Martinis Down Under–Sydney Qantas Business Lounge


This post may contain affiliate links from our advertising partners, such as American Express. Read my Advertiser Disclosure policy here.

One thing I know for certain….. Australians really know how to do a good, quality domestic lounge.

  1. Introduction and Trip Planning
  2. LAX Oneworld First Class Lounge
  3. Qantas A380 LAX to SYD Economy
  4. Park Hyatt Sydney Part I
  5. Sydney Qantas Business Lounge
  6. Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas
  7. Exploring the Great Barrier Reef
  8. Cairns Qantas Club Lounge
  9. Park Hyatt Sydney Part II
  10. Exploring Sydney
  11. Sydney Qantas International First Class Lounge
  12. Qantas 747 SYD to LAX Economy

After a fantastic first few nights at the Park Hyatt Sydney, we hopped back on the train headed towards the airport to catch a flight up to Cairns, the largest airport near the Great Barrier Reef.

One of the bright spots in the new Avios award redemption chart is domestic Australian flights on Oneworld’s Qantas.  Availability was wide open when I checked BA.com so we went with a mid afternoon flight on a 767 as opposed to a flight on one of the smaller aircrafts that service this route. The cost of this trip in each direction was 10,000 Avios points and 27 USD in tax per person. The Qantas flights were pricing out well over 500 USD roundtrip per person so this was a good value for Avios.

Upon reaching the Domestic Terminal stop on the train, we disembarked and headed through a few long corridors until reaching the sleek and modern domestic terminal.  The architect definitely used a less is more approach here with just a few check-in kiosks and lots of open space.

IMG_1666

IMG_1668

We skipped the kiosks and opted to use an agent at the desk to drop off our luggage.  We had hoped to carry on my small-ish Tumi rollerboard however the agent asked me to weigh it and noted it did not meet the strict 15 pound limit.

As is fairly common on non-US domestic flights, security was a breeze and did not require any of the oft-frustrating policies such as liquids out, shoes off, and laptops separate.

The domestic terminal is Sydney is rather compact so it was just a short walk through a door and up an escalator to find the Business Lounge, which I have access when flying Economy as a Oneworld Emerald member.

IMG_1670

We showed our boarding passes to the desk who directed us into the Business Lounge.  There is also a Qantas Club lounge here though we did not check it out.

I didn’t know exactly what to expect from a domestic lounge but our first impression was, WOW, this is WAY better than the Oneworld FIRST CLASS Lounge in LAX that we had recently visited.

This lounge has a stylish, contemporary design.  It was hard to believe this was domestic.  We did a quick tour of the facility and found lots of open seating including couches, elevated tables for dining, a business center, and shower rooms.

IMG_1683

IMG_1677

A nice self-service buffet was set out with hot dishes along with a large open bar with draft beers, wines and bottled drinks.

At this point we ran into our first major hiccup of the trip.

IMG_1742

Fortunately, with a little patience we were able to weather the storm (wait 15 minutes) and grab a few brews and watch a few ‘roos.  My favorite kind of Lunch.

IMG_1687

IMG_1679

After about an hour of open bar, we dished up a few plates of food before heading for the gate.

IMG_2786

The  approximately 3 hour domestic flight up to Cairns was smooth and uneventful.  Qantas provides meals and yummy frozen inflight snacks on these flights.  We had filled up on the lounge food which was better but felt obliged to give the Economy food selection a try.  No complaints.

IMG_1690

IMG_1695

We touched down at beautiful Cairns airport in the mid-afternoon and headed straight for baggage claim to pick up our bags and give driving on the left side of the road a whirl.

IMG_1749

The bottom line

The real takeaway for me was how much nicer this domestic lounge in Australia was over some International First and Business Class lounges I have experienced in the US and other locations.  While the selection and experience didn’t quite match up with the world class International First Class Lounges, the space is so stylish and comfortable that its easy to forget that this is just domestic.  Furthermore, this is a great reminder of how valuable Oneworld Emerald status can be.  The Qantas  Business Lounge in Sydney  is a fantastic lounge to be given complimentary access while on an award ticket in Economy Class.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

About alex

Alex loves to travel and does so a lot. Logging 100,000 flight miles each year over the past 4 years, Alex uses points and miles to power his passion. Alex is continuously striving to experience the far reaches of the globe. In his day job, Alex is a Management Consultant frequently on the road advising Technology organizations. I love thinking about, reading about, and talking about all things travel. Feel free to reach me at pmmalex@gmail.com

Sign up for Email || Twitter || Facebook |Tips & Tricks
Hotel Offers || Airline Offers || Bank Offers || Cash Back Offers

Pingbacks

Comments

  1. The domestic Qantas lounges (at least in the major airports) are of exceptional quality, however both the Qantas Club and Domestic Business lounges are often uncomfortably packed at the ‘peak’ hours of early morning and late afternoon.

  2. Very nice trip report! Hopefully, one day I will be able to visit there. May I ask if Quantas is still partner with BA? Thanks.

  3. @Nguyen – Qantas and BA are both currently a part of the Oneworld Alliance for now though there is a lot of chatter that a change may be coming in the near future.

    @Jenn – They were pretty good but nothing that would medal at the Great American Beer Fest. 🙂

  4. Hi,

    Another alternative use is AA miles which price out at 10000 one way for ANYWHERE within Australia/NZ. I’m based in Aus and considering buying some SPG points just to get some.

  5. @Paul-My wife and I just did that touring Australia. Used 10K AA miles CNS-Syd, ADL-AYQ, AYQ-CNS. Since I have the AA credit card I got 6K credited back to my AA acct. Also used 4500 BA avois each to travel MEL-ADL…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *