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Asia 2010 Part I - QR - Your 5 Star Airline?  
User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8426 posts, RR: 55
Posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 22143 times:
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Hi All,

Welcome to my second TR for 2010.

This trip follows MrsBA319131 & I on a trip to Vietnam with brief stops in Bangkok.

To keep the reports short(er) and easier to digest I plan to post 5 TR’s:-

1. QR LHR>DOH>BKK
2. VN BKK>HAN
3. VN HAN>HUE>HMC
4. VN HMC>BKK
5. QR BKK>DOH>LHR

After much deliberation, we finally decided to visit Vietnam, this is the first part of trip including a brief summary of booking.

Originally we planned to go just after Christmas, this time of year is quiet for both of us in our job roles, however we decided to move it to February as we could be away for my birthday.

There are no non-stop flights to Vietnam from the UK, not that we would be likely to have chosen one anyway (why fly direct when you can go via and add more aircraft flown?), so it was an open playing field of who to travel.

I originally wanted to go via SIN to add a few more A380’s to my flown log, however both SQ & QF fares were far far above other J fares to this part of the world.

It then looked like Finnair, which I was more than happy with, had some great flights with them in the past.

However in the end it came down to QR, they had a very cheap J fare and there seem to be more good than bad TR’s about them, so we booked without much hesitation.

Booking was done via Travelocity as the same flights on the QR website were some £600 each more.

Once booked a quick call to the London QR booking office enabled me to book specific seats without problem.

Travelling with QR would give me another A340-600 and my 1st 777-300ER flight, so not so bad.

The flights to/from and within Vietnam were all done via their website, quite easy to use, though I could not seem to find a seat selection function.


12.02.10
QR2
LHR-DOH
A340-600 A7-AGD 14A Business Class
1st Flight on this aircraft,10th A340 Flight & 7th on the -600.
SCH DEP 20:30 SCH ARR 06:10
ACT DEP 20:34 ACT ARR 06:09



View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gavin Bowler



When we travel on longer trips we always book a car service to and from the airport, just makes the whole trip easier - normally the car service arrives at least 15 minutes early, today, 1 minute to 5 the car had not arrived.

On the dot of 5 the phone rings, it’s the car people, the car it stuck in traffic, they estimate it will arrive in 15 minutes, not a problem, we always pad the schedule, even though Heathrow is a mere 11 miles away, you just can’t tell how the traffic is going to be, especially at this time of day.

Fast forward 14 minutes and the car pulls up, a Silver E Class Mercedes, we’ve been upgraded, only booked a Volvo  

The driver was a nice chap and most apologetic about the delays. Traffic was fine and before we knew it the car pulled into the drop off area outside Terminal 3.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000518.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000519.jpg

The departure screens indicated Qatar check-in was zone E
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000521.jpg
there was nobody in front of us at the Business Class check-in when we arrived, the First Class one was free too.

Check-in was painless, lounge invitations given for Lounge A, the Cathay Pacific lounge.

My only comments would be the check-in guy managed to look untidy in his Qatar uniform, the lady on the First desk looked immaculate, and he was not the most friendly chap.

Next stop Travelex to collect the pre-ordered money – which was not ready, but that’s another story.

Money in hand it was off to security, being in J we could use the Fast Track for security, it was nice and quick.

The Cathay Pacific lounge seems to be at the far end of the ‘shopping mall’, it’s down a passage, then into an elevator then down a passage before it appears to your right. Getting to the lounge feels like you are entering an none secure airside area, felt a bit tatty.
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First impression of the reception area are good, however once past there it goes a bit down hill. The lounge is clean but tired, many of the seats are worn and look a bit grubby. The food and drink selections are a bit limited but they do have JW Black Label.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000522.jpg

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Bathrooms are nice and clean, though overall I’m disappointed, had expected something better from Cathay + I expected Qatar to have their own lounge, they have enough flights to justify one!

During our lounge visit I had a beer, glass of wine and a few sandwiches, just enough to tide me over before the flight.
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It seemed a family had set up camp in the corner of our seating area, they even brought in boxes of pizza from some outlet in the terminal area, I guess there were 4 or 5 kids and all were very noisy, I noted they got the ‘look’ from other passengers, fingers crossed they won’t be on our flight!

When we arrived at the lounge the I enquired about flight announcements to which the agent advised they would make calls, however this did not appear to be the case so we left the lounge around about 19:30, mainly as gate 40 from which our flight would depart was a long way from the lounge.
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As we approached gate 40, boarding was announced for First & Business passengers, great timing on my part  
Here she is:-
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Once aboard we were greeted by friendly FA’s who checked out boarding passes and directed us to turn left.

We settled into our seats
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got books out etc. A short while later we refreshments, champagne of course, it was Lanson on tonight’s flight.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000550.jpg
Amenity kits were already on each seat along with a pillow and blanket, no socks though.
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The seat and the whole environment is quite nice, the seat felt a bit odd at first due to the fold in it, however you soon get used to it. The dark maroon fabrics are quite tasteful. The legroom was ok but not quite what I had expected. Stowage areas were lacking.
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Luck was not on my side, the noisy family was on our flight, one was sat behind us with what I assumed to be the nanny, however the little girl slept for the entire flight as did the rest of the children scattered through the cabin.

