Qantas are currently offering a pretty normal on board service on Australian domestic flights. I redeemed British Airways Avios for the flight in business class from Adelaide to Sydney, which is always good value.
My original flight departed at 6am as it was the only service with frequent flyer seats available. That was cancelled and I was moved to the more reasonable 9:55am departure. Arriving at the airport around 8am, I breezed through a virtually empty security screening area and had breakfast in the Qantas Club.
Near flight time, I headed to Gate 24 to wait for boarding to commence. Signage at the gate advised about the amended boarding process due to the pandemic. Soon, a 15 minute delay was announced by the gate agent.
At the end of that period, another announcement advised the flight had been cancelled and that everyone was moving to the later service at 11:25, a delay of an hour and a half. People were asked to collect new boarding passes at the gate. Once I had mine, I went back to the lounge.
QF738 – Adelaide to Sydney (ADL-SYD)
31 December 2020
Boeing 737-838 – VH-VZY – Temora
Seat: Business Class 2A
Departure: 11:25 Arrival: 13:25
Eventually I headed to Gate 23, where those needing assistance were asked to board, followed by business class passengers. A computer delay held up boarding for a couple of minutes, and before long I was heading down the aerobridge and onto the plane.
Qantas Business Class Cabin
Business class on the Boeing 737 consists of three rows of four. All seats feature entertainment screens, though no content is available at present due to the pandemic.
WiFi is available on domestic Qantas services in Australia and it is free for all passengers. It is also quite fast, so it is great to use while flying. Cabin comfort is good in business class and economy class people are advised to use the rear two toilets.
Safety On Board
Once people were on board, we were delayed as there was some trouble with a passenger. Eventually that person was prohibited from flying, judging by the screams of anguish coming from the jetway. We were further delayed as their luggage had to be offloaded.
Qantas celebrated 100 years in 2020 (poor Qantas!) and they put together a safety video focussing on their history. This is actually worth watching, though it is long. At the same time, the cabin crew do the demonstration along with it.
Due to the delays, we were advised we could use the free wireless Internet on the ground. A video played to tell people how to access it, which helped pass the time.
Two seats remained free in business class, with a child behind me kicking my seat. Pleasingly, the kids Mum put a stop to that and soon enough we headed to the runway. Adelaide is not particularly busy, so we headed into the air pretty swiftly.
A Qantas Business Class Lunch
Since it was New Years Eve, the Qantas crew elected to do a drinks service before the meal as a treat. I ordered the sparkling wine, which is an Australian brand, Grant Burge. When I last flew Qantas domestic business class in 2017, I mentioned it was “pretty bad”. This time I found it to be okay.
Once the cabin had their drinks, the trolley came out and the lead crew member began service. On offer was a healthy option of some kind of warm vegetable salad, or the unhealthy option of a quiche and a pie. After some banter with the crew, I received my unhealthy option.
The passenger beside me was a bit snappy with the crew for no reason whatsoever. Some people are just moody! My meal was very good and I had no complaints. I noticed when the crew were clearing in, they asked if people wanted their chocolate and at least two said no.
Onwards To Sydney
A second piccolo of the Grant Burge arrived and I put the inflight map on and watched our progress while enjoying the view. Eventually it was toilet time. Passing the galley, I was asked if I wanted another sparkling wine to which I replied, “That would be great, thank you!”
After using the facilities, my third piccolo was delivered. By now we were descending and I finished my glass at 10 minutes to landing. We landed in Sydney about an hour late, which ruined some people’s connections, judging by comments at baggage claim. My bag arrived swiftly and I was into a Taxi and at my parents place within half an hour.
The outstanding service from the crew, especially the lead Flight Attendant, really made the flight. The Qantas domestic meals in business class are on the stingy side, especially when you consider a business class ticket from Adelaide to Sydney starts at A$760 (€479/£429/US$584). For that price I would expect something more substantial, like a proper dessert and a salad starter perhaps.
That being said, free fast WiFi is an excellent perk, along with the large seats and (usually) onboard entertainment. Due to internal border restrictions and low passenger numbers, I knew my flight from Adelaide would likely be consolidated with the later service, so even that was no surprise to me. Overall, Qantas domestic business class is very good and oneworld frequent flyers are not disappointed.
What do you think of Qantas domestic business class? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
Like planes? See my “Does anyone remember” series.
Flight reviews your thing? Mine are all indexed here.
Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Not a flattering review for Qantas, considering the repeated cancellations and delays. And, why in the world does a pandemic preclude there being content on the IFE? There’s no answer I can come up with aside from this being a financial decision using Covid as a shield to hide behind.
All in all, Qantas looks cheap and unreliable based on an experience such as this.
You are correct, it would likely be a financial decision not to pay for it, since the entire international network is suspended and domestic is not running anywhere near full capacity. I’m sure it will all return in time. Thanks for the comment!