Qatar Airways now allow passengers in First Class and Business Class to select meals in advance. This service is referred to as Pre-Select Dining. It will not affect the current dine on demand service in the premium classes, thankfully!
Eligible flights are from Doha to Europe (flights over 5 hours), North America, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Guangzhou and Bangkok. You can make your selections from 14 days to 24 hours before departure.
Passengers receive an e-mail notification advising them they can pre-select their on board meal. I have a flight coming up later this week on Qatar so I received the e-mail.
Clicking the e-mail takes you to your booking and on the page is a new box about the option to select a meal. It appears it allows you to select a special meal or to pre-select.
You can see above there are three selections available from the menu for pre-order. These are the main à la carte dishes available in the menu which usually also contains quite a number of other dishes.
What About Dine On Demand?
Dine on demand is offered on Qatar Airways in Business Class and First Class. I firmly believe this is the way forward for on board meal services on long haul flights. My experiences of it on Qatar Airways have always been excellent.
Being able to select your meal beforehand does not affect your ability to dine on demand on board. I find it a little curious as to why this is being offered at all when the whole ethos is pick what you want when you want it.
It is interesting that Qatar Airways are offering pre-select dining out of Doha. This is also available on other airlines such as British Airways out of London Heathrow.
As Qatar offer a fabulous dine on demand service, this is probably a measure to try to reduce waste and save a little money. Knowing what everyone plans to eat beforehand will mean catering can be loaded in a more informed manner.
I still find it a little strange though as ordering beforehand restricts you to your choice. What happens if I change my mind on board and want something else? Hopefully that would not be an issue.
I’d best get pre-ordering and see what happens when I fly. Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
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All images via Qatar Airways or taken as screenshots from my booking.