missed a press conference he had organised featuring the keynote speaker, who was to promote the benefits of the products he sells.

DeLacy had also hired the keynote speaker to make some appearances in Sydney and even scored a slot on the Channel Nine Morning Show. That appearance was cancelled as Channel Nine instead covered the Qantas story.

“That’s a huge media opportunity lost for us, especially given the money invested into making it happen,” DeLacy wrote to My Business.

The speaker, who is US-based, is now stranded in Sydney for an extra two days waiting for a plane home.

“I am sure Alan Joyce had his reasons, but the intended shock factor has come at a high cost to those of us who use put money in Qantas's pocket almost every week because we trust they will do the right thing by our business,” DeLacy wrote. “All I can say is, Virgin just made themselves a new repeat business customer.”

Another business inconvenienced by the grounding is Inspired Adventures, a company that manages and leads charity challenges.

The company had organised for 47 people to run the New York Marathon for charity, but at the time of writing the company’s Director Justine Curtis Nadia Killeen said she fears they may not be able to leave on time.

“This amazing group of people represent a cross section of average Australians and the frustration and disappointment they feel today is no different to the feelings of the many thousands of people affected by the crisis at Qantas,” Justine Curtis, Director of Inspired Adventures said in a press release.

But at least one business has seen a boost from the grounding.

Jayride helps people share long distance driving by finding passengers willing to go along for a long drive.

“Our traffic was up 50% yesterday [Sunday] and we have a lot of members asking for rides, and we are helping them to travel,” said the company’s Rod Bishop. “. Now we just need more drivers.”

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