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Qantas from Singapore to Australia: 787-9 Premium Economy & A380 Business Class

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  • #76
    Great ambience in the main A380 J cabin...

    Bathrooms for J pax in between the front mini J cabin and the main J cabin, as well as at the rear of the J cabin.

    The view from seat 17A...


    • #77
      The tray table flips out from the side console...

      A large and stable surface...

      While awaiting meal service, I browsed the IFE. There was an IFE controller under a flap on the side console, but I never used it, as everything could be controlled by the touchscreen.

      The IFE selection was quite comprehensive.

      New movies...


      Lots of music...

      The one thing that was missing was wifi, which was quite a big omission, since most airlines offer this on long haul flights these days, but Qantas has indicated that it plans to rollout out international wifi on long haul aircraft in 2024 and beyond...


      • #78
        Rather than nuts, Qantas serves a hot Arancini (Breaded and fried risotto ball) as a snack. I found this to be really good. I had this along with their aperitivo, a very delicious margarita cocktail. What a nice way to start meal service...

        Next, a glass of Chardonnay to accompany my starter...

        Bread from the basket...

        Small bowl of side salad...

        For my starter, I chose the carrot and thyme soup...

        So far so good...

        For my main, I chose the steak, accompanied by a glass of red wine...

        Steaks on flights tend to be hit-or-miss, whatever class of service one was on. Today was more of a miss...

        While the flavour of the steak was ok. It was just too cooked and a tad dry...

        So this was quite an underwhelming onboard steak, which reaffirmed the fact that ordering an inflight steak was like a lottery, sometimes you got lucky, sometimes you didn't (Whichever airline or class of service you were on). For an example of an inflight steak done right, check out what SQ served me on a recent MEL-SIN business class sector here.

        On this particular QF flight, the Asian-style pork selection with rice looked much more appetising...

        After that, I asked for the cheese platter, and the mango mousse dessert...

        Surprisingly, the cabin crew member serving me indicated (politely) that I would have to choose one or the other i.e. either cheese or dessert, as there may not be enough for all pax. Interesting.

        Another cabin crew member next to her, probably someone with more experience, indicated to her it should be ok for me to have both, but at that point I just said "it's ok, you can serve everyone else first, and if there's any left at the end, please give me one".

        The initial cabin crew member must have been fairly new, because from a customer service perspective, some customers in J would not take to kindly to a "no" for this type of request! And on SQ, if you asked, the cabin crew would certainly have given you both the cheese platter and the dessert, and whatever else you wanted from the dessert trolley...

        In any case case, a few minutes later, a mango mousse was brought to my seat...

        That was the only blemish to what I thought was very good cabin service from the cabin crew.
        Last edited by yflyer; 13 November 2023, 02:24 PM.


        • #79
          One of the things I like to do is spot landmarks from the air. I've seen some incredible sights from a window seat. On this A380, the best J seats for this would be the odd numbered seats 11,13 15A/K in the front mini J cabin, and the even numbered seats, 16 A/K, 18 A/K etc in the main J cabin, with the window seats closer to the wondow. My seat was 17A, with the console in between my seat and the window.

          For SYD-SIN or MEL-SIN flights, I am always hoping for a routing where I could see Uluru / Ayers Rock, but on this flight it was not to be.

          We passed quite far from Uluru on this flight.

          After meal service, it was time to rest.

          Thick mattress toppers were provided for each seat. I reclined the seat to bed mode, placed the mattress topper on top, and lay down. This was a very comfortable sleeping surface!

          Last edited by yflyer; 13 November 2023, 02:24 PM.


          • #80
            Before taking a nap, I took a stroll around the upper deck...

            I headed past the rear of the J cabin, through the curtain to PEY.

            I was hoping to head down the rear stairs to check out the Y cabin downstairs, but alas the rear stairs were gated shut...

            Last edited by yflyer; 23 October 2023, 05:05 PM.


            • #81
              I turned around and headed back to the J cabin, moving forwards past the mini J cabin in front...

     the small lounge at the front of the upper deck...

              This is a cozy space for J class pax, that had been redesigned from the previous iteration of the 1st gen A380 cabin, where the lounge was just a single sofa on one side of the cabin. (A pic of the 1st gen QF A380 onboard lounge can be found here).

              In the new layout, there were seats on both sides of the stairs, and rather than a single horizontal bench, the seats were L shaped or facing each other, which would make it much easier for conversation and interaction. between pax.

              The cabin crew were also quite happy to serve you drinks and snacks in this lounge area...

              I found this lounge area to be a very comfortable space to spend a bit of time during the flight...

              On longer sectors, such as SIN-LHR, I could imagine myself spending a lot of time lounging here.

              I savoured gin & tonic in the lounge area before returning to my seat...

              Last edited by yflyer; 23 October 2023, 04:40 PM.


              • #82

                With 3 hours more to go, we were now over the Timor sea, flying towards the islands of Indonesia...

                At that point, I was so tired that I turned on the do-not-disturb button and went to sleep...

                I slept right through the hot refreshment service...

                By the time I woke up, we were making our final approach into Singapore...

