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AznMadSci Enjoys A Great Way To Fly  
User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6884 times:

Greetings fellow A.Netters. It's been a while since I have done a trip report, especially a back log of reports which include my first trip on the upper deck on CX's 744 on and try their Herringbone J seat, PMCO's newest BF seat, and fly intra-Europe F on SK. To jump ahead, I had to write a report on my latest trip which includes a rare trip report on SQ.  Introduction

Back in October after returning from a trip doing IAH-LHR-CDG-IAH on CO and Eurostar, my parents wanted to plan a trip back to the Philippines, especially on a Star Alliance carrier. My mom kept on checking fares on PMCO as well as OZ because my aunt had found a real good deal on a fare doing SEA-ICN-MNL. Yet the price was a bit comparable to the PMCO one since we would have to purchase a separate IAH-SEA ticket. However, I was not sure if the fare would qualify for 100% status miles on PMCO since I could not find the fare code for the flight. At the same time Star Alliance had just released their Fare Finder App. The cheapest option turned out to be IAH-NRT-IAH on PMCO and NRT-MNL-NRT on NH; yet the NH segment would only get 70% status miles when purchased on the PMCO website. I then noticed that for slightly more we could take SQ for 100% miles and we would get back to IAH early as well as make IAH our port of entry. After tinkering around with the schedules, we were able to fit in an eleven hour layover in Singapore on our way to MNL and then a ten hour layover on our return. While those layovers were not enough to do much in Singapore, it definitely whet my appetite to want to return!

Between my last trip report and this one, I had a few changes occur in my life, mainly on the occupation front. Instead of doing something that interested, yet bored me, I discovered a true passion for culinary delight and endeavor and wondered why did I not consider this new career move earlier in life?

As 22 January 2012 approached, I tried to contain my excitement. Early on I did wonder what the transit procedure would be while at DME as well as if we could check our bags all the way through to MNL or IAH while on an extended layover at SIN. Furthermore, I did worry a bit if we had to reschedule our return flights as SQ had reported the IAH flight would go down from daily to 5x weekly. In the end the schedules all worked out and now say I have been spoiled flying to MNL and Southeast Asia. The one thing I wish I did, but did not have much time to do, was research about Singapore and where to eat.

Pictures have been include. Sorry in advance for the quality as I took these with my iPhone 4 rather than my dSLR. I did use the Photo+ app to edit the pictures.

The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
12 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 1, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6885 times:

22/23/24 January 2012
9V - SVP

From previous trip reports to MNL, I have taken PMCO IAH-EWR-HKG and then connected onto CX HKG-MNL. This would be the first time I would take the only Asian airline currently serving IAH as well as the first non-PMCO longhaul flight since I took an AF flight doing CDG-IAH on a CO codeshare the same day the Concorde briefly returned to the skies since the accident and prior to its retirement. Flying on SQ and visiting SIN and Singapore have been part of my bucket list of things to do. This trip would allow me to mark those off the list, but add new ones such as flying on SQ's A380 as well as try their Business Class.

Our flight to DME was scheduled at 16:45; we decided to leave my place around 12:45 and get to the airport around 13:15 to check in at least three hours before the flights. It had been years since utilizing any of the Terminal D gates at IAH. Prior to Terminal E, Terminal D only had one large check in section when you first drive up to the terminal. At the end of the drive way would be passenger pick up for arriving international passengers. Since E and the IAB have opened, a special corridor connects arriving international passengers and funnels them through to E/IAB. The previous arrivals hall in D had been turned into additional ticketing counters that look a bit spartan compared to the original counters. Today, those original counters cater to AF, AM, BA, KL, and TA; the new counters handle check in for EK, LH, QR, and SQ. Thanks to my parents maintaining their Star Gold status, we were able to check in at the J counter. There were no lines at the time, we walked up and asked if we were flying on J or Star Gold, and they allowed us through. Menzies does the groundhandling for SQ, majority of the employees were native Spanish speakers while there were two Russian speakers and two Asians. The Y counters had a few people in line. Most were headed to Vietnam.

All checked in.

Hello Singapore Girl!!!

Since the arrival facilities in D are no longer used, this allowed the airport to increase the security space D, which included two full body scanners. With AF, AM, BA, KL, LH, and TA counters open, security took less than five minutes with all of the removing and disrobing and then putting everything else back on. Granted we arrived rather early to make the whole travel experience less stressful, and enough time to get a quick bite of Tex-Mex before the flight. Once done with security it was off to Terminal E and the Little Pappasitos Cantina as well as a smoothie from Jamba Juice.

The SQ flight listed on the old school FIDS seen atop of the escalators after security on departure level.   

After a quick bite and some needed provisions, it was time to head back to D and wait for boarding to commence. The waiting area is rather large as it's for gates D10, D11, and D12, the last three gates at D. No one was scheduled out of D10. We would be boarding through D11, while the LH flight to FRA would use D12. LH tends to use D12 and D4/D4A while at IAH. On a number of occasions, I have seen LH's 744 at D4/D4A and assumed those gates along with D5 would be used for future A380 use, especially after LH announced it would introduce the plane to IAH from August to October. I was surprised to see LH departing this day out of D12. It made the waiting area rather busy.

TA flight to SAN getting ready to depart from D8.

The 77W 9V-SWP that would take us all the way to DME and SIN at D11.

BA waiting to head back to LHR from D9.

While I noted the majority of passengers checking in were Vietnamese, that number increased at the gate area. The majority were old folks or new families with kids. The ground staff had sectioned of a special area to the side of the gate those needing assistance for pre-boarding. I had counted about fifteen passengers in wheelchairs, and about twenty families with kids. That's the most I have seen on any of my flights to Asia. While it didn't seem ridiculous on the flight to SIN, it was insane on the return. While my parents were getting situated in the gate area, I continued walking around the terminal. The offerings at D are rather sparse. Other than the central Duty Free Store, which now lets all travelers to purchase select items, and the sundries store, there's minimal options. However, there is plenty of retail space in terminals C and E. Terminal D does have plenty of airline clubs available for such its size. SQ and LH utilized the Executive Lounge along with EK and QR. LH does have their own tiny lounge closer to D12 which I believe is reserved for HON Members. BA also has their own tiny club next door to the LH one, but has a much nicer one across from D9, the primary BA gate. AF and KL have their own lounges with KL's Crown Lounge has their entry modeled to the Crown Lounge in AMS. PMCO did close their tiny President's Club promoting their massive one in Terminal E.

