Comparison between MH
on 4 LHR
return flights in just over 3 months..
and MH008 KUL
and MH004 KUL
and SQ107/SQ320 KUL
Booking on MAS is an absolute nightmare.
I don't trust their online booking as fares are often exorbitant when compared with the likes of Expedia or even on the first occasion by telephoning MAS directly.
I did however spend about 2 hrs trying to get hold of someone at MAS London who could issue me with a ticket - which was of the old-fashioned type only and had to be collected at the airport.
Get into the 21st century MAS!!!
internet booking is a breeze and works well to include seat selection and meals too.
Winner - SQ
Having had to change flights on several occasions... MAS was again an absolute disaster.
2 trips to KL
Sentral to alter flight dates were fruitless and the staff unapologetic and didn't seem to know what to do.
I was flabbergasted when I was advised that my ticket would have to be sent back to London for any change to occur - which the cost of course passed on to me. This on a 'C' fare???
No wonder MAS is unable make any more money than it does. The fact that I was in its homebase KL
made even less sense for this ridiculour necessity.
I left the ticket office in a huff and went to a local travel agent who was great and sorted it all out - although at a cost of another RM400.
- telephoned SQ
and they were great. "No problems sir, I will send you a new e-ticket confirmation for you to print out and take to check-in for your new flights. There is however a rebooking fee of RM70." Fine - and it all took 3 mins.
Winner - SQ
It has to be said - MAS does have a bonus of a city check-in which is convenient at KL
Sentral. No internet check-in - appalling for an international so-call '5-star airline'.
really should look into having a city check-in counter at KL
Sentral although SQ
does have internet check-in which is great but you still need to lug your luggage on the train - and me being lazy...
Winner - Tie SQ
- wonderful staff and good food and selection of drinks/snacks. Nice chicken tikka massala pre-boarding.
- not bad. again nice food and showers - bonus.
- does the job although not as comfy as their other lounges. guess this is like a 'domestic' lounge for SQ
so passes the mark.
- nice staff and food ok. There is still often too much emphasis on local Malaysian food which can be a bit much sometimes.
- no complaints about MH
's Golden Lounge at KUL
- still think its probably one of the best although staff could be a little more slick being their flagship lounge.
Winner - MH
slight delay on first flight but staff and crew very apologetic eventhough flight was only delayed by about 20mins. Boarding through new LHR
gates at (Gate 5 i think) was impressive and nice of MAS to have selection of newspapers and magazines (including wallpaper*) as you enter boarding area rather than at the aircraft door. Boarding efficient on MAS with helpful crew to assist and settle passengers.
- no mention of delay on second flight and boarding through Star Alliance gates at LHR T3
is a real trek away from the lounge. Holding area was too small to accommodate 747 load so lots of people had to stand and crowd the gate. Babies and kids crying as couldn't get comfy. Poor for SQ
standards. Crew on boarding just as helpful as MAS though.
Boarding at KUL
however was done by cabins which could be improved to speed departure as all shuttle flights taken were packed - which seems to have improved (loads-wise) from previous experiences when flights were often barely half-full.
Winner - MH
Nice new safety video on MAS - thank god the cheesy pilot in the previous one has disappeared. Professional video and pre-flight drinks all standard.
still using ageing safety video - guess it still works and no necessary need to change but showing its age.
Winner - MH
(and only really cause SQ
delay was poorly handled)
meals have improved with their NSD (new service delivery). Good mix of local and western choices on board. No cheese board though which is a real shame. I also know many have complained about this.
wines - could be improved though and I still find it odd that MAS still serves wine with its breakfast!!!
meals have declined over recent times. I was shocked on second LHR
departure that maybe owing to a delay - half the meals seems to have been left behind.
Everyone seem to have got main courses but many were missing starters and desserts. Economy passengers didn't get either apparently. SQ
handed out Ice-cream for dessert instead.
This is very very poor indeed.
Staff seemed somewhat apathetic but apologised when passengers asked as no annoucement was made to inform passengers.
light meals on KL
shuttle still good and better than MAS' selection of hot snacks.
menus in general however was more international in flavour than MH
which seems to work better.
On last SIN
flight - despite a dayflight - for some odd reason dinner (2nd meal) was served about 7 hours after departure. Lights came on and woke me which I was non-too happy about. Meal was then very drawn out before cabin went back to sleep prior to landing at LHR
. v odd and felt it interrupted my much needed rest on board.
Both airlines are great at offering drinks/snacks throughout flight.
Winner - SQ
only because their menus worked better (I forgive the episode of mentioned above as there must have been some reasonable explanation and was v unlike SQ
) and let's face it MH
- there's only so many 'nasi lemak breakfasts that anyone can tolerate' (!!)
seem to share a similar platform now so both are comparable.
's selection of films however i thought were better than SQ
although this is of course personal but i couldn't fathom SQ
's choices of odd films for its main films unlike MAS which at least tries to show some major films that I would have gone to the cinema to see.
Both airlines' music selection seemed almost identical. Interestingly - both had not changed during the last 3 months . I might have worn out 'the Killers' album on all sectors.
I stuck on the iPOD and noise cancelling earphones in the end.
I like MAS' new emailing facility on board though i didn't use it but good to know it was there.
MAS system also seems newer with a new interactive MAP and airshow from various angles. nice to play with.
IFE kept pausing on one KL
(MH) flight every 2mins which was annoying but must have been a bug as it didn't happen on any others.
IFE on one SIN
flight (SQ) flight crashed only for my seat and the seat next to mine. Crew were apologetic and reset the system 4 times before offering me another seat and giving up. I stayed and read a book.
Winner - MH
Seats & Cabin
747 cabins - so tried and tested. comfy but looking tired.
New MAS 747 cabins - much better than the old style GC
seats although some seem to prefer the other. Nice brighter cabins and more modern feel to cabin ambience.
Both airlines have immaculate toilets - something ALL
airlines should learn from!
Winner - MH
Nice videos on both carriers pre-arrival - although didn't need to watch them.
Preparation for landing were both standard on both carriers.
Although landing with a fleet of fire-engines following us at Changi on one occasion (SQ) may not have been standard though but crew made no announcement and most passengers were unaware.
Disembarkation was smooth with both carriers.
Winner - Tie
All flights delivered my luggage promptly - even at KUL
which has (or maybe HAD) a reputation for slow baggage reclaim.
Note - I did not mention anything about the inflight service on both carriers as I feel they both offer the same great service in general.
Personally - I have always found MH
crew to be friendlier than the SQ
crew but that's a personal choice and the object of this was just to make some comparison with everything else both carriers offer on their London service.
Have decided to try LHR
for my next trip just to compare notes with a European carrier.. now THAT should be interesting!
thanks for reading...