SQTalk  

Go Back   SQTalk > General > Trip Reports

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 26th April 2011, 01:48 PM   #1
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default GA: SIN-CGK-SYD-CGK-SIN

Hi there,

This trip was actually completed in Feb'2011 (during CNY break)...but I haven't got the time to post it here. I've always been curious about GA's med to long haul flight service, and since I got a very good deal of S$750 return for my SIN-SYD flight via CGK in Y class, it didnt take me long to decide.

Anyway, let's start the journey.

Route: SIN-CGK-SYD
Flight: GA0833, connect to GA0712
ETD/ATD: 18.30/18.42 & 21.50/21.52
Aircraft: B737-800NG & A330-200


It was in early Feb, so GA was still operating out of T1 in Changi.


That's my ride to CGK


Sandwiched by B747 JAL on the left


And another B767 JAL on the right


Boarding proceeded smoothly...a variety of local SG and Indonesian newspaper was offered at the entrance of the plane

The signature "Garuda Greeting" was offered by the crew upon entering the plane, which is very nice indeed. However, considering my shy nature to take a photo of the crew while performing that "greeting", I guess you guys can only imagine for now.

As usual, a welcome juice was offered...the choice was Guava or OJ.


Soon after, the flight taxied to the runway







The crew started the meal service. Despite the short flight duration, the crew managed to deliver a professional and attentive service on board this flight. I could start smelling the delicious aroma of the food...wonder what it would be...


Double meat combo for all! Yes...my first time getting a Y class meal with 2 types of meat in the dish: chicken curry and beef rendang with coconut milk infused rice. Absolutely delicious although the beef rendang might look a bit on the dry side. The meal was complemented by Japanese style coleslaw and Strawberry mousse cake with pistachios cream. I thought the cake was very light and nice.


Flight was full....after the meal service, crew member walked down the aisle with immigration card.

GA is definitely serious in revamping its hardware offerings. The IFE content (while no match to Krisflyer) is definitely more than enough for this short flight.


Flight landed smoothly in Jakarta and it was on time too.

...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:02 PM   #2
ycp81
SQTalk Solitaire PPS
 
ycp81's Avatar
 
Join Date: 01-Apr-2007
Location: Singapore
Programs: Krisflyer, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Flying Blue, Enrich
Posts: 1,424
Default

I think GA is the only airline that offers welcome drinks in economy. And the meal looks more than substantial for such a short flight too! I believe GA also gave out headsets for the inflight entertainment?
ycp81 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:06 PM   #3
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

CGK Airport was definitely not designed and built with transit passengers in mind. Though the transfer/transit process was smooth with no major drama, I got really bored after 10 mins.





The 2-hour transit time was well spent on this foot reflexology session that only cost me 95K rupiah...which is about S$13-14 for 1 hour! woohoo...how I wish the same price could be applied to foot reflexology centres here.


Not knowing what else to be done, I headed straight to the gate for my flight


Boarding commenced 40 mins before the ETD and load was about 65% only that night. This is GA's daily service to SYD from CGK. They are using the new A330-200 on this sector


GA's signature welcome drink...while this time there was no choice, it was still a nice touch by GA. I cant quite remember the last time I flew other airlines that offered welcome drink to passengers in Y class

One notable strange experience is to see the crew performing safety demo manually!! I have no idea why they didnt show it on the screen. The previous flight from SIN-CGK was in video demo


Soon after take-off, a pack of amenity kit that contains eye shade and socks & menu card were distributed to all pax



As in any other red-eye flights to Oz, only breakfast is offered 2 hours prior to landing in SYD.

However, they provided a bottle of Aqua and chocolate muffin to all pax before the lights were dimmed and finally turned off, so that passengers could snooze off comfortably


....TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:09 PM   #4
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ycp81 View Post
I think GA is the only airline that offers welcome drinks in economy. And the meal looks more than substantial for such a short flight too! I believe GA also gave out headsets for the inflight entertainment?
Yup, they surely did give out headsets. However, IFE was turned off 20 mins prior to landing..which is a bummer. Oh well, it's better than SQ on this sector
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:27 PM   #5
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

I was mesmerised by the beauty of the sky...enjoy the following shots as the sun rose










About 1.5 hours prior to landing in SYD, the cabin lights were turned on....crew started serving wholesome breakfast


I opted for the fried rice instead of the boring omellete, which was a bit spicy for breakfast (I think). Nevertheless, the taste was very good.


