[Click above for the video review.]
Airline: Qatar Airways (QR)
Flight Number: QR704
Class: “QSuite” Business Class
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300ER
Delivered: March 2011
Flight Duration: 12 Hours 35 Minutes
Distance: 6,698 Miles
The last time we flew the JFK to Doha route on Qatar Airways (QR) was during the middle of the pandemic on the Airbus A350-1000XWB. Due to QR’s dispute with Airbus, they have been flying more of their Boeing 777s on longer routes like New York. We wanted to do an updated QSuite review on this route and how it compares to our previous experience with Qatar, and we are happy to report that we had an exceptional flight. The difference in the cabin and seat comfort between Qatar’s A350 and 777 in our opinion was rather minimal. The in-flight service was excellent and is now back to how it was pre-pandemic. The meals on Qatar are still scrumptious and beautifully plated onboard. Overall we had another excellent 12+ hour flight on Qatar!
What I liked:
The seats – The seats (suites) on Qatar’s 777s are nearly identical to its Airbus counterparts. One thing that’s apparent to us was the moving map and IFE remote on the 777s are from a previous generation. The QSuite cabin also felt more spacious on the A350 due to the lack of center overhead bins. Otherwise, the seat is still very comfortable, spacious and well laid out. The seat controls, IFE, storage, and power outlets are all within an easy reach. And of course the QSuite also features a door that you can close in-flight for extra privacy.
The onboard service – The onboard service from the crew working this flight was stellar. Pre-pandemic in-flight service is back, which means the meals are once again served in courses, rather than in trays. Turndown service was also offered by the crew after the meal service, for those who want to rest. The flight attendants working our aisle were quick to respond to our requests, friendly, and proactive in delivering the in-flight service.
The Food – The catering on this flight was very good. We were able to order all the items that we wanted, and they did not run out. Our glasses were also proactively refilled during the flight, and our meals on this flight were delicious and beautifully presented by the crew.
The amenities – Qatar offers excellent business class amenities. All passengers are offered a Diptyque amenity kit, and pajamas by The White Company London. A bottled water, and noise canceling headphones are available at each seat. A full-size pillow, a thick and comfortable duvet were also available at each seat, although I did notice that mattress pads were not available on this flight, and are only available for Ultra Long Haul flights. The lavatories are also very clean and fully stocked with toiletries, toothbrushes, and razors.
Personal Air Nozzles – Yes, air nozzles are available on this aircraft, so it was easy for us to get comfortable and get some sleep in-flight.
What I didn’t like:
Rude Ground Staff at JFK – QR isn’t really well known for having the best ground staff. Actually, we’ve encountered some pretty bad to incompetent, to indifferent QR ground staff in the past, but this instance takes the cake! The check-in agent that helped us at JFK was an grumpy man that had a very condescending tone from the get go. We waited for about 5 minutes in line and then he looked at us and asked Business Class? We said yes, and continued to the counter. We gave him our passports and supporting documents for the trip, expecting that our boarding passes would soon print out. Wrong! First he made a snyde comment how the fonts are too small on our documents, and it was difficult for him to read it. Then he just left the counter without explanation and went to his colleague. We waited for about 30 minutes, and then he asked my partner to go to his colleague. He didn’t explain anything. We waited another 20 minutes just to get our boarding passes. This would have been fine, if he mentioned that they were encountering some issues with the system, but he offered no explanation whatsoever and was not apologetic at all for the long wait.
It was OK…I guess:
The Lounge- We spent a good amount of time at American’s Flagship Lounge in JFK. It is a decent lounge with plenty of seating, but it does get rather crowded at times. The buffet spread offered a few hot items and the beverage selection was also very good, though nothing compared to Qatar’s Lounges in Doha.
The IFE – This plane uses the Oryx One Entertainment system and it offers a plethora of new and classic movies, TV programs, music, and games selections. The system interface is responsive and it was easy to navigate through the media content. Super WiFi service was also available for a reasonable price of USD $10 for the entire flight. However the moving map and IFE remote on this aircraft was slightly older.