What I always liked about Terminal D was the escalator to go up to departure level after security. I loved watching the FAs as groups ascend from security as groups. From there they head to an empty gate and do their pre-flight meetings with the flight crew. Today, I saw the FA's of AF, KL, and LH sit at neighboring empty gates to do their pre-flight meetings. I then watched the our SQ crew arrive at the top and wait for the rest of the crew to gather before they all headed down to the gate as a group. I believe SQ does their on board the plane as they tend to go from check-in, to security, and then to gate to board the plane.

My boarding pass. WAHOO!!!!!   

The FAs for our flight to DME. I love the uniforms of both men and women. I love how you can tell their rank apart based on the color of the kebaya for the women or the color of the necktie for the men. I think the men's uniform is one of the sharpest, yet simplest uniforms. No need to wear a serving jacket such as those donned on at PMCO.

As 15:40 approached, the gate area started filling up as the LH flight would be departing five minutes before our flight. On our boarding passes, it said boarding time would start at 15:45. At 16:05 pre-boarding had not commenced. First and Business class passengers for LH and SQ must have left the Executive Lounge since they started filling in the podium area. It was interesting hearing a mix of German and Vietnamese people speaking. I noticed LH and SQ had their flyers queue up in the respective line and would do a document check before being allowed to get the boarding pass scanned. As 16:10 approached, my parents and I decided to start queuing up to board the flight. We asked one of the Menzies agents where to go for Star Gold and she directed us to the Priority Line for PPS, KrisFlyer Gold, First, Business, and Star Gold flyers. We queued up behind a long line of Business Class passengers who were previously waiting inside the Executive Lounge. I am not sure if there were any First Class passengers, but I do know the entire aft section of the Business Class cabin was 100% full. Unlike PMCO that requires document checks done at the podium prior to boarding, there were two separate checks. First, there was a document check. After that you were then allowed to proceed to the agent that would scan and tear your boarding pass. i miss the days where Asian boarding passes were among the first to utilize boarding passes with a magnetic strip. Now, all boarding passes utilize a 2D barcode.

While we queued, the ground staff first started boarding wheelchair passengers before they did priority boarding. The Menzies staff boarded wheelchair passengers, which took a while since the elevator to go down to the gate could handle at most two wheelchairs and accompanying members. By 16:10, pre-boarding for priority passengers commenced. By 16:15 I was making my way down the corridor of D11 to the jetway.

Hello gorgeous!   

About to board my very first flight on SQ, especially here at IAH when many thought the route would not last more than a year!   

Blurred image of the Business Class seat. One day!!!

Entering the Economy cabin.   

Walking into 9V-SWP, we were greeted by a Lead Stewardess and a Lead Steward, based on the color of their kebaya and necktie, respectively. I stepped onto the plane through 2L after touching the plane, and was directed to go through the J galley and walk through the amazing looking Business Class. FAs were throughout the airplane welcoming passengers and providing assistance when needed. I have been accustomed to the dark blue and grey colors of PMCO and was just amazed at the warm natural colors inside this 77W, especially in the Economy Cabin.

When we reached the Economy Cabin, we were just 3 rows from our seats. As we started putting stuff in the overhead bins, one of the FAs made her way to help us. While I got most of it stowed away, I thanked her for her help and she smiled with a "you're welcome" and then went on to help other passengers starting to fill in the forward Y cabin. During the entire boarding process, I watched all the FAs rush to help passengers get to their seat and place their stuff in overhead bins. The excitement was building because I could not believe I was now finally on an SQ flight, much less originating from IAH!   

View of the empty forward Y cabin taken from my seat.

I will have to interject here that there was one FA who did not quite have that Singapore Girl quality touch. This came prior to departure and landing where she would bark "window shades up" rather than be a bit more polite. Other than that once airborne she acted graciously like her male and female colleagues.

As the plane started to fill up, the only Russian ever spoken was via an automated message, preceeded by an automated message in British English. The announcer sounded like it was Joana Lumley, known for her voiceovers for the Piccadilly Line. “This is the Piccadilly Line to Cockfosters!”   

There air map and flight info screens were all done in English. With the majority of passengers already seated, the FAs in the Y cabin started with a hot towel service at 16:30 local time. Four minutes later, I presumed the lead female FA at 2L announced doors had closed and for FAs to secure doors for departure and cross check. Instead of the traditional "standby for on-call", I watched FA checked the doors and then gave the thumbs up that seemed to start from the back and go all the way to the front. Once verified, the FAs took a seat at their respective positions while they played the inflight safety video at 16:37 local time. I will say it was one of the most boring inflight safety videos that I did not bother to watch. Yet, I was also amazed that the FAs sat down during the whole presentation.

Our flight parked next to the earlier BA flight to LHR. Who will head to Europe first?

After they had played the inflight safety video, we still remained parked at the gate for almost 10minutes. By 16:48 we started pushback from D11 and we in the air by 17:04. It was a nice change to be on an airline other than CO/UA and I was ready for one of the longest travel journeys I have ever taken!

Our BA neighbor takes the early lead on its way back to LHR.

QR and EK 772Ls waiting for their respective departures to DOH and DXB, respectively.

Our Pilot who had an Australian accent welcomed us on board and gave us flight details of our flight to DME and that a new set of flight and cabin crew would take the majority of us continuing onto SIN. After he concluded his welcome, the FAs switched on the KrisWorld Entertainment System. With our flight now underway, the pilot turned off the fasten seat belt sign which gave me a chance to jump up and head to the lavatory.

Flight information for our flight to DME posted on my PTV.

Taxing to 15R, we pass up an AA 763, probably a diversion from DFW.

The best shot I could take of IAH below after takeoff.

No pics from the lavs because I always worried that I would drop my iPhone in the toilets or sink. I will say the lavs smelled nice and clean, and a neat feature they have that I had not seen esp on a J flight on either EK or CX, were foot pedals similar to the start/stop mechanisms of the drinks trolley to open the trash bins. Very cool so you do not have to worry about touching the trash with clean hands!

While I was in the lavatory, at around 17:24 local time, the FAs started distributing some inflight goodies, including cute Givenchy amenity kits, headphones, and menus for the flight(s). They had already passed my row, yet FA Lim handed one to me with a smile to make sure I received one. Then when I got back to my seat, my parents had requested one for me, thus I now had 2 from this flight!

A global view of our flight from IAH to DME.

A national view of the flight map.

Texas view of the flight map.

Houston view of the flight map. I could probably see my parents house on this map, but not my place.   

