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Old 17th October 2015, 05:20 PM   #31
yflyer
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Boarding through the large main doors of the A380 main deck.



I was not the first onto the plane today…



My seat was to the rear of the Y cabin…



After the comparative luxury of 2-4-2 premium economy on my outbound SIN-LHR sector, it was back to 3-4-3 economy seating on the A380.



That said, the A380 has such a large, roomy cabin that even with 10-abreast in Y, the cabin feels quite spacious and open.



The seats themselves were SQ’s 2006 Y product, still an excellent economy seat by any standards.



Full AVOD on a high-resolution widescreen. USB and A/C power, and paddle-shaped footrest.



I didn’t bother unwrapping the earbud headphones from the white plastic wrapper – the poor sound quality from those earphones continues to be a disgrace. The earphones are so bad even SQ doesn’t want them back after you use them.

Much better to bring your own airline headphone adapter and use your own headphones.

Hot towels and amenity kits were handed out.


Last edited by yflyer; 17th October 2015 at 09:15 PM..
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Old 17th October 2015, 05:22 PM   #32
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Cabin service began very shortly after take-off with a full drink service.



I ordered a Bloody Mary, which was prepared on the spot from the beverage cart.



Peanuts…



I was surprised that they were able to give me two packets of nuts on this very full flight…then after munching through the 2nd packet, I sheepishly realized that the 2nd packet of nuts was probably meant for the young child seated next to me – mother and child were wedged in the middle seats of my 4-seater row.

Throughout the initial part of the flight I was mistaken for the father of the young child next to me.

“Did you order the child meal, sir?”

Thankfully after an hour of smiling and pointing to the mother seated on the other side, I think they got the message and no longer looked to me to speak for the child's needs.

Maybe I should have been a PITA and declared to the first cabin crew member I came across that passenger yflyer seated at xxG is not the parent of the kid seated at xxF, and to please inform all cabin crew in that section of this fact.

Last edited by yflyer; 17th October 2015 at 09:16 PM..
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Old 17th October 2015, 05:23 PM   #33
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Today’s menu…





Choice of Western-style chicken, or Asian fish with rice…



I chose the chicken today…



Very impressive bread roll, which came in a shape I have never seen in Y…



A delicious starter with a finely sliced piece of chicken, and cous cous…



The main was excellent as well…juicy chicken and tasty potatoes.



A safe, but decadent choice of chocolate truffle meringue cake for dessert. Who could fail to enjoy that?



The large cube of cheese, and crackers, were tasty as well.


Last edited by yflyer; 17th October 2015 at 09:18 PM..
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Old 17th October 2015, 05:24 PM   #34
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After lunch, I took a stroll round to the rear of the plane, and took a peek out the windows at the landscape below, before it grew dark.







Wonder what city or town this was, that we flew over…





We seemed to be taking a more northerly route than usual today, possibly to avoid the conflict zones around Syria to the south.



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Old 17th October 2015, 05:25 PM   #35
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It soon grew dark outside…





Our route that day took us right over Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan…



Unusually for me, I happened to be awake at that time, and headed to the window to snap a picture of the city lights of Kabul, far below…



Kabul itself was very brightly lit, compared to the surrounding areas in Afghanistan.

I remained awake, and watched the moving map, as we crossed over into Pakistani airspace, towards India.

Many many years ago, I was on an SQ Airbus A340-300 Celestar on the same CDG-SIN sector, and vaguely remember waking up during the night at roughly the same point in the journey, looking out the window, and seeing the Pakistan-India border go by beneath the aircraft, and in a dreamy haze, noted that I could make out an illuminated orange line on the ground as we crossed the border. Over the years since that time, I have always wondered whether what I saw was really the Indo-Pak border.

This time I was fully awake and alternately looking at the moving map display and out the window.



This time, there was no denying it. There were cities and streets below, but as we flew closer to the border, the street lights below faded away into darkness, and what remained was a very distinct orange illumination zig-zagging perpendicular to our flight path. Yes! This really was the border between Pakistan and India, fully illuminated in bright orange, along much of it’s length.

The low-light performance of an iPhone 6+ camera out a plane window leaves much to be desired, but hopefully there is enough in the picture below to make out this illuminated border, steeped in so much history.



Looking out the window of the aircraft door in the rear of the A380, this orange line could be seen very clearly with the naked eye.

