Qantas to close domestic airport business lounges over Christmas

Qantas to close domestic airport business lounges over Christmas

Qantas will close its domestic Business Lounges at Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra airports this week so they can undergo "routine cleaning and maintenance" across the Christmas and New Year period.

The four flagship domestic lounges will shut their doors following the last flight of Christmas Eve, on Tuesday December 24th, and reopen on Monday morning, January 13th 2014.

Globetrotters are spared such deprivations, however, with the airline's international business lounges remaining open throughout that period.

Qantas says the 19 day closure of its domestic lounges will be used to give them a combined spruce-up and fix-up after a solid year of business travel wear and tear.

In the meantime, passengers who usually enjoy access to the Qantas Business Lounges – including those flying business class, holding Platinum Qantas Frequent Flyer status or the equivalent Emerald status with a oneworld partner airline – will need to 'rough it' in the Qantas Club.

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David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.
 

24 comments

  • wilsoni

    wilsoni
    Banned

    4 Dec, 2013 09:01 am

    Don't suppose they're reducing ticket costs for this amenity withdrawal are they?

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  • spudseamus

    spudseamus

    4 Dec, 2013 09:19 am

    Lol! Never let a chance go by ,,,haha 

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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    22 Dec, 2013 06:06 am

    No, wilsoni, they are a law unto themselves.

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  • Peter Loh

    PeterLoh

    4 Dec, 2013 09:21 am

    I know the image caption is meant to be sarcastic, but I would've thought they'd gifted her CL status.

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  • Al Glidden

    AlG

    4 Dec, 2013 09:27 am

    And she's having to rough it at James Packer's multi-million dollar Bondi Beach pad when she's not flying. Tough life.

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  • Skipp

    Skipp

    21 Dec, 2013 09:25 am

    Will they close the Chairman's lounge over the same period, for the same combined spruce-up and fix-up following a solid year of business travel wear and tear???

    It funny how virgin are expanding some lounges over the Xmas new year period to cater for increased traffic while Qantas closes lounges. Two airlines approaching their customers in different ways.

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  • Adrian Catalano

    agecat

    4 Dec, 2013 09:41 am

    last time i was in the normal Qantas Club lounge i thought that needed much more attention than the business lounge, in melbourne at least it looks very old, dirty and tired!!

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  • wilsoni

    wilsoni
    Banned

    4 Dec, 2013 12:44 pm

    Same for Brisbane. Sad compared to high standards back in the day. Prefer VA for domestics these days.

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  • Skipp

    Skipp

    4 Dec, 2013 08:16 pm

    Adrian I quite agree!

    Call me a cynic, but it wouldn't have anything to do with the fact that they are assuming many platinum and domestic business travellers aren't flying over that period, & hence saving costs in staff & resources required for the lounge to be open??? Hmmm

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  • Darkavid99

    Darkavid99

    4 Dec, 2013 05:48 pm

    Who cares if you are from Perth or Adelaide, you dont even get a business lounge. Not that there is a shortage or room, particularly in Adelaide!

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  • Rufus1

    Rufus1

    4 Dec, 2013 10:15 pm

    They did this last year and there were exactly the same howls of protest from AusBT readers.  Seriously, do you care that much? 

    And yes, it will affect me with a couple of flights in that time.  But I don't care that much.  In fact, I'm such a pleb that I downgrade my lounge choice in my home airport because the hot dogs in the (base level) business lounge are far better than the fancy snacks in the Star Gold lounge...

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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    22 Dec, 2013 05:57 am

    When people purchase a business class ticket routed from one of the locations with a business lounge, their purchase includes the advertised feature of access to that lounge. They may or may not decide to make use of that feature, along with seat selection, a certain increaded baggage allowance, free drinks, some sort of meal, etc.

    QF could (but don't) make reasonable effort to inform such customers that one of the advertised features will not be available at the time of purchase.

    The problem is that last year it wasn't just the lounges that were closed for a significant period, the on board catering was also downgraded.

    Imaging buying a new laptop (a similar price to an average business class fare at around $1,000) which has an advertised deal of a 3-year care plan included in the price only to find that because you bought in a 10 day christmas period you didn't get the after care - you weren't told at the time of purchase. Or a new camera kit, but one of the two lenses wasn't included in the pack.

    Yes, I care when I purchase something and don't get what I paid for.

