Flying from Sydney to Dubai in Emirates' private first class suite on an Airbus A380 can cost you around $11,000.
Or it can cost you $400.12, if you're smart enough to use Qantas Frequent Flyer points.
My name is Steve Hui, and my company iFLYflat helps businesses make the most out of earning and using their reward points to get free airfares.
So when I had to fly to Dubai last week to speak about loyalty at the Web In Travel Middle East 2015 conference, it presented a perfect opportunity to 'walk my talk' and use Qantas Points to try out Emirates' highly-regarded A380 first class.
I booked my Emirates first class suite with just 144,000 Qantas Points plus $400.12 in fees and taxes.
Flying Emirates first class comes with some welcome preflight perks, such as a complimentary chauffeur drive at both ends of the journey plus access to Qantas and Emirates first class lounges in Sydney and Dubai.
My EK415 flight – which can also be booked as Qantas flight QF8415, to ensure you earn a full serve of frequent flyer points and status credits if you pay a full fare instead of using points – left Sydney at 6am.
The cabin is opulent and comfortable.
After settling into my suite, a pair of pyjamas and a glass of champagne were quickly provided.
First class time is always champagne time, any time of the day.
And I have 14 hours of pure on-board bliss stretching out ahead of me.
In no time, we're off the ground in a very smooth takeoff. The cabin noise is very low, even without the supplied noise-cancelling headphones.
Time for breakfast – waffles seem like a good choice.
Soon after that, caviar is served.
It feels like I'm dining in a five-star restaurant at 40,000 feet.
First class passengers have access to two inflight showers.
You nominate a time-slot and the shower suite is prepared for you.
You get 30 minutes in the shower suite, with five minutes of running water and a gauge indicating the remaining time.
There's also a bar towards the back of the upper deck business class cabin.
It's a good place to mingle to pass the time.
I meet a few people. One was going to Kenya for a safari, and received a surprise upgrade from economy to business class. Another was heading to Venice to visit her granddaughter (she was flying on points - smart!). Another off to Ireland with his family (his company paid).
I tried a glass of Hennessy Paradis cognac, which turned out to be the most expensive drink on the menu – a single bottle retails for AUD$1,000.
I'm not a cognac drinker, but I like the Hennessy so now seems like a good time to start!
Ready for a nap, to take the edge of that early morning start?
The flight attendant will prepare your bed.
Ensure your privacy by pressing a button to close the suite's door and the window shades.
Once the doors are closed the suite feels surprisingly spacious. And it seems Emirates is planning an even bigger first class suite with a private bedroom.
Before I knew it, we were arriving at the massive Dubai International Airport.
14 hours of flying time seemed too short – I didn't even watch a movie.
This was without doubt the best $400.12 I ever spent!
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