Flight test: Jetstar StarClass

Airline Jetstar, Airbus A330.

Route Denpasar to Sydney.

Class StarClass (Jetstar's premium cabin), seat 3A.

Seat pitch and width StarClass 38 inches of legroom, 19½ inches wide (economy 31 inches and 17½ inches).

Seat configuration StarClass 2-3-2 (economy 2-4-2) for total of 38 seats in StarClass and 265 seats in economy.

Luggage allowance 30 kilograms checked baggage plus two pieces of cabin baggage, no more than 10 kilograms each.

Scheduled flight time Seven hours, 45 minutes. On time.

Service Plenty of crew and, as on many Jetstar flights, it's party time. Sensing it's almost midnight and sleep is uppermost in most passengers' minds, the tone is muted. Although a visit to the toilet and hence past the galley leaves the lingering impression we're at a party to which we aren't really invited.

Comfort The leather seats are big and recline like old-style business class seats (not very far) and Jetstar declares it has "lots of legroom". That may be so but when the seat in front is fully reclined, there's not a lot of room to move (and I'm only 1.52 metres tall). The necessity to fly through the night on the way home is sufficient to drive me to the front of the plane. All-inclusive, one-way fares from Bali to Sydney and Melbourne start from $439 for a JetSaver Light fare (carry-on luggage only) and $1049 for a StarClass fare. Is it worth it? Yes, because money buys space, peace and semi-darkness. Plus StarClass passengers have access to the lounge, which is functional but not flash in Denpasar.

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Entertainment No in-seat entertainment but personal video units are offered (inclusive rather than requiring payment, as in economy) but I don't see any takers.

Food It's midnight so no meal is offered but cheeses are served on a plastic plate with some biscuits — the brie and flavoured cheddar are cold and rock hard. Wine is offered.

Amenities A perk of StarClass is a large amenity sack with pockets and zippers, coloured violent orange. My friend is thrilled. Mine, with its eye shades, socks, earplugs and toothbrush, gets left behind.

Flight frequency Up to six times a week direct between Sydney and Bali during peak season; four times a week direct from Melbourne.

Online jetstar.com.

Tested by Sue Bennett