Review

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Review – SQ232 Sydney – Singapore

Just a couple of weeks ago now I picked up a relatively last minute award booking on Singapore Airlines to head up to the Singapore Grand Prix with my 4 year old daughter, Zoe, tagging along to see family.

Using KrisFlyer miles on this route for their excellent A380 Business Class cabin was a deal at 46,750 KrisFlyer miles per person plus ~$290 in taxes and fees.

This was done by transferring over Velocity points to KrisFlyer which credit immediately – so 63,115 Velocity points used for this transfer. Given I had the Velocity points in my account, and didn’t want to wait for credit card points to transfer, this was a great use of my Velocity balance.

Feature image from aero icarus on flickr

Research & Booking

I knew I would be heading up to the Grand Prix about 6 months beforehand, and understandably on a peak weekend I couldn’t find two award seats that far out, so I booked a fairly lengthy (but interesting to me) itinerary of heading to Singapore via Tokyo and Hong Kong.

However I was keen to try to minimise time away and fly direct, so set up a range of alerts via Award Nexus to keep an eye on Business and First Class availability to Singapore with British Airways and Qantas, and also with Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong too.

I thought I could put money on British Airways opening up Business and First Class seats at the last minute, but it didn’t happen. On the other hand I would have put money on Qantas not making points seats available.

The alternative was with Singapore Airlines who fly four times daily from Sydney, so I monitored award availability manually in the couple of weeks prior to departure, and around 10 days out, the perfect option came up – this flight up on the Friday before the race, and a departure on the Monday after. I’ll be reviewing that flight seperately next.

I didn’t want to miss out on this flight, so I was prepared to transfer the points over to KrisFlyer from Velocity and pay the transfer tax of the 1:1.35 transfer rate, instead of having them transfer from my Membership Rewards account where the transfer would have taken 24-48 hours.

Singapore Airlines Lounge, Sydney

Singapore Airlines Sydney Business Class Lounge (2)

When ever I travel with my kids, it seems like we run everything extremely tight for time, however hard I try to get us places with time to spare.

This flight was little different, and for an 11.15 am departure, we ended up with around 15 minutes in the lounge before boarding was called.

Singapore Airlines Sydney Business Class Lounge (1)

Singapore Airlines Sydney Business Class Lounge (3)

The lounge was nice – great views and comfortable seating, but really busy and some of the food stations had been emptied.

Singapore Airlines Sydney Business Class Lounge

I wouldn’t say it’s a lounge to aim to visit and kill time in, but it did the job nicely.

The Flight – Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin

On boarding, we found our way down to row 20-something and got settled in. The flight was full, and after some issues with the IFE (fixed with a lengthy restart) and a quick seat swap to keep the kid happy, we were on our way.

I was pretty happy to be flying on this airline, flight and route – my first time on Singapore Airlines’ A380, and was pleased that my expectations around the quality of the cabin and seats were met – muted brown leather all round, and comfortable too.

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (1)

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (2)

The 1-2-1 configuration means that all seats have aisle access, with the window seats being the most private. It was easy to converse with (and reach over to!) my seat mate in the centre seat next to me.

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (4)

A very private Business Class cabin

The seats are different from most other Business Class’ out there – the seat in front of you is closer than you’d expect, but your own seat is very wide, with a recess under the seat in front for your feet.

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (5)

Entertainment screen within close reach

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (3)

Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class Cabin (6)

The footrest and a heap of room for under seat bag stowage

When in recline mode this layout allows you to sleep with your head in one corner of one top of the bed with your feet down in the recess.

Dining on Singapore Airlines SQ232

When it comes to food, we were offered one main meal (lunch) and one snack toward the end of the flight.

It was crab to start, followed by my choice of lamb, and a cheesecake desert.

Crab Rice Paper Rolls - Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

Seared Lamb Loin in Pesto Veloute - Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

About two hours before landing, snacks were offered – I ate for two and had both some noodles and a roasted vegetable and chicken sandwich.

