46. CNS-SYD on QF in J

46. CNS-SYD on QF in J

Cairns to Sydney


Departure Time: 12:10PM

Boeing 767

Business Class Seat 5K

Duration 3 hours

Once we returned the rental car we walked into the Cairns domestic airport terminal.  We found the Qantas business class check-in and were able to speak to an agent right away.  The agent found our reservation and asked us if we had any bags to check.  I let her know Lady Tocqueville and I had only hand luggage.  Usually this goes unchallenged, but she asked to see it.  We showed her our bags we have now had with us as a carry-on for 30 straight flights without checking them.  She said because they were as big as they were she had to weigh them.  She said the maximum weight allowed as hand-luggage was 8kg and since the flight was 100% full they were enforcing this heavily.  I thought to myself if they are worried about a full flight, what does the weight of an acceptable bag have to do with the volume in the overhead bins? I knew our bags were 15kg so I wasn’t about to put them on the scale and have her check them.  I let her know we would repack our bags and come back to check-in.

We then walked straight to the check-in kiosks and did the check-in there.  Our boarding passes were issued successfully and we made our way to security.  I was confused why the agent was pressing so hard to view and weigh our bags.  We were in business class.  I am not sure what the Qantas size and weight limit is but we have now had three Qantas flights and we weren’t hassled about them in the least.  Nevertheless, checking in at the kiosk worked fine.

We cleared security and followed the signs to the Qantas lounge.

Entryway to the Qantas club in Cairns
The Qantas club in Cairns
View of the tarmac from the Qantas club in Cairns
The buffet spread was pretty good especially compared to a USA domestic lounge
Entry to the gate area
View at the boarding gate.

Boarding was called right on time and we were first on the plane after those needing assistance.  This flight would be a 767, a big bird for a domestic flight.  I had expected the odd 1-2-2 configuration we had on our Qantas 767 from Noumea to Sydney the week before.  However, this one was 2-2-2.  What else struck me right away was that each seat had an iPad.  I have heard of this but never saw it in real life.  Qantas on some of their 767s uses iPads to deliver the inflight entertainment.  There is even a little iPad pouch in the seatback so you could enjoy it hands free.  The operation of it was glitchy and they weren’t functioning until about 45 minutes into the flight, 30 minutes after the flight attendants actually turned on the delivery system.
Qantas iPad for in-flight viewing.  I ended up watching “This ain’t no mouse music” about the fascinating history of Arhoolie records.
Brand new seats had plenty of room.  A great domestic business class offering.
A close-up of the neighboring seats.
Legroom was ample.

The flight was full as the check-in agent had noted.  It appeared many in first class with us were Qantas pilots flying to some sort of training.  The staff again were nothing short of excellent as they have been for all of our flights.  Prompt professional service made us feel right at home.
No menus were passed out, just two meal choices offered verbally by the flight attendant.  We went for the mint lamb-chops which were terrific.
A view of the cabin from my seat.
This is one of the few flights were I didn’t blog so I wasn’t afraid to get after it a bit on the booze.  Jack Daniels, Ginger Ale, and some lemon were the drink of choice for me.  Lady Tocqueville went for Sparkling Wine.  It was a pleasure to toast one another at 30,000 feet while enjoying our movies and our meals.
I went for the chocolate orange ice cream to cap-off the meal.
Beautiful views of Sydney and the harbor on our descent.  This weekend was the naval parade weekend and the harbor was packed with boats and sailing vessels as you can see from the photo.

Qantas ChaufferDrive came through for us again with another free pick-up.  Our driver met us at baggage claim and hustled us to our Mercedes Van which was waiting for us for the 30 minute trip to the Sydney Circular Quay.

Overall Qantas has been excellent in customer service (except for the agent who was adamant about the carry-on bag weighing).  We have arrived on all of our flights refreshed and happy from a great experience by the crew.  And the free rides with a Chauffeur certainly don’t hurt.  Cheers to you, Qantas.

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