How We Flew Business Class on our Family Holiday using Qantas Bid Now!

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Written By Reena

Born in England, raised in Canada and now living in Australia, I love travelling and experiencing new cultures. On Family Forays, I share our family travel experiences (in Australia and overseas) as well as provide travel advice, sanity-saving tips and feature family-friendly destinations.

Ever seriously thought about flying Business Class with your family? No, me neither! Flying Business Class isn’t something I would normally consider due to the cost involved and the fact that we’re travelling with a 7 year child (albeit she’s great on planes, either she soundly sleeps or is glued to the in-flight entertainment!)

However, after receiving a Bid Now Upgrade invitation from Qantas before our recent 15 hour flight from Sydney to Dallas-Fort Worth, I must admit I was seriously tempted. (In my entire life, I have only flown once in Business Class and that was last year after being upgraded on my flight to Los Angeles. It was an amazing experience and left me wanting more!)

For those unsure how the Bid Now Upgrade works, it’s an invitation-only offer for selected flights that gets emailed out 7 days before a flight. After logging on to the Qantas website you can bid using points and cold hard cash to upgrade to Business Class and Premium Economy. For me, deciding what to bid was a bit of a challenge. In the end, I decided on what I could afford both in points and dollar-wise and just prayed that it would be accepted.

I then had to wait 7 days to find out if my bid was successful. Between 12 and 24 hours before your flight commences, you’ll receive an email stating whether or not your offer has been accepted or not. Imagine my excitement when 24 hours before my flight, I received  an email advising that my bid had been accepted for my husband , myself and my daughter .

The benefits of flying Business start also immediately. Firstly, there is the increased baggage allowance meaning you don’t have to make the difficult decisions about what to pack on your holiday.

Then at the airport, you don’t need to worry about long lines as there’s dedicated check-in lines for Business.  It was then that we received the news that our flight was delayed for 6 hours. However, knowing we had access to the Qantas Lounge made this news more palatable. Once checked-in, we received Express passes for security and immigration which made going through these lines a breeze.

It was then onto the Qantas International Business Lounge where we all enjoyed ourselves. For my husband and I, an unlimited supply of food and drinks coupled with an assortment of magazines and newspapers meant that it was a relaxing wait at the airport.

My daughter amused herself playing with the other kids in the Joey Club Kids Zone. This is a dedicated kids area with a TV and toys. There’s also Kids Snack packs available.

Between the Joey Club and the gelato bar in the lounge, my daughter was happy.

Finally it was time for our flight and being situated in business class meant we had priority boarding. (Another timesaver!). This gave us time to get comfortable in our seats (which you could recline to a lay-flat bed after takeoff).

It wasn’t long until we were up in the air and enjoying all of the extra space that Business Class provides.

The friendly flight attendants came around to make our beds and provide us with comfortable Qantas pyjamas to change into. They also reminded us to consult the Neil Perry designed menu and choose our dinner and breakfast selections.

With numerous choices for starters and mains including chicken, salmon, tuna, it took a while to peruse the menu but I finally chose my favourites. I must say I was impressed with the meals when they arrived. From the white tablecloth to metal cutlery, dining in the sky in Business Class is a pleasure especially with the accompanying wines.

Here’s some photos from our breakfast selections.

After finishing our meals, it was time to stretch out and enjoy the Qantas on-demand inflight entertainment systems.

This was my opportunity to catch up on some TV watching before finally succumbing to sleep.

I wish I could say it was a uneventful flight but as those traveling with children would know, there’s always something. Unfortunately, during our flight, we had some really bad periods of turbulence. This resulted in my daughter and other passengers feeling sick. Luckily, our seats were close to the bathroom making it convenient to deal with her upset stomach. And the flight attendants were brilliant at helping me remaking her bed with new linen and providing her with dry toast and some lemon water. The episode soon passed and she slept for most of the flight.

At the 14th hour our flight, the Captain came over the intercom to advise that it wouldn’t be long until we landed in Dallas-Fort Worth. It was time to change out of our pajamas, have breakfast and get ready for landing. The wonderful Business Class experience was  coming to an end!

Would I fly Business Class again with my family? Absolutely. Yes it costs much more but in my mind, if you can afford it, it justifies the price tag. As for kids in Business Class, if they’re quiet and well-behaved, they’ll be welcomed by the flight attendants and other passengers.

Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. Family Forays paid for the entire cost of the upgrade using points and money.

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