Once again, I took the chance of the long weekend holidays in Singapore to make a trip to a regional destination, this time to the popular resort island of Bali for a 3 nights stay. This trip would also be interesting as I would be flying Singapore Airlines on the trip up to Bali, and returning on Garuda Indonesia. Having flown SQ countless times, I was more eager to see how the new Garuda, with acclaimed 5-Stars Airline and Best Cabin Crew awards, compares to the industry leading Singapore Airlines. So here we go, the battle between SQ and GA on the regional SIN-DPS flight!
Check-in was as usual painless when done online and at Changi Terminal 2, we used the self-service check-in kiosks on get our boarding passes, printed on flimsy slips of paper.
It was a rather long trek to gate F58 where the aircraft was parked.
The aircraft had arrived slightly late from Brisbane and servicing was still being done.
Sister Silkair parked beside.
24 March 2016 Singapore Airlines SQ 946 Singapore (SIN) - Denpasar Bali (DPS) A330-300 9V-STQ Economy Class Flight Time: 2H21M
Boarding was called and priorities were enforced. Down the jetbridge we go to the aircraft.
Expecting a trolley load of newspapers at the door it was not to be. Only about 15 copies of The Straits Times were placed on the trolley. Cost-cutting measure?
Welcomed onboard and directed to my seat at 55K. The flight would end up totally full. Not unexpected during this long weekend.
Boarding in progress.
View out the window.
Legroom was average, with pillows and blankets pre-set on every seat. Note: STQ has its footrests removed as well.
I would be an almost 2.5h flight today.
The obligatory SQ hot towels were distributed, doors closed and we pushed back with safety video shown. Crew were seen to be in quite a rush due to the late boarding and full flight.
Lets have a preview of Terminal 4 during the taxi to the runway.
Cleared for departure from Rwy02C.
And lift off, climbing to the cruising altitude of 37,000ft.
Video of the takeoff.
Meal service commenced shortly after departure. Service was typically SQ, efficient and polite, with all requests attended to swiftly but nothing too memorable. Guess with the really full and short flight, one cannot expect too exceptionally superb service in Economy.
On offer was a choice of Chicken with potatoes or Fish with rice. We had a selection each. Meal was served with a salad starter, warm roll with butter, cup of water and a dessert. Requested for an apple juice to go with the meal.
Chicken with potatoes selection. The salad starter was simple but refreshing with the fruit bits. Chicken selection was just standard airplane food fare and was rather bland. Dessert I knew would be good as I can the same dessert last year on the flight back from Hanoi. An observation: The cup of drinking water, which I thought would be mineral water, seems to be "downgraded" to be just filtered tap water, as there was a rather strong taste of chlorine which I am very sensitive to. Have not encountered this on my prior flights.
As for the Spicy fish with rice option, it was a TOTAL FAIL!! The fish, I think should be dory, was all mushy and has a slight "fishy" taste. More incredibly, the red-coloured "spicy" sauce, other than a hint of hotness, was totally tasteless!! Seriously, I wondered how the caterers were able to whip up such a flavourless dish in the kitchen…. Had anyone in the catering center test-tasted the dish???
The saving grace was the chocolate mousse dessert, which was yummy!
Accompanied my meal with a Chinese movie. Not too interesting movie selections in this month's Krisworld.
Ended my meal with a cup of tea during tray collection.
Standard SQ amenities in the lavatory.
View of the forward economy cabin.
Ordered a Singapore Sling from the galley after the meals were cleared.
Flight path as we were nearing Bali.
Last glimpse of light.
Had a rather smooth landing on Bali's Rwy09 slightly ahead of schedule.
Immigration and customs was luckily rather smooth as there were no other international flight arrivals prior to us. However, transportation to town was another matter as due to a very bad jam outside the airport, there was a total shortage of official airport taxis due to all stuck in jams. Instead, we had to proceed to the departure hall to grab an incoming drop-off Bluebird cab, which usually would be forbidden by the airport authorities. It was then an hour's ride to Seminyak, with half an hour spent just leaving the jammed up airport premise!
Accommodation was booked at Heliconia Villas, which was well-located just off Eat Street in Seminyak. As it was the low season, rates were actually more than reasonable for the 2-storey pool villa.
Having reached the villa and checked-in rather late, we settled for supper at one of the restaurants along Eat Street. Chose to have our meal at Café Bali, where we ordered a Snapper steak and a Nasi Goreng. Both were rather tasty, but portions may not be the biggest.
Next morning, brunch was settled at a local Indonesian eatery along Eat Street which offers Nasi Campur, ie, rice with mixed dishes. The dishes were presented buffet-styled and you would pay after picking your fill of the dishes on your plate. Food was authentically Indonesian and tasty (and spicy!) and price was very reasonable as well!
And relaxing with a cool drink at Seminyak Square on the very hot day.
The stretch of beach near Seminyak, where KuDeTa is located, is definitely much nicer than Kuta.
Along Jln Kayu Aya, aka Eat Street.
The bar/café in the background has the concept of "Watching the World Go By".
Dinner at a well-recommended restaurant, Kendi Kuning, which offers excellent food at value-for-money prices, plus excellent service as well! A wonderful dinner experience!
Grilled clams in Balinese sauce
Prawns with avocado salad and a vegetable dish. The salad was excellent.
Balinese-style chicken with rice, and calamari rings.
And the must-order Grilled mahi-mahi!
3rd day, it was back for Nasi Campur, only this time my plate was filled with even more dishes!
And the must drink on all my trips to Indonesia, A&W Root Beer Float!
By now, you might be wondering why is there no pictures of Bali sights. But as we had visited most of the attractions before, this trip was basically a rest and relax and feast trip haha.
Dinner at Ginger Moon. Another restaurant with great food, though a bit pricey. Reservations recommended as the restaurant totally filled up after we had our early dinner.
Babi guling pizza
Steamed buns with Balinese sausages and Nasi Goreng.
Singapore - SIN
Denpasar - DPS
A standard SQ flight with pleasant and efficient service and offerings. Only fault would be the catering, which was way below usual SQ standards for the mains. But overall still a comfortable flight experience.
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