Thick hot towels were offered prior to push back and dinner orders were taken along with your preferred drinks with the dinner service.
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Menu folder
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Sleeper suits were also offered, we took one, never used it, but might come in handy one day......

View outside
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Another cabin shot
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Push back occurred @ 20:34, I noted one passenger got a top up of his champagne during taxi!
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Once the safety demo was completed, seemed very long to me, the IFE was turned on, don’t recall it being turned on so early before on other carriers.
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AGD slowly made her way out to the active
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tonight we would depart from 27R, our turn arrived and we achieved wheels up @ 20:58, Heathrow is quite busy at this time of night.

I turned on the IFE for the maps, not quite as good as other others out there, that aside, the system was easy to use with plenty of choice, sure to keep most happy for a good few hours!
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Just over half an hour after takeoff our drinks arrived with the first course arriving shortly afterwards.
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The tray table is nice and solid, much more so than the table in BA’s CW.
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A few more cabin shots, for some reason all the lights went on then got dimmed a few minutes later:-
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Table set up is quite an affair, crisp table linens are placed on the table then one is placed upon your lap, salt & pepper, butter etc all the placed on your table set up prior to your meal arriving, it’s a very nice set up and really has a feel of a quality restaurant in the way it’s done.
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I took the Arabian Mezze as my starter which was very good
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Then the Lamb Biryiani, also very good
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Followed by the warm Fig Tarte which was excellent!
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Mrs BA319-131 took the seafood cocktail to start then the prawns as a main and finished with the fruit option, they were also good I'm advised.
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Drinks were kept topped up through the meal service, I switched to an Australian red when my main course arrived, and good it was too, stayed on that for the remainder of my drinks.

After the meal service, Godiva chocolates were passed out as were large bottles of Vittel mineral water.
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Breakfast was an optional item, given we had a relatively short connection and breakfast would be the 1st or only meal on the next flight I decided not to bother with either asking for it or being awake for it.

After that I dropped off.

My next memory of the flight was an announcement that we were beginning our descent into Doha International Airport and you should return to your seat and ensure all luggage is stowed in the overhead or under the seat in front of you, however a quick check of my watch led me to think we still had a good 40 minutes to go & the plane really had not started to descend yet.

I do prefer the BA method of giving you a warning about and hour our or so, thus giving you time to go to the loo, freshen up etc etc.

Given I thought we had time in hand, I took a quick freshen up in the bathroom and returned back to my seat.
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Prior to landing hot towels were offered, another nice touch – see, we can’t be that close if these are being handed out now!

Sunrise has started
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I know it was a night flight and much of it was taken up with sleep, but I have to say service was excellent and nothing seemed too much trouble to the crew, it really was an excellent 1st flight with Qatar.
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AGD touched down on runway 34 1 minute ahead of schedule, a short taxi to a remote stand and we had arrived.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000661.jpg

On stand
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000667.jpg

Last cabin shots
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Last look
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A dedicated bus for First and Business passengers took us to the premium terminal, en route I managed to collect a few new aircraft reg numbers & hoped to get a few more during our short layover.

Premium Terminal

What can I say? very nice but lacks apron/runway views, a real bummer!

A few shots here, will go into more detail on the way back, we have over 5 hours here!
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000674.jpg

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http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000676.jpg


13.02.10
QR610
DOH-BKK
Boeing 777-3DZER A7-BAE 4A Business Class Class
1st Flight on this aircraft, 14th 777 flight & 1st on the -300ER.
SCH DEP 08:00 SCH ARR 18:30
ACT DEP 08:18 ACT ARR 18:13



View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brian Gershey



Boarding seemed to start quite late for this flight, the FID’s showed nothing against the flight then at 07:37 Gate Closing appeared, so we quickly headed down stairs to the gate area.

Our boarding passes were changed to reflect a seat change from 2 A & B to 4 A & B, this to accommodate a family travelling together, no problem for us, though I did choose row 2 to be away from the galley which is behind row 4. Seat Guru advises these seats could be disturbed by galley noise.

Out to the waiting bus, one more passenger and we were off to the plane. I had hoped for a lengthy ride to aquire a few more aircraft registrations, however I only managed 1, we pulled up to the nearest 77W, A7-BAE, this aircraft would be taking us to BKK.
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Up the stair to door 2
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000700.jpg
greeted by more friendly FA’s and again directed to turn left to our seats.

Usual ritual, remove what you want and store the bags. During this drinks were offered we both took OJ, seemed the right option for this time of day.
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Legroom is much better
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000718.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000720.jpg
The same amenity kit as the previous flight was provided as were eye shades, no socks though, I do like a pair of disposable airline socks to put over my socks when on a plane.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000851.jpg

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Better stowage space
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000726.jpg
Ramp gear
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Push back occurred @ 08:18, a slight delay due to a connecting passenger and the aircraft taxied out to runway 34, en route I managed to spy a few more registrations, taking my total to 11, should have had my bins out, would have managed more – will do that on the return!

We joined the queue for departures on runway 34, our turn arrived
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BAE’s wheels left the tarmac @ 08:34.
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The map on the IFE was better on this plane as was the seating, felt like you had more room + there was a good bin in front of you, ideal for storing ‘stuff’ during the flight. Legroom was also much better, it’s obvious the onboard product got a revamp when the 777’s started to come on-line, I don’t imagine the 346 fleet will get the same set up, they keep threatening to get rid of them.
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Once released, the crew came around taking drinks orders and the meal orders.
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Cabin
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I took sparkling water and Champagne as my drinks, yes I know it was early, but I’m on holiday now and it’s 12:00 somewhere in the world!

