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Taiwan On 4 Airlines (TR,KL,GE,SQ) In 3 Classes  
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Posted (2 years 10 months 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 14715 times:

This trip was initially booked to involve 3 nights stay each in Bangkok and Taipei but due to the flooding situation in Bangkok, the Bangkok stay was canned. With some re-adjustments of flights, I would be flying to Taiwan for the whole 6 nights, clocking 4 different airlines (Tiger, KLM, TransAsia and SQ) in 3 classes (budget, economy and business!). It was a really terrific trip to Taiwan!! Cheap and great food, friendly locals, beautiful scenery, a holiday mecca for us Singaporeans! So lets get on with the report proper.

My routing up to Taipei would involved a transit stop in Bangkok as I could not cancel my flights but just reschedule them. The first flight would be a budget airline flight to BKK on Tiger. Initially I was booked on TR2112 but in order to catch the KLM flight to TPE, I had to change to an earlier flight. A change fee was paid through the online website even though Tiger offered a free rescheduling for pax to BKK by calling in, but the hotline was impossible to get through! I had sent a feedback to Tiger regarding my change fees but I am not getting my hopes high here.

30 October 2011
Tiger Airways
TR 2106
Singapore (SIN) - Bangkok (BKK)
A320
9V-TAT
Budget Class


As Tiger flights have been covered countless times and they all feel the same regardless of destination, ie. minimal service, this sector would be more pictorial.

Departing from Gate 8 of Budget Terminal.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6057/6318977812_b7e1565612_b.jpg

9V-TAT will be flying me to BKK. 3rd time on this exact aircraft in less than half a year!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6055/6318977980_93ec62874c_b.jpg

Was given Emex row for free!


Tiger Tales, BOB menu and safety card.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6218/6318978466_231dc6a20a_b.jpg

Tiger's newest A320 beside.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6217/6318978600_17697034f4_b.jpg

Fireflying off to Malaysia
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6120/6318458225_4bb11d3c93_b.jpg

As the pax load was very light (around 50-60 pax), boarding was completed swiftly and doors closed. Safety demo was done. 4 female crew onboard today. Tiger recently hired quite a number of foreign crew. Today, 2 cabin crew (including the purser) and 1 pilot were Philippine nationals.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6059/6318457637_cba48b5df5_b.jpg

Pushed back 10min late even though doors were closed early. Probably due to traffic.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6220/6318979210_74b082c5e2_b.jpg

SQ and MI birds queuing for takeoff.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6211/6318458795_f18baff430_b.jpg

Taxi to Rwy02C.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6043/6318459091_54a5c1a221_b.jpg


Takeoff!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l1_S9SMGYJU


Blue skies



Post take-off announcement.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLO66Zv9Qhg


Climbing to our cruising altitude of 30,000ft. Quite a low altitude today.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6042/6318459361_1a437f5868_b.jpg

Crew conducting buy-on-board service.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6043/6318459499_bc2e349527_b.jpg

Wonderful seat pitch again
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6060/6318980208_55ef5e1e18_b.jpg

What to do in an emergency.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6113/6318980546_f3baeca4ce_b.jpg

Look how empty the flight was!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6215/6318980338_5029e0547a_b.jpg

Cabin view from the rear.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6117/6318980686_b63a876005_b.jpg

Starting descent into BKK
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6225/6318980800_3bd1c2c5e0_b.jpg

We were put in a holding pattern south of BKK for 15min due to congestion in BKK.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6094/6318980906_33a0b20d81_b.jpg

Flew up beside the airport and turned back south. No floods seen around the airport perimeter.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6060/6318460457_0c2c2a8211_b.jpg

On finals to Rwy01R with flooded fields in sight. Is this normal?
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6042/6318460571_8602bb13fc_b.jpg


Landing on Rwy 01R 15min late due to air-traffic congestion.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LeseRptIhk8


Welcome to TG land.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6107/6318981258_f06e4f9728_b.jpg

Eithad B77W, Orient Thai and S7.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6035/6318993504_24dbaecb55_b.jpg

Transaero B744. Ex-SQ plane I guess.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6213/6318473319_d55720cac1_b.jpg

Overall, the empty plane and emex seat row made this short hop quite a pleasant ride. Next up will be KLM to Taipei.


My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8549 posts, RR: 55
Reply 1, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 13433 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Nice start to your trip, guess the flight was so empty because of the flooding in Bangkok?

Looking forward to the next installment.

Rgds

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 13171 times:

The 2nd sector will be on KLM Royal Dutch Airlines from Bangkok to Taipei. KLM operates the AMS-BKK-TPE sector daily and as a fifth freedom carrier, it offers great fares on the BKK-TPE sector. My one-way BKK-TPE fare was only 6,170baht, which is almost half the price of TG, BR and CI. A return fare was even cheaper at 9,000baht in economy and less than 13,000baht in Business, which is cheaper than the other airlines' economy class fares!

Due to the flooding mentioned earlier, I changed our KLM flights to depart on the day we reached BKK. Surprisingly, no change fees were required even though I had booked the lowest tier fare.

Our transit stop was initially scheduled to be 2hr45min but due to the delay in arrival on the Tiger flight, the transit stop was shortened to slightly more than 2hrs. Our scheduled departure time was 1340hrs. Check in was done for the KLM flight swiftly as there were hardly any passengers at the counters. According to the check-in agent, the flight was relatively empty, which I heard is the norm on the BKK-TPE sector.

30 October 2011
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
KL 877
Bangkok (BKK) - Taipei (TPE)
B747-400
PH-BFH 'City of Hong Kong'
Economy Class


Boarding pass for the flight.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6049/6319091340_22295915aa_b.jpg

After grabbing a quick lunch, we went through immigration and proceeded to the gate for boarding. Also did some plane spotting. However BKK is not too photo-friendly as many of the glass windows were filthy. Some of the more decent photos I took:

Republic of Singapore Air Force C130 sending humanitarian aid to BKK. 2 of these planes arrived!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6035/6319092120_c28d4e7e23_b.jpg

Garuda B737-800NG
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6224/6319092504_e9d542578f_b.jpg

PH-BFH which will ferry us to TPE. It has been a long time since I last flew a B747! The plane is still in its KLM Asia livery.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6213/6319091688_3e4c1be856_b.jpg

However just before the scheduled departure time, a dreaded announcement was made. The flight would be delayed due to a technical problem with the aircraft. We were told that we would be updated on the situation in 30min. Business class passengers were invited to proceed back to the lounge. 30min later, the ground staff made another announcement that all of us would be given a 250baht meal voucher for any food outlets in the airport and we would to return to the gate at 1500hrs for further updates. In fairness, KLM ground staff has handled the situation pretty well and I used the voucher to relax at coffee joint with coffee and ice-cream. At 1500hrs, we proceeded back to the gate where the ground staff updated us again that the flight would be departing at 1600hrs.

