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Qatar Airways joins Jewel early check-in at Changi Airport

Oneworld "lounge safaris" at Changi Airport T1 are now even easier, with Qatar Airways added to the list of carriers participating in the Jewel early check-in programme.

Singapore Changi Airport and its partner airlines are slowly reintroducing a popular option for passengers, with more travellers eligible for the Jewel Early Check-In (ECI) facility, which allows you to check in for your flight and issue your boarding passes up to 24 hours before departure time.

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From 26th September 2022, Qatar Airways passengers travelling to selected countries can also use the service, checking in from 1pm to 5pm at Jewel for the carrier’s 6pm or 2.40am departures to Doha and beyond.

That’s a great improvement on the airline’s regular T1 check-in desk opening three hours before each flight’s respective departure time, allowing you to drop your bags and have your boarding card issued much further in advance.

The Jewel Early Check-in facility. (Photo: Changi Airport Group)

For many of our readers, the benefit will open up the opportunity to visit several of Terminal 1’s excellent oneworld lounges, which start to open from 2.30pm, for a variety of dining opportunities, a few hours of productive work, and of course some free-flow Champagne, prior to an evening or late-night Qatar Airways flight.

Qatar Airways Jewel early check-in

From 26th September 2022, passengers departing on Qatar Airways flights to the following final destination countries are eligible to check-in early at Jewel from 1pm to 5pm each day.

  • Austria
  • Australia
  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Bahrain
  • Bosnia
  • Bulgaria
  • Belgium
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Congo
  • Cyprus
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Egypt
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Georgia
  • Greece
  • Grenada
  • Gabon
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Jamaica
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Kuwait
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Namibia
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Oman
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Rwanda
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Serbia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • Sudan
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • United Kingdom
  • Yemen

While this covers most Qatar Airways routings, notable exceptions include those heading to Brazil, Spain, Canada and the USA as their final destination, plus (amusingly enough) Qatar itself (as final destination only, transit not affected).

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That’s because these countries still maintain pre-departure requirements (e.g. vaccination certificate, pre-departure test and/or “silly forms”) that need to be sighted by a Qatar Airways staff member at the check-in desk.

The Jewel early check-in lounge is staffed only by SATS representatives to assist you with the physical process if required. Our understanding is that they are unable to assist with visa or health certificate requirements of your final destination, hence these destination country exclusions.

Qantas, Malaysia Airlines and some Singapore Airlines passengers can currently check-in at Jewel between 1pm and 5pm, with Qatar Airways joining the list from 26th September. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Qatar Airways flight schedule

The Jewel early check-in option will currently benefit Qatar Airways passengers departing on the following flights from Changi each day.

Qatar Airways
Singapore to Doha
Now – 29th October 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
QR945
SIN
02:40
DOH

05:50
QR947
SIN
18:00
DOH

21:10

Note that to use the Jewel early check-in option, your flight must be departing in 3 to 24 hours time. For QR847 passengers, the Jewel option is therefore only useful from 1pm to 3pm each day (after that, you’re within 3 hours and must check-in at the regular T1 desks).

From the start of the winter season on 30th October 2022, Qatar Airways is returning to pre-COVID frequencies on its Singapore flights, offering three services per day to and from Doha, which will also benefit from the early check-in option at Jewel.

Qatar Airways
Singapore to Doha
From 30th October 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
QR945
SIN
02:00
DOH

05:05
QR943
SIN
10:55
DOH

14:00
QR947
SIN
20:25
DOH

23:30

The additional 11am service will also mean a morning opening window at the Qatar Premium Lounge is back, from around 8am each day.

Qatar Airways predominantly operates its Airbus A350s on flights from Singapore. (Photo: Qatar Airways)

Where is it?

The Jewel ECI is located on Level 1 of the Jewel complex.

From the T1 departures level (Jewel drop off), you’ll need to go down one level to reach the ECI facility.

From T1 arrivals you are already on the correct floor and the ECI is only short walk into the complex on the left side.

Oneworld lounges at Changi T1

As we mentioned above, one of the great advantages of checking in early for your evening or 2am Qatar Airways flight is the opportunity to pass through to the transit area with your boarding card and enjoy more time in the T1 lounges.

This possibility is also already available for those departing on Qantas and Malaysia Airlines services from Changi.

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Here’s a summary of your lounge options, including their current opening hours.

British Airways Singapore Lounge

READ OUR REVIEW

Access:

  • Oneworld First or Business Class
  • Oneworld Emerald or Sapphire status
Opening hours:

  • 4pm – 10pm daily

Qantas Singapore Business Lounge

READ OUR REVIEW

Access:

  • Oneworld First or Business Class
  • Oneworld Emerald or Sapphire status
Opening hours:

  • 3pm – midnight daily

Qantas Singapore First Lounge

READ OUR REVIEW

Access:

  • Oneworld First Class
  • Oneworld Emerald status
Opening hours:

  • 3pm – midnight daily

Qatar Airways Singapore Premium Lounge

READ OUR REVIEW

Access:

  • Oneworld First or Business Class
Opening hours:

  • 6pm – 3am daily

If you’re wondering who foots the bill for your “lounge safari” prior to a oneworld flight at Changi, our recent article breaks down the details.

Some flights have the Qsuite

Prior to COVID-19, Qatar Airways was only operating Airbus A350-1000s to and from Singapore, all of which are equipped with the Qsuite in Business Class.

This guaranteed the excellent product on all flights in and out of Changi, however the same unfortunately does not apply today.

Currently the airline is scheduling some A350-1000 flights from the airport, which all have Qsuite, and some A350-900 flights, some of which also have Qsuite but some of which have the older configuration.

Even if you’re on this older product, we reviewed it in September 2019 on an A350-900 flight from Athens to Doha and had a good experience, though it’s a lot less private.

During the upcoming World Cup, Qatar Airways is prioritising capacity on its Europe flights, which means the Singapore route downgrades to Boeing 787-8 and Boeing 777-200LR operation from mid-November to mid-December.

Boeing 787-8s have the older A350 seats like those shown above, while Boeing 777-200LRs have either the Qsuite or the airline’s oldest long-haul 2-2-2 configuration in Business Class – one to avoid if you can!

Older Qatar Airways Boeing 777 Business Class. (Photo: Frankfurtflyer)

Qatar Airways is notorious for its aircraft swaps, however, so you can’t really predict accurately too far in advance. Even short-term aircraft swaps can see you upgraded to the Qsuite (or vice-versa) on a regular basis!

Summary

More Oneworld airlines joining the Jewel early check-in programme is great news for those looking to pass through to the transit area earlier than usual and maximise time in one or more of T1’s well-rated lounges.

This latest addition for most Qatar Airways passengers is great news, adding to the existing option for Qantas and Malaysia Airlines passengers, though do note if you’re jetting off to some countries like Spain or the USA you won’t be eligible to use early check-in at this stage.

Hopefully remaining oneworld airlines like British Airways, Cathay Pacific and Finnair will offer early check-in again soon.

Prior to COVID-19, passengers departing on over 30 airlines were eligible to use the Jewel early check-in facility, with operating hours from 6am to midnight, so hopefully we will see a progressive return for this popular option in the months ahead.

(Cover Photo: Qatar Airways)