QatarA340 From Qatar, joined May 2006, 1683 posts, RR: 7 Posted (4 years 2 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 16758 times:
EK Doha-DXB-LHR-DXB-DOH Business Class (A332, A380)
Route: Doha- Dubai
Flight time: 45 min.
Seat: 3A Business
Departure Time (Schd/ Act): 3:45 AM/ 3:40 AM
Load Factor: (20% in J, maybe 90% in Y)
This is my second A380 trip report and I was eager to prepare it. This time, I booked business class, as opposed to my first TR which was on economy class, as I wanted to experience the business class in the A380. On the DOH-DXB sector, the transit time was 2 hours exactly, and on the return it was 2 hours and a half. It was well worth the wait. It was my third flight on an A380 and the first for my brother who I was eager to show him around the plane.
I arrived into DOH well before my flight so I can sit in the lounge, but well it was too long for me as DOH is a bit of a bore to stay in. The aircraft awaiting us was an A330-200, which are quite old by EK standard. There were only two classes, business and economy, and the business section was in 2-3-2 breakdown which as completely uncomfortable for business class. The seats were narrow and quite cramped, but legroom was OK. I didn’t mind really, since it was only a 45 minute flight across the Arabian Gulf. Load factor in business was very low, there were around 5 other people with us in J class, making it a total of 7 seats used. Flight was bumpy, and I didn’t eat anything, since I was saving my appetite for the Dubai business class lounge prior to my flight to London.
Route: Dubai- London Heathrow
Flight time: 7 hours 30 minutes.
Seat: Business (20K)
Departure Time (Schd/ Act): 7:45 AM/ 8:15 AM
Load Factor: (100% in J)
Reg: A6-EDE (The latest one, I think)
The Business Class Lounge in DXB is huge, I felt like it was so long and divided into so many sections, with many different food and beverage counters scattered around the lounge. Seating was plentiful, although when we arrived, we had to search for two free seats—as the lounge was FULL! The main Dining area of the lounge was wonderful and selection is plentiful. I had a full breakfast complete with Tea. They need to increase the number of restrooms though as there were only 2 for the whole lounge!
After a little while, my flight came up and we were going to the plane. The gate was located just outside the lounge—as A380 gates were divided into two floors, the upper floor for First and Business, while the lower was for economy only. The boarding procedure was a bit complicated though. We had to go to the gate, board an elevator to a lower floor and then proceed to the aircraft through the jetway. There were no staffers to assist us, as we had to press the second button on the elevator, as pressing the last button would take us to the lower level. But, well.. we figured out what to do.
Arriving into the aircraft one could never overcome the feeling of awe, no matter how many times they use the A380. When I first entered the plane, my first reaction was “Wow! That’s a lot of plastic!” The upper deck seemed to be filled to ever last inch with seats and seat amenities. I sat in seat 20 K, which was a window seat, but located actually in the aisle—with only the table and minibar located near the window. The seat in front of me was better as the seat was located directly adjacent to the window with the table near the aisle.
We saw three other A380s prior to take-off—presumable one going to Toronto, one going to Bangkok and one to Sydney, if I’m not mistaken. That was a really nice moment to see three A380 in the same eye vision!
Takeoff was smooth. We were surprised by the massive machine’s what seemed to be slow take-off! The aircraft took off after a shorter than expected run and wobbled up in the air not so steeply—which was very comfortable. From the inside looking out, the aircraft’s take-off run seemed to be sloooow, but from the outside looking at the aircraft, the plane seemed racing!
There was some turbulence throughout the flight—but nothing too bad. I am the kind of person that doesn’t like to eat with the rest of the folks and preferred to eat later. When I ordered the food later, the presentation wasn’t really like what I expected. They placed the food plate directly in the table without utensils and later brought out the utensils, the food cloth, and the salt/pepper shakers. I wasn’t even presented with salads or something.
Arrival to London was as normal—circling around London for an half an hour before landing due to traffic! Our bags came out first and our complimentary Mercedes Benz was waiting for us at the Parking building.
By halawala, shot with D-LUX 4 at 2009-10-05
The Holy Quran, never leave home without it!
Route: London Heathrow-Dubai
Flight time: 6 hours
Departure Time (Schd/ Act): 2:15 PM/ 3:00 PM
Load Factor: (about 75% in J)
The return flight was one of the best experiences because I got to try the EK lounge at London Heathrow. The lounge is incredible—very long and contained more than enough chairs and the dining area had more than enough food for the hungry passengers. There was a business area with computers and an adjacent prayer area. There were also showers. The lounge area included a small lobby in the bottom floor with a spiral staircase and two elevators leading up to the lounge. The view from the lounge is spectacular—the best view ever. There was a long table facing the window so you can sit in the stool and watch the airplanes go by. =) The boarding was the best here, since passengers get to board the plane through a gate at the end of the lounge!