Rescheduled departure timing.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6239/6319092822_b391949b3b_b.jpg

Drinks and cake were offered at the boarding gate. Finally we boarded the B747-400 just before 1600hrs. Was welcomed at the door by the crew and directed to the seat. My seat was at 62K, just before the 2-seaters at the rear.

At the gate
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6107/6319093562_23333484fa_b.jpg

Seat pitch is pretty tight at 31" but at least my legs can extend under the seat in front. PTVs at every seat as this plane was refurbished recently.


Another view of the seat pitch. If you notice, all seats had the airsick bags placed in a position with the KLM logo facing outwards.


Items in the seat pocket. Holland Herald inflight magazine, safety card and airsick bag.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6115/6319093820_72b7286fca_b.jpg

Shortly before boarding is completed, the crew came down the aisles with a stack of cups and a bottle of mineral water, offering pre-takeoff water to us lowly economy passengers. Nice gesture by the crew, but not sure if this is the norm on KLM.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6041/6319093368_c76536ec7f_b.jpg

The plastic cups used by KLM have a lovely design on them.


A CX B773 pushing back.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6047/6319094310_2955f67a48_b.jpg

The IFE system contains a comprehensive list of the food and beverages offered onboard even though no menus were given out. As you can see, KLM only serves "branded" drinking water onboard. No airplane tap water was served throughout the flight!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6235/6319094570_76ab96d8aa_b.jpg

After all passengers had boarded, we still had a bit of wait due to ATC controls. According to the pilot, our delay was due to a faulty wheel brake which required replacement. He also apologized for the delay. Flight time was estimated to be 3hrs. I must say it would be even very tiring for the crew as they would be operating BKK-TPE-BKK sectors and with the delay, it would be almost a 12hrs shift for them!


Finally we pushed back with the safety video playing. To be frank, the safety video is rather boring.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4vV57LX3H0


Starting our taxi to Rwy01R.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6104/6319094798_cc8e07b80c_b.jpg

We had quite a long taxi to the runway as we were number 5 for takeoff abd only 1 runway was in use at that time for both takeoffs and landings. By the time we reached the end of the runway, it was already nearing 1700hrs.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6221/6319095008_d69172fbc1_b.jpg


Take off from Rwy01R. You can see the floodings towards the north of the airport shortly after takeoff.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRtMfEy1fbA


Flooded plains.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6097/6318574361_ca9fd5e05a_b.jpg

More flooded fields.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6233/6319095550_807974729c_b.jpg

Partially submerged houses.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6091/6319095820_2bab19ef08_b.jpg

Flight info shortly after takeoff.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6032/6318575269_1a9f0f186b_b.jpg


Post-takeoff announcement by the crew.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88dZq0nIwWw


Headphones were distributed shortly after seatbelt signs were switched off. They were the clip-on-ear type and were for yours to keep. The 2-pinned prone sets can be adjusted to 1-pinned! IFE control was at the side of the armrest, similar to SQ's older fleet.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6039/6319096432_aeabbbaba0_b.jpg

After distributing headsets, crew came down the aisle with hot towels! I thought hot towel service only existed on Asian/Middle Eastern carriers! The towels may not be the thick cotton type used by SQ but they were still relatively thick disposable very hot towels. And the towels were lavender scented too!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6050/6318575823_b066ce8555_b.jpg

Unfortunately, shortly after takeoff, the interactive portion of the IFE crashed and we were all unable to access the AVOD system. Only channel that could be seen on the PTVs were the flight info/map. Video channels hanged and audio channels were not working too. The crew tried to reset the system but to no avail.

Cabin view. PTVs were either stuck on the Interactive mode welcome page or video mode. Quite an empty cabin too. The whole plane seemed around 50% full at most.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6097/6318576061_480cf7d5ff_b.jpg

Cruising at a high 41,000ft.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6047/6319097100_9a1bac528b_b.jpg

Sunset
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6223/6318576689_8b384a8501_b.jpg

About an hour after takeoff, the friendly KLM crew started the meal service. On this flight, the crew were all with smiles while conducting their service. The left aisle was served first by 2 crew (one to hand out meal trays while the other to serve drinks) followed be the right aisle. Another crew would be heating/preparing the meals in the galley and assisting in the service later on. Only 3 crew were serving each section of the cabin.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6116/6318576475_a6cc391f38_b.jpg

There were 2 choices of meals: Chicken with noodles or a vegetarian stir-fry with rice. I chose the chicken. The meal tray was very colourful! On the tray was a salad, main, fruits, warm roll, butter and plastic cutlery. Interestingly, the warm roll, which was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, was already sliced into half for easy spread of butter. The plastic cutlery were also the best quality of disposable cutlery I have ever come across.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6222/6318577007_769c71fe7f_b.jpg

Appetizer: Thai salad
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6108/6319098224_6d2a56a928_b.jpg

Main Course: Chicken with noodles and vegetables. It was delicious! BKK catering certainly did not disappoint.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6231/6318577905_3a926c2284_b.jpg

Fresh fruits. With papaya, melon, pineapple and grapes.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6054/6318577659_6e2a1c2859_b.jpg

For drinks, the whole bar selection is available. I had a chilean white wine and an apple juice, all served with a pleasant smile. The wines were served in bottles.


After the meal service, crew came out with a cart offering coffee/tea and after-meal liquors. I had a "Delicious hot" tea and Amarula Cream (a South African version of Baileys).
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6033/6319098970_2ba1c0dc39_b.jpg

After the meal service, there was nothing much else to do as the IFE system was down. I visited the lavatory, but nothing interesting with in there with the bare minimum amenities. At least I had the flight map/info to past the time.

Cabin view towards the rear.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6094/6318578511_4231b292af_b.jpg

I had also ordered a KLM B744 model for 9.90euros to be delivered during the flight. It was promptly delivered by the crew after the meal service.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6032/6319099632_12c031d01a_b.jpg

Soon we were nearing Taipei and started our descent. Crew also came round with a round of juice/water just before our descend.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6046/6318579205_070709d2eb_b.jpg

Our arrival was slightly delayed as were were put in a holding pattern due to heavy traffic (again!). We circled twice before commencing our final approach.

