Singapore

Introduction: A VERY Quick Trip To Hong Kong

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I take a lot of quick trips, though this one was lightning fast even by my standards, as I flew to Hong Kong and back in about 32 hours, with just over four hours on the ground in Hong Kong.

Why? This trip was motivated by United’s new Polaris product. United introduced their new Polaris international premium cabin experience for flights as of December 2016. However, in reality, a vast majority of flights only have the new Polaris soft product, and not the new seat, which is only available on their 777-300ER aircraft.

So I was determined to review United’s new 777-300ER on a longhaul flight as quickly as possible after it was introduced. Late last year United announced the first routes that would feature the new plane. Specifically, Newark to San Francisco would get 6x weekly 777-300ER service between February and May, while the first longhaul route to feature the new plane would be San Francisco to Hong Kong, as of March 25, 2017.

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Leaked Seatmap For Singapore’s New A380 Suites Class

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Historically Singapore Airlines is one of the most innovative carriers out there when it comes to their onboard product. When they introduce a new product, they already have design teams who are working on the next generation of products, or so I’m told.

In May of 2015 I wrote about how Singapore Airlines was planning on introducing new Suites Class & Business Class products in 2017, when they take delivery of their next batch of A380s. We didn’t hear much about the supposed new product for a while, though last March we learned that the Suites Class seat count would be reduced when the new product is introduced, which should come as no surprise.

Then in January we learned that Singapore would be moving the Suites Class cabin on the A380 from the lower deck to the upper deck, that the product would be revealed in the second quarter, and that it would be in service starting around October 2017.

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Singapore Airlines 777 Business Class In 10 Pictures

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My United 777-300ER flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong arrived at around 7PM, and then at 11:30PM I had a Singapore Airlines flight from Hong Kong back to San Francisco. I’ve reviewed Singapore Airlines Suites Class, first class, etc., though it has been years since I’ve reviewed their business class product.

I booked this ticket using Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles just a couple of days before departure. The ticket cost 82,000 KrisFlyer miles one-way (after the devaluation), which is reasonable, especially when you consider how many transferable points currencies can be converted into KrisFlyer miles.

It was also my first time flying Singapore’s “new” business class product. In reality the seat has the same bones as their old business class product, though the finishes have been nicely updated.

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Singapore KrisFlyer Announces Award Chart Devaluation As Of March 23, 2017

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I love the Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer program, given that it’s just about the only way to redeem miles for Singapore Airlines longhaul premium cabin flights. They only make most award space available to their own KrisFlyer members, and not to members of partner frequent flyer programs.

On top of that, KrisFlyer is transfer partners with all four major transferable points currencies — Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, and Starwood Preferred Guest — so the points are quite easy to come by.

Well, Singapore KrisFlyer has just announced an award chart devaluation for bookings as of March 23, 2017. The good news is that the devaluation is fairly mild, and even sort of fair. This isn’t some insane devaluation where some award costs are increasing by 100%, as we’ve seen from other airlines over the years.

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Great Deal: Cheap Singapore Airlines Business Class Tickets To Asia & Europe

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Singapore Airlines is known for having one of the best business class products in the world. However, they also generally have fairly expensive fares, given how good their product is.

Well, at the moment Singapore Airlines has an incredible business class fare sale, valid for travel originating in the U.S. Through this fare sale you can book roundtrip business class tickets for just under $2,000 roundtrip.

The basic details are as follows:

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More Details About Singapore Airlines’ New A380 Suites Class

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In May of 2015 I wrote about how Singapore Airlines was planning on introducing new Suites Class & Business Class products in 2017, when they take delivery of their next batch of A380s. We didn’t hear much about the supposed new product for a while, though last March we learned that the Suites Class seat count would be reduced when the new product is introduced, which should come as no surprise.

Well, it looks like there are now some more updates about Singapore Airlines’ new A380 Suites Class, per AusBT. We still don’t know what exactly the new product will look like, though we have a better sense of the timeline for when it will be introduced, how many seats there will be, etc.

What do we now know?

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Singapore Airlines Is Launching Flights Between Moscow & Stockholm

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I sure do love a fun fifth freedom route, especially when it’s operated by one of the world’s best airlines. For those of you not familiar with fifth freedom routes, it’s when an airline operates a flight between two foreign countries (by “foreign” I mean countries where the airline isn’t based). Examples include Singapore Airlines’ flight between New York and Frankfurt, Cathay Pacific’s flight between New York and Vancouver, LATAM’s flight between Madrid and Frankfurt, etc.

Singapore Airlines has just announced their newest fifth freedom route, and it’s a fun one.

Singapore Airlines will operate 5x weekly flights between Moscow, Russia, and Stockholm, Sweden, as of May 30, 2017. This flight will operate as a continuation of their existing flight between Singapore and Moscow, though passengers will be able to book a ticket exclusively between Moscow and Stockholm if they’d like. The entire flight operates with the following schedule:

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Singapore Airlines Will Fly The A350 To Houston Starting In 2017

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Singapore Airlines has modified their U.S. route network quite a bit this year, and most recently announced changes to their flight between Houston and Singapore. For years the flight operated via Moscow, which made sense at the time, since it linked two oil cities.

