O V E R V I E W :
The 1 month but felt like 1 week holiday has come to an end and it was time to head back to the UK. Having previously written on my trip back home on QR here, this edition will be rather brief and focused mainly on the 2nd sector from DOH to LHR being my virgin A350 flight. As mentioned in my previous trip report, I had a good experience for the 2 sectors back home hence I was looking forward to the return journey to London.
Qatar Airways – QR 845 – KUL – DOH
Flight time: 09:55 – 12:25 (10:12-12:09)
Duration: 7 hours 40 minutes
12th September 2017
Started the morning with a quick check in at the rather empty counters at KLIA. A sign of an empty cabin later perhaps? 😛Boarding passes obtained and baggage checked all the way to LHR. Spotted my equipment on the way to my gate. Apparently the B777 has just arrived from DOH and passengers were disembarking when I reached the gate.Above taken soon after the boarding gate was opened and the Triple 7 was spotted being attended for the turn around back to DOH. Boarding process commenced on time and I made my way into the aircraft which had a light load that morning based on the pax numbers noted in the holding gate. A visit to the lavatory after parting ways with my carry on luggage upon boarding the aircraft. For comparison purposes to the lavatory on the A350 later for the DOH-LHR sector. Got myself some water from the crew at the galley and asked if there were any water dispenser onboard the aircraft (Like the ones on Emirates) but she seemed confused and said that she will not able to provide me with a bottled water. :OSQ’s A330 spotted from the seat I moved to due to the light load, very rare 2 windows seat in economy! Got both 49A and B to myself, could have gotten the middle 4 seats for my lie flat bed as well but preferred the window seat for this morning flight as I did not intend to sleep. Mandatory legroom shot.The usual post boarding procedures were completed where refreshing towels were given and menus handed out. After which we were ready to depart!Lovely view of the climb out of WMKK through the 2 windows from my seat. Very happy to see rendang on the menu along with sambal, made my choice instantly without much hesitation. Fast forward to meal service, flavourful rendang indeed but the sambal was close to non-existent, as you could probably tell from the picture above. 😦The light snack offered pre-landing. Approached DOH with an interesting view after being in the air for approximately 7 hours and a bit. Connecting gate information? I doubt so. :OContrary to my arrival into DOH from LHR for my outbound journey back home, it was not a direct release into the departures level, had to go through security for transiting passengers like myself. A shot of the icon of DOH, the Lamp Bear by Swiss artist Urs Fischer. A lookup via Hamad Airport’s website about this 23-foot canary yellow teddy bear sculpted from bronze that sits peacefully inside a lamp is that it humanises the space around it and reminds travellers of childhood or precious objects from home. Interesting fact indeed.A quick bite at Burger King before heading to the boarding gate for my onward flight to LHR. Note that initially I was booked on QR1 that departs for Heathrow at 1pm but as my flight from KUL was retimed to a slightly later departure (9.30 am to 9.55 am) it meant that I will not have enough time to catch my initial flight (initial connection was a mere 55 minutes) and I was put on the next flight to LHR (QR12) which I only realized a few days before flying. Thankfully, QR 12 was also operated by the A350!
Qatar Airways – QR 15 – DOH – LHR
Flight time: 14:55 – 20:25 (15:08 – 20:06)
Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes
12th September 2017
Boarding gate for my virgin A350 ride!Interestingly, the machine beeped when the ground agent scanned my boarding pass and I got slightly excited but it turned out to be a seat change for some unknown reason and not an upgrade sadly. 😦Not so picture friendly aerobridge at DOH, a peek of the fancy looking curved sharklets on the 350. Not seated here unfortunately. First impression on the seats in economy, looks similar to the ones on the Dreamliner. As mentioned earlier on the lavatory visit on the Triple 7, the one on the 350 definitely has a modern twist to it with a larger sink!Take 2.Tried my luck on an empty window seat after the lavatory visit but it was actually occupied as it turned out to be a full flight, well at least I managed to get this shot before I was shooed (politely by the actual occupant of this seat) back to my original seat. Decent legroom on the QR 350, not massive though. Much prefer this new IFE screen on the 350. One of the most shouted features of the 350, its HD cameras with views from multiple angles from the exterior. Camera view from the tail.Boarding was completed on a timely basis even though it was a full flight and I was soon on my way to London. Nice view of the climb from DOH thanks to the tail camera. Confirmation that I am indeed flying on my virgin 350 flight. 😛Menu for the flight to London, an interesting discovery of a similar main option to my flight from DOH back to KUL which you can compare here, being the beef and rice option which I chose yet again. The only difference of the beef main was the wording on the menu, it was presented and tasted as good as the one I had on the DOH-KUL sector. Yet again, light snacks were served just before the descent into Heathrow. I chose the mango juice to go with it without hesitation, definitely recommend trying them if you are flying on QR. Without realising, I am almost back in London, took the above whilst on descent. Arrived at the rather wet LHR that evening and docked at T4 after quite a long taxi and hold.Baggage collection after the 1 hour and slightly more wait for my passport to be stamped at the UK border. 😦
C O N C L U S I O N:
As mentioned in the introduction, this report will be focused mainly on the sector onboard the A350, which is my maiden flight on the latest aircraft introduced by Airbus which is supposedly the competition to its rival aircraft introduced by Boeing – the B787 Dreamliner. Overall, both sectors were good and in line with my previous sectors on my journey back home, my only fault will be the repetition in 1 of the menu options being the beef with rice mentioned above but it might just be the case that I was extremely lucky to stumble upon that choice twice. The A350 is a pleasant aircraft to fly on, being really quiet compared to the other aircrafts I have flew on, the seats are said to be wider in comparison to the ones on the Dreamliner but it was not entirely noticeable, for me at least. Qatar Airways will definitely be considered on my future flights given its excellent product and service, if coupled with a competitive pricing for their air tickets.