Qatar Airways, Business Class – Airbus A 350-900: Doha to Frankfurt


Date: 17. February 2017
Departure: 08:00
Arrival: 12:10
Flight time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Seat: 4A



I have just enough time to upload and post my review of the Melbourne to Doha leg, and then it is already time to head to the departure gate for my flight to Frankfurt. I suppose you could say I am literally on my last leg…!


The flight is departing from gate B8, which is the end gate on the B pier. As such, the position of the gate in relation to how the aircraft is actually parked is awkward and does not allow for any reasonable photos. Add to that the fact that the windows on the B pier have these opaque dots on them and it becomes near impossible to take any decent pictures of your awaiting chariot.


The Cabin

The Airbus A 350 features Qatar Airways’ new Business Class configuration in a 1 + 2 + 1 layout that gives every passenger direct access to the aisle. The additional width of the A 350 really comes into its own in this cabin layout, giving a spacious and airy feel to the cabin.


The only thing I do not like about this aircraft is the fact that it has those electronically controlled window blinds. And while these are obviously a lot of fun to play with if, like me, you spend way too much time around engineers than is really good for you, they have the disadvantage of being remote controllable by the crew.

No sooner has the fasten seatbelt sign turned off after take-off the blinds come down and can no longer be opened individually until about ninety minutes out of Frankfurt.

The Crew

The crew on this flight are a chirpy bunch. Their service is efficient but unrushed and they are obviously determined not to waste any time so passengers can maximise the amount of rest they can get before we reach our destination. This is yet another thing that Qatar Airways does really well in my opinion. One of the things I really cannot stand on Singapore Airlines or SWISS is that for some reason their main meal service always seems to take for ever. On a flight across the Atlantic you are usually already half way there by the time they finally finish and clear everything up.


The vanity kit is another one of the senselessly oversized tube of aftershave balm variety. Come to think of it, it would be interesting to know what is in the ladies’ vanity kit and if that has any more sensible contents.

The Meal

I know it has not been that long since my breakfast on the inbound from Melbourne, but I am feeling peckish nonetheless. I blame it on the jet lag.

I start with a tasty strawberry and banana smoothie with is rich and creamy.


Next I have the Bircher Müsli with berries and nuts, which is served nicely decorated with a sprig of mint that gives it a refreshing twist.


And then for the main course I have the Indian dish, in this case something called Aloo paneer tikki with jeera potatoes, green pea upma, makhani sauce and sambhar. And what an excellent dish it is too, even though I am really not quite sure what it is I am eating. Luckily, Qatar Airways always seem to have at least one Indian dish on their menu, usually the vegetarian option.


For dessert I have a combination of lychee éclair and a coffee and chocolate mousse cake, which is also very good.


Once the meal is over, I figure I may as well make another trip to Noddy land to pass the time before the next feeding.

The Second Service

Ninety minutes out of Frankfurt the cabin crew pass through the cabin asking passengers if there is anything they would like to eat before we arrive in Frankfurt. There is a section with light options on the menu for passengers to choose from. I decide to go with the shredded beef salad with Thai noodles. The dish is good and tastes authentic, but I am kind of disappointed because I had been hoping for something with a bit of ‘umpf’ in it, which this dish does not have.



Twenty-three hours after departing from Melbourne I arrive back in Frankfurt. We approach the airport from the East and land on the new runway that lies north of the apron. As I step off the plane I finally get a chance to take a proper look at her and take a few pictures. This is a really very cool plane!



This flight brings to a close my journey to the land of Oz with the fabulous Qatar Airways. Their performance on the four flights I took has been truly stellar. What’s more, they are consistent in the service level they provide, even in comparison to my experience on previous trips with them. In comparison to the other Middle Eastern carriers I have tried, I think Qatar Airways definitely takes the biscuit. They are certainly more professional than Oman Air and their service feels a lot more sophisticated than Emirates. I also think their cabins are a lot classier than Emirates, which tends to be a bit flashy, bordering on gaudy. Of course Qatar Airways also has the advantage that with Hamad airport, they have a very spacious and nicely designed hub.

I shall be flying with Etihad for the first time in two months, and I am curious to see how they will compare to Qatar Airways, but I think it is safe to say that Qatar Airways is a hard act to follow.

