Review of Singapore Airlines flight Singapore Hong Kong in Business

Airline Singapore Airlines
Flight SQ860
Class Business
Seat 15A
Aircraft Airbus A380-800
Flight time 04:10
Take-off 17 Dec 16, 08:40
Arrival at 17 Dec 16, 12:50
SQ   #1 out of 142 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 613 reviews
JW19
By 2585
Published on 29th December 2016
Hi All,

Welcome to my much awaited journey. This is my maiden journey on Singapore Airlines Business Class and something that I have been looking forward to since I confirmed the reservation back in July. I had quite a few Krisflyer miles due to expire earned from my trips flown for my company a few years ago. Back then FR was nothing to me, hence many memorable travels on SQ was lost which I still regret today. Nevertheless lets cut to the chase.

I got up very early to catch a ride to the airport, 4.45 am to be precise, as I wanted to enjoy the SilverKris Lounger (SKL) as much as possible. Booked my ride on Grab, Singapore's own version of Uber and much more reliable than Uber. Arrived at Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 3 around half an hour later.
photo img_6991

A quick check on the FIDS to confirm my check-in row and I head straight to the counter. I was surprised by the crowd at Terminal 3 this time of the day, it was 5.45 am and it was bustling with activity.
photo img_6992photo img_6993

Queues even for J. This set the tone to come for my flight where I could see the area SQ was making profit. The amount of pax flying in their J class is unbelievable. I had to wait 20 minutes for my turn.
photo img_6994photo img_6998_li

After getting my boarding pass, I quickly cleared border control/immigrations and proceeded to the SKL to find another surprise. The lounge was quite crowded with people and the seating layout do not encourage privacy.


A few shots of the surrounding in the SKL. This lounge is pretty well covered by many other FRs out there so I will not go in length on the offerings. It was essentially a large hall partitioned to a few sections. It is definitely a class below that of ME3 and perhaps CX's Business Class lounge in HKG in terms of design and feel, which I find a shame when you compare what SQ offers in flight and its reputation.


Drinks area with a full range of booze available all day long. The gourmet teas were a delight to have and a great perk me up in the morning.


Hot food selection was plentiful with sufficient variety to please all taste buds. However I do find the quality of the offerings lacking when compared to the ME3s. I shall let the pictures speak on the offerings.


My selection for the morning. No booze for me as I was not ready to board the aircraft glowing red. Some fruits and cheese, dumplings, eggs, Singapore's renowned savoury carrot cake. Taste wise it was just fine with the local dishes standing out more than the Western stuff.
photo img_7009photo img_7016

Quiet computer area and a quintessential corporate shot.
photo img_7022photo img_7023

I left the lounge around an hour and 15 minutes later as the crowd started building up. Yet again I was surprised with the large number families travelling with young kids in the lounge. People can get really wealthy. I walked around the airport for some plane spotting only to get variations from one single airline. Not surprising as most of the terminal is actually utilized by that airline. I also popped by the butterfly garden to do some nature admiration.


I headed into the gate area around 15 minutes before scheduled boarding. The gate used for today's flight shares a waiting lounge area with 3 other gates and security is done at the entrance, hence it is a little irritating to be trapped in there once you have passed it. However I did discover the advantage of this layout which I shall share in the return leg of my trip.
The seating in the waiting lounge seems sufficient for passengers for 4 A388s at one go.


My aircraft being prepared.
photo img_7033photo img_7037photo img_7038

Right on time at 7.55 am boarding was called and boarding bye zone was strictly enforced. A Chinese gentlemen in Y tried to barge in front of me but was stopped by the ground staff. Straight down to the gateway to heaven I go.
photo img_7039 2

Flight Details
Aircraft: 9V-SKF
Type: Airbus 380-800
Age: 8.5 years first flight 20 Feb 2008
Operating Code: SQ 860
Scheduled Departure: 0820
Actual Departure: 0815
Flight Time: 3 Hours 15minutes
Seat: 15A

Upon entering the aircraft, each business class passenger was greeted by name and ushered into their seat individually by the FAs. While you take your seat they will deal with your coats and carry on baggage. In short, the level of service I was expecting from SQ and they delivered.
I was seated in the forward part of the 2 section business class cabin housing 20 person, while the larger cabin behind has the capacity of 60 if I am not mistaken. The 30" wide seat was quite overwhelming and fit for first class. In Business, no one else does it like this. I do prefer this layout compared to the Zodiac Cirrus ones used by many other airlines as I have large feet, and despite the angle, the foot well is large enough to fit my feet side by side.