Approaching TPE.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6221/6319100218_802e6cfdf2_b.jpg


Landing in Taipei Taoyuan Rwy05R. Taoyuan is the main International airport of Taipei 3hrs late.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSC0jeE0pGQ


Parked at Terminal 2 beside a JAL B737-800
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6041/6319100356_befa9d1f79_b.jpg

Overall, other than the unfortunate technical delay and the IFE system crash, it was quite a nice flight on KLM. Crew were friendly and delivered the service with smiles, meals were good, drinks were plenty. However their service recovery (both for the delay and the IFE crash) could be better. Even though KLM may not be there yet with the 5-star asian/ME carriers, they are still a rather decent airline to fly on.

On to my fabulous week in Taiwan! Next sector will be a short hop on TransAsia Airways ATR72!



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 12678 times:

Scenes of Taipei, Jiufen and Keelung

http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/377636_10150377578914017_556614016_8552337_1477553665_n.jpg

http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/390846_10150377580299017_556614016_8552360_1807499035_n.jpg

http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/301031_10150377581294017_556614016_8552377_257788997_n.jpg

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/376553_10150377581384017_556614016_8552379_154028594_n.jpg

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/386333_10150377613634017_556614016_8552675_1889674087_n.jpg

http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/300065_10150377615534017_556614016_8552730_1310589074_n.jpg



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1283 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 12357 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Very interesting reports so far and looking forward to the other two as well.

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
It was a really terrific trip to Taiwan!! Cheap and great food, friendly locals, beautiful scenery, a holiday mecca for us Singaporeans!

I would think most people would think of Singapore that way as a holiday mecca!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
On finals to Rwy01R with flooded fields in sight. Is this normal?

Most scenes that I have seen of Bangkok from the air appear that way!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
Welcome to TG land

Someday I hope to land there again.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
My one-way BKK-TPE fare was only 6,170baht, which is almost half the price of TG, BR and CI. A return fare was even cheaper at 9,000baht in economy and less than 13,000baht in Business, which is cheaper than the other airlines' economy class fares!
Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
According to the check-in agent, the flight was relatively empty, which I heard is the norm on the BKK-TPE sector.

Strange that with such fares, the flights are not really full

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
30min later, the ground staff made another announcement that all of us would be given a 250baht meal voucher
Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Drinks and cake were offered at the boarding gate
Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
The meal tray was very colourful! On the tray was a salad, main, fruits, warm roll, butter and plastic cutlery. Interestingly, the warm roll, which was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, was already sliced into half for easy spread of butter. The plastic cutlery were also the best quality of disposable cutlery I have ever come across.

Appetizer: Thai salad

Main Course: Chicken with noodles and vegetables. It was delicious! BKK catering certainly did not disappoint.

Fresh fruits. With papaya, melon, pineapple and grapes.

For drinks, the whole bar selection is available. I had a chilean white wine and an apple juice, all served with a pleasant smile. The wines were served in bottles.

After the meal service, crew came out with a cart offering coffee/tea and after-meal liquors. I had a "Delicious hot" tea and Amarula Cream (a South African version of Baileys).

Looks like KLM too good care of you both on the ground with the delay and in the air too. I still feel KLM food trays are to small and narrow, but I guess the quantity suffices for a short route like this.


User currently offlinefoppishbum From Taiwan, joined Mar 2006, 826 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 12115 times:

WOW! I haven't seen a trip report for Taiwan with this many wonderful photos of the familiar places! Thanks for sharing.   Your photos make me want to go home for a nice, long visit/vacation!


I'm a Taiwanese-American living in NYC and LA.
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 11777 times:

Since we were to be in Taipei for 6 nights, we decided to get out of Taipei to Taroko Gorge for a day-trip. In order to save time traveling, we joined a day tour from Taipei to Taroko Gorge, flying to the city of Hualien on TransAsia Airways early in the morning and returning back to Taipei by train in the evening. The city of Hualien is only 120km from Taipei and the flight from Taipei to Hualien is the shortest flight I have ever flown on a plane. Probably one of the shortest scheduled flights in the world too? And the route is also probably one of the exotic routes to fly on. It would be interesting to experience such a short domestic flight in Taiwan.

The flight was scheduled to depart from Taipei Songshan, which is the domestic airport (currently also used for limited international services to Japan and Mainland China) right smack in the city center, at 0700hrs. We were picked up from the hotel at 0600hrs and reached the airport just after a 15min drive.

Songshan T2, which is the domestic terminal. The original domestic terminal, T1, has been refurbished and now used for international flights.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6230/6325445491_dc6385f855_b.jpg

At the TransAsia ticketing counter to pick up our air tickets. There were 11 of us in the tour group.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6115/6326198846_aa44a4e384_b.jpg

Ticketing counters of other Taiwanese domestic airlines.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6040/6326214916_1c40b87bd1_b.jpg

Check-in counters for TransAsia flights. Check-in closes 30mins before departure for domestic flights.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6104/6326199464_bbde025791_b.jpg

Our tour leader in Taipei checked in for us and handed us our boarding passes. It was basically a slip of paper.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6223/6326199522_598556f629_b.jpg


02 November 2011
TransAsia Airways
GE 007
Taipei Songshan (TSA) - Hualien (HUN)
ATR 72
B-22811
Economy Class


After issued with boarding passes, the whole group went through security into the boarding lounge. Security was fast and we were soon in the sterile looking departure lounge. Nothing fanciful, just rows of seats, a cafe and boarding gates.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6034/6325446059_712a8c58f2_b.jpg

We will be flying TransAsia today!


Our flight will be boarding after the Makung flight.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6047/6325446293_b74c2c4f45_b.jpg

Lets do some plane spotting! Uni Air MD90.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6033/6325462175_80cdb82892_b.jpg

Mandarin Airlines ERJ190
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6229/6326201106_b5db5e3b31_b.jpg

Finally we are boarding! Will be bussed to the aircraft parked at the remote stand.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6046/6325447157_eea3ed27dc_b.jpg

On the bus towards our aircraft. Eva Air A332 and JAL B763 parked at the International Terminal ready to operate flights to Haneda.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6036/6326216404_ec7dd27f9e_b.jpg

FAT MD80 stored on the tarmac.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6107/6325475319_c319e89133_b.jpg

Early morning at Songshan. China Airlines A333 parked on the remote stand.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6041/6326203106_c09840eacb_b.jpg

Reached our ATR72 prop B-22811. It is the 2nd newest ATR72 in TransAsia's fleet and is delivered in 2007.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6035/6325448867_e82e27a1d0_b.jpg

Another view of our plane.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6048/6325450249_37b2ea7c24_b.jpg

Boarding. I was one of the last to board so that I can enjoy my photo taking on the tarmac. No ground staff stopped us from snapping shots on the tarmac.


