The big switch: Qantas changes London stopover from Dubai to Singapore

The big switch: Qantas changes London stopover from Dubai to Singapore

TALKING POINT | It’s "goodbye" to Dubai and "hello again, old friend" to Singapore as Qantas next weekend ditches the Emirates hub and returns to Singapore as the stopover point for its Kangaroo Route to London.

The Gulf city will see its last Qantas flight on Saturday March 24 – almost five years to the day that the Qantas-Emirates alliance saw the long-standing Singapore stopover axed in favour of Dubai.

Most Australian business travellers prefer Singapore to Dubai, regardless of whether it’s for a two-hour pit-stop at the airport or a two-day stay to break their journey.

Over the years our readers have consistently voted for Singapore as their European stop-over of choice. When we held a reader poll in 2016, Singapore shot to the top with 46.5% of votes – representing almost every second reader – with Hong Kong coming in second at 26% and Dubai a distant third in the single-digit territory of just 9.2%.

So Qantas' change should be a winner among readers.

Yet we appreciate that some travellers have, on the whole, grown accustomed to that Dubai transit. While they may care little for the city itself, the timing of the flights does provide a better chance for sleeping on that 14 hour Dubai-Sydney leg).

And – crucial for first class passengers on the Airbus A380 – is the changed loungescape between Emirates' sprawling luxury first class lounge and the Qantas Singapore Lounge.

Comparing Emirates' flagship first class lounge to one of Qantas' business class lounges at an international outpost is an uneven playing field, of course, but all the same that's the situation which passengers will face.

Read: What will Qantas first class flyers get at the Singapore lounge?

But it's not just first class travellers who are raising the orange flag. Many frequent flyers – including Australian Business Traveller readers, as indicated in this Community discussion – are concerned that the Qantas Singapore lounge will simply be too small to cope with those superjumbo-loads of business class passengers, Platinum and Gold frequent flyers and Qantas Club passengers.

So, with the big change barely a week away, what's your thinking on Qantas' shift from Dubai back to Singapore and how will it affect your travels?

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.
 

110 comments

  • puppy79

    puppy79

    15 Mar, 2018 07:58 am

    you do not have to be a genius to figure out why the passengers preferred Singapore over Dubai.safe to get around,great sightseeing and the shopping to name but a few things.
    Members who gave thanks

    JKH, HelenRQ, barbrawagner

  • Dmitry Abramov

    dimi

    15 Mar, 2018 09:09 am

    Well... Dubai is definitely safe to move around, clearly does not suffer from shortage of retail establishments and has quite a few things to see...
    So what's the difference???
    Members who gave thanks

    mallee, surfersimon

  • Jaryd Collins

    jarydc

    15 Mar, 2018 11:37 am

    Sorry but if youre gay with a partner it certainly is not.
    Members who gave thanks

    Neil R, Glenn1234, barbrawagner

  • dm12

    dm12

    15 Mar, 2018 03:59 pm

    agree - its a nightmare for gay people, or even unmarried couples travelling together.
    Members who gave thanks

    Glenn1234, barbrawagner

  • Anthony Spasevski

    Zaps1971

    16 Mar, 2018 02:53 pm

    And your point?
    Your not going to get the YES vote in UE..
    No member give thanks

  • lind26

    lind26

    16 Mar, 2018 10:12 pm

    Agree, it’s diversity after all isn’t it?
    No member give thanks

  • Nick  Sydney 348

    Nick Sydney 2

    16 Mar, 2018 03:36 pm

    Four times a year my partner of many years (female and different surname) pass through and stop over. Never have we had any issues.
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  • ricey58

    ricey58

    19 Mar, 2018 09:02 pm

    Absolutely correct. Dubai (and Abu Dhabi) are tolerant provided there is no parading of sexuality. Like Singapore, they couldn't care less really, providing you are using hotels, restaurants and stores. Both cities, and airports, offer great stopovers. It just depends if you want to do 8hrs + 14hrs or 14hrs + 8hrs.
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  • IT

    IT

    15 Mar, 2018 05:52 pm

    Being gay in Singapore ain't much better. Do your research on lgbt rights in Singapore
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  • Merry

    Merry

    16 Mar, 2018 03:40 pm

    Wrong. Whatever the 'legislation' being LGBT in Singapore is fine as no-one 'notices'. We have a gay son who is absolutely comfortable, not so in any Arab culture
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  • Lake Pacific Airways

    lakepacificair

    27 Mar, 2018 08:44 am

    Singapore respects women. The same cannot be said in Dubai.
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  • Anthony Spasevski

    Zaps1971

    16 Mar, 2018 02:52 pm

    And your point??
    No member give thanks

  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 04:50 pm

    @jarydc:
    "if youre gay with a partner it certainly is not."
    I totally forgot about this social aspect of UAE.

    Is that why AJ ditched DXB due to his personal life style? I wonder what was his trips like whenever he has a QF+EK JV biz meeting with Tim Clark @ EK's HQ in Dubai.....
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  • Michael Gibbons

    rowwdy

    17 Mar, 2018 01:15 pm

    I wouldn’t do a layover in DXB for this reason, but for transit, I’m not aware of any issues? While I like Changi, HEL and LHR are really the only European ports that SIN makes easier on a QF ticket.
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  • B B

    boghraty

    15 Mar, 2018 09:10 am

    Disagree on all 3 counts. And the lounge situation isn't even within the same stratosphere. I'll still be booking EK metal out of Brisbane.
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  • Nick  Sydney 348

    Nick Sydney 2

    15 Mar, 2018 02:46 pm

    I'm with you on this. the EK A Lounge is superb
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  • Alistar Chinn

    Alistarch

    15 Mar, 2018 08:05 pm

    Hong Kong and Singapore... food, hotels, people, the city! What more do you need? The choice of Airline lounges in HK is much better too. When Qantas decided to fly to London via Dubai, I decided to fly with Qantas and Finnair via Singapore/ Hong Kong. I didn’t care about the extra stop over I’m Helsink, just meant another opportunity to explore a new city!




