Rounding up my previous experiences on Etihad First Class and Emirates First Class, my next goal was to try out Oman Air’s first-class flight when their partnership went live on December 14, 2021, and it was possible to redeem for their flights using Air Canada Aeroplan points.
With wide-open availability, I snagged a seat and planned my trip around exploring the country of Oman.
While not as large as their neighboring fellow Middle Eastern airlines like Emirates or Qatar Airways, I was curious how their first-class experience compared to them.
Without further ado, let’s jump right into my Oman Air first class review!
Table of Contents
- First Class Lounge AT MCT (with spa session and Primeclass lounge)
- The Suite
- Food & Drink
- Overall Experience
- How to Book
- Tips to Maximize Your Experience
I highly recommend you take a look at the last section of this review: Tips to Maximize Your Experience so you can learn from my mistakes to optimize your experience when flying Oman Air!
- Date of Travel: January 13, 2022
- Route: Muscat (MCT) > London Heathrow (LHR)
- Flight Time: 2:55AM – 7:10AM (7 hours 50 minutes)
- Seat: 2A
- Type of Plane: Boeing 787-9
- Cost of Booking: 65k Aeroplan points and under $150 USD in taxes
Arriving from Salalah (SLL) on Oman Air’s business class at 7:15PM, I rushed toward the first & business class lounge to ensure I had the maximum time to enjoy the lounge as much as I could.
My connecting flight to LHR was at 2:55 AM so that gave me approximately 7 hours and 40 minutes to work with.
Upon arriving at the lounge, what was interesting about the first-class lounge is it is through a nondescript golden door that you’ll need someone to press you on through.
If you ever need re-entry, you’ll need to ask one of the nearby attendants to let you in.
As there were no other flights, and COVID had impeded travel for most of Oman, I was immediately informed I had the whole lounge to myself during my whole stay.
I was glee with excitement knowing this information. Oman Air only has two planes with first class, so in general the first-class lounge will most likely be deserted given the small number of first-class passengers actually possible.
I had a quick tour with the staff of the lounge offerings including the private nap rooms, bathrooms, and dining areas.
While not as massive as Emirates First Class Lounge or Qatar Airways Al Safwa First Class Lounge, it was much more intimate and beautifully decorated with literally gold colors everywhere.
If anything, I enjoyed the peacefulness of the lounge compared to the bustling nonstop crowds in Emirates First Class Lounge.
I had several goals up at this point as I communicated with the staff on what I wanted to do in the following order:
- Book a room at the nearby Primeclass Lounge (more on this!)
- Utilize the complimentary 15-minute massage provided to all first-class passengers
- Sample as much of the food as humanly possible
The team thought it was rather amusing my first goal was to immediately leave the lounge and head over to the neighboring lounge.
Prior research on my Priority Pass showed the nap rooms in the Primeclass Lounge (accessible with Priority Pass) was superior to the nap room in Oman Air’s First-Class lounge.
I headed over to the Primeclass Lounge and was informed each use of Priority Pass would allow 3 hours duration of the private room. I managed to negotiate 2 “uses” of my pass to get 6 hours of the room.
When I arrived in the room boy, was I impressed – it was quite literally a hotel room. A HUGE upgrade from Oman Air’s private room.
I would be taking a few hours nap here after my massage.
Heading back to the lounge, I took an elevator within the business class lounge up to the spa for my free session. Interestingly the spa is branded as a Shangri-La.
I had several options which consisted of typical massages. I chose a shoulder and head massage.
After the relaxing massage, I headed back down to sample some of the offerings on the menu.
I went ahead and ordered every single appetizer, cause why not!
My favorite of the bunch was definitely the cream of tomato and basil soup.
For the main course, I chose the char-grilled salmon steak, it was prepared quite well.
As my flight was in a few hours and I had been awake for over 20 hours at that point, I was strategic with my drink offerings.