A Caucasian lady had just emerged from the restrooms in the rear of the plane and she saw me looking out. “Look out the window”, I said, “That illuminated line below is the border between Pakistan and India. Amazing, isn’t it!”. She looked out and smiled in amazement at what she saw.

And in another minute, the border faded from sight as we crossed into Indian airspace. I wonder how many other passengers on this flight noticed it.



By coincidence, just a few weeks earlier in September, astronauts on the International Space Station also photographed this border, clearly visible from space.

More on that here (Link clicks through to the NASA photos of this border.)

Last edited by yflyer; 10th November 2018 at 09:21 AM..
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Old 17th October 2015, 05:30 PM   #36
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There were also snacks available if you got hungry between meal service.





Ricotta, tomato and vegetable sandwich…



Noodles were not on the menu, but I asked the cabin crew if any were available on this flight. “Let me check, sir”….”Sorry, there were, but they have all been eaten by other passengers”. Oh well…

About 2 and a half hours before landing, breakfast was served…

Breakfast menu…you had a choice of quiche or noodles.



I chose the noodles…



The noodles hit the spot, nice texture and flavour…

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Old 17th October 2015, 05:31 PM   #37
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Another shot of the cabin ambience on this completely full A380…



Dawn off the coast of Malaysia…





We flew a short holding pattern before landing, as an earlier aircraft at Changi had experienced a suspected bird strike, and we had to wait an additional ten minutes for the runway to be checked for debris…



...before our final approach and a very smooth landing at Changi Airport.



Overall another excellent flight on Singapore Airlines, with the A380 Y cabin, seat, IFE, catering and service all top notch, and what I have come to expect from flying SQ Economy.

Last edited by yflyer; 17th October 2015 at 06:08 PM..
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Old 17th October 2015, 05:31 PM   #38
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Final thoughts? Just a few:

- When travelling within Europe, it is worthwhile considering high speed train services as an option to flying…the experience is likely to be more comfortable and enjoyable, overall, than the hassle of flying.

- A dawn run or walk through Paris to the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower is a wonderful activity that I would wholeheartedly recommend.

- At least once in your life, look out the window when flying over the Indo-Pak border at night.

- While all the buzz these days is about the front cabin, and new products like Premium Economy, the SQ Economy product still delivers the goods, and still remains a great way to fly.


Thanks for reading!
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Old 17th October 2015, 08:04 PM   #39
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I love your trip reports! Always so informative and educational. I especially liked reading about the Pakistan-India border. Lit up in orange: who would've thought? Fascinating.
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Old 17th October 2015, 08:25 PM   #40
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Excellent TR again Yflyer!! I was on the A380 SQ return flight SIN-CDG last summer. I have to agree that the Y class is still a solid product compared to other airlines.

Looking at your Paris photos made me really miss my work assignment in Paris! I used to run close to Etoile! And yes i ever seen that Hyatt Regency hotel standing tall from the main boulevard. Keep it up!
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Old 17th October 2015, 08:45 PM   #41
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Thanks for another wonderfully comprehensive TR

I was reflecting on the defining qualities of yr TR and then realized you are recording some of the thoughts, questions and dilemmas that travellers entertained, trivia and probably inconsequential in the larger scheme, and quietly in our heads to be sure, but nevertheless exercised our minds. eg train or plane, not just in Europe but also in US (well when it's less than 4 hrs as you said).

After so many yrs and so many trips, I still fall back on the threadmill in the hotel, maybe it's my snobbery and my itinerary typically involves developing countries. But the beautiful pics of yr dawn run inspires me to rethink

Thanks for educating me on the Indo-Pak border, have never known abt that. And leads me to wonder how the 38th parallel look at night, but I'm sure no civilian planes overfly after KAL 007

Thks once again for an enjoyable and vy emphatic read
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Old 18th October 2015, 01:34 AM   #42
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I love your TRs. I always look forward to your adventures.
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Old 18th October 2015, 10:02 AM   #43
SQueeze
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Excellent as usual!