PDB was brought around with an oshibori which I forgotten to picture. Champagne was already available on ground but I passed the Charles Heidsieck and went for an OJ instead. The chief purser came around and greeted each J passenger individually and another following her to take our meal order and post departure beverage preference.
photo img_7047

A quick look around my seat and the old Phitek noise cancelling headphones provided. Not too shabby but not the greatest either.
photo img_7050photo img_7048

I was not able to capture the pushback process as the window was all fogged up. However as we proceeded for take off, the windows cleared and I could muster a few shots. We pushed back 5 minutes ahead of schedule at 8.15 am and was in the air by 8.30. I did not take many pictures of the Flight Information due to the glare that was coming from the screen. The serenity and quietness during take off in an A380 still amazes me till today despite riding in it for the umpteenth time.

The UA B789 you see in the bottom of this picture operates the longest flight that departs SIN for now, direct towards San Francisco with a flight time of over 16 hours.
photo img_7057

Once the seat belt sign was turned off, FAs commenced drink service. Time to bring out the bubbles.
photo img_7609 2photo img_7059 2

Service followed by the quintessential linen on table.
photo img_7060

Fruits up next, but first a glimpse at the menu for today. This is a brunch service flight, hence the heavier options for mains. SQ is currently doing a Teochew or Chao Zhou 潮州 food promotion where flights departing Singapore get a taste of its cuisine in all classes. For the uninitiated, Chao Zhou is an area within the Fujian province of China and its cuisine famed for its seafood and simple cooking methods to bring out the original taste of food. Usually Chao Zhou or Teochew cuisine involves no deep frying and heavy seasoning.


Choice of breakfast breads and pastries up next.
photo img_7062

Some muesli as well.
photo img_7063

and a must have for first timers on SQ J class, the book the cook Lobster Thermidor. Unlike a few others who have sampled this dish and do not like it, I find it done properly with the lobster pieces being absolutely tender and just sufficient sauce not to mask its natural flavour.
photo img_7064photo img_7065

Another angle of how wide the seat is. I was able to get out of it with the table intact.
photo img_7066

Intrigued my the opportunity to have Teochew cuisine in air, I requested for a portion of the Congee with traditional Teochew Condiments (refer to the menu above). Quite well executed I would say.
photo img_7067

Lemon Curd Cake to end an excellent meal. Quite tart this one, but in a refreshing way after the rich dishes before it.
photo img_7069 2

Another hot oshibori to conclude the meal service. My glass was never left empty and the Charles kept flowing. Another point to note was despite having 4 different person servicing my side throughout the meal, not once did they not address me by name. Such was the attention to detail.
photo img_7070 2

After the meal, I turned my seat into a bed and continued on my movie. Life can really be that great in the air.
photo img_7071photo img_7072

Before knowing it, time for descent has came. Descending from FL370, we were given a direct approach into HKG.


Cruising past the United Nations of airlines at HKG with presence from every corner of the earth. Truly an avgeeks heaven.
photo img_7080 2photo img_7081 2photo img_7082 2

Sistership on the earlier departure bearing SQ890.
photo img_7085photo img_7083 2

Gate latching up to the top level.
photo img_7087 2

Last view of an amazing flight.
photo img_7089

Or another one.
photo img_7093

Plane spotting at HKG.
photo img_7095

Thats the end of this flight. Stay tuned for my return on SQ J class as well and lounge hopping in HKG. Cheers.


P.S. Thanks KevinDC for the guide on rotating the pictures, that made this report possible.
See more

Verdict

Singapore Airlines

9.8/10
Cabin9.5
Cabin crew10.0
Entertainment/wifi9.5
Meal/catering10.0

Singapore Airlines Silverkris Lounge - Business - 3

7.6/10
Comfort3.5
Meal/catering9.0
Entertainment/wifi9.0
Services9.0

Singapore - SIN

9.6/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.5

Hong Kong - HKG

8.0/10
Efficiency5.0
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.0

Conclusion

After reading different reviews on SQ J class here, I had doubts they were able to live up to expectations. My doubts however were unfounded. The service was the best I have came across attentive without going overboard, sincere, engaging and most of all candid which made this experience one to remember and will form as a bench mark for my future flights in J. Catering was also top notch. No doubt SQ's SKL for Business Class needs significant improvement to catch up with the new big guns of the industry, it still does not take away the fact that Singapore Airlines is still a great way to fly.

Information on the route Singapore (SIN) Hong Kong (HKG)

2 Comments

  • Comment 379631 by
    rays 10 Comments

    Hi JW19,
    Thank you for your report. I'm really impressed that SQ serves Lobster Thermidor for brunch. And the crew even addressed you by your name when you board the aircraft, I have only experienced this once on CX so I think SQ is doing a really good job.
    Looking forward to your next report!

    • Comment 379673 by
      JW19 AUTHOR 121 Comments

      Hi Rays,
      Thanks for stopping by. Yeah the entire range of book the cook is available for booking at any time of the day. I guess I was lucky with this set of crew and that of my return flight, I have seen reports in FR on SQ that suggests otherwise.

Login to post a comment.