Passengers settles down very quickly and the crew immediately prepared the plane for departure. There were 3 cabin crew onboard today, including a trainee crew. Most of the other passengers on the flight this morning were businessmen flying to Hualien for a day of work, judging by the suits and briefcases. Newspapers were also offered at the door. Crew also did a newspaper run down the aisle. Flight time was scheduled to be 35min but the actual flying time was a mere 20mins at most.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6234/6325450497_59abb9070f_b.jpg

Seat pitch was actually rather good.


Contents in seat pocket. Inflight magazine, duty-free mag, safety card and 1 more magazine which I forgot what it was. Quite a lot of stuff for a domestic flight I must say. Even onboard shopping is offered on this short flight!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6105/6326204888_82484467f9_b.jpg

Cabin view towards the front.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6100/6325470707_62c495f937_b.jpg

Doors were closed, engines started and cabin crew performed a manual safety demo. No time wasted here! We then had a fast taxi to Rwy10.



There was no wait and we immediately took off after turning onto the runway.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bAGTvzYgZbk


We initially passed through thick clouds but the clouds cleared shortly after. Beautiful scenery of outer Taipei after takeoff.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6057/6325467919_e594ee3339_b.jpg


Service announcement by the crew after takeoff. It was a very long announcement!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVPE2kX3YMk


Followed shortly by the pilot announcement. We would only be flying at 10,000ft today!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHpUNUGiTJU


Flying along the beautiful east coast of Taiwan.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6115/6326205896_31abc6bd5c_b.jpg

The beautiful TransAsia stewardesses then rolled a cart down the aisle offering packet drinks and wet towelettes.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6033/6325451707_af484787c0_b.jpg

On offer were either red tea or an energy drink.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6214/6325451993_8435fe9970_b.jpg

Seatbelt signs were switched on throughout the whole flight as according to the pilot, there might be some bumps. But I guess it was to reduce inconveniences to the cabin crew during their service on the very short flight.

The flight was so short that when the crew were still serving drinks halfway down the cabin, we started our descent! However the crew still managed to finish serving all passengers and immediately collected the trash and prepared the aircraft for landing.

See the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow?


Almost there. Beautiful mountains!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6234/6326206242_c1bd12aecc_b.jpg

Nearing Hualien. The scenery is stunning!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6038/6326207442_01c71b915a_b.jpg

Flew over Hualien city and making a turn back to the airport.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6116/6326207822_2e15e4bb99_b.jpg

Runway in sight.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6218/6325454645_d1b35a3e0e_b.jpg


Landing at Hualien Airport Rwy03. The airport is also an airforce base and so photo-taking were actually prohibited while on the ground. An announcement was also made regarding this. But then...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrNIFWmCBNs


Just a very short taxi to the deserted terminal. I wonder when was the last time the aerobridges were used.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6119/6326208488_b6660a2def_b.jpg

View of seats during disembarkation.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6048/6325455243_7faff4661d_b.jpg

There were airforce personnel on the tarmac to stop anyone from taking photographs. So no photos of the aircraft on the tarmac. However I managed to capture a shot from the terminal building.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6120/6325457667_113a11b045_b.jpg

These are all the arrivals to Hualien airport in a day.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6045/6325458711_d46cd71ea6_b.jpg

The airport looked very new and clean. And it is definitely very underutilized!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6215/6325460633_ace698ca2a_b.jpg

It was a short and pleasant flight on TransAsia Airways and an interesting experience to try out a Taiwanese domestic flight. I was actually surprised that TransAsia was able to accomplish the services on such a short flight. I was not even expecting a drink, much less newspapers and onboard shopping on the 20min hop. Excellent service by TransAsia!



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 11438 times:

Beautiful Taroko Gorge




My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 11402 times:

More scenes of Taipei & Xinzhu

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/389140_10150378455149017_556614016_8560813_1329295901_n.jpg

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/297206_10150378650374017_556614016_8563155_441953751_n.jpg




My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 11040 times:

More Taiwan Foodies!!

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/299627_10150377577759017_556614016_8552330_2128427897_n.jpg

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/378815_10150377580679017_556614016_8552365_1802025113_n.jpg

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/386333_10150377613634017_556614016_8552675_1889674087_n.jpg

http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/385012_10150378454279017_556614016_8560798_868507956_n.jpg

http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/317327_10150378454844017_556614016_8560806_1937365088_n.jpg

http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/380841_10150378457194017_556614016_8560864_2087866520_n.jpg

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/391989_10150378553774017_556614016_8561660_390128442_n.jpg

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/383633_10150378555104017_556614016_8561695_316560216_n.jpg



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 10907 times:

A fantastic week of cheap and good food, friendly and extremely civilized people, beautiful scenery and some great shopping deals just flew past with a blink of an eye and it was time to return back to reality. However, in order to minimize the depression of going back to work, we decided to fly back to Singapore on SQ Business Class! It was also a no-brainer since SQ was offering Saver award in Business for only 21,250 miles one-way with S$90 taxes per person while Economy was only available on Standard and Full awards at 25,500 miles one-way lowest! Only a crazy person will redeem in economy! It would also be my 2nd flight on SQ Business Class this year (and whole life) and experiencing my 1st full dinner service in Business!

And so the photo intensive finale flight....

We reached Taoyuan International Terminal 2 by taxi (decided against taking the airport coach due to the large amount of luggage) slightly more than 2hrs before the 1800hrs flight. Check-in counters were already opened and a queue was forming at the economy class counters. However Business Class counters were empty and we checked in immediately.

Something interesting though, during the booking of our seats, I had initially selected 15A/C, but when I checked my booking using the "enhanced" SQ website, my selections were gone and I had to re-select my seats, when then I chose 14A/C since 15A/C were apparently "taken". After selecting the new seats, my booking suddenly showed 2 seats (14A & 15A/14C & 15C) assigned to each of us. So we are gonna get 2 seats each? However, during online check-in, the system only offered 15A/C to us, which was our original selected seats. And upon check-in, I learnt that the booking system had screwed up and double-assigned us seats, which in the end resulted in seats 14A/C remaining empty for the flight. 2 J class revenue lost because of the screw-up. Wonder how much revenue did SQ lost due to the "new" website till now as I am quite sure I am not the only one experiencing this "problem"....

Check-in counters.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6033/6331403995_aca0558572_b.jpg

Business Class! Check-in was done by a pleasant China Airlines agent. Apparently SQ has outsourced its check-in to CI as it used to have its own ground staff a few years ago.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6053/6331404229_2850fa3cfc_b.jpg

After check-in, we cleared immigration/security and immediately proceeded to the Silver Kris Lounge to grab a bite. Lounges were a level above the departure hall.


