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I usually dread flying in economy class, because my mind conjures up images of being squashed in among people, with screaming babies all around ruining my day. On top of that, flight attendants throwing food and sneering at you, the food being awful and basically having a horrible experience all round.
Happily this isn't the case when flying down the back on Qatar Airways. It's quite the opposite, in fact, as you'll see in this review. I've friends in Qatar, so I decided to visit them just before Christmas and the direct flight is the only way to go.
My day started out with the 757 bus from Charlotte Way, a fast and convenient way to the airport. Since it was around 5:30am, I was assured a speedy journey with no traffic. Once at the airport, I queued at the business class counter for a few minutes before heading off through fast-track security. Dublin Airport have taken over the former Etihad Airways lounge at Dublin and reopened it as the East Lounge. It is situated next door to the Aer Lingus lounge between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Initially I went to the normal lounge, before being advised Qatar Airways had moved to the new one.
This lounge is used by airlines that fly long-haul flights to the east, which means Qatar Airways, Etihad and Emirates among others. The facility is a step up over the other lounge on offer from the airport authority. Of course, transatlantic passengers flying west go through US Pre-clearance and then use the excellent 51st and Green lounge. Soon enough it was time to board my flight.QR20 – Dublin to Doha (DUB-DOH)
21 December 2019
Boeing 787-8 – A7-BCL
Seat: Economy Class 12A
Departure: 07:35 Arrival: 17:45
As one of the first on board thanks to my oneworld Sapphire status, I had a chance to get some pictures before most people arrived. Mood lighting is fitted to the Dreamliner and throughout boarding it was rotating through all the colours. At various times it was white light, blue, orange and more. It made for some rather strange pictures!
It is nice to see that economy class passengers on the Qatar Airways Boeing 787 get an amenity kit. This means you can whack on an eye mask, pop in some ear buds and leave the world behind. Once everyone took their seats, it was time to go. Having flown business class on Qatar Airways, I am used to receiving a hot towel to clean off the airport once on board. I really like the fact Qatar offer one for those down the back. Sure, it’s less salubrious but I’m not complaining!https://travelupdate.com/wp-content/upl ... -Towel.jpg
The passengers in front of me decided they were going to recline their seats and while that made me have less space, what are you going to do? Spending time looking out the window and deciding what to have for breakfast is far more productive than worrying about that.
Eating on board a flight is one of my favourite things to do. It passes the time quite nicely, plus I get to sometimes try food that I would never get to otherwise. On this flight, I chose to have the Leek and Onion Soufflé. Everyone has the same starters, which was a yoghurt with fruit compote and fresh fruit.
Quisine dining promised to increase the portions by 25 to 50 per cent and it certainly works. It is lovely to see food that is good quality. Also, there’s plenty of it, which suits me just fine. I’m happy to report it tasted as good as it looks, so that was a total win for me and I ate every morsel.
Cabin crew are quite good at remembering your orders. I asked for a green tea and it came along later on while I was watching Thelma & Louise on the Oryx One entertainment system. A word of warning about the Qatar Airways system. Movies are censored to within an inch of their life. Even words like “ass” are blanked out so you can’t hear them. Naturally it ruins a movie like the one I was watching, but I’d seen it before.
That is a relatively minor quibble as the entertainment system otherwise has a good selection to choose from. I guess the censorship means that you can let your children watch anything they like and they won’t get a potty mouth from it! Not too long before landing, the crew come around for a final service. This is a snack and I remember being very enamoured with these on my other flights with Qatar Airways. Things have changed to pies, with two versions offered. I chose the vegetarian one, Butternut Squash, Red Onion and Goats Cheese.
Quite frankly, they were just okay. The previous offering popped with taste, while these are more bland, I thought. It didn’t matter, they weren’t bad, they just didn’t wow me. My pineapple juice was more exciting taste wise, but I can’t complain. Once that was cleared up, we descended and landed into Doha on time.
There’s a certain satisfaction knowing that airlines exist where economy class passengers are treated well. Flying down the back on a Qatar Airways Boeing 787 is certainly a comfortable experience. Qatar’s business class is usually rated the world’s best, and it’s nice to see some of that slick ethos transferring down the back. This is not limited to the seats, either. The relatively new Quisine dining in economy class coupled with the fact cabin crew treat you as guests rather than pests, all adds up to a very humane journey.
Have you flown Qatar Airways economy class before? What do you think of it? Thank you for reading - remember, for all the images that go with this report, please click here
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