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  • habui

    habui

    15 Mar, 2018 08:05 am

    If the aim is getting a good sleep on the return to Sydney, the Singapore option is better. The flights leave LHR in the late evening, and going the old Dubai route meant an interruption after 6 or 7 hours. Your body clock feels like it's 4am and its a horrible time for sleep to be interrupted.

    The Singapore route means that once you've departed LHR late at night, you can settle in to some solid sleep knowing that there's no stops for 13 hours.
    Member who gave thanks

    barbrawagner

  • Mark

    Mightyreds

    15 Mar, 2018 08:36 am

    The move couldn’t come soon enough!!
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  • mviy

    mviy

    15 Mar, 2018 08:38 am

    Would have preferred HKG due to the FLounges there.

    But then I wanted QF9/10 to go via SIN or HKG not PER and still be on the A380.

    The 787 is a big downgrade for MEL based QF passengers.
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  • Christopher Campbell

    Chris2304

    15 Mar, 2018 08:47 am

    you still have the option of taking the a380 from MEL-SIN and then catch QF1
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  • mviy

    mviy

    15 Mar, 2018 11:08 am

    Indeed with a 6 hour wait in SIN. Doable but less than ideal.
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    barbrawagner

  • moa999

    moa999

    15 Mar, 2018 02:15 pm

    The 330/380 connection is much shorter. And then 380/380 on the way back.
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  • mviy

    mviy

    15 Mar, 2018 03:35 pm

    But that takes away the option to put in an upgrade request for F for the MEL-SIN sector. Less than ideal.
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  • lind26

    lind26

    16 Mar, 2018 10:09 pm

    Qantas are still code sharing with Emirates, make the best of it and go one way via Singapore and the other via Dubai
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  • mviy

    mviy

    17 Mar, 2018 12:48 pm

    Can't put in upgrade requests using QF points to upgrade on Emirates though.
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  • Simon Coveney

    Covvers

    15 Mar, 2018 12:57 pm

    I agree. I think HKG is, everything considered, the best of the three options mentioned. Whilst SIN is definitely clean and functional, it is, in my view, somewhat sterile and lacking in the cultural depth of HKG. HKG also has far superior weather to SIN, which is a tepid, tropical tearsfest.
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  • dm12

    dm12

    15 Mar, 2018 04:00 pm

    the carpet at Changi is also horrible
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  • Michael Gibbons

    rowwdy

    17 Mar, 2018 01:45 pm

    I wonder if they’ve done any research on the negative impact of this. It’s only a little thing, but always makes me think twice about SIN!
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  • Sanjay Prakash

    sanj747

    15 Mar, 2018 01:00 pm

    Yep agree with HK overall and the lounges. I would say in order of preference HK, SIN and then DXB.
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  • puppy79

    puppy79

    15 Mar, 2018 08:49 am

    the 787 via perth is mostly for business people or people who need to be in london urgently.i was just telling that to my brother the other day,he will if he has to go to london again stick with via hong kong(cathay)or jal via tokyo or going via singapore.the timings screw up your body clock.
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 05:11 pm

    @puppy79:
    "the 787 via perth is mostly for business people or people who need to be in london urgently".
    And those 2 traveler clusters are exactly why QF hv gone to the trouble of launching PER-LHR. These 2 clusters are the least price-sensitive but most time-sensitive among all traveler clusters in the Kangaroo route mkt.

    It's easy to imagine leisure traveler clusters whom can afford the time to enjoy whatever superior food, sightseeing, shopping, culture, etc. @ their SIN, HKG and god forbid DXB layovers /stopovers are much further down AJ's priority list of things to do to improve RoI for QF....I already know this comment will be unpopular for the majority of volks here thus I'm expecting a lot of vote downs...
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  • Bob Burgess

    Bob Burgess

    15 Mar, 2018 08:52 am

    I much prefer via Singapore except for the lounge experience. Yes its not a fair comparison against Emirates first class lounge but it was Qantas choice to return to Singapore, I fly to Singapore with QF regularly and I have seen nothing to indicate any changes being made to handle the vast increase in passengers, the lounge is already very crowded at peak times as is, and there is really nothing to make a first class passenger feel like they are first class in that lounge.
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  • jrfsp

    jrfsp

    15 Mar, 2018 09:34 am

    You never know, they might get a roped off area....nothing says first class like a bit of rope....
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    barbrawagner

  • eminere

    eminere

    15 Mar, 2018 11:17 am

    QF could take a leaf out of BA's book and emulate the Concorde Bar concept in their SIN lounge - a smart use of the existing space that provides a level of exclusivity for passengers in First.
    Member who gave thanks

    barbrawagner

  • John Hardy

    hardytraveller

    16 Mar, 2018 05:47 pm

    Amazes me as a regular J paying passenger (my money) that the lounge experience takes up so much discussion here.


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    worldwanderer

  • patrickk

    patrickk

    15 Mar, 2018 09:41 am

    I don’t mind going via Perth from Canberra and the stopover fees will be so much lower than Singapore for QF and one fewer (and faster) transfer experience for quit a few of us.
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  • xtfer

    xtfer

    15 Mar, 2018 02:22 pm

    This is only going to work if the single daily QF flight to Perth connects with the London flight. Right now, the Canberra flight touches down 45 minutes after it has left...
    Member who gave thanks

    barbrawagner

  • henrus

    henrus

    15 Mar, 2018 04:06 pm

    Unless you're willing to fly out from Canberra on a Saturday or Sunday at which point the transfers are only 1hr 5mintes making if the fastest connection to London at only 23hr 5mins.
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  • boeingimgoing

    boeingimgoing

    15 Mar, 2018 09:44 am

    Prefer to go via DXB. Timing on both sectors is good. Lounge in Singapore is going to be a challenge considering there are around 5-6 Qantas departures and other one world airlines leaving around the same time.
    Dubai as a destination has changed and I recently stopped there for 2 days and found the place had changed since I was there 5 years ago. I found it to be largely more cosmopolitan and largely more interesting than before, although I would avoid stopping over in the summer months due to the extreme temperatures. I would’ve liked Qantas to offer the choice of DXB, SIN and PER to keep the options open, especially for those that still ;refer QF metal on the long sector into DXB and EK on shorter hops to Europe.
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  • dm12

    dm12

    15 Mar, 2018 04:08 pm

    the QF departures "around the same time" are over a six hour period. More options are obviously less cost effective and would push airfares up. Having DXB as an overseas base cant be cheap

