Flight Review: Qatar Airways Qsuite Auckland to Doha

Qsuite by Qatar Airways.
Photo credit: supplied/Qatar Airways

Flying the world's second longest flight sounds like a real slog, but Qatar Airways' new Qsuite option makes it a genuine pleasure.

QR921 departs Auckland daily at 1425 (2:25pm) and touches down in Doha's Hamad International Airport around 17-and-a-half hours later, arriving at 2315 (11:15pm).

The airline won World's Best Business Class in the 2018 Skytrax awards, and now they've improved upon the offering further with Qsuite, which launches in Auckland next month.

You get your own space with a sliding door for privacy - a 'suite', rather than a seat, they reckon. There's loads of room for storage around a true lie-flat bed that all but guarantees you'll spend many of the 17 hours airborne asleep.

Travelling as a couple, in a family, or corporate group of four, is where you can really maximise Qsuite's potential as a quasi-private jet experience. The suites can be rearranged from one- to two- or four-people configurations, allowing the sharing of a double bed, group dining, business meetings and so on.

This is, of course, a luxurious way to travel that doesn't come cheap - a return trip can cost around a fifth of the average annual salary in New Zealand.

Qsuite from Qatar Airways allows 4 people to share a space in quasi-private jet experience.
Photo credit: Qatar Airways

I've only been lucky enough to fly business or premium economy class a handful of times with a few different airlines, but Qsuite's seat and bed on the Boeing 777-200LR is easily the best of them.

In its bed position, you get solid, flat coverage for your entire body - it's more than two metres long. The leather is high quality and feels great, and they'll pop down a padded mattress topper if you want it feeling even better.

The electronic seat controls include a back massager and a 'do not disturb' button.

You're also given a Bric's amenity kit that comes loaded with things like Monte Vibiano lip balm, moisturiser and moisturising facial mist.

Then there's the blanket and pyjamas, which were so comfortable I wanted to take them home with me.

There's some yummy food offered on Qsuite and it's a la carte style, so you get it when you want it. Well, five to 20 minutes after you order it.

While you can order what you like whenever you like it, they have a limited number of the mains - so reserve a beef tenderloin early on if you're planning to have it later, as they might just run out.

The a la carte service is particularly convenient on a flight as long as Auckland-Doha. Maybe you don't feel like breakfast when other passengers do - maybe you want a cheese plate then, or noodles, or ice cream.

That's all doable on Qsuite. It's mint.

The table cloth and artificial candle are lovely touches for in-flight dining, too, emulating a restaurant experience.

Oh and don't worry about the strict alcohol regulations in Qatar itself - onboard the plane, there was a great beer, wine, spirit and even cocktail selection available.

Qsuite's 21.5-inch TV screens have beautiful resolution and can be operated both from touchscreen and a PlayStation Vita-esque controller. The screen is pretty much the perfect size for the distance it is from the seat.

As splendid as Qsuite is, however, it still has room to improve.

The in-flight Wi-Fi is patchy and often slow, making things like watching YouTube fairly impossible. Yes, this is a ridiculous thing to complain about as internet in the sky is new and amazing - but just don't be planning on streaming much video on the flight.

While there's a decent range of films and TV shows to enjoy on the Oryx One inflight entertainment system, many are censored - so you shouldn't watch anything with an adult rating, unless you want to marvel at how they got every swear word out of something like Deadpool 2.

The flight tracker software looks a bit dated, too. It isn't quite as crisp and aesthetically pleasing as Air New Zealand's latest, for example.

Honestly, these really are minor quibbles - flying Qsuite is flying in extraordinary luxury and style.

The AKL-DOH flight lasts more than 1000 minutes and Qsuite made every one of them enjoyable.

Qsuite will officially launch in Auckland on June 1.

Newshub Travel flew as a guest of Qatar Airways.