Qatar Airways, Business Class – Airbus A 350-900: Doha to Adelaide


Date: 09. February 2017
Departure: 21:15
Arrival: 17:40
Flight time: 12 hours 30 minutes
Seat: 3K, starboard window seat



I have just enough time to post the report of my flight from Frankfurt to Doha before it is time for me to leave the comfort of the al-Mourjan lounge and head for gate C5 from where the flight to Adelaide will be boarding.

Since my last visit to Doha airport they have changed the security regime. Where previously you used to go through a centralised security checkpoint, which tended to get slightly hectic and chaotic during peak periods, you now only have to go through security before you enter the respective gate for your flight, which makes the whole process far more efficient and much less of a hassle for passengers.

The Lounge

Location: Just off the central plaza that links concourses A, B and C.
Name of Lounge:
Type of Lounge:
Qatar Airways Business Class lounge.
There is a long escalator that leads up to the lounge.
Toilets & Showers:
Both are available in the lounge and there is an attendant who obviously keeps the place spotlessly clean.
Food & Beverages: There is a huge selection of hot and cold dishes. In fact the food offerings are more comparable to what many airlines provide in their First Class lounges. One floor up from the central lounge area there is also a restaurant with buffet and à la carte dining.
Complimentary wifi is provided by Doha airport.
Newspapers & Magazines:
There is a large selection of magazines and newspapers in English and Arabic.



There is a separate lane for security for Business Class passengers. Business Class passengers are invited to board the aircraft first and there is a separate airbridge attached to the L1 door.


The Cabin

The seat on the Airbus A 350 is very similar to that on the Boeing B 787 on my previous flight. There are however, a few differences. First of all, due to the fact that there are no overhead bins for the middle row of seats, the cabin has a very spacious and cavernous feel, which is very pleasant actually. There is a shoe compartment large enough to store a pair of shoes properly (I wear a size 46 and managed to stow my shoes easily). And finally, the inflight entertainment system is slightly updated. Is has a larger selection of films and can be operated either via the handset or using the touch screen.

The Business Class cabin is also larger on this aircraft. There is one toilet behind the forward galley on the left and two toilets by the L2/R2 doors.



The service sequence is identical to that on the previous flight – welcome drink, menu, vanity kit. However, because of the longer flight time of twelve hours and fifty minutes, a few additions have been made to the service:

  1. Slippers are provided and they are rather comfortable.
  2. Pyjamas are also provided.
  3. There is a turndown service to convert the seat into a bed.

The Meal

Welcome drink on the ground: Lemon and mint juice.
Pre-meal drink:
Coke Zero, served with a ramekin of warm nuts.
Choice: There are three choices for the first and main course and dessert.
À la carte service.
Type of meal:
Late dinner.
Hot towel after the meal: Rose scented hot towel.


Amuse Bouche

Salmon tartar with mango salsa.

First Course

Spicy lentil soup.


Arabic mezze with hummus, moutabel and tabouleh, served with Arabic bread.

The Main Course

Red snapper with a saffron cream sauce and asparagus. Served with crushed new potatoes and spring onions and a confit of cherry tomatoes.


Ice cream.

The Second Service

Choice: The breakfast menu can be put together individually and includes a wide selection of hot and cold dishes.
À la carte service.
Type of meal:

Strawberry and banana smoothie.


Scrambled eggs with chives, served on toast with ruccola and grilled tomatoes.

A selection of breads, served with butter and marmalade.


We land in Adelaide after a flight time of twelve hours and thirty minutes. The approach brings us in right over the city and offers some great views of the hills in Adelaide’s hinterland.


Once we land I have ninety minutes to make my domestic connection and then I’ll be done. For today.


This flight and the previous one from Frankfurt to Doha have firmly established Qatar Airways as one of my favourite airlines, together with the legendary Cathay Pacific. As I already mentioned in a previous post on Qatar Airways, it never seizes to amaze me just how reliable and consistent their crews are in their service delivery. And they are all so nice about it.

But it is not just the crews that make flying with Qatar Airways such a brilliant experience. The quality and quantity of the food is really something else and puts many of the First Class products I have had the pleasure of sampling to shame.

And then there is also the aircraft. This was my second flight on the Airbus A 350 and I must say, she’s really something else. The feeling of space and comfort that the cabin provides makes even a twelve hours journey pleasurable. The only problem you have with this aircraft is that it is so quiet in the cabin that you can hear the dude snoring five rows further back!