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  • CBR boy

    CBR boy

    15 Mar, 2018 10:03 am

    The other significant problem for QFFers who prefer to fly QF metal where possible is that flights to European destinations now require either a backtrack from QF1 into London or Emirates, Cathay or Finnair metal most of the way from Australia. When flying economy class on family holidays, Emirates is a dreadful comparison with the QF experience. Next economy trip to Europe is therefore with CX.
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  • habui

    habui

    15 Mar, 2018 10:16 am

    Understandably, some customers from the gay and Jewish communities never got comfortable with the Dubai routing.

    Sure, the airport is safe enough for transit. But sometimes things go wrong such as a plane going tech or snowstorms in Europe, meaning that passengers may need to enter Dubai proper for a day or two.
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  • Alex

    tm_smile

    15 Mar, 2018 10:31 am

    Cos you know, Singapore is such a fabulous advocate for LGBTIQ rights...
    Member who gave thanks

    auspointer

  • kimshep

    kimshep

    15 Mar, 2018 10:59 am

    .. but HKG will host Gay Games XI in 2022 which will be a major impact on LGBTIQ rights in the entire Asia region.
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  • habui

    habui

    15 Mar, 2018 11:03 am

    Far less likely to be harassed or persecuted in Singapore than Dubai.
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  • tmsmile

    tmsmile

    15 Mar, 2018 04:00 pm

    Same sex intercourse is still technically illegal in Singapore. And plenty of that still happens in Dubai.

    Human rights in Singapore frequently get overlooks by westerners because on the surface everything is fine.

    If you’re going to use a country’s laws to avoid stop overs, then you should research what happens in it before you advocate for it. Is Singapore as heavy handed as the UAE? In most cases, no, however they’re not exactly a great advocate of human rights.

    Taiwan has same sex marriage, yet Indonesia just toughened their stance on same sex relationships. Singapore heavily restricted the pink dot movement last year.

    Yes these issues are what some people take into account when choosing stopover cities, however if that were the case, I’d probably wouldn’t be choosing either of those cities. (For the record, i’d transit through either and an ambivalent about it)
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 05:25 pm

    @tmsmile:
    In other words, if U hv concerns/uncertainty about law or custom in other nations, always minimize the number of legal jurisdiction U hv to pass thru for a given journey fm A to B.

    In such case, for a simple journey between anywhere in AU to anywhere in the UK, hitching the PER-LHR by QF is the most logical choice....U hv only 1 more legal jurisdiction to deal with in addition to yr home country's.
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  • TheFreqFlyer

    TheFreqFlyer

    29 Apr, 2018 08:31 pm

    @tmsmile, I have one suggestion for you then. Transit through Bangkok. Thailand is the arguably the world's friendliest country for LGBT persons.
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  • worldwanderer

    worldwanderer

    29 Apr, 2018 08:55 pm

    Agreed. Bangkok is more interesting, less sterile, more friendly , "usually" more tolerant (but run by a military regime) and a cheaper stopover city.

    However, if I was running an airline, I'd probably be picking a major transit city that is less likely have random airport closures and city shut downs due to red and yellow supporters rioting, setting fire to things, and killing each other.
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  • TheFreqFlyer

    TheFreqFlyer

    29 Apr, 2018 08:28 pm

    Well how come no one has mentioned Bangkok yet? Bangkok is arguably the most gay friendly city in the world. Almost 1 million Aussies visit Thailand each year. Why the Qantas obsession with flying to Singapore? Do they have some kind of special deal with Changi Airport? Singapore Airlines already flies up to 5 times daily from Sydney to Singapore then there's Scoot, whereas Syd-Bkk is only served 3-4 times a day across all 3 carriers that serve the route. Going from Sydney to London via Bkk, it's a 9 hour flight followed by a 12 hour one. This is more balanced than the 8h/13-14h hour flight from SYD via SIN to London. Additionally, Bangkok is far more interesting with more things to do than Singapore, if you're looking for a stopover.
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  • jrfsp

    jrfsp

    15 Mar, 2018 10:39 am

    I am looking forward to the return to Singapore, and at least the four major cities have two route options of going to Europe on QF metal all the way. And for ADL, CBR and DRW, brings bring one stop option on QF via PER with hopefully more european destinations to be added.
    The SIN lounge will be busy, there is no doubt, but at least QF will be able to control standards which they couldn't at DXB, i I've never had a bad experience with the lounge staff in SIN, same cant be said for DXB where the lounge can resemble feeding time at the zoo. SIN is has less delays and issues with fog etc which is become a regular feature of DXB.
    DXB could never offer the "almost home" feeling of SIN, and the familiarity of the transit.
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 05:29 pm

    @jrfsp:
    "DXB could never offer the "almost home" feeling of SIN, and the familiarity of the transit."
    In these 2 regards alone, I would imagine PER would logically & easily be superior to both DXB and SIN....
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  • kimshep

    kimshep

    15 Mar, 2018 10:51 am

    Whilst this change from DXB to SIN may be beneficial or preferred for many travellers, it still has some inherent failure points which are being ignored by many.

    Think about why QF entered into the agreement with EK 5 years ago. Cost savings / better airfare pricing and improved access to European destinations were the two main criteria. Oh, and allying with your largest competitor.