Unfortunately, they did have the Henessy Paradis cognac also found in Emirates First Class. Upon further inquiries about the most expensive drink they had available, I was presented with a bottle of Glenmorangie 25 that retails for over $1000 USD!
I was surprised they had something this expensive on the ground and not in the air!
For good measure, I ensured to have 2 drinks of this amazing scotch whisky.
Returning to my room in the Primeclass Lounge after an amazing meal, I had a few hours nap and was freshened up for my upcoming flight.
Upon boarding, I walked past Oman Air’s Apex Suites in business class which looked extremely comfortable. While the color scheme was simple with its white color, something about it made it look inviting.
Walking into the first-class cabin, I was greeted by the flight attendants and the high walls each suite commanded. Knowing that I was the only one in this cabin made it even more exciting.
I sat in seat 2A.
Depending on your preferences, the colors used by Oman Air made look rather simplistic. A mix of white, beige and gold-like colors were the mainstays of the cabin.
Unlike other first-class experiences where features would pop out at you, upon sitting down with Oman Air’s colors surrounding me, I felt at ease.
Usually, I would be overwhelmed by several features when trying out a new first-class experience however for Oman Air, their elegant cabin design and color use made me feel at ease and comfortable – there was no rush.
I was offered a glass of Laurent-Perrier Grand Siecle while I accepted and sat quietly enjoying the suite I was given.
First class passengers are given a Amouage bespoke amenity kit with a variety of Amouage toiletries. The kits are different by gender, so I received the male version. I admit, the female version of the amenity kit looked much better than the male.
Inside was filled with a multitude of items such as toothbrush, mouthwash, earplugs, hair comb, eye mask, socks and Amouage branded cologne, lip balm, and lotion.
For connectivity, I was handed a folded sheet of paper that contained a code for free use of WiFi. Unfortunately, the code was limited to 100 MBs for a three-hour period which was rather limiting, especially for someone sitting in first class.
Nonetheless I appreciated the offer and strategized how I would use the limited WiFi I had.
The first-class cabin was configured in a 1-2-1 setting allowing for individual travelers to maximize their privacy on the side rows and companions in the middle rows.
The seats are the following:
- 30 inches (76.2 cm) wide
- 82 inches (208.3 cm) pitch
The suite was extremely generous on the pitch as you’ll notice the area right in front of you completely clear of any obstacles.
The area has space for a second passenger to sit and dine with you, even providing their own seat belt as well! The tray table is positioned perfectly so there is enough space for you and a companion.
The seat houses the largest storage compartment you have in the suite, being able to easily hold your personal belongings.
On the side of your seat, you’ll find another storage compartment closer to you that can easily fit a laptop and several other items.
The seat controls are controlled by a small screen where you’ll be able to also control the lights and for those in the middle rows, the divider between the middle 2 seats.
By the inflight entertainment system (IFES) you’ll find a chilled minibar that houses several soft drinks and water bottles, similar to the ones you find in Emirates First Class. Though not much space here, this is a great go-to spot if you’re feeling thirsty.
Similar to other first-class cabins, you can also find a small wardrobe to hang your jacket. There is a larger proper locker area to store your clothes near the lavatories; the flight attendants can assist you on that end.
To my surprise, the lavatories have bidets installed, similar to other Asian airlines such as ANA First Class.
Finally, the one “wow” factor on this flight I experienced was not self-evident at first but when I sat down and started exploring the suite.
The material used for the walls and seat was so comfortable that I found myself constantly touching them throughout the flight. This was the first flight I’ve ever taken that I noticed the seat material was superior and extremely comfortable.
If there was no proper bedding and duvets during my nap, then I would’ve been just as satisfied with the raw seat itself.
If there was one takeaway from this review and biggest piece of advice, it would be to take the daytime flight instead of overnight.
Browsing the menu, I noticed the menu was rather bare, if anything, very similar to the first class lounge back at MCT.
Speaking with the flight attendants, I was informed the daytime flight had a much more robust menu with the inclusion of caviar. Unfortunately, I wasn’t going to have any caviar on this overnight red-eye flight.