When Lim finished distributing the amenity kits for the front Y cabin, she then started to hand out headphones to our side of the cabin at around 17:29. I did not bother taking my headphones out of the plastic bag as I already had my trusty noise-canceling earphones plugged in while I perusing the KrisWorld magazine. Following the headphone distribution, Lead Faisal distributed the menus to all at around 17:34. I got a bit excited because these were nicely made menus that gave us information on not only what would be served on our flight to DME, but also what would be served to our flight continuing on to SIN as well. As I was putting these away, I did find a straggler in my seat pocket, the menu from CO 62. The menus were written both in English and Russian.











Because of the mid-cabin galley, we could hear the rumblings of service about to begin starting with a drink service. Because I had to get it, I ordered my very first Singapore Sling. I liked it’s fruity taste without it being laden with too much alcohol. My dad decided to have their hot tea and an orange juice.

My Singapore Sling with the KrisWorld magazine and a package of salted peanuts.

My dad’s hot tea and orange juice. I love how the tea is served on its own little tray.

After my dad received his hot tea, the flight crew turned on the fasten seat belt sign as we experienced some minor turbulence. This was followed by the lead FA announcing the suspension of hot drink service while the seat belt sign was turned on and experiencing turbulence. All of a sudden, the pilot asked for all service to be stopped and the FAs to return to their positions. FAs returned their trolleys back to the galley all secured and then sat in their seats for about 5minutes before they received a call to resume service while the seat belt sign remained on. It was a bit bumpy, but not quite a roller coaster type that would require the halting of drink service.

Dinner set up. What will I choose tonight?

My mom chose the beef short rib option.

I chose the wok fried chicken option.

By far this was one of the best meals I have ever had on a flight, granted most of those were done on CO flights. Yet, this Y meal was absolutely delightful compared to the regional CX and EK flights I did in J. I had saved enough room so I could eat and glad I did! While my parents liked their meals, they were still a bit full after having some Pappasitos before the flight. Thus, I got to try the beef, which was also nice. However, I preferred the wok fried chicken and enjoyed two servings of it.

As I was enjoying the meals, the seat belt sign went off and they announced that hot drinks may now be served again. While Faisal served the food, Lim went back into the mid-galley and retrieved the hot coffee and hot tea and handed them to Faisal. He then finished with the row and then went to earlier rows and asked in anyone liked any hot drinks. My mom and I requested some hot tea while my dad got a top off. After the finished serving food in the sections, they waited about 8-10minutes before they wheeled out dessert. Nothing tops off a meal like a good ice cream, and you have to love SQ serving a local ice cream favorite!!!   

Yup! Blue Bell, the best ice cream in the country   

During the meal service and acting like such a glutton, I fired up my KrisWorld entertainment hub and checked out a few of its offerings. From take off to the end of meal service I sat at the window before taking the aisle seat. My control was not working properly where I would have to change channels the long way rather than by screen menu options. The only movie at the time that appealed to me was Puss in Boots, so I watched that during dinner. My mom then came across one of those Discovery Channel Modern Marvels specials that featured Terminal 3 at SIN. When my movie ended, I then jumped and watched the Terminal 3 special and probably let it repeat a couple more times as I went in and out of sleep during the flight.   I will say the one annoying thing about watching any program on KrisFlyer was the long promotion of a highly modern residential complex built in Singapore.

Despite being a glutton eating all that food and being sedentary for most of the flight, I got hungry about midway through our flight. Coincidentally, this would be the time the FAs would walk through the cabin offering the Light Bites. In additions to what was offered on the menu, passengers could request ramen noodles if one desired. In my case I packed just for the occasion, even up an extra set of chopsticks at Panda Express. Instead of wheeling a cart and blocking the aisles, the FAs carried baskets filled with goodies showing what was on offer, while another would go back and forth from the galleys and do drink orders. Since Faisal did not seem to take his break, he was walking along the barely lit aisles and offering any snacks to passengers who were awake or he could sense were awake. FA Chen followed Faisal and did drink orders with speedy service, including using the tiny trays to serve hot tea or coffee. After I made and finished my selection, I was still famished and dug around in my bag to retrieve my Cup-O-Noodles. I went back to the galley and asked if I could get some hot water. With a smile and a “yes sir”, Chen took my noodles and said that I could return to my seat and would bring them to me. Within a minute she was at my seat with my noodles and a spare pair of chopsticks.   

My selection from Light Bites which included a turkey roll, Biscoff, banana, and Milanos cookies.

Can’t take a flight to Asia without some Cup-O-Noodle  

While I was enjoying my light bites and then ramen noodles, I was checking out the Berlitz program, especially since they had a couple Tagalog lessons. While midway through the first lesson, it froze on me. My screen was stuck for a good portion and the only thing I could do was turn it off or turn it back on. While fussing around with it, Chen stopped by my seat, squatted, and then asked if anything was wrong, without me having to ring the FA call button. I informed her that the system froze on me while I was checking out the Berlitz program. She said it does that often when passengers check it out and said she would reset my system . Within a minute it was reset and I was back to watching the Modern Marvel episode. She came back and squatted and checked if everything was fine. I smiled after giving her a thank you. She then noticed I had finished my meal and asked if I wanted anymore water. I told her to please bring two more as my parents would probably want some in a bit. With a smile she returned to the galley and brought a small tray with three waters. That’s something I would never see on PMCO especially on a great flight!

After I finished that round of eating, it was back to sleep for me. I will say the legroom on this flight was great! You could easily stretch out and enjoy the footrest provided. A small gripe was that my bum was a bit sore and you could feel it, yet it was bearable. It made me wonder if the seat cushions on SQ were slightly thinner than the PMCO ones. I had switched off KrisWorld and enjoyed my iPhone on airplane mode listening to one of my playlists I listen to on any longhaul flight. Since I used up most of the battery to take pictures and edit them, I retrieved my charger and charged my mobile the rest of the flight.

Somewhere over Scandinavian airspace with just a couple of hours left to our arrival into DME.

Morning has broken as we approach Stockholm and begin the last meal service for the flight.

From the span of flying over Oslo to Stockholm, the crew prepared the cabin for a light meal/breakfast service prior to arrival into DME. I was not quite in the mood for airline eggs and instead chose the noodle options, which I could eat many times over, and of course I did since it was a bit spicy for my mom’s liking, even without the peppers.

With an hour and 17minutes left in the flight, breakfast is now served!

Yum! Noodles!!!!!

I say the meal was absolutely horrible!   

Entering Russian airspace around the Estonian and Latvian boarder.

The early morning sun reflecting on the wing over a cloudy Russia.

