Contributed by Hirofumi Suda
Date: July 3, 2017
Flight No.: SQ402
Route: Singapore Changi to Delhi
Airline: Singapore Airlines
Type: Airbus A330-300
Flight Duration: 4 hrs 58 min
Back in July, I had a chance to fly onboard Singapore Airlines’ business class from Singapore to Delhi – and even though it’s been several months since then, I thought the review would be worth sharing as not much has changed since then.
Also, before continuing, since this is my first article on KN Aviation this year, I’d like to wish belated Happy New Year to all the readers!
Are you interested in trying business or first class for the price of economy?
If so, you might want to check out Four Ways to Try Business Class Without Breaking the Bank - a free guide that I put together detailing some of the ways I was able to do so - and experiment with some of the methods mentioned in it.
Boarding Singapore Airlines Flight from Singapore to Delhi
Singapore Airlines operates two daily flights between Singapore and Delhi – one with the A380 and one with the regional 777 (back when I took it, it was the A330).
As I was traveling on a LifeMiles award ticket, my choice was limited to the A330 flight. That is because Singapore Airlines restricts partner premium award space on its flagship business class product onboard the 777-300ER, A350, and A380.
Because of that and the fact that it was a quick redeye flight, I wasn’t boarding the flight with high expectations – but that turned out I was wrong as the flight ended up being surprisingly pleasant.
Let’s rewind a bit, though.
The flight I was traveling on, SQ402, is the last Singapore Airlines flight to depart during Changi’s mid-night departure bank. As such, Terminal 3 which is used almost exclusively by Singapore Airlines was very deserted by the time I got airside.
In fact, I’ve never seen Changi so empty!
Before heading to the departure gate, I paid a visit to the SilverKris Lounge which was underwhelming because the lounge was so packed that it was difficult to find an empty seat. And, the food spread wasn’t impressive either – probably due to the late night hours.
In case you are flying in economy class without an airline status, you might want to consider visiting the Priority Pass lounges in the terminal.
After spending some time in the lounge and heading to the departure gate, I was one of the last passengers to board the flight. At the aircraft’s door, I was welcomed by a trio of charming cabin crew members.
By the time the boarding was completed, the business class cabin was nearly full. In fact, only of of the thirty business class seats on the aircraft remained empty. The seats were arranged in a “2-2-2” configuration, and I was seated in the last row left-hand side window seat – 5A.
Not long after I sat down, one of the crew members came around to offer me a welcome drink. I chose pineapple juice.
Next, amenities were distributed. I say amenities and not amenity kits because Singapore Airlines is known for not providing an amenity kit, distributing the individual amenities separately instead. Things provided included a pair of socks, an eye mask, and slippers. Combs, shaving kits and toothbrushes could be found in the restroom.
Interestingly, however, on this flight, I also found a little black pouch in the seat’s side pocket. It contained some useful amenities by The Laundress, and it turned out to be a limited-edition kit offered during Singapore Airlines’ celebration of its 70th anniversary.
Finally, while I couldn’t figure out the brand of the noise-cancelling headset provided, it was of decent quality.
Business Class Dining Onboard Singapore Airlines’ Flight 402
Now, let’s take a quick look at the food and beverage menu.
Despite the fact that it was a middle-of-the-night mid-haul flight, it was a thick booklet.
First, let’s take a look at the dining menu.
Next, below is the impressive drink menu.
Shortly after take-off, the first round of drinks was served and I went with Singapore Sling. Together with the drink, I was served a pack of almonds and cashews.
Since the flight was departing at almost 3AM, everyone except for me and one other passenger went to sleep right after departure. I, instead, opted to stay awake so that I could see what the meal service was like.
Given that there were only two of us eating, I was served the meal in no time. Also, rather than choosing from the onboard menu, I had pre-ordered lobster thermidor – Singapore Airlines’ signature dish – for the main course using the airline’s Book the Cook service.
Looking at the menu, though, I also found the Indian Ruchi Thali option quite tempting – especially since the airline’s Indian dishes are typically excellent.
As for my meal, the prawns were fresh and tender, garlic bread was served warm, and the lobster was excellent. On top of that, the portion was very large – and, since I wasn’t particularly hungry, I left some rice on the plate.
Once I finished the main, it was time for a dessert. The only problem – there was no sweet option on the Western menu.
As such, I asked one of the friendly flight attendants if I could have something sweet and she suggested me to have the dessert from the Indian option – gulab jamun cheese cake.
Gulab jamun is a traditional Indian dumpling soaked in sugar syrup, and so, I had no idea how it could be combined with a cheese cake. As it turned out, the dumpling was coated by the cake. I had never seen such a dessert before and thought it was creative. And, of course, it was tasty as well!
With the dessert, I had chamomile tea from TWG. It was my first time to try this brand, and I can only recommend it.
Finally, fresh fruits were offered.
The crew brought a big basket of whole fruits, though, since I prefer cut fruits and I was already full by that time, I just had some grapes.
Impressively, the entire meal service was completed within 45 minutes after take-off, even with such course offering thanks to very few passengers having the supper. After the meal, the cabin manager asked me to fill in the feedback form which I happily obliged.
The Most Comfortable Angle-Flat Bed?
Once I was finished with the meal, it was time to sleep.
Surprisingly, even though technically the seat was angle-flat, it turned almost full-flat. And, it was actually very comfortable. The large soft pillow that was provided helped me get better sleep as well.
Also, while I had a neighbor, I didn’t feel like my privacy was invaded during sleep since the seat goes down towards the floor when it is turned into a bed and there was a large console separating the seats.
I was also glad to find out that it was no problem at all to cross over the aisle seat without disturbing my sleeping neighbor.
Landing at Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport
The lights in the cabin were switched back on about 30 minutes before landing and so I was able to get solid three and a half hours of sleep. I was rested well-enough not to feel sleepy the entire day in Delhi which isn’t usually the case with me after an overnight flight.
After waking up – and before getting ready for landing – I took a look at one of the restrooms.
The business class restrooms were well-stocked with amenities (I had the same experience in premium economy) including perfume, hand lotion, facial mist, dental and shaving kits, etc.
Also, they were decorated with fresh flowers which I thought was a nice touch.
Shortly before landing, the cabin crew went around the cabin collecting the menus. However, I asked whether I could keep mine. While one of the crew members said “of course,” another one jokingly added “but only if you pay me 10 dollars.” Needless to say, I liked their attentive service and light-hearted friendliness.
The one last thing that I thought was a nice touch was when during disembarking, the cabin manager sent me off by saying “Thank you, Mr. Suda!” While there are times when the crew calls passengers by their names, it is usually done so by looking at the passenger list – and so, I was glad to have my name remembered.
Singapore Airlines A330-300 Business Class Singapore – Delhi Summary
Although the lounge experience prior to the flight was a bit of a let down, the in-flight experience was superb.
The food was top-notch, the crew was very friendly and charming, and the seat – even though it was a regional one rather than a long haul one – was quite comfortable.
Overall, I would rank the flight as one of my most memorable ones – and wouldn’t stray away from Singapore Airlines even if a flight is operated by an aircraft featuring the regional business class cabin.