Review of Turkish Airlines flight Singapore Istanbul in Economy

Airline Turkish Airlines
Flight TK209
Class Economy
Seat 29A
Aircraft Airbus A350-900
Flight time 10:11
Take-off 15 Sep 23, 11:55
Arrival at 15 Sep 23, 17:06
TK   #13 out of 96 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 775 reviews
Rixeel
By 3163
Published on 4th February 2024

Welcome onboard this new flight report between Singapore Changi and Istanbul ! 

Very happy to be flying on the A350 today and looking forward to test this famous Eco seat 29A.



Flight information

Aircraft : Airbus A350-900
Registration : TC-LGD
Aircraft age by the time of travel : 2 years
Flight Number : TK209
Flight Time : 10:11
Seat : 29A
Departure Gate : C24


changi airport and check in


Early in the morning I got a mail from Turkish Airlines saying that the flight is delayed by 35 minutes due to the famous "operational reasons".. 

We arrived at Terminal 2 with the MRT from the city center. One last time we took the skytrain to go through the famous Jewell but unfortunately the waterfall was yet not working this morning. But we got to see it on the way to Singapore a few days before, so not a big deal. I'll spare you the pictures since you can already find a lot of them here :)


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The Check In for TK is at the terminal 1.
They had 7 counters open. I liked the fact that the bands to put the luggages on are low. It makes it easier to put it on. 


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I Asked for the prices of an upgrade but it was something like +1000 SGG which is about 600€. I am not travelling alone, so I will not do it this time. But if I had been may be I would have taken the opportunity, seemed to be a fair price for a 10 hour flight. 


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After the checkin we make our way to the customs, everything is automated there so it goes very fast. Don't expect a stamp on your passport, everything is electronic.

We then arrived into the transit area with all the shops and even some little lakes (I would not call them aquariums) with fishes. Everybody was very friendly there. Prices are a little bit lower than in Europe, but not a huge difference.


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Here, I told you ! Little lakes with fishes !


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Since we have some hours left before the flight, we make our way to the Plaza Premium Lounge.
Pretty good, many food options with a buffet, scrambled eggs coffee and even three choices on demand. It was not very crowded and rather calm and quiet atmosphere. Seats were rather comfortable too.

They also have Rest area and showers which can be used against a fee. 


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Very nice thing about this lounge is that you get a view directly over the runway there, so very good for plane spotting ! 


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A few minutes before boarding we make our way to the gate C24 in the terminal 1 which is like 10 minutes away from the lounge. We stop for a last quick smoke, in a beautiful garden with another view on the runway. Even better for plane spotting (yeah the little break took then a bit longer..)


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2x A350, A380, and a B747-400 Cargo 


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I wish we were flying on this one… Never got the opportunity to fly on it until now. Let's hope it comes soon.
And after all those years I still don't know if I like it or not.. But the A350 looks definitely better. 


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And here is our plane, slowing down on the runway coming directly from IST. 


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Already parked at the gate waiting for us.


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Done with the break, time to walk towards the gate. 


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Arriving at the gate, people we already queuing for the security screening. There is one per gate at Changi, not a general one at the airport entrance. Reminds me of Berlin TXL which used to be my home airport. I find it really good because you only queue with the people of your flight. So the queuing feels less annoying somehow. It's not faster though.


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Everything is pretty well organized (like many things in Singapore) and it took us about 30 min to pass the screening. Afterwards we arrived into a waiting area where they made us wait there further until the aircraft was ready for boarding. They have there water dispensers with hot and cold water, very nice if you want to fill up your bottle before taking off for 10 hours.


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The crew was also waiting with us in the same area, so I knew we wouldn't board the aircraft within the next 5 minutes… We had still 40 minutes before departure so I took the time to make a few more pics of our A350 before boarding..


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Face 2 Face


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boarding


About 30 minutes before scheduled departure the crew finally board the plane. So still a few minutes to wait until the cabin is checked and ready for boarding. 

And then 20 minutes prior to departure they start the boarding with business class (waiting area not so much separated) by just screaming and holding a paper a with written on it "BUSINESS". A bit odd if you ask me.. Then they go further with the economy starting from rows 50 to 26. We have 29, so that's us ! 

Boarding via the second jetbridge, the first one being reserved to Business class passengers. 


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We were welcomed by the cabin manager at the door of the plane and pointed us to our row. The first impression is very good onboard this A350. Crew are not so smiley though to be honest. I definitely prefer the smoother atmosphere onboard this A350 compared to the triple 7 we had one the way to Singapore. Seats are grey and red, better than the old blue and red.