With 20minutes left in the flight, the FAs began preparing the cabin for arrival into DME. Trays were collected and passengers were doing long queues for the lavatories. I forgot to mention that while we got eye shades, socks, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and a comb in our inflight comfort kit, the lavatories were constantly stocked with toothbrushes and hair combs, as well as little cups for passengers to use mouthwash. Instead of using one from my kit, I used an unopened toothbrush kit and prepped myself for our arrival into snowy Moscow-DME. FAs started to collect headphones from passengers who were ending their journey at DME. They allowed all of us continuing on to SIN to keep our own for the next flight. I never took my headphones out of its plastic bag and left them there in the seat-back pocket.

Only 11minutes left in our flight.

Flying over Moscow with our Pilot giving us information of temperature and last minute information prior to landing.

Flying east of center of Moscow and doing a loop prior to landing at DME.

Cloudy, snowy haze after descending under the clouds.   

Snow covering most of the land.

Cluster of communal living near DME.

Making one final turn prior to landing at DME.

At 13:45 Moscow time, we touched down at DME on 14R. We taxied for the next 10 minutes before arriving at one of the gates that had a dual jetbridge. Houston weather was a bit warm; Moscow weather was at -11°C/2°F!!!!!    During our taxi, I noticed a large number of planes sitting idled, most with their engines covered from the elements. It was cool to see a vast array of Russian airplanes and airliners with just a handful of non-Russian airlines sprinkled around.

First sight of Russian airplanes and unknown airlines.

I never knew UN had narrowbody planes.

Snow shovelers ready to clear any snow accumulating on the runways.

VIM Airlines, a new airline for me.


UN, Vim, and UTAir parked on hardstands closer to the terminal. Many of them had engine covers to protect it from the cold elements.

Could this UN plane be a former SQ one?

More Russian airliners on hardstand at DME.

Ural Airlines, with a UN 744 in the distance and construction for possible expansion of DME.

After an interesting taxi to Gate 11, we heard the chimes and seat belt sign go off indicating we can collect our stuff and head off the plane. All passengers must deplane at DME, especially those continuing on to SIN. This give cleaning crew enough time to clean and refresh the airplane for the second journey of the flight. The FAs closed off the J section to allow those passengers to deplane first. Once cleared they opened up the curtains and thanked us for flying with them. Since we sat on the right side of the plane, we were directed to deplane from 1L, while those on the left side deplaned from 2L.

Upon entering the terminal, SQ ground staff were handing out “TRANSIT” cards for all those continuing on to SIN. Each person had to have one, but the ground staff make no effort to hand one out to each one unless you specifically tell them you need one. It was a relatively long walk from Gate 11 all the way up to the safety and document check for transiting passengers. Along the way there seemed to be a handful of people ending their journey at DME and about two that connected onto flights within Russia. Everyone else seemed to continue on to SIN, with the majority heading to Vietnam.

Entrance into the security area is verified once you show your Transit Card and original boarding pass stub. They also noticed any Star Gold members and issued lounge privileges. During this stopover we did not head to the Business Class Lounge. Security and document check occurred in this glass pen and did not take long, which was good. Granted we were among the early ones to queue so the wait was long especially when the area only had two scanners and no real room to take everything off and out and put them back on and in. After security was a document check by Russian Border Patrol who would only let you out after you had all the necessary travel documentation. I greeted the officer with “Добрый день“ and he just grunted “Добрый день“. I then asked the Russian officer if he stamps passports and says “NIET” and flashed his key card to let me into the departure floor. I waited only a few seconds after he released my parents from the tiny glass pen.

Transit card

Direction signs just after security while in transit.

While my parents were given access to the Airport Business Lounge, we decided not to check it out since we were not sure how long are transit was. Also, we were too full to even consider thinking about food. Upon checking the FIDS, I saw our flight to SIN had been delayed till 15:25. During this time I was not sure if we arrived late causing our continuing flight to be delayed. It did not matter, I can say I was exposed to a large number of Russians since I cannot qualify as saying I had been to Moscow for over an hour to connect to Singapore.

Flight information in Russian.   

SQ 61 is codeshared with UN.

In terms of shopping, I initially thought the terminal seriously lacked any kind of shops or eating outlets. However, I discovered on our flight back there was an upper level that provided more of a shopper’s gallery. I did see quite a few over-priced Russian trinkets and Russian passengers stocking up on duty free prior to leaving DME. On the way to the gate I discovered they had a Bosco Sports shop in the terminal. This company serves as the official clothier for the Russian Olympic teams. It was also recently announced that they were also been the main clothing retailer for Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. I was hoping to see a few niknaks promoting Sochi 2014, but I guess it is still a bit early. Another interesting thing I discovered, DME has at least two vending machines selling nothing but alcohol, except beer. In the end I was not in the mood to spend any money since I was just starting my vacation!

The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6880 times:

23/24 January 2012
9V - SVP

After wondering around the sparse concourse that handles international departures and arrivals, we decided to head to the gate. After going through security I discovered that DME offers free WiFi throughout the concourse so I was able to check e-mails and arrival information at SIN and MNL. I was also able to “check-in” and do a status update on Facebook, all on my iPhone in WiFi mode. The stores did not have much of interest so I decided to wait for our flight closer to the gate. In the process I watched a new set of crew in their colorful uniforms head to the gate and quickly put on their heavy winter jackets as they board the plane.

T5 752 waiting to head back to ASB.

We patiently waited for airport staff to call for boarding as we were just ready to get to SIN. We were joined by a couple of Russian passengers who were excited to head to SIN for warmer temperatures. A couple of them you could tell were new Russian money and either flew in F or any of the remaining J seats. As mentioned Gate 11 is the only dual jetbridge gate with separate boarding doors. The first door served as Priority Line for PPS, KrisFlyer Gold, First, Business, and Star Gold flyers, while the actual gate served for all Y boarding.

About 14:50, SQ ground staff opened the boarding for those needing assistance, followed by the priority line, and then general boarding. As much as I wanted to have checked out and see who was flying in F, I decided to enter the plane at 2L after using the priority line. From what I can tell in J, only two new people joined the rear J cabin, while everyone else originated from IAH. Upon entering Y, I recognized all the elder Vietnamese who also originated from IAH. While our IAH-DME flight had a handful of open seats, this flight in the Y cabin was 100% full, the majority originating from IAH.

EK 772 A6-ECE getting ready to head back to DXB after its recent arrival.

Only a 10hour flight to SIN today!   

I did not know that DME is 555ft above sea level.

