Qantas Airlines service, economy class review
Our trip to a Travel conference in Dubai was organised using Qantas Airlines flights which gave me the opportunity to try out this airline since its change of partnership from BA to Emirates. It’s been a long time since I flew Qantas and was keen to see how the service compared with other long haul operators.
Qantas Airlines Check-in Heathrow Airport
I think our check-in agent had left his sense of humour at home as well as his engagement tools. Possibly the worst check-in experience ever, he really was not interested. Not a great start as check-in is where you form your first opinions of an airline, I can’t even put it down to a busy day as we were the only two checking in 2 hours ahead of departure! The plus side is that Qantas Airlines give you 30kg of luggage and you can check more than 1 bag per person as long as combined weight was 30kgs, so said Mr Grumpy Check-in Agent! This is great at 7kgs than most economy long haul airlines.
Unfortunately for us, our plane went technical resulting in a 4 hour delay which Qantas Airlines didn’t readily hold their hands up to. They obviously wanted to keep everyone at the gate waiting, just in case…. If a plane needs a part, you know it’s not a 10 minute thing so the airline should say that at the time. Fortunately we overhead an airport official say at least a 2 hour delay so we’re able to go back into the executive lounge and wait for an update. Three hours later we eventually boarded for our departure to Dubai, after a change of gate and aircraft.
On boarding it was clear it was to be a very empty A380 flight to Dubai, so lots of room to stretch out, we are lucky to have a row each to spread out. Not sure how it would be if full and you were over 6 foot tall, as the space might not be adequate to go all the way to Melbourne in a Qantas economy seat. There are of course options to upgrade to premium economy a smaller cabin with more legroom and a different meal service, Qantas Club Class with Skybeds and First Class with the ultimate of flying service with a bedding down service which includes features such as luxurious pillows, blankets, a duvet as well as a sheepskin mattress.
On our flight we find that the Economy service is a little slow, given it’s a light flight (40% occupancy), drinks only come out with the meal which is roughly 1 hour into the flight, although the Qantas service does say a drinks service is provided before the meal. But it’s a big aircraft and I guess there are lots of things to prepare for the service and of course the staff have been hanging around due to the delay.
Meals and drinks
The food is actually really good much better than most airline food, but the presentation in economy lets it down as it is served on a small tray for the main meal with the desert, roll and cutlery handed to you separately. A Bigger tray with cute chocolates rather than 2 kit cats thrown at you would have been much more pleasant for the mid flight snack. Then again maybe I am being old fashioned as this is Qantas new in-flight service which is supposed to be quicker and more effective than a full tray service.
The staff are great, attentive, friendly and happy to help. But little things like a call bell ignored for half an hour and lack of drinks service just bring the service level down. In comparison to a recent long haul economy service it’s definitely not on par, especially when the flight is about 40% occupancy.
Entertainment on Qantas A380
The choice if entertainment is good with all the latest films, a great wide screen and even the headphones are very good. But we are on a relatively new A380 so that could be the difference. I love catching up on chic Films when I’m flying so watched two films, Single and Fathers and Daughters, one hilarious, the other a real tear jerker. The music option is also excellent and of course you can watch the flight landing and taking off on the SkyCam as well as the entire journey if you so wanted which is a great experience, especially if you have children travelling with you.
On a whole I would not hesitate to recommend Qantas, the aircraft was excellent and I’d have to say the quietness of the A380 is very noticeable. It’s a big beast but a pleasure to fly. Qantas Airline fly out of Heathrow Terminal 3 and have some great offers on for the London to Dubai route.
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