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Garuda Holiday (Part 2): SIN Visit On The 738

Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:11 pm

Hopefully you have enjoyed the first part of my GA trip report series.
Garuda Holiday : GA717 MEL-CGK Nonstop (by dirktraveller Jul 16 2012 in Trip Reports)

On this second part of my trip report, it would be my trip from Jakarta (CGK) to Singapore (SIN) on board the B738. Hopefully this part of the report would give you an insight about services on board GA regional flights.

The runs between Jakarta (CGK) and Singapore (SIN) is one of the most frequent route I have flown, in both premium and coach classes. The route itself was the busiest international route out of both CGK and SIN, with many airlines operating the route, all the way from LCCs like VF, QZ, or TR , fifth-freedom airlines like LH or PR, and the considered more 'premium' carriers on the route which is GA and SQ.

Given the options I did not fly GA very frequent on this particular route, so this time I think I would do a trip report on the flight, also as part of my 'Garuda Holiday' trip report series. Hopefully you enjoyed it.


Flight number : GA832
Type of aircraft: B737-800NG
Seat number: 26B
ETD: 1440
ETA: 1745


GA International Check-in desks

When we reached CGK Terminal 2E, where all Garuda international flights were operated from, check-in were having long queues. Luckily, with one of my family members having a GFF platinum we were able to check-in on the dedicated counter, saving much of our time. Passport control in CGK were having long queues which were moving slowly, but its seems a normal scene in this airport.

Lounge view when crowd has disappears

Meal options on lounge

Free access computers on lounge

Our crowded gate E4

After passport control, we headed for a lounge that is accessible by having a certain credit card. The lounge were extremely full. Food options were decent, with choices of food and some snacks, along with choices of drink like juices and soft drinks. We headed for the gate E4, assigned for my flight around 20minutes prior to boarding time written on our boarding passes. By the time we reached the boarding gate, again it was crowded with people, as I began to learn that the gate is being used for both GA flights departing to KUL and mine to SIN. Boarding call for my flight to SIN come out 15mins later than estimated, around 1435hrs.



Legroom on the 738

welcome drink

Upon boarding, welcome drink were distributed, consisted of packs of orange juice, while safety video was being played on the IFE system. The Garuda IFE System were operated in full-swing on this short flight, along with headsets provided prior to boarding. Passengers could watch movies, listen to choice of music or even play games.

Loads on this flight appeared to be full, or at least almost full on both cabins. This is normal on SIN bound flight, especially on school holiday season in Indonesia.

EY 777

GA 744

While we were heading for the runway, there are views of some international carriers flying out of CGK, such as EY, CX, and SQ flights. I catch a picture of one of the three remaining GA B744s in service. Rumours they are getting retired after the delivery of B777s, again this just 'Rumours'

Crew running the meal service

my meal tray

The egg and veggie option.

The 'small' served Spring rolls option

As soon as we lift-off from CGK, the crew started to prepare the meal service. The meal service consist of two choices of meals, the first choice of egg and veggies, while the other choice was spring rolls. I opted for the egg and veggies which was good, while my other family member opted for the spring rolls, which somehow the size of the serving was disappointing, if was compared to my egg and veggies.

Our flight progress

winglet shot

After the meal service, I chose to listen to some music from the IFE while turning on the moving map on the screen to see the progress of the flight. When we were conducting our descent to SIN, announcement from the flight deck informed that due to congestion in SIN airspace, we had to circle around for 20 minutes above the islands of Batam, Indonesia.

As you could notice, we've circled a few times before landing into SIN

Islands as we approach SIN

While we were circling above the islands, I got the opportunity to snap some pictures of the winglet, along with the beautiful sun that is setting down above the Indonesian airspace we're flying in.


Changi airport arrival hall and Passport control from a distance.

Finally we touched down in SIN around 30 minutes behind our original schedule, at around 1810 local time. The Changi Airport Terminal 3 was wonderful and spacious. It is clear why people voted this as one of the best airports in the world, shown by it winning the top three Best Airport in the World for the past few years. Passport control was a breeze in SIN, so as the baggage claim. We were already on our way to the taxi stand heading for our hotel in Novena area in just 30 minutes after touchdown. Well done Changi Airport!

Flying GA on their busiest regional route was a pleasant experience. The service was up to a standard, while the introduction of IFE in this short route was a good touch as well. However, meal service should be improved, especially those 'Spring roll' meal option which was shocking in terms of serving size. From what i've observed, it seems that GA is trying to put up a hard competition against the other carriers flying the route.

It was a pleasure sharing my GA experience with all of you in a-net. Should you have any suggestions or comments to improve my trip report I would be glad to hear it. Thank you.


[Edited 2012-07-18 05:14:27]
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RE: Garuda Holiday (Part 2): SIN Visit On The 738

Thu Jul 19, 2012 10:03 am


Apart from visiting friends, there were some places of interest that I’ve visited throughout my five wonderful days in the ‘Garden City’, Singapore. Hope you enjoyed some pics that I shared with you in this forum.

Oasia Hotel, located at Novena

Sunset in Singapore

Orchard Road, where Singapore goes shopping.

The Singapore Visitors Centre at Orchard Road

Marina Bay Sands

Universal Studios Singapore

Sentosa Island

'Skyride' at Sentosa Island

Jellyfish at Underwater World, Sentosa Island.

Well, before I could realise it, five days has passed too soon. It was already time for me to board my return flight to CGK and later, MEL. Hopefully you enjoyed some of this pictures of Singapore. This will continue with a report of my return flight GA837 to CGK.
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RE: Garuda Holiday (Part 2): SIN Visit On The 738

Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:20 am

The return flight out of SIN


Flight Number : GA837
Type of Aircraft: Boeing 737-800NG
Seat number : 20D
ETD: 2020
ETA: 2115


Since I wanted to enjoy the most of the garden city, I booked for the last GA flight out of SIN, which was GA837 flight which was flying out of Changi at 2020 hrs and reaching Jakarta at 2115. This enable a friend of mine to sent me off to Terminal 3 Changi Airport.

Changi Airport Singapore

The famous Changi AIrport ATC tower

Roads leading to T1 Changi Airport

The Changi Airport Skytrain, taken from another skytrain I was on.

Before checking-in, my friend and I were 'exploring' Terminal two and three before it was time for me to check-in my luggage. We were using the skytrain that connects the terminal buildings in SIN airport (except Budget Terminal). While travelling on the skytrain, it allows me to get some nice view of the famous Changi Airport control tower, as well as some roads leading to the airport, and the Crowne Plaza Hotel. Well, after around 15 minutes of exploring I was back again in terminal 3 to put my luggage into GA counter.

Check-in and Boarding

GA Executive Class check-in counter

Garuda had around six check-in desks for tonight's departure, with two dedicated for Business Class passengers, in which GFF platinum members are allowed use this desk as a privilege, although the particular member may be travelling in Y.

The duty free area on Changi Airport T3

After checking in, my family members and I were heading straight for passport control. As usual, passport control were always quick and efficient, and we were already on the luxurious Terminal 3 transit area without any hassle. The terminal was spacious and comfortable, while efficiency was always at its best in SIN. While some of my family did duty free shopping, I took some pictures of Terminal 3. Hopefully the pictures will help you to understand why this airport is my favourite, among other airports I have visited before.

Gate A19

Seating on Gate A19

Using another skytrain, we proceeded to our gate area A19, which were located in the corner along with A16, A17, and A18. A secondary security check on the gate was performed before passengers entering the boarding gate. This was common in SIN, and some other Southeast Asian countries airports. Around 10 minutes before scheduled boarding call in 1940hrs, there was an announcement that the flight would be delayed for around 20 minutes. The reason being was the late arrival of the aircraft from CGK.


Welcome Drink

Boarding was commenced on 2015hrs, and it was full flight again in Economy. Business Class were around 2/3 full. Welcome drink were distributed, which consists of packages of orange juice. Around 2030hrs we were on push-back heading towards the runway. Apparently during this timing there were quite numerous departures out of SIN, therefore we need to queue for take-off roll out of SIN. The queue itself add to the already late departure.


My seat

Crew running the meal service

My meal tray

My meal choice : Egg and meatballs

The flight took off from SIN around 2050hrs, heading southerly over islands of Batam and onwards to CGK. Meal services commenced shortly after took off, while IFE were on full swing on this flight as well. There is a choice of meal, which was egg with meatballs or seafood. Well, I chose for the egg and meatballs, so did my family members. The meal was decent in terms of serving quantity and quality, and was actually quite tasty. During the short 1hour 25minutes hop I decided just to listen to the choice of music in the IFE.

Our flight progress

Moving map

The signature 'welcome/selamat datang' on all GA IFEs

Approach into CGK

Throughout the short hop, passengers were either enjoying their IFE or choosing to take a short nap before arrival into CGK. Around an hour and 20 minutes into the flight, the captain announced from the flight deck that we were on descent to CGK. Landing into CGK were smooth and we arrived around 20 minutes behind the original schedule.

Landing into CGK

Baggage Claim for GA837 at CGK

CGK Baggage claim area filled with passengers arriving from different GA international flights.

CGK passport control were on moderate queue tonight, but the queue were still moving quickly. After the immigration check we headed for baggage claim and headed straight for the arrival hall where our car were already waiting for us to bring us back to our apartment. This marks the end of my adventure to Singapore this month.


In overall, flying GA on this flight I had nothing to complain about. Service were still up to standard, and meals were better this time. If their service and on board facilities remains the same on this sector, I am sure they would be able to win more share of the market on this busy route between SIN and CGK. Should you have any questions or comments to improve my trip report further I would be glad to hear it. Thanks for reading


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