Seafood Noodle snack - Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

Roasted Vegetable Turkish Bread Sandwich - Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

All up the food was pretty good – nothing to be raved about, but no complaints at all.

Travelling with kids on Singapore Airlines / SQ232

For a flight of this length (8 1/2 hours) I’d prefer to travel in daylight with kids, and this was a perfect departure and arrival time to work with our body clocks.

Zoe on Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

Checking out the right-hand seat, no bed…

Zoe on Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class (1)

And enjoying some IFE in the left-hand seat, bed made.

I was really pleased we managed to snag this departure, and it worked as well I’d hoped in terms of timing.

The A380 Business Class seats were great with kids, with an even more ridiculous amount of width than as an adult. I think Zoe could have slept sidewise across hers.

However you do have to ensure you pick up the centre seats otherwise you’ll be reaching across the aisle to manage your childrens food and entertainment.

Singapore Airlines Bear

Summing up – Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class

The service was excellent, the crew didn’t miss a beat and were proactive in doing pretty much everything, including topping up my glass champagne before and during and lunch, as well as being kind to, and engaging with Zoe.

They attempted to custom make a meal for her from various components of adult meals which was much appreciated, and generally were just spot on.

I didn’t get a chance to experience my seat for sleeping or in bed mode, but the configuration seemed like it would be pretty comfortable. For just lounging about in the day, it was great.

I also appreciated having the entertainment screen a lot closer to me than usual, given the way your feet recess into the seat in front of you. It made the day mode feel like I was in much more of a suite-type set up.

All up, this was a great flight. I wouldn’t hesitate to redeem my points for Singapore Airlines Business Class again.

Comments Expand Comments

  1. Sam

    Hi Keith,

    If there is a choice between A380 or 777-300ER business class flights, which is better? I m looking for the flight from MUM-SIN-MEL and it seems to be the day flight is 777-300ER and the night flight is A380. There is a confusion which one to choose 😉

    • Keith Author

      I think it depends which type of Business Class is on the 777 operating – if it’s regional 2-2-2 without fully lie-flat seats then A380 is definitely better. But if it’s still 1-2-1 like the A380, then I’d just pick whatever flight times work best for your trip, they are going to be pretty similar.

  2. Robert

    You will love the suites on A380. I was lucky to redeem my Amex points last year and went to London. Service was second to none. The Private room in Singapore is just that. A nice room which is more secluded than the main business and first lounge but unfortunately none of the bells and whistles of other first lounges (i.e. spas or sleeping rooms). Also love the caviar served on board. The points difference between business and suites is not that great. Well worth it if travelling alone (SQ usually only releases one suite on saver award).

  3. James

    At least one of the daily MEL flights is on the newer 77WN, that would be a good option. Missus and I are booked on it in F in Dec. Stopover in SIN then 2x suites all the way to JFK.

  4. As a Melbournite, I’m intrigued to know if you think the side trip up to Sydney is worth it for the A380 experience? AFAIK it’s all older aircraft flying out of MEL.

    • Keith Author

      Confession: this was my first SQ trip. I love the A380 anyway as it’s just so quiet and big, so can imagine it could be worth it on the outbound, but on the return I usually just want to get home so probably wouldn’t bother. Our return was on the other end of the scale, their old/regional Business Class which isn’t lie flat. Review of that coming soon.

    • Keith Author

      Accommodation also done using points – Sheraton Towers using Starpoints, just a few stops from the GP gates on the metro as well. Review of that coming next.

  5. Thank you for a wonderful report! If you REALLY want something special, next time, try to get on the NEW business class with Singapore Airlines (from Sydney on the 77wN, usually SQ222). You had the older business class (still amazing) but the new one blew me away.

Links to this article

  1. Our list of featured flights during peak travel periods - Point Hacks
  2. The best options to get to South Africa using frequent flyer points - Point Hacks
  3. Earn up to 6000 KrisFlyer miles by booking an F1 Singapore Grand Prix package - Point Hacks

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