    For those venturing to Europe (other than the UK) we will now be resigned to either backtracking using QF/OW partners to get to destinations such as Greece, Italy, Turkey, Poland, Germany etc - not great when this can entail multiple additional hours of travel .. and adds additional cost. Further, for many QF passengers, the preference will then be to book with EK either on a QF codeshare basis or swing over totally EK permanently - which results in a loss or reduced revenue.

    We all understand that QF has designs (eventually) to hopefully open PER-CDG and PER-FRA non-top services with further yet to be ordered B787-9's or possibly -10's. But how long will it be before this occurs?

    To my way of thinking, it would be smart for QF to maintain the DXB rights .. and eventually to run a set daily SYD/MEL/BNE-DBX services on B787's which could feed into EK's European network. As the market increases in size over the next 5 years, this would preserve the SYD-SIN-LHR vv A380 route whilst allowing the [return to] Europe routes to develop incrementally over time.

    Much of QF's plans for UK / Europe seem predicated on non-stop from PER to xxx which is fine for avoiding EK competition - but we are yet to see how successful that strategy is for LHR. Yes, it may work - but that doesn't guarantee that it will work for other cities in Europe such as CDG or FRA. I think the next few years are going to be particularly interesting.

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  • habui

    habui

    15 Mar, 2018 11:07 am

    There's also CX and JAL for 1-stop routes to a range of European destinations that don't require backtracking out of LHR.
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  • eminere

    eminere

    15 Mar, 2018 11:23 am

    Yes, but none of which are upgradeable using QF points. For those compelled to fly in economy to Europe (due to company travel policy etc) the great thing about the previous arrangement was you could travel on QF metal from Australia to DXB and therefore put in a points upgrade request for that longer leg, and then continue in economy on EK metal for the much shorter onward flight to Europe.
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  • kimshep

    kimshep

    15 Mar, 2018 12:21 pm

    Certainly true, habui - but these flights on CX, JL etc are code-share, not revenue-share for QF. Ergo, whilst this serves the passenger needs, it does not enhance QF's long-term revenue. QF would only receive revenue from the sectors flown on QF metal ie: SYD-HKG and/or SYD-HND (and return, if applicable).

    The trick is to maximise the amount of revenue on a pax itinerary. Without an immunised JBA (Joint Business Agreement) or 'revenue-share' agreement, which QF/CX and QF/JL have never had, it can be difficult. And since the routes you mentioned are effectively OW monopoly routes, there would be little to no possibility of JBA's being granted.

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  • habui

    habui

    15 Mar, 2018 01:14 pm

    Ok, but isn't "passenger needs" the key for travellers? Why should we as passengers care about where the revenue is going?
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  • kimshep

    kimshep

    16 Mar, 2018 10:09 am

    I agree that passenger needs are important .. however, airlines are businesses and 'passenger needs' (or wants) don't always accord completely with a company business model. The views above show that QF can meet a 'need' for flights to London, but the 'wants' in the views above suggest that this can be done via DXB, SIN, HKG, BOM etc. QF can't do them all so it has to choose which option best suits it's business model .. and that will be based on a huge range of factors.

    Why should we as passengers care about where the revenue is going? Most passengers consciously don't - but in reality, where and how the revenue goes is often determined by such points as interline agreements, code-share policies and .. you guessed it, JBA's where available. They are the points that influence our choice of carrier based on things such as price, destination availability, inter-lining luggage, earning FF points / SC's. QF is a business and needs to make a profit in order to grow .. and shareholders of private companies get vey grumpy if they don't see benefit in terms of profit, dividends and share price appreciation.

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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 06:03 pm

    @habui:
    "..isn't "passenger needs" the key for travellers?"
    It is and it should be. But it is equally true that yield or profitability is the key for commercial airlines(@ least for those not owned/protected by gov't) to survive and hopefully, thrive.

    "Why should we as passengers care about where the revenue is going?"
    Of course U should not. Then U can remain perpetually puzzled by why QF do this but not that or vice versa.....
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 05:50 pm

    @habui:
    "There's also CX and JAL for 1-stop routes to a range of European destinations...."
    A very limited "range of European destinations" this pair can reach relative to EK. Yr-round(i.e. not seasonal) European network size in 2018:
    JL=5 airports
    CX=13 airports
    EK=38 airports

    EK's network is 2.5x larger than JL+CX combined(Both they don't codeshare with each other in Europe).
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  • Sanjay Prakash

    sanj747

    15 Mar, 2018 11:19 am

    I am a fan of Singapore and am happy with QF moving back there. This change ultimately provides more options and choices for us as customers. in saying that the lounge in Singapore is not a favourite spot to spend time. But in Changi there are many things to do and simply wandering around makes the time pass by very easily.
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  • David Henshall

    Red Cee

    15 Mar, 2018 12:51 pm

    Kimshep, I agree with much of what you say. I would like to see QF introduce flights from PER to CDG, FRA and maybe FCO. It is easier and cheaper to connect from most Australian cities to PER, than to SYD. It makes a lot of sense to fly via Perth than Sydney. (I am in Brisbane, and it is around $100 to fly to LHR via Perth than Sydney). Not to mention shorter in travelling time.

    Long term, I believe Qantas should have 787’s flying directly to DXB from PER, SYD, MEL and BNE to connect with other European cities.
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  • Jason Hamilton

    JKH

    15 Mar, 2018 01:14 pm

    Bring it on!! I’m in SIN right now and it’s so much better.
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  • Joe

    Joe

    15 Mar, 2018 01:15 pm

    Not sure why everyone just buries their head in the sand about a couple of points:
    1. Qantas doesn't offer a true 'First' product in the air so the downgrade in lounge at SIN is in keeping with that i.e. Qantas 'First' is just a premium business experience as is the SIN QF lounge-compared to competing first rate carriers, charging the same money for a true First product.

