We all had a tough 2020 and with much energy and hope Michael and I always said when Covid is over (and we hoped by the end of 2021 everybody had received their vaccine) we could finally travel again. The question was where, the answer a simple one: Phuket.
After our trip to Thailand in 2018 we always wanted to go back so it was a no-brainer. We concluded that we wanted to fly with QSuite on Qatar Airways as for this "Return to Flight" (as NASA would say) we didn't care how much it cost.
A simple plan but over the months Qatar Airways made their obligatory aircraft changes and with originally 3/4 flight onboard their Airbus A350 we ended up with two 777-300ER and two 787-9 flights.
Arriving at the airport about three hours prior departure we made our way to check in where we had a flawless baggage drop and a few minutes later (after filming several shots of the entry and check in area for our trip reports) we passed through a average crowded security check.
We passed several duty free shops and finally (after passing the closed Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge) entered Lufthansas Senator First Class Lounge in Terminal 1B.
Oh boy... what to say. It was way to crowded as many passengers who normally would stay in other lounges had to use this one because there are still many lounges closed due to Covid.
The soft-drink dispenser was inop, the beer half warm and there were served only two mediocre tasting meals. At least we got two window seats with a great view over the apron and simply waited for our boarding time to arrive.
With boarding just a few minutes away we walked to the nearby gate where we saw our aircraft for the first time. A Boeing 777-300ER, Reg. A7-BER which was delivered to Qatar Airways on May 17th 2018.
I was the first passenger to board this magnificent aircraft and was greeted kindly at door 1L. Then I walked through this multi award winning business class. I had soft knees as I reached my seat...or suite 10A. So much space, such a large screen and seat. I was simply overwhelmed.
I took several pictures and videos before I made myself comfortable and was greeted by Ling, my flight attendent for the trip. She showed me the functions of the seat as well as the many storage possibilities and after she brought me some Rosé Champagne I ordered my meal. As a starter the "Signature Arabic Mezze", for main the "Duck confit with jus" and as dessert I ordered "Tiramisu".
For my wine pairings I asked the flight attendant who was kindly enough to recommend a few.
In no time we completed boarding and as I visited Michael at his suite to clink glasses and celebrate with another glass of Champagne we pushed back from the gate. I had the feeling of being in a nice hotel rather than flying. We took off on runway 18 to fly over Egelsbach and continue south-east heading Austria where the sun already began to set.
I studied the enormous amount of amenities you get in QSuite. First a pillow and a massive blanket, two menus (one being the wine menu), a "travel with confidence" kit containing a surgical mask, gloves and some hand sanitizer and finally the amenity kit by Brics which held a sleep mask, socks, ear plugs, hydrating facial spray, lip balm as well as some cream. I was handed some pajamas and slippers before they started the main service.
My Arabic Mezze arrived with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc from Chile. It was so delicious and gone in no time. Then I was served the duck along with a Château Batailley from France. Like my starter it was an absolute taste explosion.
With my tiramisu I ordered a South African Nederburg desert-wine (a bit too sweet for my taste).
In conclusion Qatar's meal service is outstanding although because of the current Covid safety regulations the LED candle as well as a few other things were missed.
Nonetheless it was an outstanding experience. A definite 5 star meal service.
When pressing the crew-call button, a flight attendant comes by in no time to give you extra champagne, coffee, tea or other amenities.
Before landing you get a small box of belgium chocolates which again were absolutely fabulous.
After my meal I relaxed a bit and scrolled through my Oryx One Inflight-Entertainment. There are dozens of movies, documentaries, TV-series to watch, as well as music to listen; all current blockbusters, bollywood and arabic films. With your controller you can easily access the big screen without getting up.
I have to admit that only on my return flight I really used my IFE because on this flight these 6 hours passed by in no time (which is a great sign)
When traveling with company you can book 2 (or more) middle seats where the crw will lower the privacy walls so you can enjoy the trip with your friends or family.
Of course the crew will prepare a bed for you as well when asking them.
Although Covid had it's influence the biggest inconvenience was definitely the lounge. The meal service, the seat, as well as all the details were absolutely perfect.
The price I paid (around 1.800 EUR) was definitely worth it, I havent't traveled this comfortably in my life. With the FIFA world cup in late 2022 Qatar regrettably increased their prices considerably so most certainly there will be no big deals in 2022.