Entrance of Taipei Silver Kris Lounge.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6231/6332157364_17291109f6_b.jpg

Was warmly welcomed by the lounge receptionist and we entered the lounge. This lounge was also used by UA Business Class passengers. However we were the only ones in the lounge then. Other passengers only came in much later. There were computer facilities, meal buffet, drinks, toilets and shower facilities in the lounge. Not bad for an outstation lounge and definitely miles better than the one in Manila.

Lounge view towards the entrance.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6060/6332157474_1ba08f8e3f_b.jpg

View towards the buffet area.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6108/6331404619_23f60e6c18_b.jpg

Wifi also available in the lounge. With my blue boarding pass, hehe.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6098/6331404697_9161747a14_b.jpg

Lots of international newspapers and magazines available for your reading pleasure.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6039/6332157840_6e2c3c802a_b.jpg

Lets take a look at the buffet spread.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6059/6331404895_fc4ac853fc_b.jpg

More food.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6228/6331405023_67ac60aba6_b.jpg

Brewed soup-of-the-day.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6116/6331405121_3f8d15d252_b.jpg

Drinks selection, fruits and cheeses.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6033/6332158232_f4a9d47a5a_b.jpg

Coffee machine, finger food, breads and pastries, hot pao and alcohol selection.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6058/6331405377_b54ca797a8_b.jpg

Sandwiches, salads, bottled water and tea selection.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6114/6331405495_cacf960fe3_b.jpg

I had a soup (soup was good) and a salad,
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6055/6331405695_077d4a66c8_b.jpg

and a bit of everything from the buffet spread.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6118/6332158532_7bc866dbec_b.jpg

Rounded up with a cappuccino and pineapple pastry. Not too much food as a feat still awaits onboard.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6111/6332158722_de628eab53_b.jpg

After relaxing for a while more, we left the lounge and proceeded to the gate about 40min before departure time. Terminal 2 seemed quite busy for the evening, with lots of PRC nationals. A check on the FIDS showed that most of the flights were heading to mainland China! Since the opening up of the skies between China and Taiwan, airlines are launching flights to every possible city on the mainland.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6107/6332158856_cac64a0674_b.jpg

Shops and restaurants in the terminal.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6234/6331405989_5474d9d3cb_b.jpg

Hello Kitty themed nursing room and telephone booth!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6226/6332163902_4b52dfae3e_b.jpg

Our flight would be departing form gate D6 this evening.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6112/6332159002_af9bbae8d8_b.jpg


05 November 2011
Singapore Airlines
SQ 879
Taipei (TPE) - Singapore (SIN)
A330-300
9V-STH
Business Class


The plane operating our flight today would be 9V-STH, one of SQ's leased A330-300s. It is fitted with the new regional Business Class seats.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6113/6332159080_07e9ca33a1_b.jpg

Boarding had just commenced when we reached the gate and so we could board immediately. Boarded through door 1 and was greeted by name by the Inflight Supervisor after he glanced at my boarding pass. "Welcome back, Mr xxxx". I was also to be addressed by my surname throughout the whole flight, something I am not too used to as on the previous flight in J from Manila, I was never addressed by name. In the cabin were 2 other stewardesses (one of whom is a Taiwanese stewardess) assisting with the boarding. Both were jovial and chatting with passengers as they boarded. Could sense they they were definitely experienced crew. Another leading steward was preparing welcome drinks in the galley. Economy seemed to be very full on this flight but business class was only 17/30.

Boarding
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6097/6331406247_85d08be303_b.jpg

More than sufficient legroom.


Checking out the seat functions. Seat controls and IFE handset.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6215/6332159294_98045b9b13_b.jpg

Power socket and USB ports.


Personal reading light


Warming up with a glass of Bollinger.


Crew also came down the aisle with hot towels and selections of newspapers and magazines. Soon, boarding was completed and we started our pushback. Flight time was announced to be 4hrs15min. Safety video was played while we pushed back.

Aerobridge retracted.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6105/6332159552_3829dac839_b.jpg

China vs China Southern
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6099/6332159636_d782403b7f_b.jpg

Air China A320 in a special livery.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6115/6332159814_79d218466f_b.jpg

EVA land.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6228/6331406813_dc2255a2d9_b.jpg

Remaining flight time as shown on the handset: 4hrs11min.



Took off from Rwy05R into the evening skies.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOaMcrxCNOw


Shortly after lift off.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6092/6331406945_b0d476df9f_b.jpg

Minutes later, seatbelt signs were switched off and the legendary SQ service started. Due to the light load in Business today, one of the stewardess went down to economy to assist, leaving only the IFS, LS and Taiwanese FSS to serve us 17 passengers. However, I must say that on this flight the service was excellent, in particular the Taiwanese stewardess who was fantastic! She was easily the best crew I have ever encountered on SQ or any other airline. Her attentiveness and personal touch were amazing. Words could not describe how great her service was till you experience it yourself, but there was not a single unhappy passenger in Business today. Overall, the service was miles better than my Business flight from Manila earlier this year when I felt I was just flying economy with a bigger seat and better food,

Firstly, socks and eyeshades were distributed. Other amenities were available in the lavatory.


A pillow and Givenchy-branded blanket were already on each seat.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6211/6332162772_7cb74eb6d2_b.jpg



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 10702 times:

Noise-cancellation headphones
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6051/6331409959_7773566dbc_b.jpg

After take-off, post takeoff drinks were served. I had ordered a Singapore Sling.


My friend has a pu-er. It was served in a traditional chinese teacup.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6031/6331407283_0f004d1091_b.jpg

Contents in the magazine rack.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6050/6332159978_7036e5f19b_b.jpg

Meal orders were also taken at this time. Lets take a look at the menu. Hmmm, though choice.... Finally settled for the cod. They had ran out of the beef, not that I would choose it though as i was not too hungry after all the food in the lounge.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6032/6331407113_4667225fb9_b.jpg

Reclined my seat and settled for the movie "Green Lantern".


Not long after, the famous SQ satays were served. Apparently if there is satay service, no nuts would be served. There was 3 sticks of satay (2 chicken/1 lamb) and condiments/peanut sauce were now placed directly on the plate instead of previously in saucers.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6226/6332160602_d7c631e55d_b.jpg

Not long after, meal cart was rolled out and trays with appetizer were distributed. Water and wines were also offered.


Crew assisted to lift up my tray table from the arm rest, which was relatively heavy. Linen was then placed on the tray table by the stewardess and meal tray placed on it. I also had a Riesling and water with my meal.

[SIZE="1"]Starter[/SIZE]
Asian Platter
Stuffed squid, smoked duck and marinated eringi mushroom with
sweet and sour dressing

The starter was delicious! And the Taiwanese stewardess even explained what contents the starter consisted of when serving us!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6215/6332160748_301f6e85e9_b.jpg

Following the starter, choices of bread were offered. I chose garlic breas and a crispy pastry.


