I decided to take a trip in Oct to Seoul to experience its autumn season. Was searching the web for some decent fares when I decided to do a weird booking, one-way SIN-BKK-ICN on TG for S$398 and redeeming 19125 Krisflyer miles + S$70 taxes for one-way ICN-SIN on SQ. Great to compare how the 2 airlines fare!
27 October 2010 Thai Airways TG 410 Singapore (SIN) - Bangkok (BKK) B777-300 HS-TKA Economy Class
I was initially disappointed when both my TG flights were scheduled to be on B772s but TG being TG, my SIN-BKK sector got TGed to a bigger B773 with retrofitted interiors due to overbooking. Finally having a chance to try the newly retrofitted aircraft!
On the day of departure, I arrived at Changi Terminal 1 slightly more than 2hrs before departure and already the queues for check-in were already long despite TG opening 7 counters for check-in. Luckily I had done an online check-in earlier and was able to bypass the long lines. T1 departure hall was still in major renovation but the transit area has more or less been done up. Immigration queues were long (as usual for T1) but I was able to bypass using the automated clearance system.
T1 transit area. Still able to see some hoardings.
The Green Market was just a short skytrain ride away at Terminal 2, beside the airline lounges.
There is a all-u-can-eat salad and appetizer buffet, with a choice of set meal or ala carte menu. The food are Japanese oriented.
A set meal was provided free, compliments of my credit card. Firstly, I had some appetizers from the buffet. It was not bad. A welcome drink was also offered.
Followed with a choice of main courses. I had a beef fried rice. Should have gone with the tempura as it looked more appetising. However the fried rice it was not bad. Meal ended with a dessert from the buffet. Overall it is a nice place to grab a bite before/in between flights.
After the meal, I headed back to Terminal 1 to my gate at C25, which was right at the end of the pier.
FIDS. More than half the flights shown on the screens are operated by budget airlines. And for the first time, my flight is indeed being boarded when Boarding is displayed on the screens.
My plane, HS-TKA, TG's 1st B777-300 and retrofitted with new cabin but still bearing the old colours. I was one of the last passengers to board.
Boarded the plane and were greeted with Thai wais by the crew at the door as well as along the cabin. Most passengers were already seated. I sat at 70A beside 2 middle-aged Thai ladies. A pillow was already on the seat.
Customary legroom shot. IFE was touchscreen and seat pitch was fantastic!!
All the stuff in the seat pocket.
The flight was very full (no wonder TG needed to upgrade to a B773) but we managed to push back on time.
Pushback with safety video playing.
I just love TG's safety video, soothing and well presented. Really one of the best out there.
We had a really long taxi to Rwy02C. Passing T3 with SQ's A380 aircrafts.
Crossing the highway.
Holding short at Rwy02C after almost 20min of taxi.
Climbing into the night sky.
We are on our way. The seat pitch is so good I can even cross my legs!
After the seatbelt signs are switched off, the crew first came through the aisle with hot towels, sadly not the SQ thick cotton type, but definitely an improvement over the wet refreshment towel packets that they used to distribute. However I was wondering why did they not give out earphones for the IFE initially but it was till towards the end of the flight when my seatmates took out their earphones that I realised that the crew had given out the earphones before I had boarded the plane. Immigration forms were also given out at this time.
Then the crew prepared for the dinner service. First, full bar carts were pushed out by the crew and parked at the rear of the plane and following that, meal carts were then pushed out too. 2 crew were manning each aisle, 1 to distribute meals and the other to serve drinks from the bar cart. The whole service procedure was very organised and swift. There were a choice of 2 main courses tonight, Prawn curry with rice or Stir-fried beef with rice. I chose the prawn curry.
Main course unveiled. With the main course were a salad with dressing, roll and butter and apple crumble for dessert.
Prawn curry with rice. TG's catering did not disappoint again. It was very good! I wiped out all of it! The food was catered from BKK though, thus explaining the high quality.
Salad with sesame dressing, roll and butter.
Apple crumble. It was great as well.
Stewardess conducting bar cart service after distribution of meals. A full range of drinks were available, including liquors and wines. TG definitely do not scrimp on alcohols and drinks! Such liquors would only be on request if one would to fly on SQ to BKK.
And best of all, you get the whole can instead of just a plastic cup full!!
I finished almost everything!
And the service was so fast that we still had more than an hour to go! I was so impressed that TG could serve a full flight in less than 20min! Try beating that, SQ.
An elaborate coffee/tea trolley service was also conducted after that, with drinks and wine top-ups also offered. I had a tea. Milk was poured directly from a milk pot instead of using creamer, really business class like!
After meal service.
Crew coming round to collect the trays and offering a 3rd round of drinks!
I had a quick peek at the lavatory. The tap is sensor operated!
Not much amenities other than this perfume.
One more cabin view.
I whiled the time away viewing the flight map since the flight is too short to complete a movie. Yes, on-demand movies are available on this flight but selection is definitely less than SQ. Also I did not bother the crew for a pair of earphones. Soon we started our descent into BKK.
The crew prepared the cabin for landing, following which the female crew went and change out of their traditional thai uniforms into their ground uniforms.
Landing at Rwy01L, with nice landing music in the background.
Welcome to Bangkok. We landed approximately on schedule and taxied to the gate.
Last looks at the comfortable colourful seats.
Proceeding to transit security for my onward flight.
Singapore - SIN
Bangkok - BKK
I am very impressed with TG as they proved that full service can still be accomplished on such short sectors. TG excels in the meals and beverages department on short flights when other airlines are cutting costs on similar length flights. However, it could be that TG had also staffed more crew on their planes as there were 4 crew per economy cabin, which is quite a high crew to pax ratio in economy.
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