That must be one of your most memorable runs. so spectacularly gorgeous Paris is. Do you run in India too? Haha.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
No opportunity to try out the Residences or First Suites on this occasion…will someone on this board get round to posting a TR on The Residence soon?
Yup. Me me. End of this year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
If the timings had worked out, I would have flown on the F70 instead, just for the novelty of flying this rarely encountered aircraft.
I know. That sounds like me too. I am desensitised to Jet's 737s and SQ's 777s. Always looking out for Q400 and ATRs whenever I can (here in India)

Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
…as well as a surprising number of traditional windmills, although I’m not sure whether those were still in use, or were just there for tourists or historical reasons…
Over the North Sea, between London and Amsterdam, you can also see so many of these modern windmills scattered on the water on approach to Schiphol. You didnt see? May be you were on the wrong side of the plane.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
Charles De Gaulle Airport Terminal One is now bursting at the seams and operating at or beyond capacity, but the architecture is still quite unique and stunning.

In some ways, it is more interesting to pass through an iconic old terminal like this one, circular, with a central atrium criss-crossed with moving walkways, than many of the gleaming new super-airports, which may offer more space, but are somewhat devoid of character.
I totally agree with you. I thought only architects / architecture nerds will love CDG T1 with its hard modernist aesthetics.

BOM is stunning too. One that stands out among the rest typical airports: bland steel and glass ones with curvy roofs.

MAD also. And I think MAD will be quite timeless.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
Final thoughts? Just a few:

- When travelling within Europe, it is worthwhile considering high speed train services as an option to flying…the experience is likely to be more comfortable and enjoyable, overall, than the hassle of flying.

- A dawn run or walk through Paris to the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower is a wonderful activity that I would wholeheartedly recommend.

- At least once in your life, look out the window when flying over the Indo-Pak border at night.

- While all the buzz these days is about the front cabin, and new products like Premium Economy, the SQ Economy product still delivers the goods, and still remains a great way to fly.


Thanks for reading!
I agree with all these. And yes, I will now look out for the Indo-Pak border.
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Old 18th October 2015, 09:20 PM   #44
icn.sg
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Thanks for another excellent report. Especially appreciate the hotel reviews, which will come in handy when I need to choose my hotels. I'm usually limited to hotels that my company has corporate rates with, but occasionally I get to pick hotels that are more closer to where my meetings will be held.

Do you edit your photos before posting them? Or do you have a very good camera that produces such quality photos in all your reports? I've given up carrying a separate camera on trips since the advent of smart phones.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
In some ways, it is more interesting to pass through an iconic old terminal like this one, circular, with a central atrium criss-crossed with moving walkways, than many of the gleaming new super-airports, which may offer more space, but are somewhat devoid of character.
You are absolutely right about CDG. I remember being amazed by the criss-cross moving walkways from the movie Airport 79 - The Concorde. Back in those days, they looked futuristic.

Quote:
This time, there was no denying it. There were cities and streets below, but as we flew closer to the border, the street lights below faded away into darkness, and what remained was a very distinct orange illumination zig-zagging perpendicular to our flight path. Yes! This really was the border between Pakistan and India, fully illuminated in bright orange, along much of it’s length.
Yes, that's the India-Pakistan border. I remember one of my SIN-LHE flights on the SQ A343 many years ago. The captain made the announcement telling us that we would be able to see the border if we looked out of the windows on the starboard side! It was dusk, and the sun was setting, so the border lights were clearly visible and we could still see the surrounding areas clearly. It was an amazing sight...

I have seen this sight a couple more times over the years on my flights to Europe.

On another SQ flight from MEL-SIN two years ago, the captain of the flight (sounded Singaporean) actually requested ATC for permission to circle around Ayers Rock. I remember bits his announcement..."It's a beautiful clear day, and we will be flying over Ayers Rock in 5 minutes, so Ladies and Gentlemen, if you are seated at the left side of the aircraft, get your cameras ready... we will be circling around Ayers Rock, enjoy the view..."

I'd flown the MEL-SIN route many times, and that was the one and only time this was ever done. You can tell when a pilot truly loves his job.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yflyer View Post
Noodles were not on the menu, but I asked the cabin crew if any were available on this flight. “Let me check, sir”….”Sorry, there were, but they have all been eaten by other passengers”. Oh well…
It was either not loaded, or the crew had kept it for themselves.


Quote:
I chose the noodles…

That's one of the emptiest looking breakfast tray I've ever seen on SQ! Well, at least they had a larger dish for the noodles.

Last edited by icn.sg; 18th October 2015 at 09:27 PM..
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Old 19th October 2015, 03:00 PM   #45
yflyer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eminere™ View Post
I love your trip reports! Always so informative and educational. I especially liked reading about the Pakistan-India border. Lit up in orange: who would've thought? Fascinating.
Thanks, eminere! Glad to know you enjoy reading them!
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