Review: Qantas Business Class B737-8, Sydney – Adelaide
Our flights within Australia were courtesy of Qantas Airlines. With only two major carriers in Australia, Qantas (along with it’s Jetstar low cost subsidiary) and Virgin Australia, we settled for Qantas which was redeemed through the British Airways Executive Club Avios program. Travel within Australia domestically is generally quite expensive, making a points redemption a very easy and worthwhile opportunity.
This post is one chapter in our trip to Australia on Air Canada & Qantas Business Class and United Airlines. This trip was booked using British Airways Executive Club Avios and Starwood Preferred Guest (Marriott Bonvoy) points. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.
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Read more from this trip:
- Trip Introduction: Hitching a Ride to Australia via Air Canada & Qantas Business Class and United Airlines,
- Plaza Premium Lounge International – Vancouver International Airport
- Air Canada Business Class: Vancouver – Sydney
- Four Points by Sheraton Sydney Darling Harbour, Australia
- The Historic Landmarks of Sydney, Australia
- A Harbour Front Walk Past the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House
- A Day at Shelley Beach, Sydney, Australia
- Bondi Beach and the Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk, Sydney, Australia
- A Day at Camp’s Bay by Watson Cove, Sydney, Australia
- Calling on the Koala Bears at Taronga Zoo, Sydney, Australia
- Qantas Business Lounge, Sydney Kingsford Smith Domestic, Australia
- Qantas Business Class: Sydney – Adelaide
- Sipping the Wines of McLaren Vale Region, Adelaide, Australia
- Restaurant Review: The Star of Greece, Port Willunga, Australia
- Exploring the Wines of The Adelaide Hills, Adelaide, Australia
- Tasting an Australian Icon “Penfolds Grange” Wine
- Qantas Club Adelaide, Australia
- Qantas Business Class: Adelaide – Sydney
- Trying to Fly Standby out of Australia’s Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport
- United Airlines: Sydney – San Francisco
- American Express Centurion Lounge: San Francisco International Airport
- Air Canada Rouge: San Francisco – Vancouver
Review: Qantas Business Class B737-8, Sydney Kingford Smith – Adelaide, Australia.
At about T-35, we wandered down from the Qantas Business Lounge Sydney to Gate 1A. The Sydney Kingsford Smith Terminal Three Domestic concourse is a pleasant and utilitarian space.
There was a large line of about 40 people had developed, running down the length of the concourse. There appeared to be no priority boarding, although there was a priority lane that didn’t appear to be enforced.
Rightly or wrongly, we wandered up to the front and ended up using the empty economy lane to “self-priority board”. Surprisingly, the only ID check was at check in during our travels. There was no identification check at security or on boarding of the aircraft which felt like traveling in an era well past.
Soon enough, it came time to board and we were underway.
SYD-ADL (Sydney Kingford Smith Domestic Terminal 3 – Adelaide International)
QF741 – Business Class (I)
6:40 PM – 8:15 PM
Thursday December 4, 2014
Booked: Boeing 737-800
Flown: Boeing 737-800
On Board Qantas Short Haul Business Class:
Once on board, we settled into older style recliner seats that had been gracefully aged a bit. It was a somewhat drab and muted cabin that was without flair but completely functional.
MrsWT73 commented that the equipment had aged quite considerably for a newer generation Boeing 737-800. I’d have to agree with her given that the 737-8 is the among the more current generations of the B737 series.
There was a recline feature for the seats, but no in seat power.
In terms of storage, our regular sized carry on’s wouldn’t fit in the overhead bin. We had a very mild reminder consisting of a raised eye brow and a wink and a nod from the flight attendant that the carry on weight limit was 7 kg (15 lbs). Who travels with a bag that is that light weight these days? And why does Qantas have such a ridiculously light carry on limit? We ended up thinning down our bags a bit to make them fit by removing some items. As it turns out, the sizing for Australian carry on’s are much smaller than the standard and familiar North American or European sizes. You’d only expect to take enough for an overnight trip, instead of squeezing everything into a carry on for a 10 day trip.
Entertainment on Board:
Our cabin didn’t have any individual video monitors. Entertainment was given from the main screen entertainment and additional drop down monitors. This meant we had to settle for the woman telling us all about the Qantas Sydney First Class Lounge.
The Qantas in flight magazine was sturdy and had was an interesting read unlike some of the Asian in flight magazines which are more a collection of cosmetic advertising articles.
A pre-departure beverage of orange juice or water was offered from a tray in a proper glass.
We had a late departure of about 35 minutes, setting off with a long taxi to 34 L runway and a departure track straight over downtown Sydney. We passed by with more hangar views on the way out of town.
It was a bumpy climb out due to thundershowers. Before we knew it, we were above clear skies headed westward towards Adelaide.
Meal Service: A Full Dinner served from the Trolley
The in-flight service today offered a full dinner service, served direct from the trolley. There was a choice of chicken leg, green beans and roast potatoes or a lamb and pasta salad. I had the chicken paired with Wirra Wirra Riesling from Adelaide hills. The chicken was topped with fresh sauce, scooped straight from the cart immediately before it was served, along with fresh cracked pepper from the mill. It was a classy touch that I haven’t seen anywhere else. It reminded me of those vintage photographs of Pan Am when your ritzy parent’s friends dressed up to dine on board.
Dinner service concluded with a tea and coffee service.
Overall, the Qantas service on board was excellent. The manager, Sophia addressed us by surname on every contact, with warm eye contact and was exceptionally pleasant to deal with.
The flight ended quite quickly after about 2 hours. We landed at the new Adelaide airport. We were met gateside by our good Australian friends who were able to clear security to meet us directly at the gate.
My thoughts on Qantas Short Haul Business Class:
Overall, Qantas was a very pleasant way to get around Australia. Despite the somewhat plain interior of the aircraft, the lounges, food, beverage and service was a substantial step up than North American carriers. The Qantas flights are a great value redemption on British Airways Avios, given the generally high cost of flying business class around a single market airline of Australia.