Our current position

A UN 763 awaiting for a flight somewhere later today.

Plenty of Russian airliners just sitting on hardstand. I wonder how long some of those planes have been sitting there.

European view of our current location, just southeast of Moscow.

Same as our flight from IAH, this new set of cabin crew took a proactive approach to ensure all passengers had settled in with hand luggage securely stowed in the overhead bins or underneath the seat in front of them. Again these FAs impressed me with how they would go above and beyond what one would normally see on a US domestic flight. By 15:15 Moscow time, all passengers had boarded and announcement made that all aircraft doors had been closed. I watched as each FA gave the thumbs up. By 15:25, the FAs took their seats while the inflight safety video was shown. By 15:30 we started our taxiing to 32L for departure to SIN.

An EY A320 heading back to AUH with a LH A320 heading to HAM, both txing towards 32L.   

Waiting for departure. EK and UN 772s in the distance and cranes up for DME expansion, which is needed.

We took off after the EY A320 flight back to AUH. The somber, winter blues that could be felt in Moscow would soon be erased at the prospect of much warmer temperatures of Southeast Asia! As we initially leveled off around 33000ft, the pilot gave his welcome to all on this flight to SIN.

Our flight started in a similar fashion as it did during the IAH-DME potion. First, Lead FA Yeoh, the lead FA for the Y cabin, handed out menus to the right side of the plane. Instead of asking if we originated from IAH, she handed menus to everyone.











Another FA handed out headphones to everyone as well. I mention above FAs collected headphones for those of us continuing on to SIN. Instead she just graciously handed out headphones to all. Upon checking in the seat back pocket, the cleaning crew appeared to have reset all items in the seat back pocket, especially a new SilverKris magazine that I had taken from the previous flight. Afterwards, Yeoh came through with hot towels followed by inflight comfort kits, and then the pick up of used hot towels. After all the “free gifts” were handed out, the Y cabin crew started drink service followed by lunch service.

I decided to go for another orange juice and Singapore Sling. This time the drink was a little strong for my liking while the orange juice was surprisingly sweet.

I received my second Singapore Sling on my second SQ flight. This time, Yeoh made it a tad too strong for me and I could barely finish it. Adding a bit of the sweet Russian orange juice helped dilute the alcohol a bit. When she handed me a package of peanuts I thought how interesting they packaged the peanuts twice. She continued working her way offering drinks on the right side of the plane while the FAs assigned to the mid-cabin galley prepared an early dinner service.

This was supposed to have featured “Gaeng phed kai” or “Red Curry Chicken”, but I guess I forgot to take a photo of it without the wrapper.   

Here’s what my mother asked because she is not a big curry person.

Dessert! This tasted like the Russian version of Magnum Ice Cream bar.   

I mentioned how DME has vending machines selling Johnny Walker, Jose Cuervo, Jack Daniels, Vodka, and several other spirits, well three people who purchased from said vending machines sat in front of us. The hetero couple and male friend each bought a bottle of Johnny, Jose, and Jack. From the moment Yeoh started the drink service from their row, they finished all three bottles by the time of “light bites” service. Surprisingly you could smell it but it was not strong no could you smell the alcohol sweating out from their pores. Overall, just a threesome of happy drunks!

Flying over Pakistan and about to enter Indian airspace at the start of “Light Bites” service.

A world view of our position during “Light Bites” service.

As typical after the first meal service, FAs turned down the lights and people tried to sleep to SIN. I slept for about 3hours and then could not get back to sleep. I tried working on my notes for the both flights taken so far. I also remembered I had added 2 videos featuring Singapore I wanted to watch and write down so I could visit during this layover, especially one intitled The Layover with Anthony Bourdain. I am not a big fan of his, but really liked the episode. The other one I recorded was Samantha Brown’s Passport to Asia – Singapore.

While watching those shows on my iPhone, the FAs on duty began the “Light Bites” service. Similar to the previous flight, a Lead FA walked down the aisles with a basket of goodies and this was followed by a tray of water and juice. Passengers could ask for a different drink and they would bring them back as soon as possible.

Just 5.5hrs left on this flight during “Light Bites” service.

Apple, ham-n-cream cheese sandwich, and Russian Sour Cream & Onion Lays.

Russian chocolate that is still sitting in my bag till this day.

Flying through Northeastern India heading towards Myanmar and Thailand.

It’s still dark out but we are inching closer to SIN!

Was trying to figure out hawker stands that we could visit during our layover. Krisworld has an interactive Rough Guide program that list various information regarding their destinations. I noted a few that we could try to visit during our layover.

As we inched closer and hugged the Thai airspace, we could hear the rustlings going on in the galley. We were just less than two hours away before we landed in SIN. I was still enjoying watching the Modern Marvels special on T3 at SIN because we would be disembarking at T3! My hunger emerged at the thought of the exciting culinary fun I would be experiencing in Singapore and Philippines! Thus, I grew excited with the last meal on this flight which all of them have so far been very delicious.

Just under 1.5hours left in the flight when “breakfast” commenced.

What’s for breakfast?

Strawberry yogurt written in Russian.   

Cherry jam and coffee creamer written in Russian.   

Yummy! Noodles   

I enjoyed those noodles and had two more helping from my parents as they did not particularly care for the spiciness, which I could not really detect. I also enjoyed the yogurt and the cherry jam, which sometimes I think is an odd combination to an Asian airline meal. Another two thumbs up on this meal! By the time I finished, Yeoh and the FAs began to prepare the cabin for arrival. First they picked up trays from all who had finished their meals. Next, the ISM went through the cabin handing out landing cards to those ending their travel at SIN. We requested three forms since we would now have a 11.5hour layover in Singapore.   

Only 49minutes left in the flight, and my first time in SIN T3 and Singapore!   

After I finished my landing form, I rushed to the lavatory to freshen up with a quick brush of teeth and face. Initially I had decided to go ahead and change into something appropriate for hot and balmy Singapore! My parents and I decided to do that upon deplaning and head to the toilets at the airport.

Now flying in Malaysian airspace; we are almost to SIN!

At this point, the cabin crew did one last check prior to landing by ensuring all seat backs and tray tables were upright and locked, foot rest stored, and window shades up. The last chimes rang indicating our immediate landing. Approaching from the southwest, we landed on 02L about 30minutes ahead of schedule and welcomed to Singapore. For the next few minutes we taxied until docking at B2.

