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June 18, 2016 / oneworld82

Impressive short hop – Qatar Airways Business Class DOH-AUH

Qatar Airways

Flight QR1056, DOH-AUH

Airbus A320

Business Class, Seat 3J

I was among the last batch of passengers to board from gate 22 – we had to board a bus since the flight left from a remote stand. Perhaps, something Qatar Airways can do to offer even a better experience is to offer premium passengers a private car ride to the plane in cases like this.

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The business class cabin – 12 seats in total – had only 1 seat empty. The seat was exactly the same as the one on the A333, which is rather incredible for an intra-Gulf flight. I also find it odd that for a 44 minute flight to Abu Dhabi you are offered lie-flat seating and top-notch IFE, while on longer routes (like EBB or KGL) you are stuck with recliners and overhead TVs. But I guess QR has to offer something different on short haul flights to market them as truly first class.

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In any case, a pre-departure drink was offered, and I just got some water. Even though this was a very short flight, a menu was offered, which read like this.

I ordered the chicken and a glass of champagne. The IFE did not seem to work all that well, at least at my seat – and I did not have any headphones either. I did not worry too much about it though, as this was such a short hop across the Persian Gulf.

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Once airborne, service started immediately, and I was presented with a nice tray that had my chicken with couscous, the champagne, and a nice chocolate cake for dessert. Everything was quite tasty.

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By the time I went through the food, we were only 10 minutes from Abu Dhabi, and I enjoyed some night view over the emirate.

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We landed on time, and we also had a jetbridge – so no bus was necessary on this end.

All in all, I think it’s hard to beat this short haul flight experience. I know that Emirates and Etihad have similar service on such short haul routes, which really makes me question the profitability of these routes… Yet again, from a customer experience perspective, they are really tough to beat!

Overall, my 2-day experience with Qatar Airways has been fantastic. Great flights, great ground experience, great F&B, great service… I really can’t complain about anything as I felt as pampered as a premium customer could possibly be.

Yet, the best of this trip is yet to come!

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