When and where Qatar Qsuite is flying to the U.S. in 2020
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with current information. It was originally published on Dec. 8, 2018.
Although some would argue it’s recently been eclipsed by ANA’s new The Room, Qatar’s Qsuite defended its 2018 title as winner of the TPG Awards prize for Best International Business Class again in 2019.
If you have tried out the product yet, you’re in luck: Qatar currently serves eight U.S. routes with Qsuite aircraft. And the Qatar has plans to add Qsuite-equipped aircraft to both of the routes currently flying without Qsuite by Aug. 1, 2020. Even better, it’s easier than ever to search Qatar award availability.
Let’s go through when and where you can check out the award-winning product for yourself to/from the U.S.
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Qatar routes currently with Qsuite
There are nine daily flights between the U.S. and Doha currently using Qatar’s Qsuite:
- Boston (BOS): QR flights 743/744 using a Boeing 777-300ER
- Chicago (ORD): QR flights 725/726 using a Boeing 777-300ER
- Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW): QR flights 729/730 using an Airbus A350-1000
- Houston (IAH): QR flights 713/714 using an Airbus A350-1000
- Los Angeles (LAX): QR flights 739/740 using a Boeing 777-200LR through April 30, 2020 before switching to the Airbus A350-1000 on May 1, 2020
- New York-JFK: QR flights 701/702 using a mixture of a Boeing 777-300ER and a Airbus A350-1000 through Feb. 29, 2020 before the Airbus A350-1000 takes over daily starting March 1, 2020; and flights 703/704 using an Airbus A350-1000
- Philadelphia (PHL): QR flights 727/728 using an Airbus A350-900 through April 30, 2020; Boeing 777-300ER from May 1 to Oct. 24, 2020 before switching back to an Airbus A350-900 starting Oct. 25, 2020
- Washington Dulles (IAD): QR flights 707/708 using a Boeing 777-300ER
However, be careful when booking these flights as sometimes a non-retrofit aircraft will be used to operate every once in a while. You’ll want to check and make sure that you weren’t switched back to this non-Qsuite product. Rather than having to do so manually, we recommend using ExpertFlyer — which is owned by TPG’s parent company Red Ventures — to set an aircraft change alert.
Routes with Qsuite launching soon
This leaves just two of Qatar’s U.S. destinations without Qsuite-equipped aircraft. But, the good news is that both of these routes will be switching to Qsuite aircraft later this year:
- Atlanta (ATL): QR flights 755 and 756 — operating with a non-Qsuite Boeing 777-200LR through April 30, 2020 before switching to a Boeing 777-200LR with Qsuites on May 1, 2020
- Miami (MIA): QR flights 777 and 778 — operating with a non-Qsuite Airbus A350-900 through July 31, 2020 before switching to a Qsuite-equipped Airbus A350-1000 on Aug. 1, 2020
While Qsuite will be a significant improvement, the Miami route is currently served by the Qatar A350-900 — which has what I consider to be the airline’s second-best business-class product. While it’s not Qsuite, it’s still pretty spectacular, especially paired with Qatar’s legendary onboard service.
However, the Atlanta route is currently being operated using a not-so-great 2-2-2 business-class product. So, the introduction of Qsuite to this route on May 1 couldn’t come soon enough.
Searching for Qsuite award availability
Searching for Qatar award availability used to be a pain. Now, for better or worse, it’s incredibly easy. At the end of 2018, AA added Qatar award availability searching and booking to its website. Now, you just have to head to AA.com and enter your desired routing to check your options. And, you can search up to a month of award availability at a time:
With that said, I have found that it’s frustrating to try to use AA’s new award searching tool to search for Qatar award availability. So, you may want to use AA’s old award searching tool instead.
While AA will combine domestic and international award availability, there’s no way of limiting the calendar search results to only include Qatar award availability over the Atlantic. If you have flexible dates, I’d recommend searching specific Qsuite routes to find which dates have what availability from the U.S. to Doha, using AA’s “non-stop only” calendar feature to limit the results to Qatar award availability.
Once you’ve determined overwater flight availability, you can figure out domestic and onward connections if needed.
How to book Qsuite with miles
Qatar Qsuite remains one of the few awards where it’s generally best to use American Airlines AAdvantage miles. So, once you find award availability, you’ll want to book right there on the AA.com website.
Awards cost 70,000 miles each way between the U.S. and the Middle East (e.g. Qatar, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates) or Indian Subcontinent (e.g. India, Sri Lanka, Maldives), or 75,000 miles each way between the U.S. and anywhere in Africa (e.g. Seychelles, Mauritius, South Africa). However, you can’t use Qatar to route to any other regions — such as back to Europe or onward to Asia Regions 1 and 2 — on the same ticket.
Taxes are minimal booking through AA. For example, flights from the U.S. to Doha cost just $7.65 one-way.
If you need to earn American Airlines AAdvantage miles to accomplish your Qsuite dreams, here are the best options right now:
- Buy AAdvantage miles for as little as 1.73 cents per mile. This is the easiest way of getting miles at the moment for an award. At 1.73 cents per mile, one-way awards between the U.S. and the Middle East or Indian Subcontinent costs just $1,211 before minimal taxes/fees. Award flights all the way down to South Africa would cost just $1,298 before taxes/fees.
Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard®: 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,500 in purchases in the first three months of account opening.
CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®: 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first four months of account opening.
Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®: 50,000 miles after spending $5,000 on purchases within the first three months — plus Admirals Club lounge access for yourself and authorized users.
Cathay Pacific’s Asia Miles is an alternate way of booking Qatar awards between the U.S. and Doha, with rates starting at 75,000 miles one-way or 150,000 miles round-trip on routes under 7,500 miles in length (e.g. Boston, Chicago, Atlanta) and topping out at 90,000 miles each way on routes longer than 7,500 miles in length (e.g. Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami).
You can get Asia Miles by transferring points from American Express Membership Rewards (1:1 ratio, 48-hour transfer time), Citi ThankYou Rewards (1:1, less than 24-hour transfer time) and/or Marriott Bonvoy (3:1 ratio with a 5,000-mile bonus for transferring 60,000 points, 5-day transfer time).
Qatar’s other options aren’t going to be nearly as good. For example, British Airways charges 108,250 Avios each way, plus almost $700 in taxes/fees for the shortest nonstop flights between the U.S. to Doha. Longer U.S.-Doha routes price as high as 154,500 Avios each way plus $674 in taxes and fees. Connections will add even more mileage and out-of-pocket cost.
Iberia Plus requires a round-trip award when booking Qatar. The good news is that the mileage is slightly better than booking through British Airways. Flights under 7,000 miles each way (Boston, New York City, Washington D.C.) price at 175,000 Avios round-trip. However, the taxes/fess are just as awful. For example, a round-trip redemption between Washington, D.C. (IAD) and Doha has over $1,200 in taxes and fees.
Featured photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy.
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