Qatar Airways to fly Airbus A380 to Sydney from September

Qatar Airways to fly Airbus A380 to Sydney from September

Qatar Airways will upgrade its daily Sydney-Doha flights to the flagship Airbus A380 from September 15 2016, replacing the Boeing 777s currently plying the route.

While the superjumbo's Sydney slot is three months off the airline's initial plan of June, the move will sharpen already-strong competition in Australia's toughest market.

Qatar Airways' Airbus A380 business class

The A380 will begin as a seasonal service which is expected to stretch through to early 2017, but Qatar Airways CEO His Excellency Akbar Al Baker hopes to see this become a year-round fixture.

“At the moment (Sydney’s A380) is seasonal, but I think it will continue as we receive additional A380s, because we have additional aeroplanes that will be in the pipeline that will be delivered to Qatar Airways,” Mr Akbar told Australian Business Traveller at a press event in Adelaide.

For business travellers, Qatar's A380 represents a monumental improvement to the business class experience, replacing the 2-2-2 seating layout of the airline's Boeing 777 with a much preferred 1-2-1 configuration which guarantees passengers direct aisle access from every seat.

Qatar Airways' Airbus A380 business class

Read: Qatar Airways Airbus A380 business class review

The superjumbo also brings with it an exclusive first class cabin – the first time Qatar Airways will offer first class on any Australian route – with eight luxe seats in a spacious 1-2-1 layout...

Qatar Airways' Airbus A380 first class

... and an inflight bar and lounge area shared by both business and first class travellers:

Qatar Airways' Airbus A380 inflight lounge

Read: Photo tour: Qatar’s Airbus A380 first, business class

The news comes as the airline launches daily Airbus A350 flights between Adelaide and Doha, which also represent Australia’s first commercial Airbus A350 service.

Qatar Airways will also reveal its new ‘super business class’ seat in November this year, featuring sliding doors to convert it into a suite-like private cabin.

Read more: Qatar Airways to reveal 'Super Business Class' seat in November

Chris Chamberlin is visiting Adelaide as a guest of Qatar Airways.

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PREVIOUS | Qatar Airways hopes to bring its flagship Airbus A380 to Sydney from June this year as part of a seasonal boost to its newly-introduced Sydney-Doha flights.

"We will be operating an Airbus A380 during peak periods from June onwards" Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker told Australian Business Traveller at this week's launch of its newest route.

Al Baker says that the airline's first Sydney-Doha flights are "fully booked", and also teased the possible extension of its Australian network to another destination – most likely Brisbane – "in the not-too-distant future."

Qatar's Sydney-Doha flights currently operate on a Boeing 777-300ER with business class and economy class, but the superjumbo will up the ante with first class and its latest generation of business class as well as an impressive inflight bar and lounge.

Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT

Chris Chamberlin
Chris Chamberlin is a senior journalist with Australian Business Traveller and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, a theatre ticket and a glass of wine!


  • moa999


    3 Mar, 2016 11:56 am

    Only 4 years ago saying they will never fly to Sydney while it has a curfew, now upgrading to an A380 shortly after launch. How times change.

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  • crosscourt


    4 May, 2016 03:56 pm

    LOL was thinking exactly the same thing

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  • kovsky


    3 Mar, 2016 12:01 pm

    Will be interesting to see if and how this shakes things up!

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  • russell


    4 May, 2016 02:00 pm

    Another F option ex Sydney for OW. Excellent news!

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  • Mark


    4 May, 2016 02:42 pm

    Hopefully they will announce Brsbane flights soon.

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  • Steele


    4 May, 2016 02:45 pm

    What about economy? Any photos or details on that, as I would imagine their A380 would be better than their 777 seating/layout.

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  • David Flynn


    4 May, 2016 04:37 pm

    We tend not to delve into international economy on AusBT, our focus being on the premium cabins (premium economy and above).

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  • Steele


    4 May, 2016 11:24 pm

    Why is that though? Far more passengers travel economy, especially most of the business travellers I know whilst they build up their mileage and/or depending on their companies travel budget. Also, I would assume the many outside visitors who discover this website via other sources would be intrigued to the information of an airlines economy offering. Lastly, as you mentioned your focus is on the higher classes of travel, there are loads of details already in other articles regarding Qatars A380's, or Emirates or any other airline. I just feel you shouldn't relagate economy travellers to little or no information. 

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  • David Flynn


    5 May, 2016 05:45 am

    We choose to focus on the premium travel as a point of differentiation and specialisation.

    We could try to be all things to all people and dive into economy seating and argy-bargy on high-density economy layouts and such - but there's plenty of this on aviation websites and blogs, and AusBT is of course not an aviation site per se.

    Our focus on the premium cabin, as part of the broader business travel picture which also includes lounges and top-tier frequent flyer levels, and of late also embraces selected 'lifestyle' elements such as whisky, is part of AusBT's unique positioning in the market. 

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  • Steele


    5 May, 2016 09:40 pm

    Well I think it would be in a lot of peoples interest to be aware of high-density layouts, espcially as this is prominent on airlines that promote themselves as 5-stars, just not down the back of the bus in relation to seating standards. I understand there is not much to note for Economy vs say Business, however perhaps what is the better choices economy wise to the US, or to the UK, or just imple mentions and the odd photograph of the layout wouldn't go astray.

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  • log0008


    4 May, 2016 02:50 pm

    Great news seeing Australia served by an a380 from the all of the ME3! 

    Hope Melbourne gets it one day so it can boast the same! 

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  • Mal


    4 May, 2016 03:34 pm

    This is great news, especially for shaking up the incumbents like QF and EK, Qatar's A380 has a much better business class than either of their A380s.

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  • aldrigsomandre


    4 May, 2016 03:40 pm

    Great news! This'd work well if they manage to time the connections to Africa and Europe right. (IMHO a must when competing with the likes of Emirates.)

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  • Harry Carr


    4 May, 2016 05:25 pm

    Hey Chris!

    I have a booking with them leaving on the 23rd of Sept and returning 7 october

    Booking shows the outbound as A380 but return still 777.

    Would you happen to know why? 


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  • David Flynn


    4 May, 2016 05:29 pm

    Harry: we're told that Qatar is still loading the back-end of the A380 seasonal service into the system, so it'll be a while before the end of the A380s run is known and visible.

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  • Mc


    9 May, 2016 02:21 am

    The footwell on the seat where it goes into flat bed mode looks particularly narrow compared to the 777 currently on their SYD route. The photos also indicate that the footwell in the centre seats looks wider than the window one - something to consider?

    Other than the fact that the 777 layout is 2-2-2 which means climbing over someone if you are in the window seat,  for sleeping purposes on the 14 hr flight to/from SYD, this new seat/layout  does not appear to be as spacious as the 777.

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  • flatout


    11 May, 2016 03:38 pm

    Very observent. I was on day 3 of the first QR A380 (DOH-LHR). I actually found the foot shelf quite anoying and difficult to get one foot in a comfortable position (RHS was leaning against the wall). Other than that it is a class leading product. We couldn't refuse Krug at the inflight bar. All the pax were "abstainers".  The DOH and LHR QR business lounges are exceptional, unlike their OW lounges.

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18 Jan, 2019 11:22 pm


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