At 17+ hours, Qatar Airways’ longest flight is back in the air

On the long trek between Auckland and Doha, the airline’s cosy business class Qsuite is definitely the place to be.

By Chris Ashton, May 11 2023
At 17+ hours, Qatar Airways’ longest flight is back in the air

Qatar Airways’ non-stop link between Doha and Auckland ranks among the world’s longest flights, and after a pandemic-induced pause it’s finally set to soar once again.

Just how long? Think 16 hours from Doha to Auckland, and to a whopping 17 hours and 15 minutes on the return leg.

This places it just behind the gold medal marathon of Singapore Airlines’ non-stop Singapore-New York service (up to 18h35m) and Air New Zealand’s  New York-Auckland NZ1 (17h35m)

Taking wing from September 1, the rebounded connection has been on the cards for some time – more a matter of when, not if. Because while Aucklanders have been transitting via Adelaide since April 2022 in the meantime, a direct service was always set to return.

Business class on the Boeing 787 is fitted with 46 front and rear-facing suites.
Business class on the Boeing 787 is fitted with 46 front and rear-facing suites.

(Though arguably a win for those on the other side of the Tasman it will be a loss for the City of Churches, with Qatar Airways pulling the plug on its Adelaide to Auckland service now that Adelaide-Doha continues as a standalone flight.)

Jetting off daily on the Airbus A350, boasting 46 forward and rear-facing Qsuite business class suites cocooned behind high walls and sliding privacy doors, QR920/921 between Doha and Auckland makes for a particularly fine way to fly.

A staggered layout sees some seats facing backwards but positioned closer to the window rather than the door, lending them a more of a private jet feel. (If you want to select those seats when making your booking, choose the A or K seats at rows 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 and 11.)

Qsuite business class has a 21.5-inch screen on which to enjoy 4000+ programs.
Qsuite business class has a 21.5-inch screen on which to enjoy 4000+ programs.

The early departure from Doha will see those lie-flat business beds put to good use shortly after take-off, though with a flight time just shy of 16 hours, there’s more than enough opportunity to enjoy other onboard features such as Dine on Demand meals.

As for the 17-plus hour return from Auckland, that’s enough to binge multiple movies and TV series, or perhaps enjoy a wine tasting through some of the premium drops onboard.

From September 1, the schedule operates as follows:

  • QR920 from Doha to Auckland sees wheels up at 01:50, touching down at 02:45 one day later.
  • QR921 from Auckland to Doha departs at 15:00 and arrives at 23:15 local time.

Once daylight savings kicks in from September 24, both flights will arrive and depart one hour later, respectively.

Lie-flat seats are fitted with plush bedding when you need some shut-eye.
Lie-flat seats are fitted with plush bedding when you need some shut-eye.

Bookings are open from today, with those already holding tickets via Adelaide being re-accommodated on the new flight.

In Doha, business class travellers can enjoy the airline’s freshly-opened Al Mourjan – Garden Lounge, in addition to the existing Al Mourjan Business Lounge.

Qatar Airways Privilege Club and Oneworld members, as well as frequent flyer members including Velocity Gold and Platinum, have access to the airline’s spacious Platinum and Gold frequent flyer lounges at Doha Hamad Airport.

11 May 2023

Total posts 2

Sounds fine - until you learn how many status credits QR give. An astoundingly stingy 80 from AKL to DOH. Qantas give 85 to fly from Auckland to Sidney. This should earn 180, by Oneworld mileage tables. 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 687

Is that miserly 85 SCs just on that QR sector (ACL-DOH), or is it typical of all QR sectors over 9,000 miles (14,500 Kms)?

11 May 2023

Total posts 2

I think it applies to Australia to Doha. Not true of Doha to Bangkok or London. They are taking Kiwis for a ride, in both senses

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

16 Jan 2018

Total posts 50

The unnaturally low number of SCs given happens if you credit the flight to your Qantas Frequent Flyer account. If you credit it to Avios, I am sure you will get decent SCs (or equivalent metrics they use).

QFF gives low SCs for flights involving Doha from/to Europe/Australia, so you could be flying other Oneworld airlines from Doha to Europe or Australia and you still get very low SCs.

I might be wrong, but I recall QFF also gives low SCs for MH on certain routes to Asia from Australia.

I guess it is an attempt for Australia-based customers to choose Qantas?


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