I do not travel on SilkAir often as the product is in no way comparable to the Singapore Airlines product (especially on Business - even on regional routes!). There are however some routes that are operated by MI-metal only and therefore it is impossible to take an SQ-metal alternative (e.g. HKT, DAD and REP). As of 01 January 2017, SilkAir operates 31 aircraft: 17 Boeing B737-800, 11 Airbus A320-200 and 3 Airbus A319-100 aircraft.
While the seat map for the Boeing 737 MAX 8s have not been published, here are a number of ways the Boeing 737-800 experience will different from the A320s and the A319s:
- More Seats on the Boeing 737-800: The 737-800s come with 12 Business Class and 150 Economy Class seats. On the other hand, the A320-200s and the A319-100s come with 12 Business Class and 138 Economy Class as well as 8 Business Class and 120 Economy Class seats respectively. While this is great for the airline, a bigger cabin generally mean a less enjoyable experience.
- Reduced Seat Pitch and Seat Width on the Boeing 737-800: While it is always exciting to hop on a new plane, traveling in the Boeing 737-800s instead of the current Airbus planes operated by SilkAir means less seat pitch and seat width on Economy and on Business.
|Seat Pitch||Seat Width||Seat Pitch||Seat Width|
- Row 9 on 737-800 is Windowless: If you are ever flying on the Boeing 737-800 in Economy Class, remember Row 9 seats are windowless (these are generally viewed as a disadvantage).
- More to come on the Boeing 737 MAX 8: The first delivery of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 was to Malindo Air and while SilkAir does not currently operate any, it is expected to debut it fairly soon. It is unclear at this point whether the number of Business Class and Economy Class seats will change but the plane is expected to operate at a higher efficiency amongst other improvements.
Singapore Airlines offered Business Class, First Class and Suites passengers the option to get confirmed meal choices (that are not part of Book the Cook) up to 24 hours prior to the flight's scheduled time of departure. Today, the flag carrier airline of Singapore has announced at the World Gourmet Forum that it will be the first airline to enable Premium Economy Class passengers to pre-order main courses from its in-flight menu from anywhere in the airline's global network from 01 May 2019.
Singapore Airlines and wellness brand COMO Shambhala (which forms part of the COMO Group) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on a wide-ranging partnership aimed at enhancing the customer experience for travellers. This partnership will see the award-winning wellness cuisine to be introduced on selected Singapore Airlines flights in the second half of this year.
The first ever YOTELAIR property in Asia will finally open in Singapore in the brand new Jewel Changi Airport on 12 April 2019. The YOTELAIR Singapore Changi Airport will be accessible from all four terminals of Singapore Changi Airport and it will feature 130 smartly-designed cabins that are bookable by the hour (minimum stay of four hours) which makes it perfect for travellers who wish to freshen up (or catch up on some sleep) while transiting in Singapore.
After departing from the InterContinental Hanoi Landmark72, I arrived at the Noi Bai International Airport ahead of time and had access to the Vietnam Airlines Lotus Lounge as a Business Class passenger of Singapore Airlines. Unfortunately, that lounge was not exactly ideal to spend time in since the food options were unattractive and the drinks could seriously do with some finesse (or ice for a start). As such, I made my way to the Song Hong Business Lounge next door (access via Priority Pass membership - there are various credit cards in Singapore that will give you free airport lounge access) and was pleasantly impressed by the space here.
Singapore Airlines is celebrating the official launch of KrisFlyer Spontaneous Escapes for travels in March 2019 with a shocking 50% redemption discount off Economy Saver award rates and Business Class redemption at Economy Saver rates on selected routes. This offer is valid for redemption flights to selected destinations across the Singapore Airlines and SilkAir network, for travel from 1 to 31 March 2019 inclusive. Online redemption has to be done before the end of 28 February 2019. For non-stop flights between Singapore and Los Angeles between 01 March 2019 and 30 April 2019, Premium Economy Class seats can be redeemed at Economy Class Saver rates.
Last year, Qantas announced that it will be opening a second lounge in Singapore Changi Airport for First Class passengers - the brand new lounge (set to open at the end of 2019) will feature a luxurious setting for 240 customers and it will come complete with shower facilities, a la carte dining options with an open kitchen, a cocktail bar as well as plenty of device charging stations. Today, Qantas has finally unveiled the visual concept of the upcoming First Class Lounge and it has been designed by David Caon in collaboration with Akin Atelier.
Japan Airlines (JAL) has just announced that they will be changing the reservation start date for international flights from 330 days to 360 days prior to departure).
Back in May 2018, SilkAir announced that it will receive cabin product upgrades before being merged into Singapore Airlines eventually. Today, the regional wing of Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, has announced that Thompson Aero Seating has been selected for the upgrade of Business Class seats on its Boeing 737 MAX 8 fleet.
When I flew out of Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) on Singapore Airlines in Business Class, I had access to Vietnam Airlines Lotus Lounge (sometimes referred to as NASCO Lounge) before departure. Even though Vietnam Airlines is not part of Star Alliance (it is actually part of the SkyTeam Alliance), most of the star alliance partner airlines use this lounge for their premium cabin passengers. Located in the International Departures Terminal above Gate 28, the Vietnam Airlines Lotus Lounge is open from 6:00AM to 2:00AM daily.
To get from Singapore to Hanoi earlier this month, I decided to travel on Vietnam Airlines’ Business Class product for a number of reasons - it departs from Terminal 4 of Singapore Changi Airport (where the Blossom – SATS & Plaza Premium Lounge is) and more importantly, I have not actually flown on Vietnam Airlines before. Additionally, I wanted to make full use of a stopover on a Singapore Airlines redemption (before the new redemption rates kicked in) so I needed to position myself in Zone 3 first. Check out my review of Vietnam Airlines’ Business Class product.