Flight Review – Singapore Airlines SQ965: Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta to Singapore by Airbus A330-300

Singapore Airlines is a major player on the lucrative Singapore – Jakarta route with up to 9 pairs of return flights daily. As I didn’t want to fly on the typical Boeing 777s on this regional route, I chose to fly back to Singapore on SQ965 which operates with an Airbus A330-300. I would love to fly on the Airbus A350-900 again though, but there is only one return flight daily with it and it departs Jakarta in the morning, so, nah.

International flights from Terminal 2 depart from Terminal 2D and 2E, with Singapore Airlines operating out of Terminal 2D. Show your flight itinerary to the security personnel before entering the area for security screening.

(The suffixes D and E are actually just the concourse designation which relates on the airside.)

There is just a single row of check-in counters for Terminal 2D and 2E. Look out for the Singapore Airlines logo around the Terminal 2D area.

My boarding pass for the SQ965 flight back to Singapore.

Immigration is at the end of the very long check-in row, at Terminal 2E only.

Once done with immigration, you’ll find yourself very near the E concourse. Walk back to the D concourse past the (overpriced) duty free shops.

A bit of a chore, but it could be my last time doing this as all international flights are expected to move over to Terminal 3 by May 2018, with Garuda Indonesia, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Vietnam Airlines, Korean Air, XiamenAir, China Airlines, China Southern Airlines and AirAsia already operating there, so it’s just a matter of time.

Turn right to the gates when you’re nearing the end of the rows of shops.

There is a single travellator down the middle of the concourse. Take it if you must – it only speeds up your journey by a little because…

… the travellator actually overshoots the entrance of the security screening before the gate and you have to backtrack to it.

Once screened for your cabin baggage, especially on the liquids, aerosols and gels part of things, head on to the gate.

My flight departs from Gate D3.

Present your passport and boarding pass for verification. Similar to Singapore’s side, the staff did not take a portion of the boarding pass but merely scanned the code and returned it back to me, with the whole piece in tact.

My SQ965 flight back to Singapore, ready at the gate.

Waiting for boarding calls to be made.

Because I was seated near the back of the plane, I was part of the first group of Economy Class passengers to board the plane.

Earphones are individually packed for your use on board the flight, and are placed together with the newspapers just before the entrance to the plane. They are yours to take home for free.

The free newspapers available to take if you’d rather read them than to use the KrisWorld entertainment system.

Boarding the Airbus A330-300.

The first Economy Class cabin (in the middle of the aircraft) is decked out in blue and brown colours. About half of the seats towards the front part of this cabin are now designated as Forward Zone Seats.  If you are on a Flexi fare type, these seats are free to select in advance. For other fare types, the fee for seats in this area start from US$8.

The rear cabin, where I belong thanks to my sale fare, has warmer shades of orange and beige. If you are on a Flexi or Standard fare type, these Standard Seats are free to select in advance. For the Lite fare type, the fee for seats in this area start from US$5.

The legroom available on the Singapore Airlines Airbus A330-300.

The safety video plays as the aircraft gets pushed back from the gate.

Taxiing to the runway.

Bye Jakarta (mainly PT KAI though).

My dinner for the evening: Beef Rendang with what I think is Sayur Lodeh (vegetable stew) and plain rice. Oh, and a dessert of Chocolate Cake.

Compared with Garuda Indonesia’s “Nasi Daging, the beef on Singapore Airlines was soft and chewable with a nice Rendang sauce, and not as dry and tough as GA’s. And chocolate cake > fruits of course.

The view of the Singapore skyline on the approach into Changi Airport from the south.

The (almost) empty shot of the rear Economy Class cabin.

The (almost) empty shot of the front Economy Class cabin.

Singapore Airlines operates from Changi Airport Terminals 2 and 3, depending on the destination. For arriving flights, the arrival terminal will only be confirmed about 1 to 2 hours before the actual arrival. Despite having departed from Terminal 2 for my Jakarta-bound flight, I arrived back in Singapore at Terminal 3.

The baggage reclaim belt assigned for my flight was Belt 45, but any baggage were nowhere to be seen, which is strange considering Changi’s efficiencies. Strangely though, there wasn’t a crowd around the belt – guess most passengers were transiting to another destination.

Luckily there were some sofa sets around Balt 45 so it was a comfortable wait, though it’s too long for my liking and my expectations of the airport.

Overall, Singapore Airlines is A Great Way to Fly on this short Jakarta – Singapore flight, especially with the ultra-low S$118 all-in fare I paid during the DBS SQ promotion last year. As compared with Garuda Indonesia, both CGKSIN for CGKSIN and A333 for A333, the meals on Singapore Airlines does taste better, and the overall service on board does feel more like home too. Oh, and not forgetting the part about bus-ing to the plane on GA which I detest. Considering how long I’ve not flown with SQ and am kind of used to budget airlines for short trips, it’s a premium that I’m glad to experience once in a while. So thank you DBS for this great promo!

(And no, this isn’t sponsored. I paid for the ticket with my own money.)

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