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We then arrive to row 29 and I discover my seat which is amazing ! Lot of space and huge leg room due to the fact that there is no seat in the front. It even has two windows so I would say that this seat on the A350 is even better than one on the row 28. From what I remember this seat is not marked as emergency exit, so it can be booked normally (not sure though). Definitely recommend it !
The only negative thing about it is that you can’t have the tv screen up while taxi and take off since it's the armrest. So not possible to enjoy the tail and taxi camera view…

And as you can see the seat if almost filly separated from the next one due to the tray table being in the armrest. 

On the seat you will found a headset, blanket and pillow. Everything packed in recyclable plastic just the pillow which isn’t.


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Yes that's the neighbors screen , not mine… But as you can see, it's rather big. 


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At 11:20 the boarding is completed and the captain makes the announcement. Expected fly time to IST: 10 hours 15min.

At 11:30 doors are closed and they start the safety demo which is more or less the same of the 777 but tailored to the 350. And shortly after with 50 minutes delay we push back from the gate.


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taxi and take off


While taxiing towards the runway, they play one commercial on the screens after the other which is pretty annoying if you wanna watch your own stuff or just look at the outside cameras.. Not possible. But anyways I I can't fold up the screen, it has to remain in the arm rest, so can't watch anything…

Passing through what seems to be an old A380 stored at the airport. 


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After 15 minutes taxi time we are holding short runway 20L and getting ready for take off. 


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11:55 am local time we are aligned on the runway.

Set takeoff thrust… 

Thrust set, 100 knots, V1 and .. rotate ! 


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180 degrees turn which gives a nice overview on Changi Airport


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Tried to distinguish the city center but due to the pollution (I guess) the visibility is unfortunately not very good.


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And an even nicer view on the airport. You can see how much they are building and expending there. What seems to be a new terminal will apparently be even bigger than the current one. 


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in flight


20 Minutes after take off the cabin crew pass through the cabin to hand over the amenity kit. I am surprised to see that it’s a different one than one we had on the flight towards Singapore ! Don't know if they have different versions or they just renewed them between the two flights.

They also hand over the menu of the meals which will be served of this flight. I don't feel very excited about what I see to be honest. But at least they have 3 different choices for the main course. And it's a nice gesture to have the menu to know what to expect ! We'll see later how it tastes. 


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The amenity kit contains slippers, socks, a tooth brush, lipstick, earplugs and an eye mask. As a comparaison basically everything that Air France provides (besides a face moisturizing cream) in Premium Economy. The quality of the pocket is exactly the same too.
I am just missing a pen, otherwise it's perfect. Even better when you are flying eco since usually those kits are not for eco passengers. 


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1 hour 45 minutes after departure it's lunch time !

A lot of cucumber on this tray.. I am not especially a fan but that's personal taste. I went for the fish and overall the taste was pretty good (it was better on the flight that I took towards Singapore though). The fish was a bit too much drowning into butter and yeah, too much cucumber. The salad was good though. Highlights for me were the salad and banana cake.
I just find something pretty annoying : the plates are not the same size. So you can't make a pile and win some space on the tray, because it's pretty small.. But nothing too serious.

Just after serving the tray they also hand over a small hot bread to go with the lunch. There is definitely room for improvement here. It's a bit too much like chewing gum from my opinion. 

The drink service is done together with the tray and they offer the usual soft drinks and wine. The glasses are a bit too small though, so it's rather fast empty. And unfortunately they just just pass one time through the cabin during service, so if you're thirsty then too bad…

A very positive point : they have a metal cutlery on the trays. I can't say too much how much I hate those knifes and forks made out of wood which have a REALLY bad taste. On the other hand, the knife is totally useless and it is cutting worse than the spoon… Tried to cut the bread with it and it just felt into pieces in my hand. 


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As they come to pick up the trays you can ask for tea and coffee. They are not explicitly offering though… Took a coffee and yeah, it tastes like coffee plane. Nothing special here. At the same time the flight attendant asks me to close my window shade even if it’s day time outside, like in Singapore and also Istanbul. Let's say it's just standard process.. 
 
Time to look at the monitor, which i took out from between the seats. It’s actually pretty hard to adjust it in the vertical position and there are a lot of reflections from the window or the plane ceiling. You can't really incline it less or more, and the incline "per default" is rater bad when you compare to the screen in the seat next to mine. A rather negative point for this seat… Don't know if it was broken though, or if they're just built like that. In the end the seat has pros and cons. Do you rather have more leg room or a better screen ? I tend to go for the leg room, kind of a luxury for a long haul flight. 


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3h after take off we are reaching India, the cabin crew pass one last time through the cabin to hand over water bottles while people are queuing to go to the toilets. Perks of row 28… but on 29A not to much disturbed, I can't complain. That's really a negative point for the emergency exit seats from my point of view, you always have someone standing in front of you.

