Qatar Airways A330 Business Class In 10 Pictures

Filed Under: Qatar, Travel

Update: Read my full Qatar Airways First Class A330 Cairo to Doha review.

Hello from Doha! After flying from Los Angeles to Hong Kong on American, and from Hong Kong to Ho Chi Minh City on Cathay Pacific, we connected to Doha in Qatar Airways business class (as one does).

I’ve long argued that Qatar Airways has the world’s best business class product, and this flight only reinforced that, despite the fact that this flight had Qatar’s worst longhaul business class hard product.

The A330 has a total of 30 business class seats, spread across five rows in a 2-2-2 configuration. Qatar has B/E Aerospace Diamond seats on the A330, which are fully flat, though definitely on the narrow side. It’s the same product they have on the A340, which I flew last year between Doha and Colombo. Keep in mind that Qatar’s 777s, 787s, A350s, and A380s all have better seats than this.

As usual, the highlight of flying with Qatar was the soft product. To me Qatar’s business class service feels a lot more like first class.

When you board you’re escorted to your seat, each crew member taking care of you comes by and introduces themselves, you’re offered your choice of pre-departure beverage and hot or cold towel, etc.

Even though this was a sub-eight hour flight departing at 7PM and arriving around midnight, we were offered pajamas, slippers, and amenity kits. There aren’t many airlines that offer pajamas in business class, let alone on such short flights.

While Qatar doesn’t have the world’s best bedding, the pillow was plush and blanket was soft without being too warm.

And then there’s the food, which is the real highlight. The meal service is fully customized, and starts with an amuse bouche.

Qatar has great soups, and this creamy tomato soup with basil was no exception.

They also have a great Arabic mezze.

For the main course I had a pan-fried chicken fillet with tomato, basil, and mozzarella cheese.

For dessert there was an incredible chocolate ginger tart. While I avoid them as much as I can, the desserts on Qatar are consistently to die for.

In addition to offering both a white and rose champagne, they have great non-alcoholic beverages, ranging from cappuccinos and chai lattes to a lime mint juice.

Service was every bit as good as the rest of the soft product. We were being taken care of by a lovely lady from South Korea and an awesome guy from Kenya, and they couldn’t have been more hospitable, attentive, and charming.

I really need to fly Qatar Airways’ Qsuites already, because when you combine this amazing soft product with that hard product, it’s by far the world’s best business class.

Comments
  1. Agreed! QR really takes care of you in J, super friendly and professional service, pajamas and slippers, fantastic meals. My only quibble is the censored IFE on some sectors.

  2. @Lucky — I’ve seen you write something like this a few times so just a quick correction. “Brut” Champagne just means the Champagne is dry, i.e. it has fewer than 12 grams per liter of residual sugar after bottle fermentation. Rose Champagne is also often brut. So in this case you mean they offer both Blanc (white) and Rose (pink) Champagne. 🙂

  3. And to add on to what I wrote above, Blanc Champagne and Blanc de Blancs are different things; the latter is one type of the former. There are several grapes allowed to be used in the production of Champagne, some white and some red grapes. Blanc de Blancs Champagnes are produced using entirely white grapes, usually Chardonnay, sometimes Pinot Blanc. Likewise for Blanc de Noirs Champagne, which is usually made entirely from Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier grapes.

  4. Have anybody heard anything about the others ME countries lifting the embargo on Qatar? I thought this would end up quickly, but the embargo really complicates the miles games on the ME, as you can´t combine award space on Qatar, Etihad and Emirates. This makes going to MLE and SEZ a bit more difficult.
    I was also looking forward to flying Qatar´s new route GIG-DOH, which was announced for next January, but this seems likely to be delayed.

  5. We just flew back home from doha to Montreal and their services both business and Economy were exceptional. We experienced both. They have amazing customer service and treated everyone with respect.

  6. Naw, B777 with the old C is without discussion far worse than these seats on the A330. So unless you get QSuites, good luck on those seats.

  7. Mmmm, i d rate A330 and old 777 equally, 777 feels more spacious while A330 is denser, but more modern design.
    Btw, i ll be lucky to fly qsuite for the first time next week

  8. Hey this is definitely not the worst J seat. Not by far. I flew between Doha and Budapest in both directions just a month ago. One of them was the A330 in this post and the other was the old recliner seats. Man those seats are NOT what you’d expect from Qatar. I’ve flown all of their products this year (777, A330, 787, A380…) except for the new Qsuites and had flatbed seats on all of them. I was not expecting a recliner seat on this flight. The soft products was amazing as you’d expect and some times I want to fly with them only for the hummus they offer on board and at the lounge…

  9. @Ben you were in Ho Chi Minh City. Why didn’t you fly Vietnam Airlines? You’ve already flown Qatar a thousand times.

  10. I love Qatar. Every flight has been delightful. You used to refer in every Qatar review you wrote you finding their F/As to be “cold”, so I was very pleased for you that:

    “We were being taken care of by a lovely lady from South Korea and an awesome guy from Kenya, and they couldn’t have been more hospitable, attentive, and charming.”

    That’s actually *always* been my experience on Qatar.