The take-off was smooth but there was some turbulence due to clouds above LHR. However, the return flight was only 6 hours and mostly smooth. Again I requested for my meal later and the server said at first he couldn’t give me a hot meal. I was surprised as why he would not reheat the meal. He said that it was against their instructions to reheat a meal. I told him that I didn’t care and that I wanted a hot meal.
He then gave me the Lamb Machboos, which is a dish made in the Arabian Gulf consisting of lamb and rice cooked with spices. It was incredibly tasty.
Route: Dubai- Doha
Flight time 45 min.
Seat: First (2A)
Departure Time (Schd/ Act): 2:30 AM/ 2:45 AM
Load Factor: (80% in F, 100% in J and Y)
The last sector of my journey required me to stay in Dubai for more than 2 and a half hours. Arriving at 12 midnight in DXB is not a pleasant scene. There were tons of people everywhere and the transfer line seemed like it would not end. There was supposed to be a separate line for First and Business Class but strangely all the lines took all the passengers. I was a bit mad since I was traveling First Class and I didn’t have to wait that long with the other passengers.
I headed straight to the First Class lounge which was very spacious, quiet, and better service—in contrast to the neighboring business class lounge which was chaotic, overcrowded, and large.
The dining area of the lounge was very good. It reminded me of a hotel or a five-star restaurant where we had the choice of a la carte style or full buffet. I choose the buffet and filled my plate with delicious foods. The only negative thing about the lounge is that they had a wine shop in the middle of the lounge which was disturbing to see. They should’ve just placed it outside or downstairs in the duty-free.
Finally we boarded the plane, an A330-200. The First Class is comparable to Business Class on some airlines, and is certainly smaller than QR’s Business Class. It is arranged in 2-2-2’s. This flight is the smoothest flight I have ever taken—there wasn’t even a slight bump or irritation.
Overall: I would love to fly the EK A380 again. I didn’t really like EK’s choice of meals, and desserts. The service could be improved. Qatar Airways’s service is noticeably better, plus you get to dine onboard at your own discretion and time—in contrast to EK who will “have to think if you can get a hot meal afterwards”. The entertainment system onboard is incredible, as well as the seats are very comfortable. I think it’s a problem for couples to sit in J since the seats are arranged what seems to be randomly—but there are two seats in the middle every two rows which can be arranged side-by-side perfect for couples.
BA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8352 posts, RR: 55 Reply 2, posted (4 years 2 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 16325 times:
Nice TR, some excellent pictures.
Seems EK standards or preceived service is still patchy.
Quoting QatarA340 (Thread starter): They need to increase the number of restrooms though as there were only 2 for the whole lounge!
- Not well thought out!
Quoting QatarA340 (Thread starter): I sat in seat 20 K, which was a window seat, but located actually in the aisle—with only the table and minibar located near the window. The seat in front of me was better as the seat was located directly adjacent to the window with the table near the aisle.
- I prefer the seat next to the window with the minibar area next to the aisle.
Quoting QatarA340 (Thread starter): I think it’s a problem for couples to sit in J since the seats are arranged what seems to be randomly—but there are two seats in the middle every two rows which can be arranged side-by-side perfect for couples.
- Good for couples unless one wants a window - me!
Glas you enjoyed your A380 flights, she's a pretty cool plane.
Ojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2862 posts, RR: 22 Reply 4, posted (4 years 2 months 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 16054 times:
Good job QatarA340! wonderful TR.
good to know you enjoyed your experience on EK, but what a contrast the EK A332 and EK A380! I have always been curious about EK's 847/848 to DOH, the oddest departure time. Basically there is barely any activity at DOH between 0230 hrs and 0530 hrs.
A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
QatarA340 From Qatar, joined May 2006, 1683 posts, RR: 7 Reply 5, posted (4 years 2 months 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 15874 times:
Quoting Ojas (Reply 4): good to know you enjoyed your experience on EK, but what a contrast the EK A332 and EK A380! I have always been curious about EK's 847/848 to DOH, the oddest departure time. Basically there is barely any activity at DOH between 0230 hrs and 0530 hrs.