Interesting to note we were now being served Laurent Perrier rather than Lanson, not a problem, I prefer Laurent.

The water arrived quickly but the champers took a while, thought they had forgotten about me, but no, it arrived.
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Breakfast arrived, some how MrsBA319-131 did not get the starter, for some reason the main was delivered, not sure what happened, I suspect it was lost in translation during the ordering process, and we just left it at that.
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I have to say the food was excellent, presentation is superb too, a great meal!

Through the flight our friendly FA’s kept the drinks topped up, never had to ask for a refill, just excellent service. I must have drunk at least a bottle of the stuff, they just kept filling um the glass, at one point they even changed the glass to give me a fresh one.
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As per our previous flight, water bottles were issues, this time they were Evian, seems no brand loyalty here.

Views outside
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http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000764-1.jpg
Map
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000767-1.jpg

More views during the flight
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After a bit of a sleep I noticed Mrs S was eating, I decided that was a good idea and ordered the Tandori Chicken sandwich, it arrived quickly, the table set up followed the same procedure as before.

The ‘sandwich’was not quite what I expected, but it was very nice.
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I decided to have a beer with it, a Crown appeared, not seen this stuff since Australia so had another once the first was finished.

Not long after the meal service we did begin a rather slow descent into BKK, the same kind of hurried landing warning was given, seems its part of the procedure, IMO they should tweak it a bit.
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Here are a few pictures as we approached the airport.
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BAE touched down @ 18;13 local time, some 17 minutes ahead of schedule, a short taxi to the gate and we were on stand.
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I had hoped to pick up a good few more registrations as we taxied in, however traffic was minimal, I managed 5 but the Red Rose 757 reg remained hidden from me.
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On stand
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Once on stand, door was 2 opened to disembark, economy passengers were held back to ensure business managed to disembark first.

There have been lots of reports commenting on the new BKK airport, from the brief time it took to exit it seemed quite organised and easy to find your way around.
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000823-1.jpg
Immigration was painless, though we did have to fill out some immigration forms upon arrival, it would have been better for QR to provide these on the plane, perhaps they should consider that?

Luggage came out pretty quickly and the queue for a cab was pretty minimal, in to time we were in a taxi heading to our hotel, right in the heart of Chinatown.

Here are a few pictures from our short stay in Bangkok.
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http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000982.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000995.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000841.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000828.jpg

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000835.jpg

Sorry about the quality of some of the shots, the windows on both planes were not that clean, my new camera seems to like the dirt!

The next instalment will be with Vietnam Airlines from BKK to HAN.

I do hope you have enjoyed the trip so far and will continue to travel with us in the next segments.

Feel free to drop and comments or observations.

Best Wishes

Mark


111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333,342
51 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6639 posts, RR: 78
Reply 1, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 22043 times:

Hi Mark,

great report with many nice pictures, I had been waiting for that review. QR's Business Class product looks quite good.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
After much deliberation, we finally decided to visit Vietnam, this is the first part of trip including a brief summary of booking.

One of the countries which I also want to visit.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Booking was done via Travelocity as the same flights on the QR website were some £600 each more.

Wow, what a difference.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Travelling with QR would give me another A340-600 and my 1st 777-300ER flight, so not so bad.

Sounds very good. Congratulations to your first 77W ride - I still need the A346.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
During our lounge visit I had a beer, glass of wine and a few sandwiches, just enough to tide me over before the flight.

Good to see they have Tsingtao beer.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Out to the waiting bus, one more passenger and we were off to the plane. I had hoped for a lengthy ride to aquire a few more aircraft registrations, however I only managed 1, we pulled up to the nearest 77W, A7-BAE, this aircraft would be taking us to BKK.

Well, still better than nothing...  
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The next instalment will be with Vietnam Airlines from BKK to HAN.

Can't wait to see that.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1084 posts, RR: 32
Reply 2, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 21783 times:

Hi Mark -

I was really happy to wake up this morning to find this much anticipated TR. Nothing brings you back to the world of the living like a TR in the morning...

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):

I took the Arabian Mezze as my starter which was very good

After recently discovering humus only last week, this choice looks perfect with the proper traditional humus set up with olive oil, whole chickpea and cumin/tumeric. The whole plate looks impressive despite by hummus focus!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
and he was not the most friendly chap.

I had a male agent last time I flew with QR at LHR and he was a miserable, attitude-laden guy too

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The Cathay Pacific lounge seems to be at the far end of the ‘shopping mall’, it’s down a passage, then into an elevator then down a passage before it appears to your right. Getting to the lounge feels like you are entering an none secure airside area, felt a bit tatty.

This is quite funny. and a mediocre offering really. The one good thing is your flying QR you know you'll have use of the extensive lounge in Qatar where as if you were flying a direct CX to say Hong kong out this would be quite upsetting as your soul offering into the business class lounge offer...

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
I took sparkling water and Champagne as my drinks, yes I know it was early, but I’m on holiday now

Nonsense! More power to you - every time of day is champagne time if its available.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
at one point they even changed the glass to give me a fresh one.

