[Airline Review] – Singapore Airlines (SQ972) / (SQ979) – Economy Class, SIN-BKK, (21 Jul 17) / BKK-SIN (23 Jul 17)

Singapore Airlines deployed the B777-200 for SIN-BKK

Singapore Airlines A330-300 is used from BKK-SIN

On The Ground

SIN-BKK

Check-in

Singapore Airlines uses Terminal 2 in Singapore Changi Airport for flights departing to Bangkok. Check-in counters for SQ are located in rows 3 and 4, with row 4 catering for passengers who opt for self check-in and baggage drop offs. We used the counters in row 3 to check-in due to our bulky luggage. There was no queue at the check-in counter probably due to SQ encouraging their passengers to use the self check-in counters, as there are ground staff deployed at the check-in rows to direct passengers to the self check-in machines. We were greeted by a friendly ground staff who processed our check-in with haste and reminded us the boarding gate and the time to be at the gate. Singapore Changi Airport is a shopping haven with lots of activities for passengers to spend their timing waiting for their flight. Other than numerous luxury brand boutiques, duty free cosmetics and liquors, there are activities such as gardens, movie theatres, snooze areas for passengers to kill their time.

Singapore Airlines SIN-BKK departs from Terminal 2 in Singapore Changi Airport

Passengers traveling on Singapore Airlines checks in from Row 3 in the terminal building

Empty queue at the check-in counters

Artwork in Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 2 

Singapore Airlines departs from Gate E4 in Singapore Changi Airport

Walking down the aerobridge towards my Singapore Airlines  flight

BKK-SIN

Check-in

Check-in rows for Singapore Airlines are located in Row K in the centre of Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. 3 queues are set up for passengers flying with Singapore Airlines in the airport, one each catering for Business Class passengers, Economy Class passengers and passengers who has completed online check-in. As we were early for our flight, all three queues were relatively short. I have the habit of completing online check-in whenever I fly as the queue is usually much shorter then the other queues. There were no one waiting in line at the time we were at the airport. We were served promptly by the ground staff, who processed our check-in and took our luggage swiftly. The friendly ground staff briefed us on the gate for our flight as well as the time of boarding. Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport is always bustling with life, there are huge crowds in the airport. We spent a considerable amount of time clearing immigration. There are no lack of shopping in this airport, particularly souvenirs, however the souvenirs are much pricier than that found in downtown Bangkok.

Singapore Airlines check-in counters are located in Row K in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Check-in rows for Economy Class passengers and passengers who have completed internet check-in traveling on Singapore Airlines in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Singapore Airlines internet check-in counters in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Economy Class Check-in counters

Singapore Airlines departs from Gate D7 in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Waiting area in Gate D7 in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

The Cabin

SIN-BKK

Singapore Airlines uses B777-200 for this leg of the flight. The Economy Class cabin look aged as I entered the aircraft, which signals the airlines would either replace the aircraft or refurbish it. Despite the aged look, the cabin is still bright, thanks to the white lighting used in this aircraft. The seats are arranged in a 3-3-3 configuration, draped in hues of blue and purple. Comparing to the newer aircrafts, the seats onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200 looks more comfortable with thicker cushioning. A stark difference from my previous experience with Singapore Airlines (some 7 months back), no pillows or blankets were placed on the seats. It seem that Singapore Airlines is cutting back budget. Pillows and blankets are available upon request.

Singapore Airlines B777-200 Economy Class cabin is decked  out with blue and purple seats

Seat onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200 Economy Class cabin

Economy Class cabin ambience onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Front gallery and peeking into Business Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

The lavatory is of a decent size, almost the same as its newer counterparts. The use of mirrors in the lavatory made it look bigger than it actually is. Despite the aged look, the lavatory is very well maintained. Singapore Airlines places additional amenities such as toothbrush, comb in their lavatory which is getting rare for Economy Class onboard other airlines. On top of these amenities, the standard amenities such as mouth wash, hand moisturiser and hand soap are also available.

Mirrors in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Mirrors in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Coat hangar found on the door to the lavatory

Sink in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Toilet inside the lavatory

Amenities found in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Additional amenities provided by Singapore Airlines. Not all airlines provide these amenities these days

Amenities in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines

BKK-SIN

For this sector of the flight, Singapore Airline uses the A330-300. There are 2 different colour tones in the forward and aft Economy Class cabin. The forward Economy Class cabin has a lighter and more “skyish” colour scheme. Decked out in light blue and light brown, the forward cabin feels livelier in the choice of colour. The aft Economy Class cabin is decked in hues of brown, giving it a more earthy feel. Coupled with the use of mood lighting in the cabin, the Economy Class section feels very comfortable. Seats are arranged in 2-4-2 configuration in Singapore Airlines A330-300.  As with the previous flight, no pillows and blankets are placed on the seat. However they are available only upon request from the flight attendants.