    2. The Dubai stop over is much nicer than Changi lounge and connections wise to EU, Middle East and Africa are amazing - most with QF code share.
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  • Craig

    crwilkins

    15 Mar, 2018 01:19 pm

    Have to laugh at the comment in the article about business travelers and a “2 day stopover to break their journey”.....if only this luxury was true, who has time for that today - really transiting an airport who cares where it is when you just need to get where you’re going, and for someone who is Plat with QF and Diamond with DL can’t say I’ve ever had a 2 day stopover just to break my trip. Both SIN and DXB are wonderful cities and airports, obviously both very different cultures but doesn’t make one worse than the other in my view
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 06:26 pm

    @crwilkins:
    "Have to laugh at the comment in the article about business travelers and a “2 day stopover to break their journey”.....if only this luxury was true, who has time for that today."
    So true & realistic these days. If a biz traveler is making a 2days stopover @ wherever, it is for another 2days of work @ that city, not sightseeing, not shopping/gourmet dining, not soaking in the culture, etc. However, so many reader comments made here about the relative merits of these stopover cities are all aligned with the "2 day stopover to break their journey" ideal. To me, these hv a very leisure travel tone about it.

    IMHO, if flying between AU and UK is for work, even a 5hrs layover /transit @ the stopover point is a luxury these days. Real biz travelers will seek a flight schedule that can reduce the layover to an absolute minimum or near the MCT(Minimum Connection Time).
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  • brettepi

    brettepi

    15 Mar, 2018 02:42 pm

    wont the overall flying time be longer now that it goes via singapore? i thought it was a lot quicker to go via dubai
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  • Nick  Sydney 348

    Nick Sydney 2

    15 Mar, 2018 02:54 pm

    I am in the minority but have grown accustomed to the DXB stop and the superb lounges there. There is so much hot air on these boards about how great Changi is. It is and I'm a regular to SIN. However we are talking about a transit. Those on Gold/Plat, Sapphire/Emerald (likely business passengers) just do not have the luxury of a two day stop to meander through Singapore. The DXB lounges are just bigger and better than the QF Singapore Lounge. Also the loss of connectivity into Europe by flying into DXB on QF and than EK elsewhere. Cest la vie
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  • aniljak

    aniljak

    15 Mar, 2018 04:12 pm

    How about an alternative to both Singapore and Dubai?
    What about reviving the old QF9 route Melbourne - Bombay - London of the late 80s? Tap into the fast growing indian economy and huge Indian population in Melbourne.
    Not sure why Bombay was dropped or when. Terminal in Bombay was shocking then but Indian airports are now modern and efficient!
    KLM also flew 747-200 Melbourne Colombo Amsterdam although very heavily weight restrcicted in summer.
    Whatever happened to the Qantas proposal for Australia- Shanghai - Europe of a few years ago?


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  • Himeno

    Himeno

    15 Mar, 2018 04:17 pm

    Most issues with such routes come down 5th freedom rights and what is allowed under the air service agreements.
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  • FLX

    FLX

    16 Mar, 2018 08:00 pm

    @aniljak:
    "What about reviving the old QF9 route Melbourne - Bombay - London of the late 80s?"
    If use BOM instead of SIN or DXB as stopover, it will help QF to immediately GET RID of all opportunities to connect LHR traffic to/fm other AU mkts except MEL itself. Brilliant network move to REDUCE geog mkt coverage & traffic feed.

    "Tap into the fast growing indian economy"
    Which is a grand but vague idea great for PR messaging. In reality for such QF9, it's really only about capturing traffic on MEL-BOM or BOM-LHR. MEL-BOM does not hv nonstop by anyone for ages so U can imagine the realistic mkt size. BOM-LON is a huge mkt but already populated by 3 competitors and U can bet more local upstarts will want in now that India airline industry dereg is finally a reality.
    "...huge Indian population in Melbourne."
    Which is great but obviously, not all of them are fm the BOM metro region. For these non-BOM folks in Melbourne, a MEL-BOM QF route is not particularly superior to the numerous 1stop services by MH, TG, SG, Scoot, AirAsia, Malindo/Batik, etc.to destinations across India...

    "Not sure why Bombay was dropped or when."
    Why:
    MEL-BOM-LHR for QF9 worked in the late 80s because so many connecting hubs on the Kangaroo track today were too far to economically reach either MEL(e.g. fm DXB) or LHR(e.g. fm SIN) nonstop with the aircraft types existed back then. Naturally, this meant very few competitors can offer 1stop routing in the late 80s. Today, there must be @ least 2 dozens competitors all offering 1 stop MEL-London via their own hubs which offer them huge cost+scale+traffic feed advantage. BOM clearly was not a QF hub so MEL-BOM-LHR has no chance to survive in today's competition.

    When:
    Must be around the time when 744 or even 343 /772ER, types that can easily fly 14hrs nonstop, became abundant in the fleets of these competitors....circa mid to late 90s?

    "Indian airports are now modern and efficient!"
    Which has more relevance to pax users than airlines. Without traffic feed fm a QF or partner network, BOM is a pretty useless stopover for QF even if it's SkyTrax #1 airport in the world.

    "Whatever happened to the Qantas proposal for Australia- Shanghai - Europe of a few years ago?"
    Let's ignore the fact that PVG-Europe mkt is now over-saturated with so many competitors fighting. How successful do U think QF hv been in securing more slots fm PVG to support the Shanghai-Europe route segment given the hopelessly congested PVG?
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  • TheFreqFlyer

    TheFreqFlyer

    29 Apr, 2018 08:36 pm

    @aniljak, Bombay (Mumbai) doesn't make much sense as a stopover destination nor does it attract non-Indian Australians. Bangkok however does. Can't make sense of Qantas' obsession with Singapore, they should really consider Bangkok, through which they used to offer onward flights to London until a couple of years ago. Bangkok is also more attractive to Australian travelers than Shanghai. Although there is now a 6-day visa-free option for Shanghai, you can't leave Shanghai or Zhejiang province, whereas you can get a 30-day visa waiver at Bangkok airport allowing travel throughout Thailand.
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  • Himeno

    Himeno

    15 Mar, 2018 04:13 pm

    The only thing I liked about DXB was the Concourse A lounges. The rest of the airport was terrible.

