We’re sharing everything we’ve learned about Etihad and Qatar airlines so you can make an informed decision to help you fly on the better airline.
There will be no need for debate after reading this article. You’ll find out whether Etihad or Qatar is better for your needs after we show you the comparisons based on price, customer feedback, airline ratings, flying with infants and more.
Etihad vs Qatar
|Where does it fly to?||90+ destinations 90+ destinations in these regions:
||150+ destinations in these regions:
||Qatar flies to more destinations globally|
|What star rating is it?||5-star||5-star||Both airlines have Skytrax 5-star ratings|
|What classes are available?||The Residence (a three-room suite), first class, business class and economy class||First class, business class, economy class and Qsuite, a new type of business first class||Both offer the same classes plus additional luxury classes|
|What is the baggage allowance?||Economy class allows one 7kg carry-on and two 23kg checked bags||Economy class is allowed one piece of carry-on baggage not exceeding 7kg and one 30kg checked bag||Etihad offers economy customers more checked baggage|
|Where does it fly from in Australia?||
||Qatar flies to more Australian destinations|
|What's the in-flight entertainment like?||
||Qatar’s Oryx One entertainment program offers movies, audio, TV and games and has been awarded for Best Content Innovation in 2017||Both airlines offer a wide variety of entertainment. However, Qatar’s Oryx One has won awards|
|Can I make changes/cancellations?||Yes, but fees apply. Changes or cancellations made within 96 hours of departure have an additional 10% fee applied||Yes, certain flights can be cancelled or changed but fees apply||Both airlines accept changes and cancellations on certain ticket types with fees|
|What type of plane will I fly on? (And will I fly on an A380?)||Etihad has a fleet of six types of planes:
||Qatar flies more types of planes|
|Which frequent flyer programs is it with?||Etihad Guest||Privilege Club||Etihad Guest offers frequent flyers more opportunities to claim points for a wider selection of products|
|Is there Wi-Fi?||Yes, Wi-Fi must be purchased or you can use roaming with select partners. Data plans start from US$4.95||Yes, on select flights Wi-Fi is available to purchase. Prices are available once on the aircraft and above 10,000 feet||Etihad has Wi-Fi available on all planes|
|Can I price match?||Yes. If the same flight on a third party site is US$25 cheaper for economy or US$100 cheaper for business or first class, Etihad will refund the difference||Yes. If the same flight is found on another site at a cheaper price within an hour of booking, Qatar will refund the difference||Both price match but Qatar does not require you to have a minimum price difference for a refund|
|Does it serve alcohol?||Yes. Beer, wine and spirits are served||Yes||Both airlines serve alcohol|
|Is there online chat on the airline's website?||Contact is by phone or email||Contact is available by email or mail||Etihad offers a faster method of communication via phone|
|Does it charge for infants?||Etihad charges infants under two years 10% of the adult fare if they sit on the adult's lap||If a child is two or under an infant fare is charged which is typically 10% of an adult fare if sitting on an adult’s lap. A child fare is charged if sitting in their own seat||Both airlines offer the same discounted price for infants travelling on an adult’s lap|
|Does it fly pets?||Yes. Guide dogs are allowed in the main cabin. All other animals travel as cargo||Yes, service dogs may be transported free of charge in the cabin. All other animals must travel as checked baggage or cargo||Both airlines have the same restrictions for pets travelling|
|What are my payment options?||
||Qatar accepts more forms of payment|
|Can I book round the world fares?||No||Yes||Only Qatar offers round the world fares|
|Can I book multi-city fares?||Yes, up to six cities can be booked||Yes, up to six flights can be booked together||Both airlines offer the same restrictions for booking multi-city fares|
|Any features to find the best price?||Etihad features a deals page for flights||Qatar has a section online to find flight deals called offers||Both airlines offer deals for flights from Australia to destinations across the globe|
Who offers the best price?
We put Etihad and Qatar head to head to see which airline has the best price by comparing flights from Perth to Paris on the same day.
Qatar saves you money when you book according to this test. Similar flights on the same day with Qatar were $125 cheaper than with Etihad.
Is it a good airline to fly with?
Since both airlines have received 5-star ratings, we took a look at what customers have to say on Skytrax to find out which airline comes out on top for customer satisfaction.
Qatar beats Etihad in this round with an amazing 8/10 rating overall and 4-star ratings for all categories such as food and beverages, inflight entertainment, seat comfort, staff service and value for money. Etihad falls behind with only a 5/10 rating overall and 3-star ratings in all categories.
Any other differences worth noting?
Both airlines offer a more luxurious class than most airlines. However, it is important to note that Etihad’s The Residence is a 3-room suite for the ultimate airplane luxury experience. Qatar’s more luxurious class, Qsuite, is not a private suite like Etihad's but is an option that more than one person can book or upgrade to and provides more privacy in business class.
What are the deals like?
We checked out the deals on both Etihad’s deals page and Qatar’s offers page to find out which airline really has the best deals. Both have deals for destinations around the world from multiple departure locations in Australia.
After comparing the deals, there was no comparison here and Qatar takes the lead in this round. The deals were significantly cheaper from Qatar, sometimes cheaper by $1,000 for flights to Europe.