Qantas, Virgin Australia, Emirates: Top in-flight bars revealed


Forget about the in-flight drinks trolley – the ultimate glass of wine is found in the front of the plane in the on-board bar.

Here, passengers can escape the confines of their seat and mingle with fellow travellers.

The only downside, of course, is that they are only available for first class and business class travellers, and they’re not on every flight or every airline.

If you do make it into the mile-high bar club, you will find extensive drinks lists.

On some planes, there are seasonal cocktail menus, and on others, passengers can order everything from a martini to a chilled bottle of champagne.

With afternoon tea, TVs and private seating – here are some of the best bars to drink in while 37,000 feet in the air.


Virgin Atlantic’s Boeing 777 has an on-board bar for upper class passengers.

The UV-lit futuristic-looking island and the cocktail menu changes seasonally.

The seating area is less spacious than on the other airlines, though, with just a handful of bar stools and otherwise standing room for drinkers.

Earlier this year, Virgin’s Airbus A350 aircraft added a bar called The Loft, with communal seating, afternoon tea and drinks.


Virgin Australia added a bar to its Boeing 777 aircraft in 2016.

The drinks on offer – spirits and whiskeys – beat many of its rivals.

Instead of just bar stools, there are also secondary seats around the edge to relax in.

As well as bar snacks, passengers are able to take their breakfast there too.


The in-flight bar on Emirates A380 flights was introduced in 2017.

The lounges can accommodate up to 26 passengers at a time who can watch the 55-inch LCD TV while enjoying canapes and bespoke cocktails.

First class passengers can even order their own bottle of champagne on ice.

The airline recently announced plans to upgrade the bar again, although little has been revealed about it yet.


Etihad has more of a relaxed lounge called The Lobby for its business and first class passengers.

Inside are circular seats, which can fit up to six people, along with a large TV.

Guests can help themselves to drinks from the well-stocked trolley, with high-end spirits and bottles of champagne all available.

Guests can also order bar snacks from cabin crew if they get peckish.


Korean Air’s A380 planes have an on-board lounge called the Celestial Bar.

With lots of seating for business class passengers, you can order aviation-themed cocktails that are sponsored by Absolut Vodka.

If you don’t like vodka then you will have to request other drinks, which they make elsewhere – but you can kill time with bar snacks like nuts and beef jerky and browse a magazine or watch TV.

It is also a great place to mingle with other passengers thanks to the open seating.


Qantas’ new bar on the A380 plane was once a private area for cabin crew, located on the second level behind the cockpit.

First class and business class passengers can make the most of the new and improved first class and business lounge area, which feels like a seat inside a New York bar.

Dark and moody, the multimillion-dollar refurbishment has transformed the space with group-seating booths for around 10 passengers, sleek wooden finishes and co-working spaces.

Along with booth seating and a large flat screen TV comes the all-important self-serve mini bar.


Qatar is a Muslim country with strict drinking laws, but the country’s national airline still has one of the best plane bars in the world.

Business and first class ticket holders are both allowed access to the bar, which is surrounded by long sofas that can hold up to 10 drinkers at a time.

Guests can order a range of top-shelf spirits as well as glasses of Krug champagne.

You can also nibble on bar snacks and get dishes from the business class menu delivered to the sofas.

This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission


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