As we were about to approach SYD, I could see the shadow of our plane there....the sun light was so strong and the temperature was reported to be 32 degrees at 6am??????

Flight landed 30 mins ahead of the schedule and a familiar sight bestowed us upon arrival....I see this airlines everywhere I go and I wonder if their loads are really that good???



Straight away went down to catch the airport rail to the city. Didnt expect to pay such an expensive fee for a short ride to the city. I think it was a rip-off!! or maybe Oz is just plain expensive now for holiday, esp. with the strong AUD...sigh

...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:41 PM   #6
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

Using my SPG points to exchange for 3 nights of free stay at this hotel, the 4th night unfortunately had to be paid and it cost A$505!!!! When did Oz hotel start becoming so expensive???? I mean I grew up in Melbourne in the 90's and things were definitely not that expensive then...





View from my room's window


Very ordinary room if you ask me....it was clean though



I had the whole 4 days in Sydney basically, as the returning flight to CGK was in the morning of the 5th day. Needless for me to explain the sights of Sydney...I'm sure lots of SQTalkers had previously posted better TRs in SYD.













....TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 02:50 PM   #7
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default
























A trip to Sydney wont be complete without a visit to Lindt Cafe! I absolutely love the fondue

...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 03:04 PM   #8
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

Without realising, it's now time to go back.

Route: SYD-CGK-SIN
Flight: GA0713, connect to GA0832
ETD/ATD: 11.15/11.10 & 16.30/16.38
Aircraft: A330-200 & B737-800NG



Busy morning at SYD


GA check-in counters were located on the right side of the terminal building.


Check-in counters were divided by class (Economy and Executive) as well as Plat&Gold FF

It was a breeze thru check-in as the load was only 89 pax!! Very very light load for that morning. As I was checking in, I noticed an interesting announcement

Wish I had that extra A$800 to spend on this






The official SYD Airport magazine

Morning time at SYD is filled with all Chinese carriers





That's our ride back to CGK


A rather "senior" set of crew will be on duty in this flight

...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 03:16 PM   #9
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

As I was seated at the rear, I was allowed to board first.







The usual routine started...



Manual safety demo on A332 planes




Lunch service with options of Stir fried chicken with rice or Beef Pasta (in case you guys cant read the small words)

Guess what?? Hot towel was offered too!! Woohoo...this is getting better and SQ-alike






In fact 2 rounds of drinks were offered before lunch service started. Indeed very good service by GA



The male crew in vest during meal service.

...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 03:33 PM   #10
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

These were the 2 choices of meal offered

I opted for the pasta which turned out to be brilliant!!! 9/10 from me!!!



This generous serving continued with ice cream afterwards. Indeed this service was beyond expectation from GA (sorry, I didnt mean to steal the tagline from M*&^%^*a Airlines )


I like the way they served water in full bottle to all pax instead of the puny glasses like many other airlines. Of course OJ/Apple/Soft Drinks were regularly offered too throughout the flight.


The blanket is of high quality and thick too

When stomach was full and I was getting ready to get some rest, I noticed there were a couple of officers in "immigration uniform" with push carts on the aisles. Wondering what they were up to, I waited until they reached my seat.






Wow...this is new for me! GA is offering "Immigration On Board" service for all pax flying into CGK from SYD, so that they dont hv to queue up at the notoriously long immigration counters upon landing. The service not only applies to C class pax, but also to Y class pax.

We finally landed smoothly in CGK...however, due to congestion at the gates, our plane was parked at the remote bay and all pax were then transported by buses to the main terminal building.


...TO BE CONTINUED
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 03:53 PM   #11
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

I quickly went straight to the gate for my connecting flight to SIN as the transit time was merely 1 hour.

ON TIME performance seems to be the culture of GA flights nowadays and I was very pleased with it.


The usual welcome drink in many forms and types, depending on your point of departure...it's interesting!