    Will have to see if the PER-LHR works, or if QF goes back to having a stop over somewhere after a year or so.

    The QF SIN lounge is going to get even more insane then it has been. It currently serves 1 737 (PER), 1 787 (JQ MEL) and up to 5 A330 (1 BNE, 2 SYD, 2 MEL). When that becomes 1 737, 1 787, 3 A380 (SYD, MEL, LHR) and 3 A330 (SYD, MEL, BNE)...

    The main thing I liked about SIN before the EK agreement was the old QF32 times (lunch time LHR departure, morning SIN arrival). Gave me a chance to go into the city for the day before getting a late afternoon/evening flight to wherever in Asia my next stop was, or a flight back home. But QF2 uses the evening LHR slot and arriving in SIN in the afternoon :(.
    QF10, with the lunch time LHR slot, worked quite well into DXB, but the LHR-PER route just doesn't factor in to my travel plans. :(
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  • Performa

    Performa

    15 Mar, 2018 04:13 pm

    Time will tell what pax prefer, adjustments will be inevitable, DXB is now a QF adjustment, PER may well too. Interestingly for EK to LGW it is their third most popular route into LGW , and now QR are returning to LGW with 16 weekly flights. SIN just does not have the connecting network that DXB or DOH has, and five years ago when QF used SIN as a hub, you could not fly direct as you can today into various Asian cities from MEL and SYD. I'm not sure that SIN is as important for those reasons?

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  • Performa

    Performa

    15 Mar, 2018 04:15 pm

    Third most popular route from PER into UK
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  • Dex

    Dex

    15 Mar, 2018 04:34 pm

    What about the people who have to travel to the Middle East only?

    I understand that after QF switches to SIN, people who want to travel to DXB from SYD have only EK metal to fly on. Given than QFF privileges still apply because all EK flights are QF codeshared, but doesn't the SYD-DXB route have demand?

    Will QF add a SYD-DXB only flight? Any updates on that

    P.S. EK is adding another A380 to the SYD-DXB route, so clearly there's demand.
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  • Himeno

    Himeno

    15 Mar, 2018 07:43 pm

    EK doesn't have much choice. They only have 777s and 380s. They are also able to spread demand for 140 destinations across a single connecting flight.

    That EK is adding seats to AU-DXB to make up for QF pulling seats, thus allowing QF pax access to non LHR destinations in Europe while reducing seats to NZ, which QF is picking up, is no surprise and has little to do with demand.
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  • Aportbuzz

    Aportbuzz

    15 Mar, 2018 07:29 pm

    Agree the change is welcome. Transiting DXB can be a challenge, especially for the elderly and incapacitated. Always a buzz flying into Changi.
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  • puppy79

    puppy79

    15 Mar, 2018 08:27 pm

    The Change is well overdue.I have seen Ultimate Airport Dubai and the airport there is a maze to deal with.I have done the UK/Europe TRIP ONCE BEFORE albeit with Singapore Airlines via Singapore and it was way better.This time around I am on Qatar Airways to Budapest travelling through Doha and coming home from Munich same path.will be keen to see how that compares to Changi.
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  • MarkJohnSon

    MarkJohnSon
    Banned

    15 Mar, 2018 09:00 pm

    I'm usually the first one to praise QF... however, whilst SIN is certainly preferable to DXB, I'd much rather see them set up 'stop-over shop' in HKG. The lounges are far superior, the airport is just as efficient as SIN, and, most importantly, HKG is actually a place one may want to spend time in outside of the airport.

    Sad!
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  • Pushka

    Pushka

    15 Mar, 2018 10:15 pm

    I like the longer leg from Dubai to Australia, and much prefer the Lounges in Dubai as the rare time I’ve been in the Singapore lounge its been overcrowded, noisy and lots of kids just running free. Poor food choices. It will need to improve a lot for F passengers.
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  • justindboyd

    justindboyd

    15 Mar, 2018 10:52 pm

    About time !!! Dubai is a dump and a repressive society
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  • Anthony Spasevski

    Zaps1971

    16 Mar, 2018 02:56 pm

    Ok we are talking about the new route, not about been GAY (nothing against Gays) but seriously you all know what the Middle Eastern feel about that..
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    Masonic Phantom

  • Justin.  Binko

    Justinbinko

    16 Mar, 2018 02:59 pm

    Singapore airport is a little outdated but very functional. Singapore lounge willl not cope - was there last week and imposible to find a seat. Also food is pretty average compared to EK first class lounge in DXB. Whilst Singapore is a brilliant stop over, getting to any European destination was easy from DXB now you’ll have to fly EK and not QF If your looking for that.
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  • Lynda Ford

    Lynda44

    16 Mar, 2018 03:10 pm

    I'm happy for this change as vodafone does not have the $5 per day plan in Dubai and I was charged for data - wait for it - $380.00!!!!! to post my location on facebook. I travel via Dubai this week and won't even turn my phone on. I trael back via Singapore which is part of the $5 per day plan, so bring it on!
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  • crosscourt

    crosscourt

    16 Mar, 2018 03:27 pm

    No more of that clinical over priced city, Dubai, and its cold soulless F lounge and an airport that I don't find nice at all. Welcome back Singapore.
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  • Robertybob

    Robertybob

    16 Mar, 2018 03:31 pm

    Let's remember a couple of things. Qantas will still offer its customers DXB via codeshare for those going to Europe at odd times of day or to secondary EU cities. But DXB is too close to Europe to offer a full sleeping leg for its breakfast arrivals into London (ie QF1), but the legs are perfect for lunchtime arrivals into LHR (ie the soon-to-be ex-QF9 and EK flights out of MEL and SYD late at night). QF via SIN will offer the best chance to sleep into Europe (the new QF1), and with some re-timings it could offer good one-stop links from all Australian secondary cities. QF via PER offers a good new option for a lunchtime arrival into Europe, and with better timings down the track will also offer more one-stop connections from ADL, BNE and even SYD. All the while QFFs can still book on codeshare via DXB, albeit without the upgrade ability. It adds up to a win-win-win for flyer choice in my opinion. If the PER hub takes off and BNE to Paris and SYD to Frankfurt are added soon the QF network will offer great customer flexibility without crippling QF with the costs of its old network where SIN and HKG were hubs.
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  • Merry