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  • bzj123

    bzj123

    5 Dec, 2013 10:10 am

    woooaaah, has anyone else experienced the 'new' menu in the Melbourne business lounge? Arrived last night around 7pm. Gone are the daily plate specials. Instead there is a toaster where you can make your own toasties. Dessert seemed to have disappeared, same for the cheese. Bread downgraded too. what a shame.

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  • sjariel

    sjariel

    20 Dec, 2013 11:36 am

    I was at the Brisbane Business lounge on Monday and noticed a new sandwich toaster and I was talking to the guy behind the bar and he said that a new juice bar is coming and that the contract was now being run by Sofitel hotels.  Not sure if that is Australia wide or just Brisbane.  

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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    22 Dec, 2013 06:04 am

    David, perhaps you could ask your contacts at QF the obvious questions, which could clarify the debate and ease the frustration:

    • what work is being done?
    • why does it take so long?
    • why is this work necessary in the business lounge and not the Chairman's or QC?
    • is on board business catering also being downgraded (like last year)?
    • why aren't customers informed at the time of purchase of a reduction in service level?
    • if work is being done, why this can't be done in the other > 3000 hours in the year when the lounge is shut (approx. 2030 to 0430 nightly)
    • and one for the road...when the lounge is open why are they chucking people out before the boarding of the last flight of the day
    Thanks.
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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    22 Dec, 2013 11:11 am

    PS. I seem to remember that the lounger were closed for around 10 days last year: isn't longer this year - almost three weeks!

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  • Rob

    Rob

    23 Dec, 2013 01:41 am

    Sorry, I'm from Perth. What is a Bussiness Class lounge!!!! Seriously though, was in Brisbane Business lounge two weeks and Melbournes last year and was impressed. Perth Domestic Qantas club is full of Hi Vis miners coming from and going to work. Its all we got

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  • highflyer

    highflyer

    26 Dec, 2013 03:29 am

    I reckon they should transform the "downstairs" lounge into a Business Class Lounge... it's segregated, away, and there is potential to up the ante in that dedicated area...would be nice... *dreams*

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  • whipper

    whipper

    23 Dec, 2013 11:58 am

    Why is everyone moaning about this - what a pack of complainers.  What don't you travel Virgin - oh I forgot - they don't have busienss lounges and the last time I was in the Melbourne lounge - most of people had their names written on their shirts and half the women were littered with tatt's.  Very trashy.  The Qantas Clubs are fine - and lets get real - most people are in there for the bar service, not to create a three course meal from the dips.  Also PLATY all the airline is liable for is to get you from point A to point B and not even guarenteed with the timings, so suck it up pussycat. 

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  • watson374

    watson374

    23 Dec, 2013 12:09 pm

    "Pussycat"? Classy, whipper. Real classy...

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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    23 Dec, 2013 08:52 pm

    Whipper, some folk like some lounge time and would prefer to eat/drink before the flight. Others get to the airport just on time and then moan about the low levels of service on board their business class flights from the USA to Australia.

    People are different.

    I fall into the former category and you in the latter (based on your previous whinging posts about QF in flight catering).

    Despite these differences, both of our expectations are reasonable if we are paying $10 per hour of flying time for an advertised benefit - be it business lounge access or any time dining.

    The legal stuff ain't even an issue. Give poor service - compromise your customer base.

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  • Darkavid99

    Darkavid99

    23 Dec, 2013 10:17 pm

    Actually now flying virgin twice a week I think the clientele and etiquette are very business focused. It's not like trying to board a jet star flight at the coast.

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  • htc

    htc

    23 Dec, 2013 08:52 pm

    Gee you guys can have a moan! Any property requires regular maintenance so give them a break. 

    Travel is light over these periods particularly in SYD, MEL and BNE so it makes commercial sense. If you are too precious (or too tight) to shout yourself a sandwich in the food court then don't bother flying. 

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  • PLATY

    PLATY

    24 Dec, 2013 06:24 am

    Good advice, htc, giving them a break is exactly what I'm planning.

    I don't think it does make commercial sense - it's just one of many service degradations that lowers the quality of the product and brand at a time when their main domestic competition is encroaching on their market.

    Suggesting someone is precious or tight because they expect the advertised product to be delivered as advertised and have the temerity to question the commercial sense of QF management seems absurd logic to me and bordering on the personal insult.

    Happy holidays!

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25 May, 2019 03:23 pm

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