Very impressive. One of my pet hates is drinking a lovely drink e.g. whiskey out of a filthy glass... I though the glass used for champagne (same as red and white) looked quite bulbous for champagne... still nice though!

Anyway - look forward to the rest and hopefully they'll be in the same vein as this quality QR experience. Glad to see your being sufficiently critical too... Good work

Luke



Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offlinecolts001 From United States of America, joined Mar 2009, 93 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 21720 times:

Excellent TR, waiting for the next set of TR's.

User currently offline757MDE From Colombia, joined Sep 2004, 1753 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 21547 times:

Good report!
I recognize that Mitsubishi ad in the way to Suvarnabhumi way too good now, and the "Welcome to Thailand" besides it.
It's good you didn't have to wait for a cab, it took me almost an hour the other day, and the guy wanted to rip me off to add insult to injury. I can't wait for the Suvarnabhumi Airport Link to be finally ready.

Am I the only one finds that picture of the El Al and the Iran Air airplanes parked together sort of ironic?

[Edited 2010-03-13 06:32:46]


I gladly accept donations to pay for flight hours! This thing draws man...
User currently offlinerogerbcn From Andorra, joined Sep 2006, 1194 posts, RR: 20
Reply 5, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 21348 times:

Hola Mark!

Another interesting TR from your hand. Very intersting reading and great comments from QR, they seem to have an excellent service, although the 40 min. warning before landing is a little tight if you are sleeping and want to move a bit before touching down. I tend to have a walk, visit the toilet.... before landing and that seems pretty tight to me.

Food and seats look very nice, presentation of the food is excellent. And prices seem to be quite reasonable, especially if you had this 600 pounds 'discount' on travelocity.

Looking forward to reading the rest of your trip to Vietnam.

Salut!

Roger



"At reise er at leve" H.C. Andersen (Travelling is Living)
User currently offlineakhmad From Netherlands, joined Sep 2005, 2429 posts, RR: 53
Reply 6, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 21227 times:

Hi Mark,

I have been eagerly waiting for this report of yours. I was curious about your J experience with QR as it has been almost two years ago. Nothing seems to have changed on QR in terms of service. With every word of yours, I just can recall my own experience that time. Thank you very much!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
a Silver E Class Mercedes, we’ve been upgraded, only booked a Volvo
Great! This feature is unfortunately not available in the Netherlands. So I just have to stick with the train.   

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Luck was not on my side, the noisy family was on our flight, one was sat behind us with what I assumed to be the nanny, however the little girl slept for the entire flight as did the rest of the children scattered through the cabin.
Awful!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
What can I say? very nice but lacks apron/runway views, a real bummer!
I know that.  
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Through the flight our friendly FA’s kept the drinks topped up, never had to ask for a refill, just excellent service. I must have drunk at least a bottle of the stuff, they just kept filling um the glass, at one point they even changed the glass to give me a fresh one.
Sooo QR!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Immigration was painless, though we did have to fill out some immigration forms upon arrival, it would have been better for QR to provide these on the plane, perhaps they should consider that?
That's a good idea. Have you sent in your suggestions?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The next instalment will be with Vietnam Airlines from BKK to HAN.

Can't wait to see that.
Mee too!

Great report, Mark! I just love it!

Cheers,
Suryo



Friends forever
User currently offlineairbuseric From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 4207 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 21141 times:

Hi Mark,
welcome back, and you managed to tell the story briefly but it was great. Good amount of pictures, quality is very fine too. I must admit, the catering on QR makes a good impression. And the cabin is really my taste too. Did your feeling against the B777 change to more positive compared to the A330 now? It's such a magnificent aircraft.
Strange to see no QR lounge in LHR. That's really not good since they are said to be a premium carrier, and offer numerous flights a day to LHR. Now they leave the experience of threir pax in CX's hands. I wouldn't take the risk, if I was QR.
For your info; CX does not have a louge in AMS, but uses the JL lounge for their flights.
Looking forward for your next flight on VN.

Regards,
Eric



"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1151 posts, RR: 5
Reply 8, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 20958 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hi Mark,

I had been waiting for this trip report ever since you had announced your plans to fly QR!! Such amazing photos, especially of the Qatari skyline and of course the ground shots of the A346 and B77W. I love the A346 and really wish QR would keep them. Such an elegant bird to fly on.

What happened to the shot on the stairs up to the B77W, just before you entered the aircraft. Even though the meal services look classy, the portions seem quite tiny. You were flying in J class after all.

Nice that you actually flew close to Karachi!!

Looking forward to your other up coming trip reports.


User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8426 posts, RR: 55
Reply 9, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 20532 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hi All,

Thanks very much for your reads and comments, a few selected replies below.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
great report with many nice pictures, I had been waiting for that review. QR's Business Class product looks quite good.

- Thanks PH, it's a decent product I must say, though not perfect.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
One of the countries which I also want to visit.

- Vietnam is wonderful, we plan to return next year to see more and include Cambodia.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Booking was done via Travelocity as the same flights on the QR website were some £600 each more.

Wow, what a difference.

- Tell me about it!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Congratulations to your first 77W ride - I still need the A346.

- Thanks   Amazed you are still missing the 346, how about the home team, LH to some place  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Good to see they have Tsingtao beer.

