Many who know me, know that I’m a big fan of Qatar Airways. In fact, nearly half of my American Airlines Executive Platinum status is going to be earned on Qatar Airways this year.
- So why am I big fan:
- Layflat seats: I haven’t flown a single flight without layflat seats. I hear Qatar flies planes with angled layflats or worse, but I’ve been lucky.
- Exhaustive food options. I’m flying Doha to Washington-Dulles as I write this, and I’ve just had the best gnocchi that I think I’ve ever had.
- a corollary to that: other than the 5 course meals, their tea in excellent.
- Lounge: I *really* enjoyed the old premium terminal. In fact I prefer it compared to the new terminal and lounge. Of course this might be because I liked the chicken Sandwiches more than the Krug I can get now.
- That said, the batenders at the current lounge had only a third of a bottle of Krug left (not sure why) and held it for me. To the point where one of the bartenders asked my permission to pour a glass of Krug for a new friend.
- New mattress pads, even on old 777-300ERs! That said, they are hard to do yourself. I asked the crew to set mine up, which was wonderful. For reasons I can’t fathom and won’t speculate on, my wife didn’t ask. So, you can imagine who was helping.
- They give you pajamas in business class! I mean who else does that (other than Qantas and Eva Air)?
- Some of the things I think Qatar could still improve on:
- Remote gates: we flew from Cairo to Doha on 777-300ER, with 250 or more passengers yet we were bused from a remote gate. I thought the whole point of the new airport was to have enough gates – what is this? Another Heathrow or Frankfurt?
- Boarding practices: if there is one thing that I hate, it is Qatar‘s boarding practices. I’ve left far too many lounges just to sit on a bus or stand in line when they post “last call” 40 minutes before departure.
- Pajamas: ok, this is a total first world problem, but when I put the Qatar PJ’s on I at once feel like Captain Kirk. The tapered leg of the bottoms and the tunic (yeah, thats what I’m going to call it), feel so Star Trekish.
- Qatar‘s Onyx entertainment is awesome on the 787, and I hear on the A380 and A350, but the selection kind’ve sucks on the 777. Unlike some, I seldom load movies on my iPad so my most recent trip, I slept and read. Two wonderful activities nonetheless.
To wrap up, flyer Qatar Airways in my humble opinion is good to great. It’s business class, so I think you need to set your expectations.