The wonderful Taiwanese stewardess attending to a passenger. If CI/BR would to have all their stewardesses similar to her, they would give SQ a very tough fight in cabin service.


Main course delivered piping hot from the galley by the IFS. I had chosen:
Roast pacific cod with potato gnocchi, broccoli,
edamame beans and wild mushroom "a la Grecque"

Exclusively created by Alfred Portale of Gotham Bar & Grill, New York
It was great too! And not a too heavy course. Presentation was also first class!!


Look how fresh and juicy the cod was!


My friend had the noodles.
Tainan style noodle soup
Egg noodles in pork broth garnished with minced pork, pork meat
balls, prawns and boiled soya flavoured egg

Chopsticks, soup spoon and chilli were also presented. "Please enjoy a warm bowl of Taiwan's famous dan-dan noodles!" quipped the stewardess in mandarin while serving. We just felt like royalty!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6239/6331410671_0e6df2caa1_b.jpg

Close up of the noodles. I tried some and it was delicious too!
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6237/6331408161_06773c60fc_b.jpg

Looking across to the other seats, the 2 other choices seemed not bad too. After having done with the main course, dessert, cheeses and fruits were offered on a cart.


Whole seasonal fruit selection were offered from a basket. I had a dragonfruit and some grapes. Unfortunately, the grapes were not the fantastic types I had in Taiwan. To be frank, I rather that SQ offered a pre-cut fruit plate as it was quite troublesome cutting up and eating a whole fruit without creating a mess.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6031/6331408325_06a255e7a4_b.jpg

Friend had the Taiwanese pear and grapes. The pear was not sweet. Also offered in the fruit basket were apples, oranges and water-apples.


Also served was dessert. We tried one of each.
Cappuccino ice cream with mango compote
The ice-cream satisfied my sweet tooth!
Pistachio creme brulee with berries
Still preferred the ice-cream to the creme brulee.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6098/6331408589_4af804e761_b.jpg

Cheese plate. Cheddar, camembert and "smelly" blue cheese were offered with walnuts, grapes and crackers.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6235/6332161590_4f79f6de95_b.jpg

Pralines offered from a tray. I grabbed 2 of them.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6038/6331408753_9e0598e83d_b.jpg

After the heavy and satisfying meal, I visited the lavatory. It was still as cramped as the ones in economy...


..but with better quality amenities.


Business class cabin from the rear. Lights were slightly dimmed.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6100/6332161960_b05366ee8f_b.jpg

Another view of the seats.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6105/6331410573_df7b2e33a4_b.jpg

SQ-branded mineral water was distributed to each passenger. Hmm, can't SQ use a better known brand (KLM does that in economy) then their house-branded water?


Seat at full-reclined mode. There is a slight angle to the ground but the new seats are still very comfortable.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6233/6331409263_c47987609f_b.jpg

More ice-cream to satisfy my sweet tooth. Haagen daaz from Economy, hehe.


Rounded up with a cup of soothing TWG chamomile tea with honey.


Reality is getting nearer...
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6114/6332162588_8a37c3f7dd_b.jpg


Due to heavy air traffic, we circled for a while in the air before landing on Rwy20R a few minutes late.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1S7az9w6C-Y


Initially, it was announced by the pilot that we would by arriving in Terminal 3 Gate B1 but after landing, we taxied to A20 instead at the far-end of the terminal. Parked beside a Garuda B738 that had just arrived before us from Jakarta.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6118/6332163008_93da021c9b_b.jpg

Aerobridge attaching to the aircraft door.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6046/6332163084_d99f8d8d5e_b.jpg

View of the "our" empty seats 14A/C in front during disembarkation.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6093/6332163214_316faf1cdb_b.jpg

Last view of the very comfortable new regional Business Class cabin and seats. Was bade farewell by name again at the door.
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6040/6331410339_7edb51de58_b.jpg

Last view of 9V-STH. Noticed the nose-cone of the aircraft is of a slightly different colour?
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6100/6331410487_266a094fcb_b.jpg

In one word, this Business Class flight on SQ was WOW! The crew (especially the stewardess who is easily the best), were among the greatest set I have encountered on SQ. Catering from TPE was superb except the fruits where I personally preferred cut fruits to whole fruits (I like more variety than just a single fruit). The new regional Business Class seats are more than comfortable for the mid-haul flight even though I have no qualms traveling on them for long-haul as well. SQ certainly lived up to its standards on this flight but I guess for most airlines, it would be the crew and food that makes/breaks the flight and SQ did not disappoint on this short flight.

Next month, I would be relegated back to Economy, flying a mix of BA/QF and possibly throwing in Virgin Australia while on a working trip to OZ. We will see how SQ's competitors fare on the busy SIN-SYD route.

Your comments are much much appreciated, thanks for reading!



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 10390 times:

My past reviews:

Binge In Bangkok By 3K And FD (by ycp81 Aug 22 2011 in Trip Reports)
Jetstar Long-Haul To Auckland! (by ycp81 Aug 11 2011 in Trip Reports)
Budget Weekend Trips To Phuket & KL (by ycp81 Jul 19 2011 in Trip Reports)
Budget Vs Business To Boracay (TR, 5J, 2P, SQ) (by ycp81 May 6 2011 in Trip Reports)
Bonjour Paris On SQ A380 (by ycp81 Feb 14 2011 in Trip Reports)
To The Cape With SQ (Pics And Vids) (by ycp81 Jan 29 2011 in Trip Reports)
Another Short Hop To KL On Firefly And Air Asia (by ycp81 Nov 27 2010 in Trip Reports)
TG Vs SQ To Incheon (Lots Of Pics And Vids) (by ycp81 Nov 8 2010 in Trip Reports)
Lazing In Lombok By Silkair (by ycp81 Aug 12 2010 in Trip Reports)
A Mix Of Both Worlds (Budget Vs 5-Stars To KCH) (by ycp81 Jul 3 2010 in Trip Reports)
Tigering To Vietnam (and VN Domestic) With Videos (by ycp81 May 23 2010 in Trip Reports)
Flying With Malaysian Hospitality To Tokyo (by ycp81 Apr 17 2010 in Trip Reports)
Silkair To Siem Reap : A Wonderful Way To Fly! (by Ycp81 Feb 1 2010 in Trip Reports)
36hrs In KL By Firefly And Air Asia (by Ycp81 Oct 30 2009 in Trip Reports)
Invasion Of The LCCs (Penang On Tiger And Jetstar) (by Ycp81 Aug 31 2009 in Trip Reports)
10 Flights On 6 Airlines In 11 Days! (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
Cathay Way To Taipei (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
SIN-DPS-SIN On Lionair And SQ (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
SIN-SYD-MEL-SYD-SIN On SQ & QF (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
SIN-SGN-SIN On SQ In 2008 (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
Missing Swiss In SIN (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)
('07 Memories) SIN-KBV-DMK,BKK-SIN On TR, DD & FD (by Ycp81 Aug 25 2009 in Trip Reports)



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineinfinit From Singapore, joined Jul 2008, 577 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 10240 times:

Thanks for the fantastic report! Been reading all four legs of it. Its engaging with your attention to detail and the very generous amount of pictures.