- Best part of the lounge!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Out to the waiting bus, one more passenger and we were off to the plane. I had hoped for a lengthy ride to aquire a few more aircraft registrations, however I only managed 1, we pulled up to the nearest 77W, A7-BAE, this aircraft would be taking us to BKK.

Well, still better than nothing...

- True, at least I made some 10 or so when we first arrived.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
I was really happy to wake up this morning to find this much anticipated TR. Nothing brings you back to the world of the living like a TR in the morning

- Ha, thanks for reading  
Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
After recently discovering humus only last week, this choice looks perfect with the proper traditional humus set up with olive oil, whole chickpea and cumin/tumeric. The whole plate looks impressive despite by hummus focus!

- Indeed, great stuff - not thought about the shot & it's 'hummus' focus  
Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
and he was not the most friendly chap.


I had a male agent last time I flew with QR at LHR and he was a miserable, attitude-laden guy too

- Might be the same chap?

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The Cathay Pacific lounge seems to be at the far end of the ‘shopping mall’, it’s down a passage, then into an elevator then down a passage before it appears to your right. Getting to the lounge feels like you are entering an none secure airside area, felt a bit tatty.

This is quite funny. and a mediocre offering really. The one good thing is your flying QR you know you'll have use of the extensive lounge in Qatar where as if you were flying a direct CX to say Hong kong out this would be quite upsetting as your soul offering into the business class lounge offer...

- Yes, the CX lounge was pretty weak IMO, given they have, what 3 flight? per day, I expected something more from them.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
Glad to see your being sufficiently critical too

- Trying to be  
Quoting colts001 (Reply 3):
Excellent TR, waiting for the next set of TR's.

- Thanks, next one might appear on sunday time permitting.

Quoting 757MDE (Reply 4):
Am I the only one finds that picture of the El Al and the Iran Air airplanes parked together sort of ironic?

- Yes, sure is!  
Quoting rogerbcn (Reply 5):
Another interesting TR from your hand

- Thanks Roger.

Quoting rogerbcn (Reply 5):
the 40 min. warning before landing is a little tight if you are sleeping and want to move a bit before touching down. I tend to have a walk, visit the toilet.... before landing and that seems pretty tight to me.

- Agreed, especially for economy pax with limited number of bathrooms.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
Hi Mark,

I have been eagerly waiting for this report of yours. I was curious about your J experience with QR as it has been almost two years ago. Nothing seems to have changed on QR in terms of service. With every word of yours, I just can recall my own experience that time. Thank you very much!

- Hi Suryo, thanks for reading, glad it brings back good memories.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
a Silver E Class Mercedes, we’ve been upgraded, only booked a Volvo
Great! This feature is unfortunately not available in the Netherlands. So I just have to stick with the train

- Seems a gap in the market?

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Immigration was painless, though we did have to fill out some immigration forms upon arrival, it would have been better for QR to provide these on the plane, perhaps they should consider that?
That's a good idea. Have you sent in your suggestions?

- No, good idea, will drop them a line.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 7):
Hi Mark,
welcome back

- Thanks Eric, I'd like to say it's nice to be home............

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 7):
I must admit, the catering on QR makes a good impression

- Yes, great catering, has a real quality reasturant feel about the dining experience.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 7):
Did your feeling against the B777 change to more positive compared to the A330 now? It's such a magnificent aircraft.

- Whilst a great plane, the 777 is just so noisy, even ahead of the engines, I'd still take an A330/340 over a 777 anyday.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 7):
Strange to see no QR lounge in LHR. That's really not good since they are said to be a premium carrier, and offer numerous flights a day to LHR. Now they leave the experience of threir pax in CX's hands. I wouldn't take the risk, if I was QR.

- This is the strange thing as the CX lounge is pretty poor, the QF experience is above the CX lounge, if I was a first time F/J pax on CX x LHR, the lounge is not a great impression.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 8):
Hi Mark,

I had been waiting for this trip report ever since you had announced your plans to fly QR!! Such amazing photos, especially of the Qatari skyline and of course the ground shots of the A346 and B77W. I love the A346 and really wish QR would keep them. Such an elegant bird to fly on.

- Hi, thanks for reading. It will be interesting to see how long QR keep the 4 346 birds flying, they seem to be unhappy with them but they still fly them, perhaps as the secondhand market is poor? Regardless, I love them!

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 8):
What happened to the shot on the stairs up to the B77W, just before you entered the aircraft

- What, this one?
http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000694.jpg

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 8):
Even though the meal services look classy, the portions seem quite tiny. You were flying in J class after all.

Cheers

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333,342
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From Germany, joined Sep 2003, 5005 posts, RR: 55
Reply 10, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 20433 times:

Hey, Mark,

I´ve been waiting also for that story, eagerly interested after you´re follow up mails during you´re travels.

Well done, good work and real nice to follow with that pictures, not a problem for me with that dirty windows
like you stated.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Boeing 777-3DZER A7-BAE
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
1st on the -300ER.

Exactly, me too, the one and only till now, on the short ride from DXB to DOH late last year.

And as far as I like the A346, I prefer the Boeing product any way.

