Review: Qatar A350-1000 QSuites Business (IAH-DOH)

Finally, after a positioning flight from Dallas and a couple of lounge visits during our layover in Houston, it was time for the star of the show. I had seen plenty of photos online but now it was my turn to fly the A350 in Qatar’s awesome business class QSuite.


One way cash fares for our travel dates were over $5000 per person from the US to the Maldives so redeeming points was our best option. Since we needed 2 award seats we were limited in the options that we had since I could only find one seat through American AAdvantage on most flights, including the DFW-DOH flight. Houston had two openings so we jumped on that and redeemed 70,000 AAdvantage miles each and paid $7.20 in taxes and fees.

Though AAdvantage isn’t transfer partners with any major travel credit cards, Qatar does use Avios as their frequent flyer currency which does have transfers for a number of credit cards.


We landed in Terminal C on our flight from Dallas. Since United and Qatar aren’t partners, we reclaimed our luggage at baggage claim and took the tram over to Terminal D where Qatar’s check in counters are located.

a luggage cart in an airport
a sign in a building
a hallway with a sign and people walking

When we arrived in the check-in area, the line stretched all the way down to the nearby baggage claim carousel so it looked like this was going to be a full flight! Thankfully there was a separate lane for Business Class passengers as even the priority lane had a longer line. There was a family in front of us but within five minutes we had our boarding passes in hand, documents checked, and our bags tagged through to Male and we headed off to security. With no line at security we were airside only a couple of minutes after checking-in.

a man with a backpack in a airport
a group of people in a large building with luggage
people standing in front of a counter with people in a line


Qatar Airways uses the KLM Crown Lounge as their contract lounge in Houston. I reviewed the lounge in greater detail here. Though the lounge isn’t bad, it is far from great. Though it is located close to the departure gate. We spent most of our time in the American Express Centurion Lounge which we accessed thanks to my AmEx Platinum Card. If we were flying out of one of the OneWorld hubs in the United States, we would have had access to American’s excellent Flagship Lounge.

a person standing in front of a glass door
a room with a television and chairs
a bar with a variety of glasses and bottles


We left the lounge and headed towards our departure gate, D5, 30 minutes after our scheduled departure time as the inbound aircraft from Doha was running late. I managed to catch a glimpse of the back half of the Airbus A350 that would be operating our 15 hour flight to Doha. I also saw the cabin crew standing nearby which wasn’t a good sign.

an airplane parked at an airport
people standing in an airport

The gate area was a mass of humanity and was also undergoing an extensive remodel which led to a less than stellar experience. Qatar had 4 boarding lanes set up along with a reverse funnel shape line that seemed to be the pre-board line. Things were a little chaotic as an Emirates 77W was boarding at the adjacent gate.

Houston Intercontinental Airport Qatar Airways Boarding Gate

An hour after our scheduled boarding time, boarding started with pre-board passengers including wheelchairs and families needing extra time. While I appreciate that some folks need extra time to board, for this flight, it seemed like folks were taking advantage of the system as massive groups of people boarded with a single family member that were either in a wheelchair or a child. There was an endless line of pre-board pax and when all was said and done, roughly 70 pax had pre-boarded our A350-1000 to Doha. Twenty minutes after pre-boarding started, priority boarding finally began with Business Class passengers invited to board.

Qatar Airways

QR 714

IAH-DOH (Houston George Bush Intercontinental – Doha Hamad International)

Seat: 5E (Business)

A350-1000 (A7-ANQ)

Scheduled: 6:15p-5:05p (+1)

Actual: 7:19p-6:10p (+1)

Qatar elected to use a single jet bridge in Houston which meant that we had a long line of people waiting past the scanners who were pre-board pax. We spent roughly 10 minutes on the jet bridge before making the left turn into our home for the next 15 hours, Qatar’s award winning QSuites business class.

Houston Intercontinental Airport Qatar Airways Boarding Gate


After we boarded, the flight crew showed us to our seats, 5E and 5F, which are a pair of the ‘couples’ seats where the center divider can be lowered to create one large space. In addition, you can book the two seats behind as well should you be traveling as a group of 4.

a person in a mask on an airplane
a person in a mask standing in a row of chairs
a seat on a plane

Waiting at our seats were amenity kits, blankets, pillows and menus. After settling in and stowing our hand luggage, a FA came by to inform us of the features of our seats and where to locate headphones, water, and storage. Over my right shoulder, there was also a light and coat hook readily available.

