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LOUNGE REVIEW: Brisbane Qantas Business Lounge. Packed to the gunnels!

LOUNGE REVIEW: Brisbane Qantas Business Lounge. Packed to the gunnels!
Series: TRIP REPORT: Double Status Credit run to New Zealand

This lounge was chock-a-block full when we arrived around 6:00 pm. I expect this is peak hour in this domestic business lounge. It was not a pleasant experience and came with limited access to quality food. The big downer is the bus transfer between International and Domestic terminals. And, on this trip, the premium security entrance for Qantas Lounge access was closed. Oh, for the ease of the international/domestic transfer at Melbourne Airport!

a plate of food and a glass of wine on a table
Slim pickings for food options at the domestic Qantas Business Lounge, Brisbane. [2PAXfly]


This is going to be a short, sharp review since the Qantas Business lounge in Brisbane around 5xx pm was absolutely heaving. First up, it meant taking photos was really difficult because of the number of people in the lounge and the inability to get a ‘clear’ shot of any aspect of the lounge

a map of a city
Screen Grab of terminal map [Google Maps]

At the Airport

To get to the Domestic Terminal from the International involves a bus. Here is a link to a PDF with full details of the transfer experience. You will need to collect your luggage unless it has been tagged to your final destination. With only hand luggage, we were out in a minute. The way to the transfer bus is well signposted. We waited for something like 15 minutes for the bus.

an orange and white sign
Transit sign at free airport transfer service between International and Domestic terminals in Brisbane [2PAXfly]


The Qantas Business Lounge is at Brisbane Airport in the Departures Level 1, near Gate 22. That is to the right of the Qantas Club’s main reception. It’s part of the Qantas Lounge Precinct, with the Qantas Club up first and the Business Lounge up the back

a group of people walking in a hallway
Qantas Lounge Precinct entry 2018 [Schuetz/2PAXfly]


The lounge design is part of the David Caon design language. Think marble, pale wood, some greenery. If you have visited the Perth Business Lounge, then, you won’t be too far off the mark. I think the design predates that of the Melbourne Business Lounge, so its not quite as schmick as that. Readers, correct me if I am wrong on that.

a buffet with fruit in baskets
Brisbane Qantas Club food selection 2018 [Schuetz/2PAXfly]

Food & Drink

The lounge was so full at this time that it was impossible to take pictures. There wasn’t much to photograph anyway. It was like the food selection after a bunch of ‘hangry’ teenagers had been through. There were slim pickings. All the ‘fresh’ food had gone, and there were only pre-prepared carbs like corn chips, and stale cheese left.

I have used an image from the Brisbane Qantas Club taken back in 2018, which basically looks the same as the Business Lounge, to give you an idea. The set-up in the image above is for breakfast. Just substitute eventing fare, and you will get the idea.

a man in a cowboy hat standing on a bridge
Bob Katter, Commonweatlh of Australia Member for Kennedy in Queensland. []

People of note

The most notable aspect of the lounge was the presence of Federal Member of Parliament Bob Katter. Bob is a larger than life ‘maverick’ figure and os the Member for Kennedy a Queensland electorate running from south of Cairns on the coast to the Northern Territory border. It includes inland regional and mining hubs such as Mt Isa, Charters Towers and Burketown.

Bob is ambivalent about Qantas, to say the least. You will find some of his thoughts on Qantas here. Famously, he rejected the invitation to join the Qantas Chairman’s Lounge offered to all politicians. That’s why he, his Akubra and his posse were talking loudly in the Business Lounge.


The lounge being full, was not very comfortable. We did find a small table and chairs right off in a far corner. It was not a pleasant place to spend time during this part of the day – which was probably peak time. It has all the facilities you would expect, so at a quieter time, it could be quite pleasant.

I should note that I was possibly a little tired and emotional, given our previous flight from New Zealand. Well, certainly tired, at least.

an orange and grey sign
Brisbane Airport transit bus sign from International to Domestic – 15 minutes [2PAXfly]


We had spent two hours on the ground since our last flight from Auckland, with about an hour and a half of that in the Lounge. To be honest, I was really ready to leave when they called our boarding for the next flight to Sydney. Boarding was called at 7:15 pm instead of 7:20 pm as indicated on our ticket

a white vehicle with a sign next to a staircase
Brisbane International Airport – arrival stairs [2PAXfly]

2PAXfly Takeout

I think this is a pleasant lounge under the design direction of David Caon. Where it does fall down is capacity at this peak time of the day/week. It was a Sunday night, with presumably many travellers repositioning to southern states for the coming working week.

There was hardly a seat to be had in the lounge, and most food options disappeared as soon as they were placed on the counters. During these periods, Qantas needs Accor’s catering division to have circulating waiters with food offerings (party pie, anyone?) as they do in Adelaide during quiet periods. I’ve been offered everything from an expresso shot to a spring roll while posting away on my laptop in the workstation area.

We were looking forward to the lounge after our flight from Auckland and the cumbersome bus transfer from Brisbane International and the Domestic Terminal. The convenience of the transfer was not helped by long security lines at Brisbane Domestic. Not what you want during a transfer.

However, it must be noted that Seat 2B and I were completing a long day of travel after a weekend of entertainment, drinking and eating. So maybe our impression was coloured by our tired and emotional condition.

I should probably make a judgement on this lounge when I am better rested, and it is less crowded.

Other Posts in the Series
<< FLIGHT REVIEW: Qantas A330 Auckland to Brisbane, Business ClassFLIGHT REVIEW: Brisbane to Sydney on Qantas Business Class in a Boeing 737-800 >>

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