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I recently had the opportunity to embark on my first-ever flight with Singapore Airlines. While the flight was unfortunately delayed by 1.5 hours, originating from Singapore's Changi International Airport to Manila, the airline was not directly responsible for this delay. Despite the initial setback, I must emphasize that the overall flight experience with Singapore Airlines was nothing short of excellent. I invite you to delve into my comprehensive review of this remarkable journey, which unequivocally cements my strong concurrence with its well-deserved 5-star rating.
Covered in the Article
Singapore Airlines (SIA) is a renowned flag carrier and one of the leading airlines in the world. Established in 1947, SIA has a rich history of excellence and has consistently set high standards in the aviation industry. The airline is based in Singapore and operates a vast network of destinations across six continents. It is known for its exceptional service, luxurious amenities, and state-of-the-art aircraft. Singapore Airlines has received numerous accolades for its commitment to quality and innovation, making it a preferred choice for travellers seeking a premium flying experience.
My Flight Experience from Singapore to Manila
This was my ever first flight with Singapore Airlines that took off in December 2023 from Changi Airport to Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Having heard about the very great reputation of the airline, I was excited to board this flight. The flight from Singapore to Manila was the last leg of my flight from Helsinki via Munich by Lufthansa.
I booked my flight via the Lufthansa website which was the marketing operator of my flights. Lufthansa is the national carrier of Germany and a Star Alliance member. At the same time, Singapore Airlines is the flag carrier of Singapore and is also a member of Star Alliance. Both airlines have codeshare agreements with various other airlines, which allows them to sell tickets on select flights operated by partner airlines. This provides passengers with more options and connectivity when travelling to different destinations. Especially, since Lufthansa isn't operating a flight to Manila from Singapore.
My flight, SQ 918, was operated by Boeing 787-10. It had 36 Business Class seats while there were 301 seats in the Economy Class where I was sitting. The flight was almost full, with only a few vacant seats.
The aircraft had a 3+3+3 seat configuration in the economy class. The seats were arranged in a way that provided ample legroom for passengers. The seats reclined and each passenger was kept entertained with the high-definition touchscreen featuring movies, music and shows. You could recharge your mobile device into the in-seat USB port below your LCD screen. A headset, pillow, and blanket were provided for each seat.
The luggage allowance for the economy class included 23 kg of check-in luggage and 8 kg of personal items to the cabin. There weren't any separate inspections on how much each cabin luggage weighs or size at the gates during boarding. This might be due to a busy flight schedule and a full flight. In fact, after doing two rounds of security checks for all passengers, also the boarding processes were carried out in totally the same way without the need for the staff to randomly verify the weight or size of cabin luggage with an actual measuring device as commonly done by low-cost airlines like Ryanair and Wizzair.
The purchased ticket included a meal and drinks. Passengers with food allergies were first served their pre-chosen meals followed by other passengers. I chose the Mediterranean fish mashed potatoes from the two choices. The meal included white bread, chicken salad and ice cream for dessert. While each passenger was served automatically with a bottle of still water, all passengers were asked too by the cabin crew if one wished for an additional drink. Drinks of choice included orange or apple juice, beer, or soft drinks.
Despite the delay of the flight, the professionalism of the crew of flight SQ918 was exceptional. They made sure that every passenger was able to exit the plane safely and reboard the plane after the second round of security screening. The announcement of the captain regarding the need for all passengers and crew members to leave the aircraft and proceed to the departure gate for the other round of security screening was made very clear while communicating the reason behind it. The staff were friendly and efficient in carrying out their tasks like in serving meals and were quite responsive to passengers' requests.
In addition to the pillows, headsets and blankets, passengers's well-being in Economy Class is also taken care of. Personal care products are provided like individually packed toothbrushes and toothpaste, moisturizing lotion and cologne which are a great surprise that other traditional airlines don't commonly provide for passengers in Economy Class.
Flight Entertainment System
Fortunately, the flight entertainment system of this flight was working smoothly. Each seat was dedicated with a touch-screen LCD screen. It provided free access to movies, music, TV channels, and details of the progress of the flight such as distance to the destination, current altitude, speed and remaining flight duration.
Delay Due To a Security Glitch
The original flight departure of 19:10 was on time and the flight was expected to arrive in Manila at 22:50. We departed the gate accordingly, but then we stayed on the ground for almost half an hour. At 19:36, the captain announced that we needed to return to our departure gate for a second round of security checks. Everyone inside the plane including those beside me started to sleep and were negatively surprised by this announcement. It was even worse when the crew asked everyone to take their belongings with them. However, everyone behaved well while we were informed that security is paramount and that it is the airport's protocol to ensure that security checks are carried out thoroughly.
At 19:56 all passengers and crew members of flight SQ918 were back at gate E22 for a second round of security screening. Everything was carried out smoothly. As a consequence, everyone got packed like sardines inside the hall with most passengers seemingly exhausted. Fortunately, at 20:32 passengers started to reboard the plane on the same sequence as the previous one. At 20:55, this flight took off from Changi International Airport. After 3 hours and 28 minutes, flight SQ 918 arrived at Ninoy Aquino International Airport at 00:23 being delayed for 1 hour and 33 minutes.
I think that Singapore Airlines deserves its 5-star rating. The comfort one can experience with Singapore Airlines exceeds what other traditional airlines can offer such as increased legroom and more comfortable seats, better quality of food served during the flight, and thoughtful touches like amenity kits even in economy class. The friendlier and professional staff also made an impression. While I could not utilize its complimentary Wi-Fi service, it was well compensated by its diverse in-flight information system.
- Does Singapore Airlines have Business Class on short-haul routes?
- Yes, it does if you fly with a bigger aircraft like the Boeing B787-1000.
- Does Singapore Airlines have reclining seats in Economy Class?
- Yes, and each seat features an LCD screen filled with music, movies and TV shows keeping you entertained during the flight.
- What is the seat configuration in Economy Class of Singapore Airlines' Boeing 787?
- 3+3+3 seat configuration featuring ample leg room.
- Are there many meal options in Singapore Airlines' short-haul Economy Class?
- Based on my flight (Singpaore-Manila), there were two options available.
- Does Singapore Airlines have in-flight entertainment in Economy Class?
- Yes, it does have.
- Do the seats in Economy class have USB ports to charge a mobile device?
- Yes, each seat has a USB port.
- Is there Wi-Fi inflight Singapore Airlines for Economy Class passengers?
- A complimentary Wi-Fi service is provided for KrisFlyer members in the Premium Economy and Economy Class.
- What are inflight amenities provided to Economy Class passengers of Singapore Airlines?
- Each seat has a disposable pair of headsets, a pillow and a blanket. Personal care products like individually packed toothbrushes toothpaste, skin moisturizers, and cologne are also provided which you can find at the lavatories.
My inaugural flight with Singapore Airlines was an unforgettable experience, despite a minor delay of 1.5 hours which was beyond the airline's control. The exceptional professionalism and friendly service of the crew during the flight left an indelible impression, reaffirming the airline's consistent top performance in the global aviation industry. This dedication to customer satisfaction has rightfully earned the airline its well-deserved position at the forefront of the world's best airlines. Having experienced the airline's exceptional service firsthand, I am resolute in my preference to choose Singapore Airlines for my future flights. The airline's consistent delivery of top-notch service, despite unforeseen circumstances, has solidified my confidence in making them my airline of choice. My first-ever flight with them was a testament to their exceptional standards, and I would gladly opt to fly with them again if given the opportunity.