First Impressions of Qantas First Class A380 LAX to MEL

I’m sitting in the Qantas Domestic Business Class Lounge at Melbourne, having just got off QF 94 LAX to MEL in first class on the A380. Here are some of my first impressions.

1) The A380 is still my favorite aircraft. There’s something so magical and impressive about the beast, and there are SO many A380s at LAX, which makes for some great plane watching.

My bird to Melbourne

My bird to Melbourne

2) Qantas has a solid first class product on the A380s. It’s not a suite, but it’s decently spacious, and the bedding is quite nice.

Qantas first class seat

Qantas first class seat

3) The food is some of the best food I’ve had in the sky. The warm salad of duck confit was probably the best salad I’ve had on a plane. Overall, I was pretty impressed with the food, even if lacks to more typical “luxuries” of first class on other carriers (i.e. caviar).

Warm salad of duck confit with grapefruit, hazelnuts, and radish

Warm salad of duck confit with grapefruit, hazelnuts, and radish

4) The service… was not great. The crew was perfectly friendly, but they were slooooowwww. Normally, in first class, you can ring the flight attendant bell and someone will be at your side within 5 seconds. Not so for this flight. I rang my flight attendant call bell multiple times, and the  quickest response time was over 1 minute. Now, this is of course a first world problem, but one time I rang the call bell and had to wait over 5 minutes before a flight attendant appeared. And there was no apology or explanation for the wait. It got to the point where I even brought my own dirty dishes to the galley since the flight attendants wouldn’t collect them. What kind of first class service is that?

5) I got to go into the cockpit at the end of the flight! And the pilots were much friendlier than the pilots on the Lufthansa flight where I went into the cockpit.

Cockpit on the A380

Cockpit on the A380

Overall, I’d definitely choose Qantas over United for a nonstop first class product to Australia, but I was left puzzled by the slow, non-proactive service.

12 thoughts on “First Impressions of Qantas First Class A380 LAX to MEL

  1. min

    Thanks for sharing your quick impression of the Qantas FC. Your comment about the service is rather unusual for first class. How many passengers were there? Can you tell us what was the ratio of flight attendants serving FC passengers?

    I would at least share this experience with Qantas as it is unacceptable for you to carry the dishes to the galley. Imagine if I were a revenue customer doing that!

    Anyway enjoy reading your trip report. Good luck

  2. Joey

    I agree with min. Was the first class cabin full? What was the ratio between FAs and passengers in First Class? One of my Aussie friends did tell me that he expects the CX first experience to be better than Qantas first given the culture difference between the two. In Australia, it’s similar to the USA where a first class passenger is no better than the flight attendant or a business class passenger (First just means you have a bigger seat and more privacy and better food.) Of course that is all debatable but perhaps you just had a lackluster crew?

    1. Edward Post author

      The cabin was 13/14 with three flight attendants (one in the galley, two serving). The service felt like international business class on a US airline with a decent crew.

      1. Joey

        Wow! Given how it’s the winter in Australia, that’s a lot of people flying First class! Of the 13 people, how many do you think were there on points?

      2. Edward Post author

        The cabin was booked 6/14 the day before the flight, so I imagine that 7 people were upgrading on points. Essentially everyone else in the cabin except for a very bougie-looking couple looked like they were business people.

  3. milesglu

    Did this exact route about a year ago and had great experience… although the cabin was a lot less crowded. I believe there were only 5 passengers. Supper service was also extremely slow, even though I was the only one eating. However, whenever I pressed the call button, FA would show up immediately. For breakfast he forgot two items in my order, but a quick reminder was all he needed to get it right.

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