Nice end to the trip too!

Its surprising SQ uses China Airlines check-in agents there though. Looks like they've really scaled down their operations in TPE.

The food in the TPE lounge looked good. They haven't updated it to the new style of BKK and HKG yet I see but at least this one has toilets I suppose? I don't know what SQ is thinking removing the toilets from their HKG lounge..

Sounds like the Taiwanese stewardess really added that special touch to the service. I suppose she probably also stood out as the only foreigner among the Singaporean crew. I had a fantastic female IFS on my HKG flight 2years ago. She just went all out to ensure it was a flight I'd remember- and I certainly remember it. I even wrote in to commend her after the trip.


User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 10058 times:

Quoting infinit (Reply 13):
Thanks for the fantastic report! Been reading all four legs of it. Its engaging with your attention to detail and the very generous amount of pictures.

Thanks!

Quoting infinit (Reply 13):
Its surprising SQ uses China Airlines check-in agents there though. Looks like they've really scaled down their operations in TPE.

Not sure when they changed to CI agents. Well, outsourcing is the way to go now to cut costs.

Quoting infinit (Reply 13):
The food in the TPE lounge looked good. They haven't updated it to the new style of BKK and HKG yet I see but at least this one has toilets I suppose? I don't know what SQ is thinking removing the toilets from their HKG lounge..

Yep, the food was pretty good for an outstation lounge. And yes, it still has toilets and shower facilities.

Quoting infinit (Reply 13):
Sounds like the Taiwanese stewardess really added that special touch to the service.

How the crew performs on a flight will make or break the experience.



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineRvXKaz From Singapore, joined Apr 2011, 195 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 9935 times:

Hi Ycp81,

Great to finally see your TR on a hodgepodge of diverse airlines and their equally diverse services! I must say, your itinerary this time is even more funky (that's the best word I can think of) than your previous trip to the Philippines! Nice to read about your flying adventures with budget, 5th freedom, domestic and business services all in one TR! I enjoyed it very much and I loved the many, many excellent photos onboard and on the ground as well, especially of Taiwan!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
Cheap and great food, friendly locals, beautiful scenery, a holiday mecca for us Singaporeans!

Sounds like you had a excellent time there! You're most right! I love the Taiwanese food and the people are really friendly! Loads of fashion products and prices of stuff there are also wallet-friendly!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
A change fee was paid through the online website even though Tiger offered a free rescheduling for pax to BKK by calling in, but the hotline was impossible to get through! I had sent a feedback to Tiger regarding my change fees but I am not getting my hopes high here.

Ouch, that sucks! Such horrible post-purchase service like this has always deterred me from flying budget!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
As Tiger flights have been covered countless times and they all feel the same regardless of destination, ie. minimal service,

Reason No. 2 why I don't like to fly budget! It takes the fun out of flying!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
9V-TAT will be flying me to BKK. 3rd time on this exact aircraft in less than half a year!

Looks like you're developing a close relationship with this bird! haha

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
As the pax load was very light (around 50-60 pax

Wow. I must say its very fortunate Tiger did not cancel the flight!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
Tiger recently hired quite a number of foreign crew. Today, 2 cabin crew (including the purser) and 1 pilot were Philippine nationals.

Considering there's alot of Filipinos working in the hospitality/service industry in Singapore, it is interesting to observe that they are also present as cabin crew on Singapore's carriers!

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
Look how empty the flight was!

Wow. Looks like a really light load! (Again, fortunately Tiger didn't cancel the flight altogether!)

Quoting ycp81 (Thread starter):
On finals to Rwy01R with flooded fields in sight. Is this normal?

Wow, it looks flooded indeed. But if I hadn't known Thailand is under-going flooding issues, I'd thought it looks pretty normal myself.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Due to the flooding mentioned earlier, I changed our KLM flights to depart on the day we reached BKK. Surprisingly, no change fees were required even though I had booked the lowest tier fare.

What a stark comparison with Tiger...

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
However BKK is not too photo-friendly as many of the glass windows were filthy.

Its a real pity especially looking at the number of exotic birds you've taxiied past earlier (S7, EY, UM..)

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Republic of Singapore Air Force C130 sending humanitarian aid to BKK. 2 of these planes arrived!

Wow, quite spectacular to see the RSAF in action! haha...

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Drinks and cake were offered at the boarding gate.

That's a nice touch.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
The IFE system contains a comprehensive list of the food and beverages offered onboard even though no menus were given out.

wow! I think this is really great! Did they write the meal options for the flight as well?

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
More flooded fields.

Wow, the situation looks bad from this angle.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Unfortunately, shortly after takeoff, the interactive portion of the IFE crashed and we were all unable to access the AVOD system. Only channel that could be seen on the PTVs were the flight info/map

Ouch! That sucks! Good thing you, being the plane enthusiast, still could rely on the flight info/map as entertainment!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
Main Course: Chicken with noodles and vegetables. It was delicious! BKK catering certainly did not disappoint.

Mmm.. Looks really good indeed!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 2):
After the meal service, crew came out with a cart offering coffee/tea and after-meal liquors. I had a "Delicious hot" tea and Amarula Cream (a South African version of Baileys).

I think this is an awesome post-meal service! Great to see you try the Amarula Cream. Did you enjoy it?

I am quite surprised there's only 3 crew serving in each section! Especially since its a B747 flight! If that's the case, it would mean not all crew who flew in from AMS were activated for the BKK-TPE-BKK flight I presume? Just curious as well, were there any Thai/Chinese crew onboard?

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 6):
Songshan T2, which is the domestic terminal. The original domestic terminal, T1, has been refurbished and now used for international flights.

Wow, its great that you could experience first-hand Taiwan's domestic airports. It looks really new and good actually.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 6):
The beautiful TransAsia stewardesses then rolled a cart down the aisle offering packet drinks and wet towelettes.

A really beautiful stewardess indeed!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 6):
On offer were either red tea or an energy drink.

Both seem like quite an interesting option. Not something I'd imagine an airline serving! haha

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
And upon check-in, I learnt that the booking system had screwed up and double-assigned us seats, which in the end resulted in seats 14A/C remaining empty for the flight. 2 J class revenue lost because of the screw-up. Wonder how much revenue did SQ lost due to the "new" website till now as I am quite sure I am not the only one experiencing this "problem"....