Singapore Airlines A330-300 livery

Flight attendants welcoming passengers during boarding

Peeking into Business Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Forward Economy Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 is decked with blue and brown seats

The aft Economy Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 is decked with different shades of brown

Similar with the previous sector, the lavatory is of a decent size and was very well lighted. Unlike the lavatory in the B777-200 which uses mainly white lighting, the A330-300 lavatory uses yellowish lighting, which makes it feel comfortable. There are Hollywood style lighting in the mirrors of the lavatory onboard this aircraft. Again the clever use mirrors makes the lavatory feel bigger than it is. The standard amenities such as hand soap, mouth wash and hand moisturiser are found in the lavatory. On top of these, additional amenities such as toothbrush and combs are also found in the lavatory.

Sink in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Toilet in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

I like this pedal onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 lavatory for activating the trash bin lid

Hollywood style lighting on the mirrors in the lavatory

Amenities in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Amenities in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Coat hangar on the door in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Mirrors in the lavatory onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

The Seats

SIN-BKK

Despite its aged look, the seats onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200 are comfortable and well maintained. Thanks to the thicker cushioning for the seats, it feels as though the seats hugs around my body. Seats in Economy Class cabin are 32″ in pitch and 17.5″ wide. The legroom is good on the Economy Class cabin. Tray tables are the standard single piece, which is different from the bi-fold design in their A330-300. The placement of a small cup holder on the back of the tray table is a good design which allows passengers to stow their drinks when the tray table is folded up. Seat recline button is found on one of the armrests, while the IFE controller is stored on the other armrest on each seat. Unlike its more modern counterparts, there are no USB or power sockets onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200 aircrafts.

Economy Class seats onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Legroom is decent in the Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Cup holder on the back of the tray table

Seat recline buttons in the Economy Class seats onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

2-tier seat pocket onboard onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Tray table in the Economy Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Singapore Airlines B777-200 flight safety card

Seat pocket contents onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Cabin lighting onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Cabin ambience in Economy Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

BKK-SIN

The seats onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 are very comfortable despite appearing to be thinner in the cushioning compared to their B777-200 counterpart. It has a pitch of 32″ and width of 19″. Legroom seem slightly better than the B777-200 in the Economy Class section. The multiple pocket seat pockets is a welcomed addition in the Economy Class section as it allowed me to store various small items that I carried onboard. A coat hanger can be found in every seat as well as the audio input and USB connector, which allows passengers to charge their mobile devices inflight. Tray tables are bi-fold, allowing passengers to use the tray table and still allow passenger sitting in the window seat to gain access to the aisle without having to put away the tray table. A small mirror on the back of the tray table is a nice touch to the design of Singapore Airlines Economy Class onboard the A330-300. On the top left corner, next to the IFE screen is a small pocket that allows passengers to store small item, a cup holder is also found in this area, which means passengers can put away the tray table and not have to hold their drinks on their hands. The seat recline button ad headphone jack is found on the armrest of each Economy Class seat.

Singapore Airlines Economy Class seats onboard A330-300

Legroom is excellent in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Cup holder found on the left of the IFE screen along with a coat hangar

I like the design of the seat pocket with a lot of small compartments to store small items  in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Singapore Airlines A330-300 flight safety card

Seat pocket reading materials onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Bi-fold tray table with mirror in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Tray table fully extended in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

IFE in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Seat recline button in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Headphone jack is found on the armrest in Economy Class seat onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

In-Flight Entertainment

SIN-BKK

Singapore Airlines B777-200 has a smaller 6.5″ screen for their IFE compared to their A330-300 aircrafts. IFE onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200 features video on-demand, which allows passengers to watch the shows available as and when they like. The IFE does not have touch screen function and lagged a fair bit when used with the controller stowed on the armrest. Despite the aging equipment, the IFE still packs a wide selection of movies, TV shows, games that kept me entertained throughout the flight. The IFE on my seat malfunctioned halfway through the flight, showing the age of the equipment. My screen resetted itself halfway through the flight and I was faced with a blank screen. I highlighted this issue to the flight attendant and she resetted the system for my seat. However after the reset, the IFE lost its on-demand function and I was only able to watch movies through the schedule timing. The IFE controller is aging as well, it did not respond well to the button pressing and lagged a fair bit. One would have to have patience when operating the IFE onboard this aircraft.

6.5″ IFE screen in Economy Class cabin onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

There are no lack of entertainment options onboard Singapore Airlines

IFE controller is stored on the armrest in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Aging IFE controller in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

Back side of the IFE controller

Headphone jacks on the armrest in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines B777-200

My IFE reseted by itself halfway through the flight

BKK-SIN

The IFE onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 has a large 10.5″ screen compared to the B777-200 aircraft. As with all aircrafts on Singapore Airlines, passengers are treated to video on-demand allowing them the flexibility to watch the shows they wanted onboard. The controller for each seat is stored below the IFE screen. As with most of Singapore Airlines aircrafts, there are no touch screen function for the IFE, however the system is rather responsive with the controller. Singapore Airlines has a good library of entertainment options, ranging from the latest Hollywood blockbusters to TV shows, that is sure to keep its passengers entertained throughout the flight.