I recline the seat and get even more annoyed by the angle of the screen. It's not comfortable at all to watch a film like that. Plus as you can see on the picture above, it might be disturbing for the passenger seating in row 28 because it's directly next to his seat and even touching his arm. From the content point of view you will find the usual films and other stuff like music, audio books, etc. The screen is technically pretty good and quite responsive ! 

After their last pass through the cabin they switch off fully the cabin lights. But the light of the galley which is a few meters away can be a bit annoying since it’s on the whole time. Not too much disturbing for me, and in any case there is the eye mask in the amenity kit.

I have a look at the wifi, apparently to get free connection (I guess for text messages) you need to be a TK miles and smiles member. Otherwise the messaging package costs 5$. I can survive for 10 hours without what’s app so I won't subscribe or buy anything. 


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As I have directly access to the emergency exit I can stand up without disturbing everyone seating in my row. Be Careful though !! Indeed, the overhead lockers are pretty low, so you don't want hit your head while standing up.. Which I obviously did as you can imagine, otherwise I wouldn't have written this.. 

So mid flight I stood up to have a walk, stretch my legs, and get a snack in the galley. Not that much of a choice there : only some olive oil crackers and the usual drinks, that’s all. The cabin crew won't pass through the cabin a single time through the cabin to offer at least water or anything else. If you want something you gotta stand up and get it. 


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About the toilets, they are still rather clean after passing the first half of the flight. I very much like the fact that they put parfume, some moisturizing cream and other amenities inside the toilets. Something you don't usually see in usual economy toilets. And it smells quite good actually ! 


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2h prior to arrival as we slowly reach the Turkish airspace they switch on the lights and start with the second service. It’s a breakfast so pretty weird because it’s 08:00pm in Singapore and something like 04:00pm in Istanbul. So a bit confusing to be honest. May be they should have done the service the other way around, first the breakfast and then the lunch/diner.


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The fruits tasted good, cheese was ok but the waffle with mango cream didn’t taste good. It's very very industrial style. And i'm still not fan of this half hot bread, too chewy. For the drinks I went for a normal earl grey tea and a glass of water (yes it's breakfast time right ?!). The little pocket contains the metal cutlery, and a wipe. 


And there we are, after 9 and a half hours we start the descent towards Istanbul Airport 


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Spoilers out 


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On short final


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landing


And after 10h10 minutes of flight we land at 17:06 Istanbul time, 25 minutes behind schedule


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After a very short 5 minutes taxi time we reach our parking position. 


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Istanbul Airport


A loooong way to reach the connecting flights and to reach the main airport area.


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I have one hour before the boarding for my connecting flight to Berlin and unfortunately the screens in the corridor are not working.. So I don’t know my new gate… 

I have to walk through the whole terminal to reach a security check point for international connections. I was quite surprised about that to be honest. I thought I would stay on the airside.. And the controls are pretty busy. I am a bit confused because on the way in (BER-IST-SIN) i didn't had to go through this security check point. The good point is that you don’t have to remove anything from your hand luggage since they have the new scanners, so it makes it less annoying after a 10 hours flight.  

I didn't had to pick up my luggage and go through the checkin again though. It will go directly from SIN to BER. 


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And lastly some views of the main terminal which is just huge and pretty impressive ! 


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And that's it for this report between Singapore Changi and Istanbul ! 
Thanks for reading me :) 

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Verdict

Turkish Airlines

7.3/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew6.0
Entertainment/wifi8.0
Meal/catering7.0

Singapore - SIN

9.5/10
Efficiency9.0
Access9.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Istanbul - IST

5.9/10
Efficiency5.0
Access5.0
Services7.5
Cleanliness6.0

Conclusion

A very good experience on this flight TK between Singapore Changi and Istanbul !
The seat 29A can be a very good option if you want to have bigger leg room. Be aware of the fact that the usage of the screen can be a bit annoying. I was not able to set the incline, and since it's located between both seats you can't have it up while taxi take off and landing. In the end : what's more important for you ? The screen or the leg room ?

Information on the route Singapore (SIN) Istanbul (IST)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 3 avis concernant 1 compagnies sur la ligne Singapore (SIN) → Istanbul (IST).


Useful

La compagnie qui obtient la meilleure moyenne est Turkish Airlines avec 8.1/10.

La durée moyenne des vols est de 10 heures et 42 minutes.

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1 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 643810 by
    thejetflyer BRONZE 143 Comments
    Beautiful report of my favourite airline - yes I understand different amenity kits are offered into / out of longhaul stations. That Banana Chocolate cake looks super lush ! The Turkish Airlines Economy Class Amenity Kits are truly in a class of their own :)

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