The yummy and spicy fried rice made its come back again! I dont mind having a repeat meal as I liked it the first time anyway

We landed around 10 mins ahead of the schedule. And upon arrival in SIN, I waited for my luggage for almost 1 hour and it never appeared on the conveyor belt! My nerve started to shiver....and I hate to know that my beautiful and memorable journey so far with GA had to end sourly. Indeed the luggage never appeared.

I lodged in a luggage missing report with CIAS (the ground handling agent of GA) and my inquiry was handled professionally and promptly. The next day, an officer from GA in Changi T1 called me up to personally apologise and promised to trace the luggage ASAP. On the third day after it went missing, the luggage was finally found, still stranded at SYD airport. It was then flown in to SIN by QF and delivered to my doorstep with a handsome compensation sum from GA for the inconvenience caused! Again another surprise by GA as I didnt expect any compensation in return, considering that SIN is my home base and even my travel insurance couldnt compensate me for the delayed luggage.

All in all, I sincerely think that GA deserves the 4 stars rating and if I may be allowed to comment, I personally rate GA higher than some of the so-called "5 stars airlines" by Skytrax. Thanks for reading my old TR....signing off for now. Adios
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 04:17 PM   #12
ycp81
SQTalk Solitaire PPS
 
ycp81's Avatar
 
Join Date: 01-Apr-2007
Location: Singapore
Programs: Krisflyer, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Flying Blue, Enrich
Posts: 1,424
Default

Impressive!! Garuda certainly improved by leaps and bounds!! And I dare say is better than many of the 5-Stars airlines!! Watch out SQ/MH/TG....
ycp81 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 08:26 PM   #13
Kyo
SQTalk Life Solitaire PPS LPP3
 
Kyo's Avatar
 
Join Date: 22-May-2008
Location: I left my heart in OSL...
Programs: A3*G, OZ*S, ex-KF*G, MPC Green, SPG Plat50, BA Gold, Ex-HH*D, IC RA, Ex-BD55
Posts: 5,818
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by diecastdrool View Post
Using my SPG points to exchange for 3 nights of free stay at this hotel, the 4th night unfortunately had to be paid and it cost A$505!!!! When did Oz hotel start becoming so expensive???? I mean I grew up in Melbourne in the 90's and things were definitely not that expensive then...
What on earth... why would you pay A$505 for the 4P, I have no idea... there are plenty of other choices and surely for cheaper than half a grand for 1 night! That'd easily get you an awesome room, perhaps a suite elsewhere...

Quote:
Originally Posted by diecastdrool View Post
Again another surprise by GA as I didnt expect any compensation in return, considering that SIN is my home base and even my travel insurance couldnt compensate me for the delayed luggage.
Sounds like it's time to change insurance providers... most pay out compensation at least after every 8 hour-block, if I'm not wrong.

Anyway, I enjoyed reading your TR!
Kyo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 11:02 PM   #14
diecastdrool
SQTalk Elite Gold
 
Join Date: 27-Apr-2010
Location: SG
Programs: SQ KF, GA GFF, MH E, CX AM, KL FB, SPG[G], PC[G], HH[B]
Posts: 141
Default

@Kyo: I didnt want the hassle to change hotel, hence I was forced to pay that hefty amount. I know it's ridiculous but trust me, most hotels were full during that period. I had no idea what event was on. The other hotel in SYD which I used to frequent (Holiday Inn at Darling Harbour) cost A$480++ too!! Oh well, unless I wanted to settle at some granny B&B in Parramatta or something, I guess I didnt have much choice.

Avoid Chartis Insurance! I haven't got time to check and compare other travel insurance providers, but they told me that it's a norm for travel insurance to pay out compensation for delayed luggage that occurs only at destinations other than your original point of departure (i.e home base)! So guys, watch out and read carefully your insurance T&C!!
diecastdrool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2011, 11:08 PM   #15
UMD
SQTalk Solitaire PPS
 
UMD's Avatar
 
Join Date: 08-Dec-2006
Location: SIN
Programs: SQ-TPP, GA-Plat
Posts: 1,511
Default

Thank you for sharing your TR, diecastdrool. Garuda's Y service on its medium haul is indeed impressive. This airline is getting better and better.
UMD is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +8. The time now is 07:22 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Techadmin: Luke | Hosting: www.lomag.net