    Merry

    16 Mar, 2018 03:46 pm

    Ecstatic! For women, Dubai was a complete pain. Nothing wrong with QF's current Lounge in Changi, but it will not take Qantas long to secure a lounge for First Class/ Platinum to ease crowding.
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    JIG

  • antkleve

    antkleve

    16 Mar, 2018 03:53 pm

    It's not just the LGBT thing in Dubai. Any place where you can be banged up without trial for years on end for any relatively minor infractions should be avoided like the plague. I even heard a story about a guy who was sent to jail because somebody took offence to a breast cancer awareness shirt that he was wearing when he was transiting through DXB.
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  • Nick  Sydney 348

    Nick Sydney 2

    16 Mar, 2018 05:24 pm

    Getting banged up for years without trial. Bit like those banged up in camps on Nauru ....?
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  • Alan Davis

    Alaninperth

    16 Mar, 2018 04:05 pm

    What if like me you have a Qantas booking for May that goes through Dubai on my return to Perth from London and also goes through Dubai on the Singapore London - will this change to the new arrangements?
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  • billposters

    billposters

    16 Mar, 2018 04:41 pm

    Based in Brisbane and never fly to London/Europe, only to SE Asia so this is good for me. The A380 is a nice option to get to Singapore. For my sake I hope that QF won't start retiming QF 35 and QF 51 to link up to the London flight. Pre-2013 this made it a real pain to connect intra-Asia, as it often meant an overnight stop.
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  • mviy

    mviy

    17 Mar, 2018 12:57 pm

    QF35 is the A380 flight and isn't being retimed for a good connection time to QF1. Even if they did decide to eventually they'd likely switch the timing with the A330 flight that offers a good connection time to the SIN flight. So there will be choices.
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    David

  • HEM bAKMIWEWA

    wewa

    16 Mar, 2018 04:45 pm

    This is all will happen again and again. Earlier it was Bahrain now it is DXB going out. When the QF/BA partnership was terminated QF married EK and said many things and lots of publicity was given saying that was thee thing forever. QF even stopped Frankfurt and said will carry passengers to DXB and the EK world of europe was thee thing as passengers can travel easily out of DXB. So now DXB is dropped means EK onwards has not paid off.
    QF going to start Paris again good.
    QF must fly to few more European cities for sure with the new aircraft B787.
    For QF1/2 and QF9/10 singapore is the best no doubt.
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  • Nick  Sydney 348

    Nick Sydney 2

    16 Mar, 2018 04:46 pm

    There are some very precious folk on the board or folk who simply have not travelled. Certainly the UAE has laws that are repressive in our eyes. However what about the death penalty that Singapore has. Same for the USA. These breach human rights somewhere and yet we think nothing of travelling to both. The reaction to the switch to SIN is a bit OTT. Unless stopping for a day or two we are talking about a pit stop for 120 minutes to take fuel and food on board. Changi is magnificent as is DXB. Do i go to either for the shopping? No. Straight to the lounge. Freshen up and onward.
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  • Ingo Reisch

    Crane62

    16 Mar, 2018 04:54 pm

    I am surely many of you have covered this already, however, whilst I do like Singapore as a hub, the problem to me is the total lack of Europe destinations being restricted to London only, if you want to stay true to QF hardware. Dubai has been an amazing pivot point allowing us to pretty much get into any major city in Europe. To a point the 5 year diversion to Dubai has made Emirates even stronger, as many loyal QF patrons have been exposed to the more lavish pointy part of the Emirates fleet. No doubt QF will provide code shared flights via Dubai to their clients, which will further cement the passenger-Emirates relationship but will also remove any upgrade options as upgrades are not enabled on non-QF hardware.

    Emirates has got the domination down pat even giving Qatar and in particular Etihad a major challenge.

    The Singapore QF lounges will be great and surely QF would have done an extensive study like in LA to establish what capacity they need. It is difficult to compare Emirates lounges with the QF ones.....just a different style all together. QF is far more modern with a very unique design edge and Emirates is very heavy, glitzy and nearly dare I say old fashion.
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  • John

    VZ1_60

    16 Mar, 2018 05:55 pm

    I think the Dubai route for a day flight to Europe ex Perth is a better experience. Whilst is a 6.00am start, you can have a full day experience on the flight, short changeover, then fly on the most places in Europe arriving early evening, a good sleep that night refreshed for the next day and in the timezone straight away.

    The new route means a day flight to Singapore, then an extended wait, then a night flight (assuming it will be ex Singapore midnight or thereabouts) getting into western Eurpoe 1st thing in the morning. A long day ......

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  • Cap'nDave

    Cap'nDave

    16 Mar, 2018 07:52 pm

    Will this apply to London to Melbourne flights also without having to reach Melbourne via Perth or Sydney?
    Having Melbourne as first destination now necessary when shipping a dog as a 10 day quarantine is mandatory (even after lengthy anti rabies preparation in UK) in Mickleham 18klms North of Tullamarine and of course the non stop London to Perth is out of the question for an animal anyway.
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  • worldwanderer

    worldwanderer

    16 Mar, 2018 10:17 pm

    Been thru DBX twice. Once with a stopover, once in transit.
    Resolved never to do it again.
    Huge walking distances, insufficient showers, extremely rude bureaucracy at immigration, soulless city, uncertain and inconsistent application of law, women treated like trash.

    The last couple years went thru HKG each time, a much better experience.

    The change back to SIN gives me another acceptable option.