There was a large IFE screen that was extremely crisp and responsive to touch. Underneath that was the tray table.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites IFE

To the right was a table which held a blanket, pillow and the amenity kit. Underneath this was an open cubby which was used to hold the menus for this flight. The seat controls were also located here and very intuitive.

a pillow and a blanket on a bed
a close up of a device

Over my right shoulder was a reading lamp and a coat hook, though I didn’t use it to hang anything during the flight.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Reading Light

One of the best parts about Qatar’s QSuite is the privacy provided by the full door. Even with the door open, which it has to be for taxi, take-off, and landing, the staggered seats still feel extremely private.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Door

While boarding finished I dug into the amenity kit, which was a box instead of the typical pouch. Both the box and the products inside were from Diptyque and were a decent size, so much so that we ended up bringing them home with us. There was also a Qatar Airways branded eye mask.

a box with a bow
a box with a group of white and black containers
a group of small white bottles of cosmetics and a black pouch


As boarding wrapped up, our flight attendants came around with pajamas which were from The White Company. As we settled in, the FA’s came around with pre-departure champagne and water.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Pajamas

We pushed off of the gate in Houston over an hour late but, with an 8 hour layover in Doha, I wasn’t worried. The ‘couples suites on Qatar’s A350-1000’s are rear facing which was a strange experience for me. This flight was my first time ‘flying backwards’ and it was an odd sensation to be facing the wrong way while moving. After a short taxi, we rocketed off towards the east and climbed out over Beaumont and Baytown before crossing the Louisiana border.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Moving Map

During the climb out, I headed to the business class lavatory to check it out. The rear lav was spacious and even had a window which, since we were in middle seats, was the only view I got on departure. Lotions and perfume from Diptyque as well as mouthwash were available. I was surprised with some of the wear that was already present on this fairly new aircraft though as this doesn’t appear elsewhere in the cabin.

a window in a plane
clouds and clouds from an airplane
a shelf with bottles and cups
Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Restroom


Back at my seat dinner service was getting ready to begin. The menu for our flight was as follows.

a hand holding a book with a picture of champagne
a hand holding a book with a picture of wine bottles
a hand holding a book with a picture of wine bottles
a hand holding a book with a picture of a bottle
a hand holding a book with a picture of a bottle
a hand holding a menu
a menu of a drink
a hand holding a menu
a menu of a restaurant


Dinner started with a bowl of warm nuts accompanied by a glass of the Laurent-Perrier Brut Non-Vintage. I fired up another episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm and then it was, as SFO777 would say, showtime Qatar Airways style! I started with the American style tapas while Mrs. ATX Jetsetter had seared ahi tuna with sesame seed both of which were served with a pretzel roll.

two screens on a table
a glass of champagne and a bowl of nuts on a table
a tray of food on a table
a plate of food on a tray

After our appetizers were cleared, we had the wonderful porcini and chestnut cream soup before both selecting the lobster thermidor. When the main course was served, I switched over to the Joseph Chromy Pepik Pinot Noir.

a bowl of soup and a piece of bread on a plate
a plate of food on a table

We had some choppy air throughout the meal service but the FAs did a great job of keeping the service flowing. After our main course, I decided to forgo the dessert and finished with the cheese plate and another glass of Pinot. Mrs. ATX Jetsetter skipped the cheese plate and enjoyed the fresh berries with mint syrup for dessert.

a plate of cheese and grapes on a table
a bowl of strawberries and blueberries on a plate

Finally, I finished the meal with a Woodford Reserve bourbon before asking the FAs to make my bed while I went off to the lav to change into my pajamas.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Woodford Reserve


The flight attendants made both of our beds and lowered the dividing wall to allow for a shared twin sized bed. At this point, we were flying over the coast of Maine. The bed was extremely comfortable and I was able to get a solid night of sleep. I woke up just as we were crossing into Egypt.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Bed


Thirty minutes after waking up, breakfast service began, though it was 3:00p Doha time. For starters, I had the corn flakes while Mrs. ATX Jetsetter had the assiette of cold cuts. Both were served with a croissant and butter. I also ordered a coffee to go along with it.

a breakfast tray with a croissant and cereal
a plate of food and a cup of coffee on a tray

For my main, I had the Gruyère cheese and turkey croque madame while Mrs. ATX Jetsetter had the crème brûlée French toast.

a plate of food on a tray
a plate of french toast with strawberries and syrup


As we began our descent, the flight attendants brought boxes of chocolates from Laderach to each passenger as well as some pre-arrival mints.

a white box with gold text on it
a box with a piece of soap inside
a hand holding two small packages of candy

The crew also did a great job of keeping our drinks topped up on descent.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Pre-Arrival Champagne

Since we were in the middle seats, I had to use the tail camera to see the outskirts of Doha on descent.

Qatar Airways A350-1000 Business Class QSuites Tail Camera

After landing in Doha, we taxied over to a remote stand where we blocked in an hour and ten minutes late. A few minutes later we were off the plane and headed to the buses. Qatar had three buses for business class and we ended up on the first. While the passengers with tight connections may have been frustrated, I enjoyed the experience as I was able to see our A350 up close and in person.

a plane wing and bus on the runway
a group of people boarding buses
a plane parked on a tarmac

The business class buses were well outfitted with seats that were more than substantial for our short ride to the terminal.

Qatar Airways Business Class Bus Doha Hamad International Airport

With no line at transfer security we were through quickly and headed for the Al Mourjan business class lounge.

a glass doors with signs on the side
people on an escalator


The ground experience in Houston certainly left something to be desired but, once we were in the air, the service was impeccable and the seat was extremely comfortable and private. As someone who doesn’t sleep well on planes, I was excited to get some solid sleep on this flight and woke up feeling refreshed. Also, the crew did a fantastic job with service especially considering the turbulence we experienced during the dinner service. If there is a better business class product out there, I haven’t experienced it yet.

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