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Be warned: Qatar Airways is now selling a new restrictive business fare class

Sept. 27, 2021
3 min read
Qatar Airways A350 in the sky
Be warned: Qatar Airways is now selling a new restrictive business fare class
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Starting Oct. 1, Qatar Airways is introducing a new fare class for business-class tickets, and adjusting the inclusions for the existing fare classes.

The number of business-class fares will increase from three to four, with the new P fare emerging at the lowest price point. The classes are labelled Lite (P), Classic (R), Comfort (I, D) and Elite (C, J).

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Qatar already recently introduced a rather odd fare for business-class travel that didn't include access to a business-class lounge: the fare class R.

This change follows the trend of unbundling in premium classes, allowing travelers to experience a top-level flying experience (such as Qatar's QSuites) without paying for extra services that used to be standard, including seat selection and lounge access.

Qatar's Qsuite business class on the A350-1000. (Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy)

Award tickets, such as those booked with Avios, continue to have full services and privileges.

Related: Qatar unveils new business-class, coach cabins for its latest Boeing 787s

The full specifications for Qatar's new fares are outlined in the table below:

Qatar's new business class fares. Image courtesy of Qatar Airways.

In addition to charging for lounge access, a refund in the original form of payment and date or route changes, travelers who book Qatar's new Lite (P class) fares also won't be able to earn the same amount of Qmiles.

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P fares only earn 75% of miles flown (compared with 125% for Classic fares; 175% for Comfort fares and 200% for Elite fares) when credited to Qatar Airways Qmiles loyalty program.

Travelers who want to earn Avios with Qatar business-class flights, for example, previously received a generous 125% mile bonus, no matter the fare class. If you choose to credit the new P fares to Avios (rather than Qmiles) from Oct. 1 you will now earn 75% of miles flown as Avios for the cheapest P fare, with 125% of miles flown for the more expensive J, C, D, I and R fares.

All things considered, unbundled P fares could mean lower business-class prices, which could be beneficial to many travelers. But before you book this new fare, keep an eye out for the benefits included in your ticket. Perhaps the R fare is available at only a slightly higher price, making it possible to earn more miles and enjoy lounge access in the process.

Oneworld elite members will continue to receive their status benefits such as lounge access and seat selection, though keep in mind that, at Qatar's hub in Doha (DIA) you will not have access to the well-regarded Al Mourjan lounge on the cheapest P class fare even if you do have status.

Featured image by Qatar Airways A350 in the sky (Photo by Vytautas Kielaitis/Shutterstock)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

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  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
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  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
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  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees