After arriving in Singapore from Brisbane, I had a transit time of about 4 hours before heading to Doha. At exactly 3 hours before departure, I checked in and got my boarding pass and made my way to the lounge. Qatar uses the Dnata lounge in T3 which is quite terrible, to say the least. It’d be nice if the airline paid to use the Qantas or British Airways lounge.
I had flown on the Qatar A350 once before and fell in love with the aircraft. The look, the onboard product and how quiet it is amazes me every time. To me, I much, much prefer the A350 over the 787. Boarding started ten minutes late, but priority boarding commenced shortly after.
Qatar’s A350 features 36 B/E Super Diamond suites in a 1-2-1 configuration and 247 Economy seats in a 3-3-3 configuration. The Economy seats feature a pitch of 32”and a width of 18.”
As the Business cabin is in a 1-2-1 configuration, that means every passenger gets direct aisle access which is the standard in premium travel nowadays.
When making the booking, I was initially assigned seat 9E which is in the middle of the cabin. At check-in, I checked Expertflyer and saw seat 1A was blocked and asked if I could instead have that seat. The check-in agent moved me and said I was lucky to get the seat as the flight was completely full in Business.
When you arrive at your seat, you’ll find a pillow and blanket. There’s also a bottle of water in the side armrest.
The seats have a 17-inch touch screen for entertainment. The screen is extremely efficient and fast.
The crew came around to introduce themselves to the passengers and offered a welcome drink consisting of orange juice, water, champagne or lemon and mint juice. I went with the traditional lemon and mint juice which is a favourite of mine when flying on Qatar.
After offering the welcome beverage, the crew handed out the BRICS amenity kits.
The kit includes facial mist, moisturiser, lip balm, socks and an eye mask. I’m still not a massive fan of the new kits and wish Qatar stayed with the Armani products as they were really quite lovely.
Just after pushing back from the gate, it started to rain but our departure out of Singapore was smooth and extremely quiet.
Shortly after reaching our cruising altitude of 39,000 feet, the meal service started. I went with the non-alcoholic So Jennie champagne which is my favourite drink in the air, and I wish more carriers had it. It was also served with some warmed cashews.
I would have listed the menus from the flight. However, it appears I left them in a hotel; I blame the lack of sleep ;). Anyway, the Amuse Bouche on the flight was a herb crusted prawn.
Following that, I had the Arabic Mezze for the appetizer with Hommus and Mutabbal with pita bread.
And for the main, I had the coconut fish. I can’t remember exactly what fish it was, but it was coated in a coconut and satay sauce which was beautiful!
And for the dessert, I went with the chocolate cake with cream and raspberry sauce.
After feeling quite full of food, I decided to get some sleep before getting up and doing some work. On these shorter services, there’s no mattress or pyjamas offered in Business. After getting some sleep, I decided to connect to the internet and try to work. I find Qatar’s internet to be the second best in the Middle East after Etihad. The wifi is quite expensive for what they offer but still faster than Emirates. Etihad, on the other hand, has similarly priced plans but with no data caps which makes them the winner.
The Business Class cabin is split into two sections, and in the middle there’s a small self-serve area and it also has a great view of the forward Business cabin.
The self-serve area has Champagne, fruits, chocolates and small snacks available throughout the flight.
If you’re an Avgeek and want a view of the amazing looking wing, I can recommend the back section of Business Class. Another thing to note about the A350 is how the windows work. Unlike the 787, the A350 can completely block out light. The windows have small touch arrows and the windows dim with the small curtain, similar to the A380.
Also located next to the self-serve area are two of three bathrooms for Business guests. They were kept decently clean but not to the level of Etihad, Singapore etc.
There’s a few sets of toothbrushes and toothpaste as well as shaveing kits.
The bathrooms all house Rituals amenities.
As you can see, the cabin is visually stunning, especially with the purple and pink mood lighting.
The Super Diamond seat is my all time favourite seat due to the space, comfort and overall feel. The Qatar seat, however, I feel lacks storage compartments compared to Virgin Australia, American etc.
On the right side of the seat, you’ll find all of the seating controls in one spot.
Below the seating panel, you’ll find the new style IFE remote which also features a call bell and lighting button.
The seat, of course, has in-seat power with both a 120V power point and a USB port which is found to the left of the IFE remote.
On the right-hand side of the seat is where the armrest is found. It has to be lowered for takeoff and landing but can be raised during the cruise for extra privacy. It also is where the headphones and water bottle is found.
Another cool feature I love about the A350 is the smoking and seat belt signs. As the aircraft is full of modern technology, why not have an LED screen with the signs on it?
The flight was coming to an end and I ended up having 4 hours of sleep and managed to get some work done. As the crew started to prepare the cabin for the arrival, they handed out Godiva pralines to passengers.
For a product that’s been flying for a few years, it’s still in great shape but you can spot the small imperfections if you look hard enough.
As we landed in Doha, I was expecting to park at a hard stand but to my surprise, we were given a gate and I was thankful for that as I really don’t like the heat which is ironic as an Australian living in Queensland 😉
The flight was really enjoyable and exceeded my expectations. Qatar crew can be quite inconsistent at times but on this flight, the crew were friendly and enthusiastic. The flight again proved why I love the A350 and I cannot wait to be onboard another one in the future.
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