My Second Singapore Airlines Restaurant A380 @Changi Experience
After experiencing Business Class on the first Restaurant A380 @Changi flight on 24 October 2020, I submitted my name on the Economy Class waitlist to hopefully get another go on board a stationary Airbus A380 again, but this time, paying a lot less since I blew my money on the first experience already. For $53.50, it sounds like the current airport taxes payable to Changi Airport for every flight anyway, so this is just like a zero-fare AirAsia price for 3 hours of SQ. Pretty good deal.
There are 3 classes of Restaurant A380 @Changi experiences here on RailTravel Station.
- Click here for the Restaurant A380 @Changi Business Class experience.
- Click here for the Restaurant A380 @Changi Premium Economy Class experience.
- Click here for the Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class experience.
There are also fringe activities for Restaurant A380 @Changi diners.
- Click here for the Restaurant A380 @Changi Airbus A380 aircraft tour.
- Click here for the Transit Area Shopping Tour Changi Airport Experience Event for Restaurant A380 @Changi diners.
- Click here for the free shopping vouchers and Canopy Bridge admission from Jewel Changi Airport for Restaurant A380 @Changi diners (Redeem by 15 November 2020).
Restaurant A380 @Changi Check-In
My waitlist was cleared only for dinner on the very last Restaurant A380 @Changi experience on 1 November 2020, and I didn’t get a call back for other lunches or dinners on that weekend.
Heading to Row 1, only half the row was open for check-in, and the staff mentioned it was because they were only using one aircraft for the last dinner. Interesting.
The check-in screen for Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class passengers.
My passport and invitation card for the Restaurant A380 @Changi. I’m seated on board 9V-SKN parked at Gate B4 again, or so I thought.
Restaurant A380 @Changi “Immigration”
Bags are checked manually before entering the SIA First Class Departure area, and your identity is checked with your passport inside immigration, where passports are collected throughout your stay in the Transit Area.
Ground staff are on hand throughout the path from First Class immigration to the Gate-Hold Room for Gates B1-B4. Unfortunately, no stopping for shopping is allowed, which was only reserved for those in the Transit Area Shopping Tour Changi Airport Experience Event.
There’s only one aircraft, so there’s no difficulties in sorting passengers to counters outside the gate hold room.
Scan the Restaurant A380 @Changi SafeEntry QR code before entering the gate hold room. Attendance is checked before heading in to the gate hold room through security.
Restaurant A380 @Changi Pre-Dining Restaurant Tour
As part of the Restaurant A380 @Changi dining experience, there is an optional Pre-Dining “Restaurant” Tour included before my non-flying flight. And by restaurant, Singapore Airlines is referring to the Airbus A380-800.
Don’t worry, there’s a link in that article to bring you back to this one.
Restaurant A380 @Changi Gate-Hold Room Activities
The gate-hold room activities are the same as my Business Class experience last week, but a lot more private with only one aircraft of socially-distanced passengers.
The nice and spacious gate-hold room for just one A380.
The Heritage Showcase is at Gate B3, and with the thin crowds, this was quite a private event compared to the first day.
The information panels of the various uniforms used from the time of Malayan Airways till now.
No problems today with getting a front row standing spot for pictures of the cabin crew.
There’s also no queue at the Batik Rose activity, be it the workshop or just a collection.
The Batik roses ready for collection in baskets.
In the gate-hold room toilet, Singapore Airlines have placed their Penhaligon’s Business Class amenities for everyone to use which was a very nice touch.
If you’re feeling peckish before the dining experience, you can buy some overpriced drinks and snacks from the Hydrate concession in the gate-hold room.
Sigh, I wish I could have a Restaurant A350 experience though.
About 50 minutes before the flight, the crew for the Restaurant A380 @Changi board the aircraft along with an announcement, with everyone applauding. Guess they made it an official parade already.
Not forgetting the main people who get things moving in the cabin.
Hmm, they’re heading to board at Gate B2 instead. This means I get a change in aircraft to 9V-SKS.
Boarding the Restaurant A380 @Changi
Boarding calls are made in classes, just like an actual flight. An additional announcement was made for everyone to board from Gate B2 instead of B4 as printed on the invitation card.
Unfortunately, the Flight Information Display System didn’t change to “New Gate”.
9V-SKS will be flying me from Singapore to Singapore.
Heading down the clear moving aerobridge.
Heading down to the first lower deck aerobridge as my seat was in the starboard aisle.
On top of the usual headsets, the Singapore Airlines Care Kit can be picked up before boarding the aircraft.
The care kit consists of one face mask, one Ki-ose 390 Disinfectant Hand & Surface Wipe, and one VitaminSpa Antibacterial Hand Sanitizer.
Passing through the Premium Economy Class section.