The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 3, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6880 times:

Singapore Layover


Similar to our arrival at DME, the FAs closed off the J galley for passengers on the right side of the plane and directed them to deplane from 1L. Based on the mess in the F cabin, all seats were utilized on this flight. As I approached 1L, I immediately got that hit of the familiar balmy Southeast Asian air; gotta love that! Like a little kid in a candy store, I enjoyed that feeling of stepping into the “World’s Favorite Airport”, and I can tell why, especially with T3!

First thing’s first, we needed to change and freshen up. I changed into some comfortable shorts and summer attire. The toilets near the B2 gate after deplaning were clean and organized, which is to be expected. Now donning on some comfortable attire we searched out the left luggage facility airside in T3 so we could drop our hand luggage and enjoy the sights of Singapore for a few hours.

My mother and I ready for our day in Singapore!   

A quick view of the shopper’s lane in T3. I love the ceiling. amazed how they came up with it.

A replica of La Tour de Eiffel made out of flowers in the middle of T3.

After dropping off our luggage, we wondered around a bit in the terminal because the trains had not commenced service to the city yet since we arrived before 06:00 SIN/MNL/HKG time. I noticed replicas of the kebaya worn by the SQ FA’s. I also saw they had a shirt for guys in the same pattern and I knew I had to get one on my way back! By the time it approached 08:00 we decided to go through Singapore Customs & Immigration and venture into the city.

Now here is my only grip of Singapore that I did not know then. We traveled during Chinese New Year and arrived into Singapore the day after. Thus, we did not get to see, much less eat much! A sprinkling of places would be open, but we just did not know where. Yet being seasoned travelers, we admired the architecture Singapore had to offer with a sprinkling of food here and there. The first stop was to City Hall stop and walk around to check out the Marina Sands and any interesting landmarks in the area.

The Central Business District while standing near City Hall.

The Marina Sands taken near the Esplanade.

The CBD and Merlion Park taken near the Esplanade.

The Esplanade that to me looks like the shell of the durian fruit.

The Singapore Flyer and the Marina Bay Floating Stadium that hosted the first ever Youth Summer Olympic Games in 2010.

A baby merlion water statue behind one of a few merlion statues in Singapore.


A delicious and refreshing mango ice pop from “Frostbite” over at One Fullerton.   

From Merlion Park and One Fullerton, we leisurely walked down Fullerton Road, which turned into Raffles Quay that would take us to Lau Pa Sat Festival Market. It was the nearest hawker place to us at the time, since I did not have time to fully research where to go. We took a chance to see if any of the stands would be open and lucked out on a few Chinese ones.

An interesting art installation while walking around an empty CBD.

Food from a few handful of stalls open the day after Chinese New Year at Lau Pa Sat Festival Market.   

Interesting name for a museum.

After brunch, we head over to the Raffles Place train stop and headed up the red line to Orchard to check out any shopping. A few stores had opened at normal business hours while most of the others would open later on in the afternoon when we needed to be at the gate for our flight to MNL.

Cool cardboard puzzle display wishing everyone a Happy Year of the Dragon at the Muji Store at Ion Orchard.   

Yup, the Orchard train stop.

By 14:30 we decided to head back to the airport as the main Hard Rock Café was not open and I wanted to walk around the airport as well as check out the Star Gold lounge in T2 prior to our departure to MNL. We got to the airport about 15:15 and retrieved our hand luggage from the airside left luggage facility in T3. From there we rode on the automated people movers to T2. It reminded me of Vancouver’s driver-less Skytrains, just smaller.

The massive check-in hall at T3 after arriving from the train platform.

FIDS departure screens.

SQ 918, please head to T2.

More of the check-in hall at T3.

In the distance, the “green” wall and water fall. Behind some of the “green” wall are restrooms. Down below is the
Customs & Immigration hall.

Some guy photobombing my floral merlion picture.   

Since we stored our hand luggage at T3, we took advantage of going through Singapore departure control at T3. Prior to entering, they had set up a bag x-ray, but that was not manned nor in use. Many Singapore citizens utilized the e-reader gates to go through Passport Control, while I interacted with a very friendly agent who asked about our short layover in the city. I should first mention that there were no lines, either at Customs & Immigration or at Passport Control. Another nice feature is them offering candy throughout the airport, especially my favorite, Fox’s black currant hard candy. I felt bad picking through them, but I rarely see those sold anywhere in the Philippines, especially just strictly the black currant ones.

Once we retrieved our stuff from the left luggage facility, we headed to T2. When we arrived, T2 looked amazing, yet still night-and-day compared to T3. T2 primarily handles most of the regional flights, especially around Southeast Asia. After stepping off the automated people mover, we decided to check out Kris Flyer Lounge since it only catered to Star Gold flyers. By the time we arrived at the lounge we were getting tired as we had traveled more than 30hours and had a few more hours left till we arrived into MNL! I did not take too many pictures in the lounge, but it was nice and relatively small for a Star Gold lounge. They did have nice offerings of food and got more noodles, similar to the ones served on IAH-DME and DME-SIN; my parents on the other hand were getting tired of this version of noodles. Yet they appeased my father having fish fried rice we tasted nice and a bit salty. After walking around in the heat I kept on driving sodas and water. We finished off our “meal” with a couple of tasty finger desserts, which I do not remember.

The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6874 times:

24 January 2012

About an hour prior to departure, we decided to go ahead and head to our gate. After going down stairs and experiencing more duty free stores, I came to an area with windows and did a bit of spotting, especially noticing an SQ Star Alliance logo plane 9V-SRI, which would fly as SQ 918 to MNL.

SQ tails awaiting their journeys throughout Southeast Asia.

PR 508 operating as an A320 would head back to MNL departing from F31.

Getting a close up of our SQ 772 Star Alliance logo jet 9V-SRI taking us to MNL.   

F41 gate display for our flight to MNL.

We got to the gate at 15:58 when the sign on the FIDS changed to “Go to Gate”. Like all gates at SIN, there is security control before entering the gate lounge. The gate only has one x-ray screener and one metal detector. The Indians manning security control could nor or probably did not want to crack a smile, while everyone else in Singapore did.   

After security control, we showed our boarding passes to the gate agent who scanned and ripped up our boarding passes, handing back the stub along with Philippine immigration forms for arrival. From there we leisurely waited a few minutes prior to our departure to MNL. While we waited, our cabin crew awaited for all to arrive and ready to board. Todays flight would consist of 8 FAs and 5 lead FAs or higher. One wore a special color higher than an ISM, but could not tell if he was headed home to the Philippines or on vacation in MNL.

Plane awaiting at the end of the jetway.

Junior crew getting a quick debriefing by the ISM, while lead FAs wait to board the plane.

