Virgin Atlantic Got $6 Million Discount Buying Planes When Richard Branson Hypnotized The Seller

News and notes from around the interweb:

  • A claim by Richard Branson about buying aircraft

    Branson told Mr Delosa the story of how he scored a $6million discount on planes in the early days of forming Virgin Atlantic after making a bet.

    The company chairman he was buying the planes off said he would only agree to the massive discount if Branson could hypnotise anyone in the room.

    The deal was done over dinner after the chairman noticed his watch was missing, not realising the cunning Branson had swiped it from him earlier as a joke.

  • Amidst operational meltdowns Qantas gets good press by giving free trips to journalists

  • Exceptions that American Airlines will (and won’t) make with trip credits.

  • A $1300 Airbnb cleaning fee? (HT: @tmount)

  • New study finds labor unions reduce product quality though this finding is never as determinative or monolithic as it seems, since relatively less-unionized isn’t that much better than American or United and workers at relatively heavily unionized Southwest don’t seem to hate their jobs (but then Southwest still manages to cull employees who aren’t a culture fit, to the chagrin of its unions).

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »


  1. Not so sure about “New study finds labor unions reduce product quality”: the study based its finding that more product recalls came from companies with unions. Could be that the industries and companies within those industries which involved more product recalls, like automobiles, are traditionally more unionized. How do we know it’s the unions’ fault? It could the result of shoddy engineering, cheaper materials, poor quality control processes, less investment in modern techniques, maybe even the kind of management that deserves and needs unions. In our own industry, unions such as ALPA, APFA, IAM, etc., can argue that they make significant contributions to quality by calling out and resisting poor management practices. Just because unions and recalls coexist in some places does not necessarily constitute cause and effect.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.