                Landing on Runway 20R....

                On the ground in Singapore, landing at 9.11pm, 20 minutes ahead of schedule.

                It was great to be home!

                Overall, I thought this was a very good flight. QF's new refreshed cabin J cabin product is quite excellent, and a dramatic improvement from the Qantas 1st gen A380 cabin.

                The seats were very comfortable for lounging as well as sleeping, and offered good privacy, not to mention aisle access for all pax. Catering was very good as well (Too bad my steak was overcooked, but that's something notoriously hard to get right). Cabin service was generally very good as well, with the cabin crew taking particularly good care Qantas frequent flyers, especially Platinum.

                Things that stood out for me included the mini lounge in front of the J cabin, and the quality of the bedding (pillow and mattress topper). The only negative was the lack of wifi at this time, although wifi is planned in future.

                Compared to SQ J, I believe with the refreshed QF A380 cabin, SQ has a serious competitor on their hands for the Kangaroo route. I would say in terms of hard product, in my opinion, the QF A380 seat is on par with, and perhaps even slightly preferable to the SQ A380 Monocoque business class seat. On the catering front, I would say SQ might still have a slight edge in terms of variety of dishes and the availability of Book the Cook (BTC) options, but the gap isn't really significant. As for cabin service, SQ is stll clearly the leader here, although QF service was fine as well.
                Last edited by yflyer; 23 October 2023, 04:38 PM.


                • #83
                  Final reflections...

                  2 weeks was a really long time to be away, but I had a great trip, and apart from work, saw and did a lot. I spent most of my time in Melbourne and Sydney. These are both such wonderful cities to visit, with so much to eat, drink and do. With it's new tram running down George St, Sydney felt quite different from what it was previously, but there's no doubt that the tram has made the city more pedestrian and tourist friendly.

                  I really enjoyed flying QF on this trip. My longer sectors, SIN-MEL and SYD-SIN were both great. The QF experience on domestics sectors was very good too. It definitely helped that I had lounge access on all my flights. As far as cabin products are concerned, I was very impressed with QF's new A380 J, and completely blown away by QF's Premum Economy -- the best PEY product I have ever flown by some margin.

                  As for hotels, if I was a Hilton person, I would definitely stay at the DoubleTree Hilton at Flinders Street in Melbourne again because of it's excellent location, and I really liked the West Hotel in Sydney as well.

                  I will likely be making another trip to Australia some time in the next few months. It's going to be a very tough decision whether to fly QF or SQ!

                  Thanks for reading!


                  • #84
                    Thanks for sharing, yflyer!
                    Love traveling through your TRs.
                    Qantas new-design A380 interiors look very nice. Especially the common lounge area.


                    • #85
                      Originally posted by StarG View Post
                      Thanks for sharing, yflyer!
                      Love traveling through your TRs.
                      Thank you for reading, StarG! Am sure you are travelling a lot again these days too!

                      Originally posted by StarG View Post
                      Qantas new-design A380 interiors look very nice. Especially the common lounge area.
                      I was very impressed with the new QF A380 upper deck lounge area! It is double the size of their previous 1st gen lounge, which was only on the riight side of the staircase, not the full cabin width.

                      On long flights, I would definitely want to head there for at least a while, to stretch my legs and have a drink or a snack.


                      • #86
                        I am based in Melbourne. If you are ever in Melbourne again, I would be happy to meet.

                        Qantas premium economy looks good. Would love to try that on future MEL-SIN trips, just that I don't like the timings from MEL. From SIN is still okay.

                        I tried the J product on a Sydney-Melbourne flight last year. Was really good. I still think one of the best J products out there would be ANA newest J product.

                        Unfortunately Qantas' reputation is now trashed in Australia. I think SQ 228 can attest to that.


                        • #87
                          Originally posted by zilchster View Post
                          I am based in Melbourne. If you are ever in Melbourne again, I would be happy to meet.
                          Wow quite a number of SQTalkers based in Melbourne! Kyo, SQ228, SQ218 too! Yes, let's see if we can organise another meet up there!

                          Originally posted by zilchster View Post
                          Qantas premium economy looks good.
                          Their PEY is the best I have flown (I've tried SQ, BA, LH and NH PEY). I find QF PEY to be much better than SQ PEY, mainly because of the difference in catering concept. QF catering is business-like. SQ's is like Y catering. And ANA rubs salt into the wound by serving you PEY sake, wine and cocktails in paper cups.

                          Originally posted by zilchster View Post
                          I still think one of the best J products out there would be ANA newest J product.
                          Yes, that looks very impressive! Although I also realize it is very difficult to assess J products just based on pics and reviews. Some seats which look ok in pics are actually a bit cramped when seated, whereas others which don't look so spacious are actually quite comfortable once you sit in them. But then I have very limited experience flying J compared to many folks here.


                          • #88
                            QF has bad PR in the press here in Australia but their PEY is good.


                            • #89
                              Originally posted by BigVicDT View Post
                              QF has bad PR in the press here in Australia but their PEY is good.
                              Yes, lots of bad press recently. Hope they get through this rough patch, and also hope staff morale isn't too badly affected.