TRIP REPORT: Qatar Airways, Belgrade - Doha

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Written by BEG Flyer

Travelled from Belgrade to Doha last week. In my opinion, Qatar Airways is the best of the MEB3 airlines in terms of service quality and value for money.

Check-in at Belgrade is done at the newish mid-terminal area with five desks being used. The flight was quite full and there was one vacant seat in business class. At check in there were a lot of Indians and Chinese queuing up.



After check-in I went to the Business Club lounge which has all the basics.




Qatar Airways uses the A321 on their Belgrade flights which feature the old short-haul business class. Since they will be retiring this aircraft type, I don’t think they will be refitting them with new cabins.




The crew on board was nice. There was a Serbian purser and a Filipino stewardess working the cabin. Both came by and introduced themselves personally. Prior to departure, you choose your welcome drink and the menus and hot or cold towel are distributed.





We took off on time and the meal orders were taken. Since they have a dine anytime concept, you can request when to have your food served. Qatar Airways has a limited menu. By this I mean that on many short haul flights you will have exactly the same meal choices, and even on some long haul flights you will see the same meals being offered. It’s as if they have a small selection of dishes which they use throughout their network which I find a bit odd for an airline of its size. Prior to the meal, a drink and some warm assorted nuts are served.






The flight was very smooth and the crew courteous. They came around several times asking passengers if they needed anything. The Serbian crew member obviously spoke Serbian to the passengers. The A321s don’t have wifi but there is a personal TV screen at each seat with a large range of movies and TV shows.



Prior to landing the purser came over to each passenger to thank them for flying with Qatar Airways. We landed in Doha slightly ahead of schedule and disembarked via an air bridge.



Doha Airport is without doubt the best among the Gulf airports since it is modern and new, functional and without all the bling and gold you might see at other nearby airports.



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Comments

  1. Nice report, there isn't a pic of the meal they served?

    I am not surprised that there were many Asians on the flight. I think SU and QR are profitting the most. Hopefully they keep the extra three flights in winter!

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    Replies
    1. I realized I accidentally forgot to send in the meal pics. Admin has added them now.

      I travel to the Middle East often because of work and have taken all the three Mid East airlines from Belgrade several times - Etihad, Qatar and Flydubai and out of them I would say Qatar consistently has the most passengers from Asia - primarily China. Also from what I see they carry a lot of Chinese living in Serbia because I notice they know Serbian but don't speak English.

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  2. Gr8 report, thanks!

    QR is a superior airline in all senses. Flown with them to SE Asia several times but not in business.
    Hamad is nice airport too and much better than the previous one.
    Lets see if QR will have success with the new late evening flights departing from BEG. If so, it is likely for them to see extend them in winter too.

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    Replies
    1. I think they need those flights because connectivity isn't great at the moment.

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  3. thank you for the great report. I normally like them, but recently we had some rather disappointing experiences with them:

    1) before leaving Indonesia, a customs inspector insisted that we need a paper signed by a QR rep, but they refused without explaining why. we had to organize a DHL shipment (not cheep!)
    2) on a flight to SJJ the croatian flight attendant refused to help her asian co-workers with communication to bosnian passengers that could not comprehend their kind of English
    3) on two flights they made a big fuss about serving beer ("because of ramadan") but somehow wine and spirits were fine; (the problem is not their rules, but the behaviour of the FA)

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  4. Very nice article, totally what I was looking for.

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  5. I hope Vinci is also planning to build a business class lounge for non-Etihad group travelers, the way any airline can include the usage of it in the fare.

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    Replies
    1. There already is a lounge for non-Etihad airlines. Why would they build another?

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    2. This one, presented in this trip report, looks very gloomy and empty. It is actually not a business class lounge, but a VIP/diplomatic lounge geared towards general aviation and officials. Many people here remember the controversy on pricing items procured for trimming that proforma lounge back in mid-2000s. Like a fork being paid for hundreds of euros or something. It never saw a good usage, because not much demand fro general aviation users, so they gave it out to other airlines. A new business lounge should be better positioned. For some future use it shall be elevated to a separate flor and have a link to C-concourse array to separate jetways for business class in wide body aircrafts. This is what makes serious airports better than average ones.

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    3. This is not a diplomatic lounge it is the Business Club lounge used by all airlines other than Etihad, Air Serbia and Atlasglobal. It's not gloomy at all (sorry if the pictures don't do it justice) and is usually very busy, has good food choices and good bathroom facilities. The airport has a VIP lounge but that is only used by VIP passengers.

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    4. You can see morempics of the lounge in my other trip report

      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2019/04/trip-report-austrian-belgrade-vienna.html

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    5. BTW, Premium longue accept travellers from more companies, not just those 3.

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    6. That's true. If you are flying with any airline and pay an entry fee you can enjoy the Air Serbia lounge.

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    7. No, I wasn't talking about that - as far as I remember there are some other logos at entrance to Premium lounge. This was changing from time to time so I cant recall current status :)

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    8. They only changed dependent on which Etihad owned airline went out of business or left the alliance. Alitalia used to use the lounge but not anymore. Now it's just Etihad, Air Serbia and Atlasglobal. They also have the Virgin Australia logo at the entrence :)

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  6. It is a beautiful picture with very good light :o

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