Video Review: Comparing Qatar Airways’ All Business Jet with its 787 DreamlinerBack to Forum
Anonymous30 May 2014
Qatar Airways continue to expand on the London-Doha route, and have just introduced a sixth daily service with an all-business class A319 jet. I was lucky enough to travel on it, and have made a video review of this innovative service
Qatar Airways use Heathrow’s Terminal 4, which has been recently refurbished. They have one of the very best lounges in the airport, and manage to even beat BA’s Concorde Room. There’s a great dining room for pre-fight dining as well as a bar & deli for lighter snacks.
A maximum of 40 people can fly on this A319 jet, which is equipped with lie-flat seats. Qatar’s traditional ‘dine on demand’ service is in place, so there’s no issue if you want to go straight to sleep and eat closer to Doha.
The quality of the food & preparation knocks the competition for six – each food component is cooked separately, rather than taking the approach of a ready meal where everything gets cooked together for 45 minutes. The crew lay and set everyone’s table – as opposed to serving everything on a tray like British Airways.
The seat goes fully flat without you having to stand up, although there’s an optional mattress that the crew can put on if you wish to hide any bumps. There’s a good amenity kit (with great eye shades) and pyjamas handed out to all.
Unfortunately, Qatar have put 3 buttons on the shell of the seat for you to operate when in bed mode – and they’ve installed bright lights in each button which shine at you all night.
The other major shortcoming is that half the seats don’t have direct access to the aisle – which makes getting out troublesome, especially when in bed mode. Even if you pick the aisle seat, you will be disturbed when your neighbour moves.
Overall, Qatar Airways’ excellent service shines on this service, and the bed is a big improvement over the slopey A330s they operate. However, you are much better off picking from the other services Qatar operates – the beds on the A380 and 787s have direct aisle access and more privacy. The 787 has only 22 business seats and feels more quiet & private, even if the overall plane is much larger.30 May 2014
Qatar Airways have recently introduced their new 787 Dreamliner to the London-Doha route, which has a fantastic business class product as you can see in this video review:
The fully flat bed and all-aisle access for passengers makes this a competitive business class product – add in the large TVs, quality food that’s cooked to order, as well as a good alcohol selection – and you have a world class product.
There’s a self serve bar so you can help yourself to snacks and nibbles – although there’s no seats, so there’s nowhere for you to congregate and disturb other passengers! It does seem an odd addition to an airline that has such attentive staff though.
The seat is fantastic, and rivals many carriers’ first class products. There’s decent storage (including space for a water bottle in the arm rest) and a mini extra shelf for Kindles and drinks. It switches to a flat bed without you having to stand up, and the seat has far, far fewer lumps and bumps than the competition (I’m looking at you, British Airways).
Being able to order what you like from the menu at any point in the flight is liberating, and useful as many passengers will be connecting & jet lag. The food is presented wonderfully, and as each component is cooked separately, it tastes good too.
It’s possible to buy tickets on 4 different types of planes on this route right now with Qatar – the seat on the 787 (and A380) is far ahead of the A319, and in a totally different league to the planes with slopey seats. Pick carefully when booking!
Overall, the Qatar 787 Dreamliner is fantastic & shows up the flaws in Qatar’s older products and in their European rivals. Highly recommended.6 Jun 2014