Singapore Airlines’ New Economy Class on A380
Ah, I miss this Economy Class section. Feels more like a flight now than on Business Class last week.
Plenty of seats are blocked off for safe distancing. This is going to be a very comfortable 3 hours.
The legroom on board Singapore Airlines’ New Economy Class.
Ah, a nice conveniently-placed KrisWorld touchscreen in front of me.
The SQ380 flight path from Singapore to Hong Kong. This will take an estimated 0 minutes with a perpetual 2566km to go.
If you fly runway heading from Changi Airport all the way northeast, you end up exactly right on Chek Lap Kok Island.
All the ports and buttons are placed conveniently on the left corner. No way to accidentally activate the crew call button every 15 minutes or so with this layout.
Every alternate row is blocked off for safe distancing, and each group of diners get a private row with other seats in the row blocked off.
A true mark of now everyone misses flying – instead of ignoring the safety demonstration, everyone is snapping photos and videos of the safety demonstration of pointing out the exit locations.
There were also some laughs when the safety briefing mentioned not to put on your seat belts, but I thought it was actually logical since it’s the same thing when the aircraft is refueling.
A welcome-on-board video replaces the safety video.
There is plenty of space on board with all the safe distancing measures in place. In fact, it’s a bit too much space, just like how flights were like in February and March before every country started restricting border movements.
Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class Dining Experience
Here’s the Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class menu to go through first. A .pdf menu is sent along with the KrisShop order confirmation. And sticking with the latest service changes, the paper menu is no longer provided on board.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t any Nasi Lemak offered in Economy Class, so I couldn’t put Shermay Lee and Pak Naseer up against each other. Instead, I went for the western selection of Pan Fried Salmon with Creamy Dill Sauce like how I would on a regular flight, since I wasn’t interested in having rice + 1 meat + 1 veg for dinner.
My meal tray pleasantly had Business Class linen and tableware on it. It looks amazing in Economy Class with all the cutlery compacted together. Although this might be a bit of overselling the Economy Class product for passengers who have never flown with Singapore Airlines before.
NOTE: The olive oil was a special request by me, which the crew kindly obliged getting a bottle from upstairs for me.
The look of my meal after uncovering it. Beautiful.
For appetizer, a Roasted Chicken with Potato and Pumpkin Salad is offered for all meal selections. This comes with Seaweed Sesame Dressing, the one with rave reviews by almost every media outlet who went for the media dinner in Business Class on the first day. And by me too during lunch, #notsponsored.
My selected main course of Pan Fried Salmon with Creamy Dill Sauce. This comes with seasonal vegetables and roasted potatoes.
My salmon was pretty good, around a medium well nearing well done, but goes well with the Creamy Dill Sauce swirling around the dish.
As I wasn’t in posh Business Class upstairs, I devoured my meal like how I usually do in Economy Class, with one fork only for everything from cutting and scooping to putting it in my mouth. Feels good to not care about table etiquette. I also could eat my courses however I liked without being judged.
On my last few bites of salad after finishing up my main course, the stewardess came around with Häagen-Dazs Vanilla Ice Cream.
Thank you Singapore Airlines for taking the SATS housebrand double chocolate out of the menu for this dining experience. Hope to not see it in the near future!
The crew did really well in catering for this on-ground experience, and the Häagen-Dazs Vanilla Ice Cream was served at just the right consistency, not rock hard when fresh out of the freezer when flying 35,000ft above sea level. I usually spend the first 10 minutes poking the ice cream in the air with my teaspoon.
Once the main meal was done in an hour with all the conveniences of a single tray in Economy Class (sounds like I really do belong in Economy after all), it’s time for drinks. And what other way to go about than to have a Singapore Sling on board Singapore Airlines.
My first glass tasted slightly lighter than the one I had on Business Class last week, but my second glass was comparable. After asking a stewardess if this signature cocktail was mixed on board, I learnt that this was a premix, with pineapple juice added just before serving.
So, 1. it’s not possible to get a non-alcoholic Singapore Sling, and 2. maybe my first drink had a little bit more pineapple juice to premix.
I opted for a hot coffee for fun to see what tableware they would use, and lo and behold, it’s porcelain again, save for the teaspoon.
After my satisfying Singapore Slings and coffee, making me high and awake – 2 things that shouldn’t be happening at 9pm when I have work the next day, I decided to be thick-skinned and request for a Champagne.
The stewardess informed me that she would check, but no promises, but a few minutes later, lo and behold, bubbly in Economy Class.
I love this dining experience and the crew of Singapore Airlines even more now.
BONUS: My fellow railway fan neighbour had the Shermay Lee’s Selection of Ayam Tempra and Brinjal Sambal.
The meal was pretty good overall, the nicely glazed chicken and soya sauce complimented each other, and the spicy Brinjal Sambal added punch to the rice. Fitting for a Peranakan dish.