As boarding time grew near, I could tell this would not be a busy flight as a scattering of people waited to board the plane with plenty of open seating. At security, we had a minimal wait and processing time. Within 20 minutes after a call for boarding, all passengers had boarded. When they opened the boarding doors, they offered priority boarding to all priority passengers through Door 1/1L. All other passengers waited at Door 2/2L.

My parents and I were among the first to board the Y cabin. Passengers scattered throughout the forward Y cabin with plenty of open sets of seating, while no one sat in the rear section. I decided to move from 33A to 41A so I could have my own row and catch a quick nap after the meal service on this flight. This gave me first “lie-flat” experience on SQ.  http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u252/AznMadSci/Singapore-Philippines%202012/ce0e5fc6.jpg
A few FAs awaiting to show and help passengers to their seats.

When we got to our seats, pillows had already been placed at the seat while blankets were available upon request. Despite the relatively small number of passengers on this flight to MNL, passengers on all my flights boarded with relative quickness and efficiency. It probably helps when the FAs take a proactive approach to get everyone situated.

My sexy leg/legroom shot!   

By 16:51, the ISM called that all doors have been closed. At that time, the FAs disappeared while he showed the inflight safety video. By 17:10 we pushed back from the gate and started our taxiing to 02L for departure. We lined up to watch an 6E flight arrive, followed by takeoffs from FY and then a UO 738. At 17:25 we made our way to MNL.







I chose the Pan Fried chicken with the apple spritzer.

Dessert in the form of a KitKat Drumstick!   

These pictures served as the only pictures for the flight to MNL because I fell asleep after I finished the KitKat Drumstick, which were nice and hard, but still yummy! While I enjoyed the dessert, I wish I could say the same for the entrée. I’m just not sure now if the food served on regional flights are delicious. I did not wake up until one of the FA’s had to politely nudge me to wake up and to open up my window shades.

We landed around 20:34 and taxied to gate. Immigration took the longest as a OZ flight from ICN and then a KU flight from KWI/BKK occupied all lanes. I patiently waited in my line as I queued in a separate lane from my parents. By the time I completed immigration, all of our bags were enjoying the ride on the conveyor belt. From there we headed to customs where they actually wanted to check our stuff, the first time it happened since my first trip to MNL back in 1984! They saw nothing exciting and let us pass. Once out my mom was anxious to get a SIM card for my iPhone 3. She could not wait until the morning to get a cheaper, functioning one from my cousins rather than the POS, expensive one at the airport. Lesson learned mom, and she should have listened!   

So that concludes this portion of the trip report. This one featured a lot of photos as opposed to the upcoming report, the return back to Houston. So stay tuned. Comment are welcomed!

The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineplanejamie From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2011, 576 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 6559 times:

Excellent report, I don't think I've seen this flight reported on before on here, it certainly seems long but by the looks of things the SQ hospitality made up for it  

Here's one thing I picked up on

Quoting aznmadsci (Thread starter):
“This is the Piccadilly Line to Cockfosters!”

I was on a Piccadilly Line train to Cockfosters this time yesterday (sadly not in London anymore at the moment and as travelled by train there won't be a trip report!) so I sort of know what you mean by the announcements! I think I've heard the same announcement as you've heard on SQ on SV and Oman Air before now

User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 14
Reply 6, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 6176 times:


Great report, thanks for sharing it.
Nice to see that IAH-DME-SIN route is still around after more than 3 years. SQ looks very excellent.
I had a laugh when I noticed the 'light' breakfast. Probaly a bit more heavy than any other airline flying TATL  


Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlineflyingdoc787 From United States of America, joined Jun 2012, 74 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 6131 times:

Great TR! I also flew the same flights going to Manila (and back) a couple of years ago. I spent my long lay-over in SIN on the way back - I took the 8.10am departure from MNL, spent the day in SIN, and flew out on SQ 62 which left around 2.30am the next day. On that flight, I was able to get 3 seats all to myself ... slept flat and loved it!
I must admit the transit experience in DME was not the best, but it wasn't too bad either. I bought some overpriced Russian dolls and eggs as "pasalubong" or gifts for my family - and they were very happy. So, it was money well spent.
SQ crew were amazing! The flight steward who served my section called me by name!
I believe SQ's IAH service is here to stay!

User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 8, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 5991 times:

Quoting planejamie (Reply 5):
Excellent report, I don't think I've seen this flight reported on before on here, it certainly seems long but by the looks of things the SQ hospitality made up for it

Thanks PJ!

I know a few others have taken it, but I believe in J. This was one flight I had always wanted to take to MNL but the price was too much. Now, SQ's prices to MNL have dropped considerably and the amount of miles earned is pretty good too! Even in Y i have now been spoiled by SQ and want to take them each time I go to MNL, Southeast Asia, or even down to Australia!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 6):
Great report, thanks for sharing it.

Thanks Marc!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 6):
I had a laugh when I noticed the 'light' breakfast. Probaly a bit more heavy than any other airline flying TATL  

The portion sizes and taste are a whole lot better on SQ Y than any other airline I have traveled on. But the service really amazed me and did not feel robotic or impersonal as many have mentioned.

Quoting flyingdoc787 (Reply 7):
I spent my long lay-over in SIN on the way back - I took the 8.10am departure from MNL, spent the day in SIN, and flew out on SQ 62 which left around 2.30am the next day. On that flight, I was able to get 3 seats all to myself ... slept flat and loved it!
I must admit the transit experience in DME was not the best, but it wasn't too bad either. I bought some overpriced Russian dolls and eggs as "pasalubong"

Salamat FD787!

We also had a long layover on the return, that I will report on in a few days. We took the second flight of the day because that 8AM flight was a bit more expensive. At least we got to experience more, with other places open since it was after Chinese New year. I will also say we had an annoying experience transiting through DME on our flight back mainly caused by rude Russians and frustratingly annoying Vietnamese people. It's hard to make those generalizations but when it happens right in front of your eyes you want to slap them all. My mom did by a babushka "pasalubong" just for her to say she bought something in Russia. Yet, with all that headache, I would still take the flights and hope for the best!

Thanks y'all!


The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineflyingdoc787 From United States of America, joined Jun 2012, 74 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5920 times:

I'm visiting the Philippines in October after two long years, and this time I'm still flying SQ but now I will try their Whalejet service from LAX. [LAX-NRT-SIN-MNL, vv.] It is out of the way and involves backtracking, but I love SQ and this also gives me a chance to visit my sister, who lives in Singapore. And of course, I get to earn miles and experience a standard of inflight service that even other airlines talk about!  
I will try my best to post a TR on that one! Mabuhay!