Nonetheless, I ordered several items before my nap. My eating spree at the lounge just a few hours prior was still sitting in my stomach, so I was unable to eat much.
First was the grilled focaccia with roasted beef and pickled vegetables on the side.
Next we have the marinated poached lobster, smoked mackerel, and seared scallops.
After my nap, I woke up and decided to stick with a simple breakfast.
First was the muesli which was rather delicious.
Finally, I had the herb scrambled eggs with tomato and onion.
After informing the flight attendants of my intention to nap, they went ahead and prepared my bed for me in the center seats. The pillows and quilted duvet were rather comfortable though I found myself wishing to feel more of the seat material rather than the duvet against my arms and legs.
With the doors closed and high walls surrounding my suite, I fell asleep rather quickly in what felt like my own personal castle.
Upon nearing London at around 6:30 AM, I refreshed myself in the lavatories, cleaned up my suite, and prepared for landing.
The flight attendants, including the purser, came around to thank me for flying on this flight. The team was absolutely delightful and I was very happy with how quick and prompt they were. Unfortunately, the flight was barely 8 hours so I did not have enough time to truly enjoy the offerings of the cabin.
If I had to describe my overall experience with Oman Air’s first class cabin, it would be: “humble”.
Unlike other first-class experiences that are over-the-top (e.g., Qatar Airways giant onboard lounge or Emirates decked out gold plated suites), Oman built an elegant overall experience without being overly in your face or sensationalized.
At no point I felt like I was ever in a rush. The team throughout were calm from the lounge and the flight itself. They were patient and guided me each step on the way, making it as enjoyable as possible.
In other first-class experiences, I feel like an excited kid looking to tinker with everything. With Oman Air first class, I felt like a sophisticated traveling quietly enjoying his journey.
The “wow” factor isn’t here and many people will definitely appreciate that. If you’re looking for a comfortable travel experience without the crowds you might see in Emirates for example, then Oman Air is a great alternative to consider as part of your journey.
My final thoughts can be summed up as this:
- Humble with excellent staff throughout your journey
- Very quiet and discrete given the limited first-class seats in Oman Air’s fleet
- Superior and comfortable materials used for the seats
At the time of writing this post (June 6, 2022), Oman Air has not joined an airline alliance and have formed codeshare agreements with various airlines making it rather tricky to book with them on points.
Luckily, on December 14, 2021, Oman Air became officially bookable with Air Canada Aeroplan points.
With minimal taxes, it’s very easy to go onto Air Canada’s website and book directly using your Aeroplan points. Here are the costs to book with fees amounting to less than $100 USD:
- Between London (LHR) and Muscat (MCT): 65K Aeroplan points*
- Between Bangkok (BKK) and Muscat (MCT): 80K Aeroplan points
- Between Kuala Lumpur (KUL) and Muscat (MCT): 80K Aeroplan points
*Special note: if originating and flying out of London (LHR), you’ll be imposed the UK Air Passenger Duty (ADP) resulting in a total cost of over $300 USD to book!
If possible, consider flying from MCT to LHR instead where the fees will be less than $100 USD.
There were a few things I learned on my flight that I wish I knew beforehand but as well as ones that are not openly advertised. I hope these become of value when you try out Oman Air first class:
- You get a free 15-minute massage: immediately inform the staff at the lounge so they can book a timeslot for you. There is no mention of this anywhere unless you’ve looked online
- Take the daytime flight rather than overnight: Due to how short Oman Air’s flights are, the overnight flight has an extremely limited menu which doesn’t include caviar
- The superior private room is at the neighboring Primeclass lounge: if you’re looking to nap in the airport for a few hours, then the Primeclass lounge next door has hotel-quality private rooms with bathrooms. You should book the room ASAP in the event the lounge is crowded
Love my Oman Air first class review? Check out my other review where I explore ANA’s new first class dubbed “The Suite” and its gastronomic Japanese experience.