Looking for the next part now and
best wishes,
Markus (FLIEGER67)



Next: Is there something new for the new countries?.
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6639 posts, RR: 78
Reply 11, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 20424 times:

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 9):
Amazed you are still missing the 346, how about the home team, LH to some place

Yes, an A346 flight is overdue. I almost booked a flight on the type last year (LH to YYZ), but the fare suddenly jumped up and I picked a routing via YYC (AC 763) on the way to the US West Coast. Let's see, maybe I'll get an A346 this year.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8426 posts, RR: 55
Reply 12, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 20382 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 10):
Hey, Mark,

I´ve been waiting also for that story, eagerly interested after you´re follow up mails during you´re travels.

Well done, good work and real nice to follow with that pictures, not a problem for me with that dirty windows
like you stated.

- Hi Markus, thanks for reading & nice to hear the dirty windows are not a real problem, they were causing me an issue!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 10):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Boeing 777-3DZER A7-BAE
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
1st on the -300ER.

Exactly, me too, the one and only till now, on the short ride from DXB to DOH late last year.

- Well we were equal, I've another under my belt now.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 10):
And as far as I like the A346, I prefer the Boeing product any way.

- Interesting, what is it you prefer? I prefer the Airbus machines as they are much quieter than the 777, such a noisy beast!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 11):
Let's see, maybe I'll get an A346 this year.

- Let's hope so - she is a really gracefull bird.

Regards

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333,342
User currently offlineSQ_EK_freak From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2000, 1626 posts, RR: 20
Reply 13, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 20335 times:

Quoting 757MDE (Reply 4):
Am I the only one finds that picture of the El Al and the Iran Air airplanes parked together sort of ironic?

Yes I do, and the Etihad and Emirates planes parked next to each other at adjacent gates as well  



Keep Discovering
User currently offlineContact Air From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 1154 posts, RR: 14
Reply 14, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 20311 times:

Hi Mark,

Thanks for this great report - it was interesting to read about QR's Business Class product which is obviously very good. I liked your pictures of the City of Doha which seems to be worth a visit as well.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Menu folder

Very nice - looks like in a good restaurant.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
What can I say? very nice but lacks apron/runway views, a real bummer!

Indeed not very good. At least your stop-over didn't take too much time on that day.

Regards
Christoph


User currently offlineNibog From Ireland, joined Apr 2009, 329 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 19999 times:

Hi Mark,

Thanks for a very interesting report,great work,and excellent photographs,never mind the dirt!!!!.What type of camera do you use Mark?
Looking forward to your next instalement
Thanks Nibog


User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1151 posts, RR: 5
Reply 16, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 19913 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

No I meant this one. I forgot the stairs had the glass enclosure above...I was wondering what all those black dots were, and where they suddenly appeared from     

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z287/BA319131/2010%20ASIA/P1000700.jpg


User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2919 posts, RR: 24
Reply 17, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days ago) and read 19122 times:

Hi theer,

excellent TR; The pictures were really good as well.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
I expected Qatar to have their own lounge, they have enough flights to justify one!
Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 9):
given they have, what 3 flight? per day, I expected something more from them.

QR has 4 flights a day out of LHR.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
no socks though.

Strange, they give ones in their Y class Amenity kits on their long haul flights.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
I took the Arabian Mezze as my starter which was very good

yummy!

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 12):
Airbus machines as they are much quieter than the 777, such a noisy beast!

Amen! Airbus 346 over their B777s any day (as a passenger).

Looking forward to your remaining TRs.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlineQatarA340 From Qatar, joined May 2006, 1729 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 18833 times:

First of all, as usual, I LOVED your Trip Report!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
This trip follows MrsBA319131 & I on a trip to Vietnam with brief stops in Bangkok.

QR does fly to Vietnam, I was wondering why didnt you take it direct?

You do DRINK a lot!! hehehe

The food does look very tasty both sectors. I was wondering what were the Load Factors for both flights?



لا اله الا الله محمد رسول الله
User currently offlineMH017 From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 1668 posts, RR: 31
Reply 19, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 18774 times:

Hi Mark,

Had been looking for this one some time, esp. after our brief 'exchange of notes' in Viet Nam; sorry to have missed you by a few days in Ho Chi Minh, however, I do hope you enjoyed Mui Ne...

Yes, why didn't you fly DOH-SGN i.s.o. DOH-BKK ? price ?

QR has been a longtime favorite of mine (Privilege Gold now), and your pictures and text confirm, once again, it's a great airline to fly on !!!

Thanks for sharing: looking forward to the rest of your Trippie.

Best regards,

Pieter...



don't throw away tomorrow !
User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8426 posts, RR: 55
Reply 20, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 18691 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting Contact Air (Reply 14):
Thanks for this great report - it was interesting to read about QR's Business Class product which is obviously very good

- Hi Christoph, thanks for reading & yes, it's good, not perfect though.

Quoting Contact Air (Reply 14):
. I liked your pictures of the City of Doha which seems to be worth a visit as well.

- Thanks, it does indeed seem woth a visit, some striking buildings there.

Quoting Contact Air (Reply 14):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Menu folder

Very nice - looks like in a good restaurant.

- Very much so, it pretty much sets the tone for dining onboard.

Quoting Contact Air (Reply 14):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
What can I say? very nice but lacks apron/runway views, a real bummer!

Indeed not very good. At least your stop-over didn't take too much time on that day.

- No but 5 hours on the return leg!