It is beyond me why SQ had to do away with its previous website!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
and a bit of everything from the buffet spread.

The food from the buffet spread looks great! And the soup sounded delicious as well!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
Aerobridge retracted.

Not something you get to see out of the window in economy class!  
Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
However, I must say that on this flight the service was excellent, in particular the Taiwanese stewardess who was fantastic! She was easily the best crew I have ever encountered on SQ or any other airline. Her attentiveness and personal touch were amazing. Words could not describe how great her service was till you experience it yourself, but there was not a single unhappy passenger in Business today

Wow, its great to hear that you had such a great service by the Singapore Airlines crew! I'd always believe you can never go wrong with service on Singapore Airlines but its nice to hear that this stewardess provided a level of service beyond expectations!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
There was 3 sticks of satay (2 chicken/1 lamb) and condiments/peanut sauce were now placed directly on the plate instead of previously in saucers.

mmm.. looking delicious!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
Asian Platter
Stuffed squid, smoked duck and marinated eringi mushroom with
sweet and sour dressing
The starter was delicious! And the Taiwanese stewardess even explained what contents the starter consisted of when serving us!

I think this looks really good!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
If CI/BR would to have all their stewardesses similar to her, they would give SQ a very tough fight in cabin service.

My experience with CI tells me SQ would have the upper hand in cabin service!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
I had chosen:
Roast pacific cod with potato gnocchi, broccoli,
edamame beans and wild mushroom "a la Grecque"
Exclusively created by Alfred Portale of Gotham Bar & Grill, New York
It was great too! And not a too heavy course. Presentation was also first class!!

Yes, the presentation looks really good! I can only imagine the taste to be on par, if not even better!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
To be frank, I rather that SQ offered a pre-cut fruit plate as it was quite troublesome cutting up and eating a whole fruit without creating a mess.

I agree!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
Friend had the Taiwanese pear and grapes.

Lol. I don't know why but I find such a large whole pear on the plate quite a funny sight.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 10):
Cappuccino ice cream with mango compote
The ice-cream satisfied my sweet tooth!

NICE!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
More ice-cream to satisfy my sweet tooth. Haagen daaz from Economy

Great to hear the passengers in Economy aren't treated too shabbily as well! Did you have to ask for the ice cream or the lovely Taiwanese stewardess got it for you?

It had been really nice reading your TR and kudos on producing such an excellent report. Also, great planning to turn a possible nightmare situation due to the unforeseen flooding into a wonderful holiday in Taiwan! Glad to hear that you've had a positive experience on KLM despite the delay and entertainment breakdown and also an excellent business class service experience with Singapore Airlines!

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 11):
Next month, I would be relegated back to Economy, flying a mix of BA/QF and possibly throwing in Virgin Australia while on a working trip to OZ. We will see how SQ's competitors fare on the busy SIN-SYD route.

Wow, I was thinking of a trip to SYD as well on QF next year! I certainly am looking forward to reading about your experience with QF and BA and I hope you get to fly with QF's A380. Have a fruitful trip and happy flying!

Cheers,
RvXKaz



They say that I'm a dreamer. But I'd only Dreamt Skyward.
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 9878 times:

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 14):
Considering there's alot of Filipinos working in the hospitality/service industry in Singapore, it is interesting to observe that they are also present as cabin crew on Singapore's carriers!

Probably soon we will also have Filipino SQ crew! Not surprising as SQ has started recruiting Thais as well.

Quoting ycp81 (Reply 14):
wow! I think this is really great! Did they write the meal options for the flight as well?

Not available for this flight, but only for flights departing from AMS. Also it will list all the service on the flight, down to the lavender scented hot towels! Unfortunately the system crashed before I could take more photos.

Quoting RvXKaz (Reply 15):
I think this is an awesome post-meal service! Great to see you try the Amarula Cream. Did you enjoy it?

Well, tasted just like Baileys... lol

Quoting RvXKaz (Reply 15):
I am quite surprised there's only 3 crew serving in each section! Especially since its a B747 flight! If that's the case, it would mean not all crew who flew in from AMS were activated for the BKK-TPE-BKK flight I presume? Just curious as well, were there any Thai/Chinese crew onboard?

I think this is the norm on European carriers. BA only has 14 cabin crew on its 744s compared to SQ's 17. No Asian crew onboard, all were Dutch.

Quoting RvXKaz (Reply 15):
Wow, its great to hear that you had such a great service by the Singapore Airlines crew! I'd always believe you can never go wrong with service on Singapore Airlines but its nice to hear that this stewardess provided a level of service beyond expectations!

I guess SQ's service is robotic at worst (see CDG and MNL flights this year) and excellent if you had a great set of crew (see CPT and this TPE flight). When the service is robotic, it felt just like any other airline out there (I have had better service on TG, MH, TP, CX and MI vs SQ's average service) but when the service is great, it is simply unsurpassable.

Quoting RvXKaz (Reply 15):
Lol. I don't know why but I find such a large whole pear on the plate quite a funny sight.

Yes, I found it ridiculous that SQ would serve that too! How would anyone finish it? It is not meant for a single serve. In fact, we just bit a few mouthfuls and left the half-eaten pear on the plate.

Quoting RvXKaz (Reply 15):
Great to hear the passengers in Economy aren't treated too shabbily as well! Did you have to ask for the ice cream or the lovely Taiwanese stewardess got it for you?

Well, nothing is too much for a Business Class passenger :p



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
User currently offlineje89_w From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 2361 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 9806 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
PHOTO SCREENER

Great trip report, makes me want to visit Taiwan and fly on TNA!  

Glad you enjoyed your SQ Business experience. Looks like a fantastic product.


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 15
Reply 18, posted (2 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9767 times:

Hi

Nice trip report, learning me a new airline. Looks nice that you got an ATR72 on the intra-asia flight! I'm also surprised by the width of the PTV screens on the KL flight!


Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlineycp81 From Singapore, joined Jun 2006, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (2 years 10 months 2 weeks ago) and read 9027 times:

Quoting je89_w (Reply 17):
Great trip report, makes me want to visit Taiwan and fly on TNA!

Do visit Taiwan!

Quoting je89_w (Reply 17):
Glad you enjoyed your SQ Business experience. Looks like a fantastic product.

This flight was great due to the delicious food and fantastic crew!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 18):
I'm also surprised by the width of the PTV screens on the KL flight!


Seems like the refurbished B744s have the biggest screens in the fleet.



My past and future travels - http://www.ba97.com/ba97/calendar/report.asp?handle=ycp81
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