Well, the airport was not that empty. The Lounge at Doha Airport looked like a haunted house as there were lots of people sleeping! LOL! But, the flight from DXB-DOH was really full--I think EK upgraded some Y pax to J, but Im not sure.
This flight connects to many cities which is really ideal for many pax. I used to fly route a lot since I reach DXB before work starts.
Quoting Ojas (Reply 4): Good job QatarA340! wonderful TR.
Thanks Ojas, and looking forward to your comments as usual =)
UAEflyer From United Arab Emirates, joined Nov 2006, 941 posts, RR: 0 Reply 7, posted (4 years 2 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 14792 times:
Quoting QatarA340 (Thread starter): After a little while, my flight came up and we were going to the plane. The gate was located just outside the lounge---as A380 gates were divided into two floors, the upper floor for First and Business, while the lower was for economy only. The boarding procedure was a bit complicated though. We had to go to the gate, board an elevator to a lower floor and then proceed to the aircraft through the jetway. There were no staffers to assist us, as we had to press the second button on the elevator, as pressing the last button would take us to the lower level. But, well.. we figured out what to do.
I think you got the chance to enter the aircraft from the upper bridge directly via the first class lounge, i did that couple of weeks.
Excellent Trip Report dear, keep reporting on your trips wherever you go.
KHI747 From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 1613 posts, RR: 1 Reply 8, posted (4 years 2 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 14062 times:
Absolutely loved your TR and the pictures you took.My only complaint is you should have taken even more pics!
First of all i agree on the assessment of the EK A332 J class seats.I have had the honour myself of flying on them a few times and they surely belong to another decade now it seems.
I assume you were travelling with your significant other and i see what you mean by the alternate middle row seating arrangment in the A380 J class because even though i have not flown it,its the same case in Etihad J class.But as you know the seating arrangment alternates and you can always find willing passengers to swap the two intimate middle seats with the not-so-intimate middle seats.Thats what i just did a couple of days ago so that my little daughter could sit next to my wife.
I love the touch of the mini-Quran you travel with,infact i noticed it on the picture before i read your comment and i was immediately impressed.You have inspired me now too.
I cant help myself from asking you about that ubiquitous Gucci bag! Is it yours or hers? I just gotta ask man !
I wish i could write TR's for my own journeys but i simply dont find the time.All i managed from my most recent trip was a picture (even this was an achievement for me).Its the top one (Ref: A345) if you see the pics on my profile.
EtihadAirways From United Arab Emirates, joined Dec 2006, 145 posts, RR: 0 Reply 11, posted (4 years 2 months 1 day ago) and read 13287 times:
Glad you travel on emirates 380 Buz and hope you enjoy it. I traveled on it this summer DXB-BKK-DXB and it was amazing flight. the onbored lounge is really nice touch and I agree that the buz Emirates lounge in the morning is crowded !!! its so Huge but still so many people.
SQ325 From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 1441 posts, RR: 7 Reply 13, posted (4 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 12836 times:
Quoting QatarA340 (Reply 9): Quoting KHI747 (Reply 8):
cant help myself from asking you about that ubiquitous Gucci bag! Is it yours or hers? I just gotta ask man
Come on! Its my bag and its a man's bag! I was traveling with my bro. lol
Asked myself the same, but your profile says male.
No offense, just kidding!!!
Nice report, my last flight to DXB was with the new LX C-class, because I was to lazy to fly FRA-LHR-DXB!
But next time I should give the A380 a try.
QatarA340 From Qatar, joined May 2006, 1683 posts, RR: 7 Reply 14, posted (4 years 1 month 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 11635 times:
Quoting Directorguy (Reply 10): Awesome TR, anything involving the A380 will get my attention. It's amazing how each TR still manages to personalise the experience.
Thanks for sharing an keep 'em coming!
Your most welcome!
Quoting EtihadAirways (Reply 11): I traveled on it this summer DXB-BKK-DXB and it was amazing flight. the onbored lounge is really nice touch
You should've done a TR! Thanks =)
Quoting SASDC8 (Reply 12): On the other hand, EK's business class configuration on their 380's looks really good
IT is great!
Quoting SQ325 (Reply 13): Asked myself the same, but your profile says male.
hahahaha! Well, you have to be brave carrying something like that.
Quoting SQ325 (Reply 13): Nice report, my last flight to DXB was with the new LX C-class, because I was to lazy to fly FRA-LHR-DXB!
But next time I should give the A380 a try.
Come on, go to London, have a 2 day vacation and return using the A380! IT is well worth the wait!