    Can I point out to all those giving the route a downer with lounge commentary - the flight experience is 5-6 times longer than most transits. The on board experience is far more important to me, the lounge a bonus.
    Member who gave thanks

    JIG

  • aniljak

    aniljak

    17 Mar, 2018 05:26 pm

    There are a couple of things people are forgetting here as to why Singapore is so popular
    1) Singapore has been voted favorite airport consistently for many years whilst Dubai is well down the list!
    2) 80 % of passengers are flying economy and dont use lounges!
    3) Singapore is both a business and tourist destination for Australians whilst Dubai has little of both
    4) Singapore has far less congestion than Dubai leading to less delays and diversions
    5) Singapore does not require a long range aircraft for nonstop service from Australia
    6)Quick efficient and polite immigration and customs in Singapore
    Member who gave thanks

    JIG

  • Johnny9

    Johnny9

    18 Mar, 2018 09:50 am

    I don’t understand the irrational unjustified fuss about the SIN lounge.

    Flying business to EU I’d prefer direct isle access, privacy seat and an inflight bar any time over the outdated Skybed II on the QF A380. I’d think that the comfort for 20h+ in mid-air would be more important to most travelers than a 2h transit in an overcrowded SIN lounge.

    I’m flying both to SIN and EU - and as much as I like SIN as an airport, flying from AUS to Central Europe I’d prefer QR or EK(QF ticket) any day ( both in J and Y) for comfort, convenience (only 1stop, no backtrack via horrendous LHR) and time reasons
    Member who gave thanks

    JIG

  • puppy79

    puppy79

    18 Mar, 2018 10:20 am

    the only real advantage with Dubai is for people flying with EK from places within europe or the uk straight through to adelaide,perth,melbourne,sydney and brisbane and are not starting in london.i would rather fly via dubai although singapore is my preferred stopover of choice if flying straight through and be home the next day the following evening.
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  • Dr Al

    Dr Al

    18 Mar, 2018 12:06 pm

    Have to say I am very happy with the move back to SIN. After many years of transit in Dubai being the only QF option I am pleased that now I am offered both. QF codeshare via DXB (at least I hope there will still be on the ex ADL flights!

    Sin is definitely my preferred option for a stopover, if time allows.

    Personally I wish that QF and Qatar would get into bed. IMHO the Qatar service has far outshone EK. Doha has great European connections.

    I have previously chosen to accept the lower status credits and points to take QR over a QF codeshare on EK due to price,timing, and service.
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  • Adam T

    AT

    18 Mar, 2018 02:24 pm

    Which ever way you look at it I still think it’s a shame that QF is losing a fairly major global city from their online network.
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  • les harvey

    cambriamarsh

    18 Mar, 2018 07:29 pm

    Refer tje other thread on QP lounge access in DXB. It will be interesting to see if QP members in Y retain lounge access in DXB. If not that will be very unpopular given the EK tie up is all about getting QF passengers one stop access to more of Europe.
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  • Andrew

    EKdevotee

    20 Mar, 2018 05:49 am

    I for one love DXB. I worked there for 11 years and I have to say that all the armchair experts out there about safety/lgbt treatment/treatment of women do not know the place. Armchair experts. Yes Emiratis can sometimes be aloof but I worked with many of them and I find them to be good people with attributes that many of we Australians should aspire to.

    Contrary to misguided belief expressed here, there are many Australian businesses thriving in the UAE, particularly in Dubai. Official stats show that Australians are a significant and growing proportion of tourists visiting the Emirates.

    On a personal note, I much prefer DXB terminal 3 concourses to the shabby and dated offering in Singapore, where I often stop on my way to the UAE, Africa, EU and USA. The only really good part of Changi is the Emirates lounge.

    Also I'm delighted that ultra shabby and rude Qantas will no longer pass through Dubai. As an airline that has consistently disappointed me in the past, I will never step inside Q metal again. And I have many a belly laugh when I read the constant carping about poor Qantas behaviour by self-confessed Q frequent flyers. Wake up people!

    Yes Emirates is certainly not perfect. Some things definitely need improvement. CR in particular, but Qantas is equally woeful there.

    The best thing about Qantas no longer using Dubai is that there will be less QF plats cluttering up the superb F lounges in concourses A and B. Another punishment of loyal and misguided Qantas FFs who will only fly QF metal. Good luck I say. I'm EK platinum and the treatment EK gives its premium passengers is much better than the poor Qantas effort. I certainly don't miss what Qantas does to its misguidedly loyal customers
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  • puppy79

    puppy79

    20 Mar, 2018 06:40 am

    What this as codeshares via dubai with emirates gave us was one stop access to a lot of europe that required backtracking in the old days due to qantas quietly dropping the ports during the late eighties and early nineties.will be missed.i look forward to reading up on any reviews on the qf9/qf10 via perth to see how that stacks up with any singapore,dubai or other intermediate stops on the way to the continent as it's a trip one of the admins at my old high school has done quite a bit over the years.
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  • puppy79

    puppy79

    22 Mar, 2018 08:57 am

    great move but for this to work is to maybe reinstate the adelaide to singapore flights.bring back the soon to be axed QF5/QF6 services from Sydney to hub via ADL on their way to Singapore say four to five times a week to link onto the QF1.via Perth is not for everyone and unless you are one of those people who works a full day to say 3pm and does that then choose a QATAR OR EMIRATES late night service out via DUBAI OR DOHA to London due to prior commitments to be over there the following day mid afternoon,than time this dependent on time of year leaving between 1:30pm and 3pm ADL-SIN connecting with a great connection to the UK.Currently QR/EK aside the existing other connections are just terrible.8 to 10 hours in transit in HKG,KUL,SIN with all of their competitors is not pleasant even if one can get a transit hotel any price.
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  • Heath

    heathcor

    28 Mar, 2018 08:21 pm

    Has anyone has flown this week on recently changed QF1 route via SGN to LHR and how was the Qantas lounge? was it as crowded as the concerns raised on here by some? Did they provide a segregated area for First Class; or direct them to another One World lounge? flying in two weeks and keen to see some reviews... cheers
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18 Jul, 2019 09:16 am

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