Personally, I’m just wondering why Shermay called the chicken Ayam Tempra but not Sambal Terong for the brinjal.
Towards the end of the flight, a stewardess came around to thank every passenger personally while handing out goodie bags, and another stewardess, to my very pleasant surprise, came over to hand me a teddy bear to thank me for my support towards Singapore Airlines over the past two weeks. I’m not a PPS Club member or anything, so I was totally not expecting any form of special service.
Truly a great way to dine.
Here’s what’s in the Economy Class goodie bag, including my additional teddy bear.
There’s a 6-piece Travel Organiser Set, Economy Class Amenity Kit, a pack of playing cards, and a pen
for you to fill out your immigration form.
The Economy Class Amenity Kit consists of a pair of socks and a toothbrush kit.
The 6-piece Travel Organiser Set consists of 3 packing cubes in various sizes, and 3 packing pouches in various sizes. Thanks Singapore Airlines, this is useful to fit in my CabinZero for my next budget flight.
Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class Toilet
The clean toilet on board Economy Class. But what is that I see on the bottom rack?
For this dining experience, Singapore Airlines provided Business Class amenities of Penhaligon’s hand lotion, face mist, and eau de toilette right here downstairs in Economy Class.
Just like my previous Business Class dining experience, the rest of the amenities shelves were left empty, presumably thanks to COVID or with the amenity kit in the goodie bag already provided.
Disembarking from Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class
While disembarking, the cabin crew serving my section thanked me once again for my support, and asked if I was going for the Inside Singapore Airlines behind-the-scenes tour of SIA Training Centre. (Of course I booked.)
Well, I look forward to seeing her again then (if I get a slot).
UPDATE: I didn’t get a slot despite submitting my booking 6 minutes after its opening. Oh well.
The group of cabin crew thanking each passenger upon disembarking.
I hope I will get to experience this again soon.
Heading up the aerobridge.
Heading on the path around the gate-hold room.
Passing by Raffles Medical Group. Unfortunately, no detours to the toilet or Butterfly Garden (closed, by the way) is allowed.
SIA ground staff line the path all the way to immigration, thanking every passenger passing along.
Heading down to immigration.
The empty immigration hall which everyone will pass through without stopping.
The very green baggage reclaim area of Terminal 3.
My passport will be collected from Table 6.
My wristband is taken back in exchange for my passport.
Passing through customs, unchecked this time.
Heading out back to the public area.
Fulfilling my Economy Class experience to perfection, I headed down to get the MRT back home.
Overall, an extremely pleasant experience on board Singapore Airlines Restaurant A380 @Changi Economy Class.
I mentioned previously that the aircraft was parked at the gate throughout the experience which means no movement, and electricity is provided on the ground by auxiliary power units which means a quiet environment. With the regular Economy Class headsets, I do not need to set a high volume to watch my movies and TV shows in order to drown out the engine noise.
Business Class tableware, Penhaligon’s toilet amenities, and Champagne were also a pleasant surprise to see in Economy Class, levelling up the dining experience despite the low price point of $53.50. Social distancing also means that no one in front reclines into my seat, and I do not recline into someone else’s seat. I’m wondering if Singapore Airlines can even break even on an Economy Class seat with the products and services offered with all the good stuff coming my way and so many empty seats around.
And saving the best for last, even in Economy Class, the cabin crew provided a very personalised experience, comparable and perhaps exceeding Business Class since I prefer my conversations less formal (sorry I’m indeed an AirAsia and Scoot passenger).
I was very surprised that the crew addressed me by Mr. Surname somehow seem to have known that it was my second dining experience, even spending some time after giving me my teddy bear and goodie bag to have some small talk with me about my experiences.
To top the whole experience off, when retrieving my passport from SATS at Row 47, the SATS staff also mentioned “Hope you enjoyed your second flight!” as she handed me my passport.
Many skeptics have asked on social media why would anyone pay $642 for Nasi Lemak or go for this activity for that matter. Well, it probably isn’t for everyone, but more for those who really miss flying and travelling, and not forgetting the signature in-flight services provided by Singapore Airlines.
For $53.50, I was not buying Salmon, I was buying the full experience of being on board an Airbus A380 with probably the best crew in the world. (I wanted to say paying for the crew’s allowances but I’m not that holy.) Being realistic, you get what you pay for, and totally expected that level of service when I was on board Business Class. However, on the low-priced ticket on Economy Class – now that’s special. And the little details being noticed by the crew, being overly appreciated for being a repeat customer, that’s priceless.
I hope to go on more of such dining experiences soon, but unfortunately the emcees for the dinner seem to have suggested that this would have been the last flight of the Singapore Airlines Restaurant A380 @Changi. Fingers crossed that there will be more dining experiences in the near future – I promise I’ll book more dining experiences when available.