Review: Canberra to Melbourne on Qantas Economy Class

The next leg of the trip, from Canberra to Melbourne, was the only leg of the trip we had not booked in a premium cabin. We were able to get two economy seats for 9000 Avios and £38 taxes. It didn’t seem worth it to spend double at the time of booking for a Business class seat.

We arrived at the airport about 90 minutes before departure. Canberra airport is very efficient and given the huge political contingent who fly regularly, it’s a bit like London City airport, where advised times between kerbs and gate are low.

There was a queue for economy check in, but thanks to my Emerald and my wife’s oneworld Sapphire status, we were able to use the empty business desk.

Security was quick and we were soon ensconced in the lounge, with a barista-made coffee.


After about 30 minutes, the gate was called so we headed down. Queueing was already well underway, but again the priority lane was available to use and we were amongst the first on board.

I am 6ft3 and ‘well-built’ as my Mum would say, so economy seats are never spacious, but this one was particularly cramped.


My knees were jammed into the seat in front of me – thankfully it was only a short flight and the person front of me did not feel the need to try to recline. My knees were grateful when the seatbelt sign came off in Melbourne!

In the UK on BA, one would be offered the Buy on Board menu on a flight like this. Not on Qantas – they offer free snacks. For this flight, it was a hot or soft drink and a flapjack. I was grateful for the coffee and it was nice to be offered something to eat.


It was only an hour gate to gate, and we were right not to have spent the extra miles on the upgrade – but I’ll be honest; every time I wedge my knees into an economy seat that isn’t an exit row, I am always reminded how grateful I am to be able to fly in premium cabins!

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