Quoting Nibog (Reply 15):
Thanks for a very interesting report,great work,and excellent photographs,never mind the dirt!!!!.What type of camera do you use

- Thanks, camera is a Panasonic DMC-ZS3, its got a 25mm wide angle lens, early days in it's use but seems better than my old Sony, though it's not quite a 'pocket' camera.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 16):
No I meant this one. I forgot the stairs had the glass enclosure above...I was wondering what all those black dots were, and where they suddenly appeared from

- Ha, yes, dirt on the glass  
Quoting ojas (Reply 17):
excellent TR; The pictures were really good as well.

- Thanks Ojas.

Quoting ojas (Reply 17):
Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
no socks though.

Strange, they give ones in their Y class Amenity kits on their long haul flights.

- Indeed, we did get them on some of the other sectors.

Quoting ojas (Reply 17):
Amen! Airbus 346 over their B777s any day (as a passenger).

- Yep!  
Quoting QatarA340 (Reply 18):
First of all, as usual, I LOVED your Trip Report!

- Thanks  
Quoting QatarA340 (Reply 18):
QR does fly to Vietnam, I was wondering why didnt you take it direct?

- The direct dlight was much more expensive, even though the detour to BKK inc hotel and flights with VN cost more in the end, it gave teh wife a chance to visit another country, if only for a quick visit.

Quoting QatarA340 (Reply 18):
You do DRINK a lot!! hehehe

-  
Quoting QatarA340 (Reply 18):
The food does look very tasty both sectors. I was wondering what were the Load Factors for both flights?

- All 4 J segments on QR were full, not sure about economy but Iassume they were pretty similar.

Quoting MH017 (Reply 19):
Hi Mark,

Had been looking for this one some time, esp. after our brief 'exchange of notes' in Viet Nam; sorry to have missed you by a few days in Ho Chi Minh, however, I do hope you enjoyed Mui Ne...

- Hi Pieter, thanks for reading, and yes, amazing we missed each other by a few days! - Mui Ne is fantastic, at least our hotel was.

Quoting MH017 (Reply 19):
QR has been a longtime favorite of mine (Privilege Gold now), and your pictures and text confirm, once again, it's a great airline to fly on !!!

- I agree, even the wife would be happy to fly them by herself if the need arose.

Regards

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333,342
User currently offlineFlyingFinn76 From Finland, joined Jun 2009, 1706 posts, RR: 31
Reply 21, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 18616 times:

Hi mate,

Great stuff, looks like QR hasn't lost the edge. Very impressive J class service, the food and menus look delicious. Actually reading through that and watching the photos made me hungry! Too bad I'm sitting in my kitchen right now and the call button is inoperable!


Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Sorry about the quality of some of the shots, the windows on both planes were not that clean, my new camera seems to like the dirt!

Hey, I have exactly the same problem with my new camera - it keeps on focusing on dirt, ice and water on the plane window instead of the actual scenery beyond it. Playing around with the zoom usually helps, though.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The Cathay Pacific lounge seems to be at the far end of the ‘shopping mall’, it’s down a passage, then into an elevator then down a passage before it appears to your right. Getting to the lounge feels like you are entering an none secure airside area, felt a bit tatty.

The lounge itself looks rather good. AY uses this lounge nowadays since it moved to T3, maybe I should fly them ex-LHR just to get a glimpse (and some JW Black, the good stuff  ) before my status expires.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
got books out etc. A short while later we refreshments, champagne of course, it was Lanson on tonight’s flight.

Hmm, that's quite a low end brand. I guess they reserve the more expensive stuff for F class.

Looking forward for the next parts, as always!


User currently offlinePKflyer From Pakistan, joined Apr 2008, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 18514 times:

Hi Mark.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Getting to the lounge feels like you are entering an none secure airside area, felt a bit tatty.

I have also noted that the majority of LHR does seem a bit grubby and tatty compared to other English International airports like MAN & BHX.

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 1):
It seemed a family had set up camp in the corner of our seating area, they even brought in boxes of pizza from some outlet in the terminal area, I guess there were 4 or 5 kids and all were very noisy, I noted they got the ‘look’ from other passengers, fingers crossed they won’t be on our flight!

Woah now that is truly hardcore!   If the food in the lounge was not enough to feed them then there is always an alternative of bringing pizza from across the airport eh?

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 2):
However a quick check of my watch led me to think we still had a good 40 minutes to go & the plane really had not started to descend yet.

If I can remember, EY also did this prior to landing in AUH. Maybe it is an middle-eastern concept of rushing the cabin prior to landing because PK & MS did not do this. However, I will take this into consideration when I fly QR in 2 and a half weeks time.

Much obliged for a flawless TR on the five star airline. Will be looking forward to the following legs of your journey.

Kind Regards
Arslaan



My name is Khalid and NO I am not a bloody terrorist!
User currently offlineairpearl From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 943 posts, RR: 27
Reply 23, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 18288 times:

Hi Mark, joining the chorus of voices here to say I've been waiting for this report too  

And a very nice one. Great pictures. Thanks much!! Glad to see both you and the Mrs enjoying the QR experience. As you know, I was flying the opposite direction from KUL to DOH on the same day you were headed for BKK (shame missed you at DOH), so it's especially interesting to see the flights you experienced.

It does seem that the QR you experienced was very much like what I encountered as well - which speaks well for the quality and consistency of this airline.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
my 1st 777-300ER flight

Congratulations!

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Amenity kits were already on each seat

They do look a little like a woman's purse don't you think?

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Menu folder

Interesting touch - on carriers like EY and SQ, this only happens on in F Class

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Table set up is quite an affair, crisp table linens are placed on the table then one is placed upon your lap, salt & pepper, butter etc all the placed on your table set up prior to your meal arriving, it’s a very nice set up and really has a feel of a quality restaurant in the way it’s done.

That's really quite nice. Meal times are quite an 'event' on QR, aren't they?

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
Better stowage space

I really do like this on the 77W. Simple yet practical.

Quoting ba319-131 (Thread starter):
The next instalment will be with Vietnam Airlines from BKK to HAN.

Look forward to the next chapter.  

Cheers
airpearl


User currently offline767747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1881 posts, RR: 25
Reply 24, posted (4 years 1 month 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 17949 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Mark,

Fantastic report so far! Looking forward to the next installments. I've read a few Qatar reports before, and I'm always impressed by the bread basket on the tray table as part of the set-up. Seems unique to Qatar Airways!

767747


25 Post contains images groobster : Great trip report, I look forward to your next instalment. I've a similar trip lined up in August, but I'm traveling with EK in J to Thailand, then I'
26 NZ107 : Hi Mark, Great TR with some great pictures! Looks like your new camera is paying off already. Interesting - I was also expecting a bit more from CX's
27 Post contains images Econojetter : Thank you Mark for an enjoyable report. Very nice. This allowed a side-by-side comparison of the cabin product on these two types. Overall, it seems Q
28 oa260 : Great report and nice pics. Love the food especially the Arabic Mezze. Love the Godiva chocs even more then the Molton Brown amenities, my kind of air
29 Post contains links and images Ryanair!!! : For a flight originating from LHR, they sure do have a lot of non-Western options for their main course! Nice report. Looking forward to your intra-A
30 gabrielchew : Great Report. I'm hopefully off to Asia with QR in April - my outbound flights (LHR-DOH-ICN) have been confirmed in Business, but my return (HKG-DOH-L
31 timb777 : Hi Mark, Thanks for this interesting report. I am now looking forward to the upcomings legs! Qatar seem to offer a decent J product, with the 773ER se
32 a1ring23 : Hi Mark, Good to see you back with another TR! Indeed, looks very good. The entire meal looked excellent, good portions and presentation! Top marks fo
33 MH017 : No airbridges at DOH, so all passengers are bussed to the Terminal Building(s)...
34 Post contains images ba319-131 : - Thanks p - Is the wife not home? - I'll try using the zoom next time, see if it helps, thanks. - The best bit might just bit about the place! - I'd
35 flyboy_se : Thanks for a nice report. Glad you had a nice experience. QR gives out socks in Business class. They even do in Economy class. for business class, you
36 ba319-131 : -Hi & thanks for reading. - Of the 4 lrgs with QR we only got socks on one sector, but the eyeshades and amenity kit on all 4, quite odd! Rgds Ma
37 QatarA340 : just curious, why isnt the 340 mentioned in ur line bar? If there is no space, make some! Just delete some of Boeing classics! Its a mighty fine bird
38 ba319-131 : - No space!
39 flyboy_se : very odd. I am thinking it could be manufacturing miss.
40 The777Man : Excellent report with wonderful pictures ! So I guess QR lived up to your expectations ? How do you think they compare to EK ? The777Man
41 Post contains images ba319-131 : - Thanks Lars - Indeed, quite happy and would fly them again. - Difficult to say as I've only had 1 EK J flight and that was special as it was their
42 ronerone : Mr. Mark! Excellent Trip Report my friend! .. And great pictures too ..Hope you and Mrs. BA enjoyed your time in BKK. Noticing that you paid a visit t
43 Post contains images readytotaxi : So tell me, how can you drink THAT much and still take GREAT photos? Really liked that report and YES, those meals look great, luck you.
44 Post contains images ba319-131 : - Hi Roni, thanks for reading, good to hear from you. - We sure did thanks, first time there for Mrs BA, she want's to come back and see more of Thai
45 AI151 : Another fantastic TR Mark and now that I can write a reply its even better. You're TR's in general are amazing, so well detailed and excellent picture
46 ba319-131 : - Thanks Sandeep and welcome aboard, always good when you can reply to posts - I'll keep an eye out for a QR TR by you in the future. Best Wishes Mar
47 Post contains images elevate : A fantastic read! Hi Mark, long time no speak, how you doing? Really? Wow... Think I'll need a few more positive reports before going there again! Wha
48 abrelosojos : Thanks for a great report. Your QR long-haul experience mirrors mine ... though, I had a lot poor ground experience @ DOH. On-board, everything worked
49 ba319-131 : - Thanks Sam - I know, can be annoyong. - Thanks Alex. - Yes, seems the ground staff need some work, a complete contrast to the on board service. - N
50 flpuck6 : Hi again Mark, I've read nothing but good things about Qatar Airways. The table set up is proof that a business class service can be exexcuted WITHOUT
51 ba319-131 : Hi flpuck6, Thanks for reading and dropping a line or 2. - Indeed true. - Yes, when we ate together. - Don't remember that detail. - No carts or servi
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