  11. The old 777 J is awesome if the seat next to you is empty (so you can let them make the bed there).

    Had this on the DOH-AKL flight, and almost felt like flying F, with seat and bed next to each other + the excellent soft product!

  12. I agree with the mice paul. If I fly business class, I’ll always go for Qatar or Aer Lingus. Better than many first class options

  13. @Brooklynboy – your information may be accurate, but is it really relevant to point out on this occasion?

    Just enjoy the post and happy/safe travels 🙂

  14. I’m disappointed (as a fan) to have missed you in Doha by a day!

    Staff in the Al Mourjan lounge recognized you and told me about you I think 😉

  15. Ten months ago flew ATL-DOH on the 777-200LR. The seats, while far from cutting edge, were spacious and very comfortable. Unfortunately, on the next leg the a350 was replaced by an a330-300 where I was seated in row 1 against the bulkhead. It sucked. The seat is too narrow and the leg room too small to let me sleep on the 7+ hour flight. I enjoyed the meal, the service and the IFE but would have gladly forgone that for the seat on the a350.

  16. @Lucky

    Have you ever thought how much MSG airline/lounge soups potentially contain? Do you know if QR uses MSG?

  17. @Lins,

    Personally I appreciated the correction/update. On the ground I generally am a Veuve or Laurent Perrier guy and only try other champagnes when airborne…just not a lot of real need or opportunity to drink champagne in day to day life. Ben does a lot of his champagne drinking in the sky, so he might not get the nuances of the champagne industry as if he were doing tasting on the ground. However, since he’s writing a blog in which he judges airlines based on a number of factors, to heavily include the type and variety of champagne served, it can’t hurt to know a little bit more about it so he can make an accurate and fare comparison about products on which he’s knowledgable. Ben’s super savvy about nearly everything he writes – which is why we’re all reading this – but if you’re gonna knock one airline because of some carbonated swill, it doesn’t hurt to be able to back that up with knowledge.

    Keep up the good work, Ben?

  18. I still do not understand this love affair with Qatar.

    Flew CPT-DOH-LAX and the beverages served on board were in the $10 – $30 price range and tasted like it. Highlight red was “Jump the Stump” Australian Shiraz. The Charles Heidsieck Rose, however, saved the ‘day’ (16 hours). The menu on demand was limited to the extreme and on our flights did not have anything edible. It was almost impossible to get service at a time when meals were not being served to others as the flight crew were hard to find (they did not answer the call button). As opposed to the EK flights in the outbound journey which excelled in the menu though served without the extra personal touches (on demand, amuse bouche etc).

    Hard product is good – but not good enough.

    I guess the choice is either a decent meal and good beverage selection or the frills offered by Qatar. I choose quality over frills so Qatar is nothing special to me. Back to Cathay and will try EVA as well and may write again.

  19. I flew both the new QSuites J and their current 787 J (and the old 777 J) recently and agree QSuites J is easily the best J I’ve ever flown. EY 787 would be second

  20. Just flown SYD – MAN return in economy, having flown just about every route from Australia to UK Qatar is without exception the best. In the flight into MAN the crew asked myself and young family to go to the galley at the rear where the entire crew presented us with a fruit and chocolate platter and fresh smoothies – what an beautiful touch. Need I say more about the service ? – and we were down the back !

  21. They gave you PJs??? That is some BS!! Flew CDG > DOH in FIRST last month (evening flight, arrived around midnight as well) and they didn’t offer PJs, even when I asked; I managed to acquire some in the Al Safwa lounge for my layover, but even then they only had the dark grey. I wanted the light grey, like you have in the photo above, but they acted like no such thing exists. Very inconsistent on that front.

    Other than that minor annoyance though, my flights and ground services were outstanding! Terrific, warm service, great food, and an all-around beautifully-designed offering. Just give me my damn pajamas!! Hahaha

  22. Qatar FAs were generally “cold”, but on my last trip (April) they were friendly. Anecdotal, but maybe there has been a change.

    The food shown in this post looks much better than what I got on transatlantic in April. In particular, the meze actually looks appetizing in the photo.

  23. Does anybody know if all their A330 are full flat now? About 11 months ago I still had the angledd flat product from TXL to DOH. (Which was ok on the daytime flight, but would have been less impressed on a redeye …)

  24. We flew this configuration Doha to Windhoek, a route that debuted with a 787 but is now an A330. The best seats, since the seat well is larger are the pair in the middle, row 1. Coming back the A330 was configured with angled flats 2-2-2 which were not as comfortable. No slippers going or coming on this 9 /10 hr route but everything else was superb.

  25. Ben, I love so much all you do day in and day out! You are a rock star and seem to have boundless energy. 🙂

    @Lins, it’s true that my point was not central to the post, I just wanted to offer it since I know Ben loves his Champagne haha! And I’m glad others appreciated it as well.

  26. Ben, I was on the return flight you took from DOH-SGN to complete your trip, but unfortunately wasn’t able to say hello. In any case, one thing that I think that is often overlooked about this particular A333 product is that the IFE screens are by far the most superior that I have seen in J on Qatar (having flown every J product except for Qsuites and A380). I think these might be the only High Definition widescreens in J on QR and am quite surprised that the A350 or B787 don’t have this caliber of video quality. Hope to catch you again on another flight…

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