Qantas 737 Business Class Guide

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If you’re flying across the ditch with Qantas you’ll most likely be on their narrow-body, Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

Flying to/from Auckland? you may be on the larger widebody A330. If you have the option, I strongly suggest you choose a flight operated by this aircraft!

Baggage Allowance:

For those Kiwis going to Melbourne for an extravagant shopping spree you’ll appreciate the increased baggage allowance for business class passengers! 😉

 Some Qantas Frequent Flyer and Qantas Club members are entitled to an additional non ticketed checked baggage allowance when booked with either a QF or EK flight number on your ticket.

·        Business class passengers are entitled to 40kg.

·        Qantas Club members and Silver Qantas Frequent Flyers are entitled to 52kg

·        Gold Qantas Frequent Flyers 56kg

·        Platinum and Platinum One Qantas Frequent Flyers get 60kg!

There is no restriction on the number of pieces within the weight allowance for international travel. Just remember no single piece can exceed 32kg!  

Checking-in

You’ll find a dedicated premium check-in lane/counter at on both sides of the Tasman.

Generally check-in has always been efficient with next to no waiting. This means more time to sip on bubbly in the lounge!

Lounge

You get to start your journey in the comfort of the International Business Lounge, found in key Qantas destinations around the world. With fresh, delicious dining options, shower facilities, private work areas, it’s the only way to travel.

The lounge experience will vary depending on the port of departure so we won’t go into too much detail here.

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Priority Boarding:

If boarding the aircraft and getting to your seat before everyone else is an absolute must, then you’ll probably find yourself a little disappointed. Qantas has a large number of Gold and Platinum frequent flyers travelling in Economy entitled to priority boarding. So, don’t expect to be the first one to walk down the red-carpet onto the plane.    

On my recent flight from Melbourne to Christchurch in Business, the wait time at the boarding gate was less than one minute.

The seat!

You’ll find 12 seats in a 2-2 layout across three rows. Unfortunately, there is no direct aisle access for those by the window, however the seat is superior to those in the 3-3 layout in economy.

Qantas offer wide leather seats with an extendable leg rest, ergonomic design and comfortable recline. They are not lie-flat, however.

These seats have 22 inches of width and 37 inches of pitch (distance from seat back to seat back).

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Row 1: Whilst at the very front of the cabin, the bulkhead will reduce your legroom. Since there’s no seat to put your personal items under, during taxi, take-off and landing your personal items must be put in the overhead locker and your inflight entertainment unit must also be stowed. I’ve noticed that the crew reserve the overhead locker space in row 1 for emergency equipment, so you may have to share with those I row 2 and 3.

Other benefits of row 1 include being served meals first and not having the seat in front of you recline into your personal space.

 Credit: Travellingotter https://www.flickr.com/photos/travelingotter/15049609227

Credit: Travellingotter https://www.flickr.com/photos/travelingotter/15049609227

Row 2: These seats are our top pick! On flights with the seatback entertainment unit, you’ll enjoy uninterrupted inflight entertainment from gate to gate and under-seat storage. Meals will still be served in a timely fashion and you’ve still got a high chance of getting your preferred meal choice.

Row 3: Whilst still a great seat, economy class is directly behind you and on a full flight you might fight for overhead locker space with those in row 4, minimising your storage space.  

You will be the last to be served meals, reducing your eat time, this is worth considering on shorter flights or if you eat at sloths’ pace like me 😉

Each seat has back comfort controls, as well as adjustable leg and foot rests. On newer aircraft you’ll also find USB and AC power outlets.

Meals

Once seated in your comfy leather seat, a pre-departure drink/s will be served. In business class – this is usually a champagne, still water, sparking water or juice

Shortly after take-off, the magic begins! The full drink and meal service commences.

Typically, you’re offered a selection of starters and main dishes, and a small dessert.

I personally feel the quality of the food and the servings are great for the short hop across the Tasman.  The overall offering is very competitive, and I feel it easily beats rivals across the Tasman.



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Entertainment

Across the Tasman you’ll find the 10.6-inch video on demand screen. Roughly half of the Qantas domestic 737 fleet now stream video to personal devices.

Generally, we’ve found the selection tends to be pretty good, with a good variety of films, TV shows and music.

Roundup:

While the Qantas 737 product does lack the wow factor that the lager A330 has on selected routes from Auckland, the offering is a considerable step-up from Economy.

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The seats are very comfortable, despite some drawbacks being no direct aisle access for those at the window, restricted space if the person in front reclines, and no lie-flat option for sleeping (Not really an issue for Trans-Tasman flights as flights are less than 4 hours)

I personally find Qantas crew providing exceptional customer service, consistently,  even in economy!  

Overall, I find Qantas 737 business class to be a pleasant way to fly on shorter routes. If you can afford to splurge or have lots of points you wish to redeem I wouldn’t hesitate recommending this product.

However, if you have limited points or money then I’d recommend foregoing the 737 for the superior experience on their larger A330 aircraft to/from Auckland.