I have flown more miles on the SQ
A345 than I ever wanted to. After 6 ultra long segments in a couple months, the innagural EWR SIN
, and two LAX SIN
r/t, I am in no rush to do it again anytime soon. Twice this was done in "Executive Economy", do not let the name fool you, it is ECONOMY. Food is Economy, seat comfort is economy. SQ
tried to expand pitch as much as possible by making very thin seat backs, all they achieve is no lumbar support and a very uncomfortable ride. The "leg resT" hits you in the back of the knees and does nothing for any normal sized person (i am around 5 10). If you are a 4 year kid, the legrest is perfect. For everyone else, it is uncomfortable. Foot rest is not far away enough, so you are forced to bend your knees a little too much.
The small mini cabin in front part of Y class is 3 rows and is noisy as hell. Whatever engineer felt the need to have the toilets flush with insane suction and loud noise per every flush should be shot. You can hear the LAVS within 3 or 4 rows in both directions. Avoid the first 7-8 rows of Y all together. Avoid the last 3 or 4 rows of Y as well, as their is constant light, traffic, and noise coming out of the back "bar" that is too short to be of any good. I would not take an isle seat either, as it seems everyone in this plane feels the need to be up and about at all hours of the flight. You will be bumped into numerous times if you are on the edge and even close to crossing over into the isle.
You can sit in the window seats, but if you have to go to the LAV you cannot move if someone is reclined next to you. Absolutly no room the squeeze by if the "leg rest" is up. Trying to step over them does not quite work unless you have insanely long legs.
The flight crew always had a wiered schedule for turning on and off the cabin lights. Coming back from SIN
on the 3 JULY in Raffles class, the lights went off for 4 hours, back on for 30 minutes, off again, on again, and so on. I am not a SQ
employee, I do not need to be awake for them to take care of other pax. Turn the damn lights off and leave them off and let pax sleep.
Krisworld had some sort of issue every single time. One leg the on demand movies did not work the whole flight. In seat power worked for about 3 hours and then was off for the rest of the flight. Under the Y class seats are huge metal boxes that house the IFE units (Wisemann 300 Matsushitu), and take up at least 40% of the space under your seat. Not only was this a horrible idea to have under the seat like that, as it reduces legroom but almost 1/2, but if the damn thing will not work consistantly than whats the point, i would rather sleep. Sure, Krisworld is great when it works, but on this plane it has shown to not work coniststantly. On EWR
inagural flight a Matsushitu employee was on board trying to figure out what was wrong. He seemed to know very little, as he was on the phone with his boss for a good 4 hours. After awhile of no laptop power and some areas not having on demand movies, he promptly shut the whole thing down for awhile.
On to raffles-
I had a Raffles ticket for EWR
inaguration 28 June. We had a nice cocktail party downstairs at EWR
where the mayor and senator of the newark NJ
area spoke. The ambassador to singapore was also present. Cocktail party was very nice. We were given gifts upon boarding the plane, a pewter plaque that has a raised globe impression with the routes to and from EWR
. The plaque held a picture frame upright that has a SQ
girl and a pic of NY and SIN
. Made by Royal Selangor in Malaysia. Pretty nice on the desk. Security was unheard of getting through the jetway. Whole jetway was lined with NY/NJ Port Authority police shoulder to shoulder as well as TSA
and privite contracted security. Bomb sniffing dogs walked up and down the jetway sniffing pax carry on bags.
Raffles class colors are awful. The purple on everything makes you sick after a short period of time. The TV
is nice and big, but is too far away from your seat to be nice. Should have been a pop up. I do not see distances very well, and it was a struggle to view the TV
. Read above comments on krisworld and its preformance.
The biggest compalint about raffles is the slanted seat. You cannot truly relax on these seats as you still have downward gravitational force on your feet. It is like you are just standing up sideways. You are using your legs to support you in the seat. Not relaxing, but similar to excersize the whole flight. A true flat seat would be great, but these slanted seats are junk. UAL First class international is far more comforatable without the IFE of krisworld.
The F/A screwed with the cabin lighting the whole flight and it was annoying. If you are in the rear of raffles class you can hear the econ lavs (4 total) being flushed non stop the whole flight. Way to much F/A and pax traffic up and down the isles of the plane. A window seat gives some relief. You can easily step over the reclined raffles seat next to you to get to the isle and go to the lav or whatever.
Food service and drink service takes a long time since Raffles class is so large. Not really focused attention on premium cabin pax, as that cabin is about 1/3 the size of econ.
F/A on EWR
failed to hand out immigration cards, so at 530 in the morning we all had to fill out these cards at the immigration hall. I do not know why the F/A lacked the forsight to pick up some cards and hand them out, at least to raffles class pax.
The first flight was filled with reporters. I would say a good 70% of the econ cabin was reporters. Maybe 20 huge video cameras with lights that would go up and down the aircraft ALL
NIGHT LONG. Of these, a group of about 10 people from a French TV
station would not leave anyone alone. These people were loud and had no reguard for the pax that wanted sleep. The long haired freak and his camera went up and down the isles with a giant video light shining it at people and filming them sleep. These people also felt the need to barge into the raffles cabin, a cabin they were not supposed to be in other than to pass through to get on and off the plane, to film people and wake them and ask them questions. One of them actually asked if they could sit in my raffles seat and film the landing and i could go sit in row 46 in econ and sit with some French cameraman. Was he serious? I do not know but i informed him that the raffles cabin was for ticketed raffles passeneger and your camera gives you no right to be here.
I think the plane has some real bad deisgn features, such as the bar area in the back that does nothing but cause traffic, noise, and more light into the cabin. The LAVS are SO LOUD and can be heared from most parts of the plane. The cabin is quite noisy from engine noise and general noise. Not a quiet aircraft at all. The raffles purple seats are ugly as sin. Krisworld is a joke, the boxes take up a bunch of space where my feet should be, and have a load of problems. Can they be fixed? Probubly. Do i want it taking up my legroom if it is broken? Make it work before you charge people for it. Dont have expensive ticket prices if half the features do not work and the other half are junk (leg rest, etc).
I am in no rush to fly on this plane at all anymore. I have had lots of experiance flying on it, 6 ultra long legs. Thats a good 50 hours of flying time to figure out that it is not well set up. I will take the UAL 747 to NRT
and on to SIN
from now on. Fix krisworld and get rid of the LAVS that suck out the bowl contents at 500 mph and i will consider flying it again.
If you are interested in flying on it, by all means do it. Do not expect to sleep well or have krisworld work. Just hope you do not sit next to the french tv.
[Edited 2004-07-10 11:27:51]