User currently offlinejetBlue777 From United States of America, joined Jul 2009, 1597 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5893 times:

Wonderful trip report, loved all the details and enthusiasm!

I'm also going "home" to the Philippines this summer on SQ and MI! Although I would be flying JFK-CEB/MNL via FRA, SIN on MI and SQ (A380!) However, I seriously wanted to change our outbound flights from JFK-FRA-SIN to IAH-DME-SIN to 1) Try SQ's 77W and how it compares to the A388 and 2) "Visit" DME and see some exotic Russian jets. The thing that really set me back was the outrageous one way fares from NYC to IAH (although HOU was considerably cheaper)

Anyways, your TR has really made me excited about my trip in a few weeks from now. There's really no surprise here that SQ was once again....SQ-like! 

It was also great to hear that they had instant ramen-noodles available in-flight, I'd love some of those on a longhaul flight.

Can't wait til' I transit through SIN too! And we're also going to have a 12-hr layover in Singapore on the way back, so looking forward to that!

Once again, stellar trip report and Mabuhay! 

Jezrel (JetBlue777)

It's a cultural thing.
User currently offlineB738FlyUIA From Kazakhstan, joined Dec 2009, 557 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 5616 times:

Hi Colin

Thank you for sharing your great TR on your huge trip from IAH-DME-SIN-MNL. Really enjoyed it very much and I'm surprised that the food you had was so looking good and tasty!!!

Quoting aznmadsci (Thread starter):
It was a relatively long walk from Gate 11 all the way up to the safety and document check for transiting passengers.
Quoting aznmadsci (Reply 2):
As mentioned Gate 11 is the only dual jetbridge gate with separate boarding doors. The first door served as Priority Line for PPS, KrisFlyer Gold, First, Business, and Star Gold flyers, while the actual gate served for all Y boarding.

I was in DME a couple of times and all my flights left from Gate 11. With my GF we left from DME for SGN through the same one. Brings up the feelings again that want to escape to a warm country again.

What was your impression of the DME Terminal?

Quoting aznmadsci (Reply 3):
The Marina Sands taken near the Esplanade.

Again I see that a lot has changed in downtown SIN. I've seen some nice pics from "The Marina Sands" and sure when go there again want to go on top of there even simply for s great swim and dinner with my GF!!!

Quoting aznmadsci (Reply 8):
We also had a long layover on the return, that I will report on in a few days.

I hope that you will not wait to long for your rtn TR from MNL and share with us your great pic's
Quoting aznmadsci (Reply 8):
I will also say we had an annoying experience transiting through DME on our flight back mainly caused by rude Russians...

Interesting to know what happened that they and others where rude!! As mentioned I have been through DME a couple of times and never had a problem with anyone!!

Cheers  Smile

[Edited 2012-06-24 01:28:42]

User currently offlineaznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3782 posts, RR: 5
Reply 12, posted (3 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 5398 times:

Thanks again y'all for reading!

Quoting flyingdoc787 (Reply 9):

I'm visiting the Philippines in October after two long years, and this time I'm still flying SQ but now I will try their Whalejet service from LAX. [LAX-NRT-SIN-MNL, vv.

I have an aversion to LAX and would prefer to go through SFO since I have not been through SFO since they opened their International Terminal. If SQ decided to end IAH, I'd probably try JFK-FRA-SIN because I like the longer routing.

As much as I wanted to take my first A380 flight on SQ, I'm taking advantage of LH being the first to utilize the big bird to IAH this August on my way to Scandinavia. I'm jealous of you going back to the Philippines in October, but I will probably be headed back there next February.

Quoting jetBlue777 (Reply 10):

Wonderful trip report, loved all the details and enthusiasm!

Maraming salamat!   

Quoting jetBlue777 (Reply 10):
I'm also going "home" to the Philippines this summer on SQ and MI! Although I would be flying JFK-CEB/MNL via FRA, SIN on MI and SQ (A380!) However, I seriously wanted to change our outbound flights from JFK-FRA-SIN to IAH-DME-SIN to 1) Try SQ's 77W and how it compares to the A388 and 2) "Visit" DME and see some exotic Russian jets. The thing that really set me back was the outrageous one way fares from NYC to IAH (although HOU was considerably cheaper

The seats will probably feel the same. Compared to the 77W and the 772, the 772 had a nicer padded seat, while the 77W had the nicer foot rest and inflight entertainment. I was pleasantly surprised with all those airplanes just parked at DME and wondered if most of them were still utilized. It is cool to say that I did fly into Russia for a transit stop.

Quoting jetBlue777 (Reply 10):
It was also great to hear that they had instant ramen-noodles available in-flight, I'd love some of those on a longhaul flight.

I know a few passengers who requested instant noodles, but I like to bring my own just for my own personal enjoyment. I used to do it on the PMCO flight to HKG and had a few FAs smile when I asked. What was nice with SQ was that they provided the utensils to eat with just in case you did not have any.

Quoting jetBlue777 (Reply 10):


Quoting B738FlyUIA (Reply 11):
I was in DME a couple of times and all my flights left from Gate 11. With my GF we left from DME for SGN through the same one. Brings up the feelings again that want to escape to a warm country again.

The Russians that did join our flight seemed ready for the warmer Asian weather compared to the cold conditions seen upon arrival. As for Gate 11, that served as our gate for SQ 61. On our way home I believe we used Gate 9, I need to check my notes. That was a special gate that allowed for special screening for flights to the US. More will be mentioned on the return trip and posted on this same thread.

Quoting B738FlyUIA (Reply 11):
What was your impression of the DME Terminal?

I was a bit shocked, but knew DME would be a bit smaller. But it felt too small for Moscow. I presume SVO is a whole lot bigger. The other thing that surprised me of DME were the number of planes just sitting there. It was cool to see Russian airliners I had never seen nor heard of before, like Vim and Ural Air.

Quoting B738FlyUIA (Reply 11):
Interesting to know what happened that they and others where rude!! As mentioned I have been through DME a couple of times and never had a problem with anyone!!

Did you transit through DME? It ended up being the whole transiting process from security to document check. Overall the Russians I did encounter that were rude were those dealing with the annoying hordes of Vietnamese that easily pissed me off since our 2AM departure from SIN.    Otherwise, the overall process would have been comparable to our transit going to SIN.

Thanks for all that have read and commented. I am working on the return portion of this trip and will post it on this thread instead of starting a new one as there are not much pictures from the return.


The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
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