However, as activity in the oil industry has declined, so have Singapore Airlines’ premium cabin yields on the route. Ford and I flew from Moscow to Houston in Singapore Airlines first class over the summer, and we were the only passengers in first class. Based on monitoring seatmaps, it seems such low loads were the norm rather than the exception.

So Singapore Airlines has modified this particular route, and now operates their Houston to Singapore flight via Manchester instead of Moscow. That seems like a pretty smart move, as Houston is a United hub, and Manchester is a pretty big destination that United doesn’t fly to nonstop out of Houston, so they can codeshare with Singapore on it.

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Horrible Injustice: Singapore Airlines Refuses Someone A Free Upgrade

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It’s not often I check the comments section of airline Facebook pages, because they seem to be a dark, dark place. Come and think of it, I couldn’t imagine working in social media for an airline, given all the complaints they get.

However, one complaint from Singapore Airlines’ Facebook page is getting a lot of attention. This customer says that Singapore Airlines just lost a client and did something totally unacceptable that a world class airline wouldn’t do.

What did the airline do, you ask?

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Is Singapore Airlines Cutting First Class To Houston In 2017?

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Singapore Airlines has modified their US route network quite a bit this year, and most recently announced changes to their flight between Houston and Singapore. For years the flight operated via Moscow, which made sense at the time, since it linked two oil cities.

Of course as activity in the oil industry has declined, so have Singapore Airlines’ premium cabin yields on the route. Ford and I flew from Moscow to Houston in Singapore Airlines first class over the summer, and we were the only passengers in first class. Based on monitoring seatmaps, it seems such low loads were the norm rather than the exception.

So Singapore Airlines has modified this particular route, and now operates their Houston to Singapore flight via Manchester instead of Moscow. That seems like a pretty smart move, as Houston is a United hub, and Manchester is a pretty big destination that United doesn’t fly to nonstop out of Houston, so they can codeshare with Singapore on it.

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Review: Singapore Airlines Lounge London Heathrow Airport

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There are four Star Alliance lounges at Heathrow Terminal 2, operated by Air Canada, Lufthansa, Singapore, and United. Due to Star Alliance regulations, all first class passengers can use all Star Alliance first class lounges, while all Star Alliance business class and Star Gold passengers can use all business class lounges.

Given the high standards that Singapore Airlines is known for, I was curious to check out their Heathrow lounge.

The Singapore Airlines Lounge London is located just a short walk from the United lounge, right next to the Air Canada lounge.

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SilkAir 737 Business Class In 10 Pictures

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Hello from Siem Reap, Cambodia! After great flights on Cathay Pacific from Los Angeles to Hong Kong to Singapore, and a couple of nights in Singapore, our next stop is Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Singapore Airlines’ subsidiary, SilkAir, operates flights between Singapore and Siem Reap. The airline is a member of the Singapore Airlines group, though isn’t a Star Alliance member. That means you can’t redeem Star Alliance miles for their flights, other than Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles.

Fortunately I managed to redeem miles for this flight through a promotion KrisFlyer is offering, so the cost was just 10,000 KrisFlyer miles one-way in business class. I flew SilkAir several years ago on one of their A319s in business class, though they now have a fleet of new 737s, so I was curious to see how that experience compared.

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Introduction: Journey To Kazakhstan

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My goal this year has been to review as many new airlines in premium cabins as possible, and I’ve found it to be immensely enjoyable. I’ve tried even more new products than I was hoping to, so several weeks back I shared an additional list of 13 more airlines I want to review in the coming months.

In the comments section of that post, a couple of readers mentioned Air Astana, which I didn’t really know the first thing about. After doing some research, I was fascinated by the airline, as they seem to run a solid and quirky operation. So this entire trip was centered around being able to try Air Astana, though fortunately I managed to try some other interesting products while positioning for the trip as well.

The first aspect of planning this trip was figuring out the ideal Air Astana itinerary. My goals were to do the following on a single itinerary:

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Singapore Airlines Is Getting Rid Of Their First A380

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About a decade ago the A380 seemed like the next great thing that would change aviation. Unfortunately over time that perception has changed, and aside from Emirates, most airlines flying the A380 don’t seem very pleased with it. For a couple of years there has been speculation that Airbus would discontinue the A380 program, given the lack of new orders.

The simple problem is that the A380 is the highest capacity plane in the sky, so there aren’t that many routes where it can be flown in a profitable manner. Also over the past few years we’ve seen the 787 and A350 become more popular; arguably those planes are the real game changers. These are efficient, long range, fairly low capacity aircraft that most airlines can operate much more profitably.

So while Emirates loves their A380s, other airlines would prefer to operate more versatile and fuel efficient planes.

At the moment the second largest customer of the A380 is Singapore Airlines, which has a total of 19 of the superjumbo aircraft in their fleet, which another five aircraft on order.

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