Qatar Airways A380 First Class Award Space

Qatar Airways first revealed their A380 schedule back in late April, when they announced that they’d inaugurate A380 service between Doha and London Heathrow as of June 17, 2014.

As soon as they updated the route to reflect the A380 they stopped releasing first and business class award seats on those flights. That trend continued when they announced A380 service to Paris, and has also continued throughout the delivery delays.

As it stands now, the Qatar Airways A380 inaugural flight to London is scheduled for October 10, 2014, while the A380 inaugural to Paris is scheduled for October 16, 2014. However, I would bet that’s not actually realistic, and would optimistically guess it will be closer to the end of the year before Qatar Airways actually starts flying the A380.

However, there’s one trend that has just recently been reversed — Qatar Airways is now releasing first and business class award space on their A380 flights.

On most A380 flights I’m now seeing two first class award seats and four business class award seats. Availability is definitely better to Paris than London, though that’s generally true of those routes for Qatar Airways. As a reminder, Qatar is planning to put the A380 on the QR003/004 London frequencies, and the QR039/040 Paris frequencies.

This isn’t just over a small period, but through the end of the schedule. It’s true in November:

Qatar-A380-Award-Availability-1

And next March:

Qatar-A380-Award-Availability-3

And next June:

Qatar-A380-Award-Availability-4

And as I said above, to London as well:

Qatar-A380-Award-Availability-5

Again, I wouldn’t count on getting an A380 this year, but if you book for travel next year, I think chances are really good that your flight would be operated by the A380.

It’s certainly nice to see this policy reversed, whether it was intentional or not.

Redeem miles for Qatar Airways A380 first & business class

In terms of redeeming miles for Qatar Airways premium cabins, your best bets are American or US Airways:

  • American charges 30,000 AAdvantage miles for one-way business class between Europe and the Middle East, and 40,000 miles for one-way first class
  • US Airways charges 60,000 Dividend Miles for roundtrip business class travel between Europe and the Middle East, and 80,000 miles for roundtrip first class

If you have top tier status with either airline, it’s especially easy to lock in seats now, since you can always cancel them later without a fee.

Qatar Airways A380 first class

Qatar Airways’ first class doesn’t actually look that spectacular, especially after we’ve seen Etihad’s plans for their A380, and Emirates has said that they’ll match. So I’d try this more for the novelty than expecting to fly the world’s best first class product.

Qatar-Airways-First-Class-1

Qatar-Airways-First-Class-2

Now, I have a sneaking suspicion that this whole A380 delay is an Akbar Al Baker ego ploy and that they’re actually totally redesigning the first class cabin. I know it’s farfetched and you can call me a conspiracy theorist, but we are talking about His Excellency here. Only time will tell, I suppose…

Bottom line

Woohoo! Another A380 first class product that can easily be checked off the list! Now I just need to hop on the Asiana A380, as I’ve done all the other A380 first class products out there:

(Tip of the hat to Naveen)

Comments

  1. not too useful for US readers, nobody is going to route via Doha back to Europe. however if you can snag C/F on a US flight you’ll be quite happy as the product is superior to Emirates.

  2. Thanks for the heads up Lucky. We had QR42 booked but just jumped on QR40 for next May. Hopefully they will have the aircraft by then 😉

  3. seriously amazing looking product. such a shame that the flight is so short (relatively). And given that I have no desire to go to DOH, I’ll probably never get to fly this plane.

  4. Ben, thanks for this. Could you also do a post on Qatar business class availability trends?
    I do find their availability spotty (like other OW carriers) and there seem to be times where weeks and weeks are blocked out for award space availability (e.g. from 23 July to end of Aug). They do release some a few days out.

    I love their product but I’m having difficulty finding premium space.

  5. @ Chris K — Yes, there’s some risk if you’re booking it solely to fly the A380. But by the middle of next year I have a hard time imagining they won’t have A380s yet.

  6. It’s also the same cost in miles if you fly from the Indian Subcontinent to Europe. So if you want to try the 787 and the A380 on Qatar Airways, do BLR-DOH-CDG, for example.

  7. Lucky! CDG-DOH OW fares with American Advantage 40000 points, with BA 70000 points.
    If I use AA miles is the availability and the taxes are the same as on BA website?

  8. Thanks and the availabilty the same as on BA site? Or do I have to call AA to know that and for booking?

  9. Hi,
    Is this correct? as per above :
    “American charges 30,000 AAdvantage miles for one-way business class between Europe and the Middle East, and 40,000 miles for one-way first class”

  10. Hey Lucky,

    I just noticed that the seat map on my reservation notes that the F cabin is on the top deck, arent most F cabins on the 380 on the lower deck?

  11. @ Tyler — It goes both ways. Emirates, Etihad, Lufthansa, and Thai have first class on the upper deck, for example.

  12. Thaaannnks Lucky!!!!
    I had QR38 (A346) booked but after your post, U$60 to jump on QR40 (A388) for next April.
    So excited 8)

  13. Hi Lucky
    What the hell going with BA executive club award booking???as soon as the booking involved a foreign carrier ut kept showing the message to call executive club desk,i cant finalise any booking out of BA or AA.

  14. Tangentially related to QR A380 service, is there anything better than ba.com to search for award space?Looking to book US to Africa via DOH with AAdvantage miles but it is not showing award space on any of the direct routes that QR flies to DOH. aa.com is, of course, useless here as well…

  15. Just checked the QR availability via BA website for flights on Nov. 24 from LHR to DOH. BA only shows four flights QR006 / 012 / 002 (Three of A340) / 016 (A319) daily but no QR004 (A380) and QR008 (B787). Contact CX Marco Polo Club and agent found some F award space, but system will reject it and provide alternative flight to QR012, even system displayed QR004 F award is available for redemption. CX agent spent about an half hour to verify, and so far only Nov. 29 (from Nov. 10 to Nov. 30) is available and finally got a confirmed F award for me.

  16. Weird. Just contaced CX MPC and agent superisly found one seat available on Nov. 24 for QR004 by A380 F and QR938 to Singapore by B787 C…..so Luck!

  17. Hi Lucky,

    I have an opportunity to fly CDG-DOH in First on either the 777 or A340 service…which do you recommend? Are these new first products? Or should I try and route from another European city to get a better plane 🙂

    Thanks!

    Stacey

  18. Thanks Lucky! How’s the F product on the A340’s? Is it new (like the upcoming A380’s?) Or would you recommend Business on the 787 from BRU for example?

  19. Seems like they are blocking it again, can’t find the 380 flights to CDG or LHR via the BA tool for 2015. The 3-4 other LHR flights seem to have good availability though.

  20. It seems for me too, that they blocked Business and First. I’m trying to take QR2 from LHR-DOH on June 3rd, but they only have economy 😛

  21. I want to try Qatar F class on the 380 and was thinking to relocate and fly from LHR on one of my upcoming trips.
    But i cant see any award space on any flights, short or long term, on F class 380 to or from LHR.

    Has their policy changed again? Or is it only available for the top tier ppl?

  22. @ Mark — Nope, they still make some space available last minute, but it requires a lot of flexibility. Make sure you’re also checking space out of CDG. You need to be very, very flexible.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *