04 Nov REVIEW: SINGAPORE AIRLINES BUSINESS CLASS 777-300ER SINGAPORE-BEIJING
Singapore airlines is arguably one of the best airlines in the world, especially when it comes to premium seats (business and first class). It remains, to this day, the “holy grail” for any aviation and business/first class enthusiast! We were privileged enough to experience Singapore airlines’ new business class onboard the B777-300ER on our 6-hour flight from Singapore to Beijing and we couldn’t wait to bring you this review!
Overall: Business class on Singapore airlines and in particular on the 777-300ER is one of the most special aviation experiences, especially when it comes at a cost of only 21.000 Aegean airlines miles and just over €40 in taxes! The legroom is definitely sub-optimal, especially for long flights and if you’re not seated in the bulkhead (rows 11 and 14), but overall the seat is so beautiful, functional, spacious and comfortable that you can overlook the issue. If you can find redemption availability then please do yourself a favor and don’t overthink it: just book it!
Booking: There are 5 daily, direct flights between Singapore and Beijing on Star Alliance carriers: 2 with Air China and 3 with Singapore airlines. Out of the two, Singapore airlines is definitely the one to go for so our goal was to redeem on one of its flights. Out of SQ’s three flights, one is on the A380, one on the 777-200 and the other on the 777-300ER, which has the new business class seat and hence, was our aircraft of choice. The A380 would have been good too but definitely avoid the 777-200 as it features angled-flat seats and it departs at an awful time (1.10am). After searching for availability on the ANA website we found one last (!) seat on the 777-300ER which we booked using Aegean miles for just 21.000 miles and €41,16! Flights in the Far East are a great redemption sweetspot for Aegean so we were really happy to score this ticket!
Lounge: Our flight was departing from Terminal 3 of Changi airport which has two SQ lounges: one for business class passengers and one for economy/premium economy passengers who have Star Alliance Gold status. We headed to the business class KrisFlyer lounge. It’s a very nice, functional, well equipped and beautifully decorated lounge but doesn’t really have a wow-factor. The food/beverage selection (especially the TWG teas!) is probably one of the best features and you will also find private showers with amenities if you need to freshen up before your flight.
The seat: Business class on the Β777-300ER has a total of 42 seats in a 1-2-1 configuration with 8 seats in the front part of the cabin and another 34 in the back, separated by the galley. If you have the choice, then definitely go for the smaller front cabin as it’s quieter and feels a lot more private. The seats are absolutely gorgeous and massive (71cm in width) and offer direct access to the aisle which is a great feature. However, the seats in the bulkhead (rows 11 and 14) have a significant advantage over all the rest: they have a lot of room to stretch your legs when either reclining or in bed-mode. In all other seats, leg room is noticeably restricted as you can only stretch your legs at an angle (see the photos below for details). This can be quite uncomfortable, especially on a long flight so if you can, definitely go for a bulkhead seat. Other than that the seats are beautifully designed, have tons of storage compartments and lots of nice touches: multiplug, USB/HDMI port, vanity mirror, a big storage compartment for laptops and lots of reclining options. When it comes to the bed, the big difference on SQ is that the back of your seat drops to the front to become your bed instead of the seat sliding forward. This creates a very comfortable sleeping surface area (198cm long) that doesn’t have the grooves you typically find on other seats. Overall, we absolutely LOVED the seat and wholeheartedly recommend it!
Food/Service: One of the best features of business/first class on SQ is that you can pre-select your meal from a VERY extensive menu that’s different to what you get on the flight. The so-called ‘Book the Cook’ service is available via “manage my booking” up to 24 hours before your flight and lets you choose from dozens (probably close to 30) of international dishes. Of course you can still choose from the normal menu on your flight if you change your mind. We chose the “Chargrilled Soya Beef” from the extended menu and it was delicious! We also really enjoyed the ice cream we were served for dessert. Service-wise you can’t really fault Singapore airlines; they are renowned for it and for good reason. Having said that, maybe it’s just us being Greek and all, but we did find the service a bit too ‘formal’. We would have preferred a bit more casual interactions with the crew but that’s more of a personal preference. Overall, the service is very refined and you can tell that the crew have been very well-trained to interact with business/first class passengers.
Entertainment system/Internet: The seats are equipped with a gorgeous, 18 inch HD LCD screen loaded with over 1000 different movies, shows etc. You also get noise cancelling headphones which were ok but the sound was a bit grainy so we definitely recommend the Bose Quietcomfort 35. What we didn’t like for sure, was that the screen was not a touch-screen and could only be controlled via a small remote which, unfortunately was a bit fiddly and not terribly accurate. We would have preferred something a little bit easier to use. Our flight offered internet access but the options were pretty disappointing as they had a low data cap and were very expensive (see pics below).
Amenity Kit: Singapore airlines does not offer a dedicated amenity kit to business class passengers. Instead, you get socks and slippers. You can, however, find a range of amenities (dental kit, shaving kit, comb etc.) in the bathrooms.