10.5″ IFE screen in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

IFE menu in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Audio and video inputs as well as USB port in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

IFE controller in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300 is stored below the IFE screen

IFE controller and headphones onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Back side of the IFE controller in Economy Class onboard Singapore Airlines A330-300

Meal Service

SIN-BKK

As the SIN-BKK leg lasts around 2 hours, flight attendants sprung into action preparing the meals soon after the  seat belt sign is turned off. On this leg of the flight, passengers are given the meal options of Chicken Sausage with Egg or Fish with Rice and Omelette for breakfast. Passengers are also treated with the standard drink options such as soft drinks, beer and various juices. I opted for the Sausage option, which is tasty and well seasoned. The fried eggs are done perfectly and the mash potatoes are moist. Despite portion looking small, it is enough to fill my stomach. Each meal comes with fresh fruits and chocolate mouse cake, which are tasty as well. My friend opted for the Fish and Rice, which is well flavoured and tasty. The omelette is full of flavours as well.

Flight attendants doing their meal runs shortly after the seat belt sign is turned off

I took the Chicken Sausage and Egg option

My friend had the Fish with rice and omelette

BKK-SIN

For this leg of the flight, passengers are given the option of Chicken with Rice or Beef with potato option. I took the Chicken with Rice option which comes with apple and prawns as appetiser and coconut cake as dessert. The chicken is well marinated and is very tasty. The prawn is well poached but the apple is a little to sour for my liking. Standard drinks such as soft drinks, juices and beer are available for passengers.

Flight attendants doing meal run service

I took the Chicken and Rice option for this leg of the flight

Service

Service onboard Singapore Airlines is impeccable on both legs. For the SIN-BKK leg, the excellent service started at the time of boarding. Flight attendants are seen helping passengers with the carry-on luggage and helping passengers settling into the seat before taking off. Service is always done with a smile. As my sister is traveling with my young nephew, flight attendants are seen checking on them constantly to ensure they are comfortable and well taken care off.

Flight attendant distribution hot towel before taking off

Flight attendants attending to the needs of passengers during meal service runs

The service on the BKK-SIN leg is nothing short of excellent as well. The team of flight attendants were friendly and did not feel imposed upon when requesting for items such as additional bread or drinks or even blankets. During the fight, Eunice Tan made us feel comfortable and ensured that all our requests are being attended to. Usually flight attendants would forget about requests for drinks during meal service. This is not the case for Eunice. Despite the drink I wanted was not in her cart, Eunice offered alternatives and promised to get back to me after servicing the section she was responsible for. Eunice was seen rushing back to the galley after doing her job and emerge with the drinks I wanted. Eunice was also attentive when she noticed that my drink was finished, she took the initiative and asked if I need more drinks. This is the first time I encountered such attentive service onboard Singapore Airlines. Eunice was attentive to my sister as well. During meal time, she was seen suggesting to my sister to be served meal first, so that my brother-in-law can “entertain” my nephew. Eunice took note of the meal option for my brother-in-law and returned later to check if my  sister has finished her meal. After clearing the meal tray from my sister, Eunice promptly returned with my brother-in-law’s meal.

The other crew onboard that truly stands for what the Singapore Girl means is Ploypom. When I requested for a blanket from Ploypom, she responded to my call for attendant promptly and took the initiative of bringing 2 blankets, with the other 1 for my friend as well. Such thoughtful gesture surprised me, Ploypom did not only do what was requested, she went above and beyond that.

Flight attendant distributing hot towels before taking off

Afterthought

I had a comfortable flight with Singapore Airlines for this Bangkok trip. Despite its B777-200 being aged and a small hiccup on the IFE, the aging aircraft is comfortable to fly in. The A330-300 that Singapore Airlines deployed is comfortable and the IFE system kept me entertained throughout the flight. The service is impeccable onboard both legs of the flight. Flight attendants are seen serving the passengers well and ensured that our needs are being taken care of. Nothing seem to be too troublesome for these industrious flight crew who strived hard to keep the standard of service that Singapore Airlines is well known for consistent. Despite traveling with infant, Singapore Airlines does not offer priority boarding for passengers with young children, boarding is done sequentially by rows organised in groups. Singapore Airlines no longer provide pillows and blankets on their seats during boarding, these amenities have to be requested should passengers need them.

Singapore Airlines ready to depart Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Flying above the clouds

Sun setting in the sky

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