Emirates business class is a standout with superb features like an onboard bar, great space and service. Just ask our Flights Specialist Rosalind…

What I loved about flying Business Class with Emirates Airways

The Route: Melbourne–London (26 hours)

The Emirates business offering is truly hard to beat and has set the standard high. You can book a free private car transfer (with a certain radius) from your home to the airport, getting you off to a great start. Emirates has really put the fun and glamour back into flying. Arriving at the airport, the spacious lounge facilities are second to none. The food offerings are outstanding. The small details make a big difference, such as the quality of the nuts (the biggest I’ve ever seen!), while the range of drinks far exceeds other airline lounges.

The onboard experience is excellent and if you are lucky enough to fly in the A-380 you could be forgiven for thinking this is first class not business class. You have your own personal mini-bar of drinks and spacious luggage lockers next to your seat so you don’t have to get out of your seat and stretch overhead to access your bags (always annoying when you’re trying to find items you need during the flight). There is plenty of room to stretch out with fully reclining, lie-flat beds and mattresses overlaid.

The semi-circular bar is the standout feature that makes flying on the Emirates A380s so enjoyable! It is surrounded with seating so you can mingle easily with fellow travellers. This is how flying is supposed to be – a fun and social experience (in stark contrast to the modern day isolation of people burying themselves in their digital entertainment screens).

On the wide-bodied A380s they use a 1–2–1 configuration that feels very luxurious and spacious; you have all the space you could want. The amenities kit is great with everything you could need and the noise cancelling headphones are excellent. You have a personal shelving space next to you for storage of small items, books and magazines.

The food selection and quality are excellent, and the attention to detail makes you feel pampered. The small details matter – like the weight of the cutlery and quality of the linen used. There is a good selection of international wines and spirits and very attentive service.

Entertainment options are brilliant with a wide selection of films, including recent releases, and a very generous screen size.

Once in Dubai you have good lounge facilities for a shower, though the business lounge is massive and can get very busy – be prepared for this. The transfers in Dubai are relatively painless thanks to the express priority queues rather than the lengthy security queues that economy passengers have to endure.

Be aware though with Qantas and Emirates having codeshare on routes to Europe you may be on either a Qantas or an Emirates flight – even if you have booked your trip with Emirates. I flew one leg on Qantas coming back from Europe. The higher cost fares often reflect the type of aircraft and shorter, more direct connections. The A380s or new Dreamliners offer the best space and connection, so their popularity is reflected in a higher price. The lower fares your see advertised to Europe may involve other airlines and legs going through KL/Singapore and Dubai.

If you are planning on using your Skywards frequent flyer points to apply for a business upgrade on an economy flight you have purchased, be aware that only certain classes of economy ticket (often not sale fares) are eligible. You are advised to check directly with the airline before purchasing.

Lounge access

The Emirates lounges in Melbourne are a cut above the rest, though in their Dubai hub the sheer number of business class travellers can make it feel crowded. The chance to refresh with a shower makes a long journey more bearable.


On the wide-bodied A380s they use a 1–2–1 configuration that feels very spacious and comfortable.


Your stopover for this flight is Dubai.


Flying in conjunction with Qantas, a business class special to Europe costs from $7300. Subject to availability; blackout dates apply.

Best for walking the…

Note: We’d love to help find you a great deal on an international flight, but please note that we only offer this service to clients who have booked one of our walking trips.


Experience: 9/10

Value for money: 7.5/10

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Why book your flights with RAW Travel?

Our in-house Flights Expert Rosalind specialises in business class airfares and city breaks and can help take the stress out of planning all the travel arrangements around your walk. Rosalind can book your international flights, give you advice about land transfers to the start of your walk, organise the perfect city break, and more! She offers a personalised service that you won’t find on online booking sites, along with specific destination knowledge you won’t necessarily find with your own travel agent. For more info, contact Rosalind today on (03) 5976 3763 or email [email protected]

* Codeshare: An interline partnership where one carrier markets service and places its code on another carrier’s flights. This offers carriers an opportunity to provide service to destinations that are not in their route structure.