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Discovering more in Hong Kong, venturing new land in Taiwan!

 
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jbalonso777
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:03 pm    Post subject: Discovering more in Hong Kong, venturing new land in Taiwan! Reply with quote

'R.I.P, to all those souls lost in the tragic accidents which unfolded in the recent past, while wishing their families and loved ones the best..'

Hello everyone
And welcome.
To my fourth trip report of 2014.
This TR would probably reach ‘widths’ that have never reached by me before….

INTRODUCTION
Obviously, disappointment levels reached a crushing low when I learnt my Q400/B73H/B744 combination to BOM had to be cancelled. (Thank you, exams and internship Crying or Very sad). But then, this was not to last long as we decided to go to Hong Kong, revisiting this vibrant city once again, following the trip in 2010.. 6 days in Hong Kong, half the things seen, what else can we do? And importantly for us (Dad and I) avgeeks, how do we get there?

THE FLIGHTS!
I will be referring to a ‘base price’ here, which is equal to the CX/9W price on the BOM-HKG-BOM sector, on the same dates. INR, of course.
Starting off with the supposed cheapest combination(s):
UL @ -2.5k: via BKK, either on the one stop A332, OR Mihin A321 to BKK, get off at BKK, change to the A332 after a long transit. What. Shocked Plus anyways, the HKG flights weren't on the required dates so...
CX @ +1.0k: via BKK, all on 773s.

Then, on to the more conventional ones:
MH @ base price: 73H, 772 via KUL of course. 772 would be a new equipment, but didn't look too swell.. There was once a time when the 772 was a 380..
TG @ -1.4K: THAI Smile A320, B744 from BKK and back, long transit at BKK. B744 did look good, but there was once a time when the 744 was a 380..
SQ @ +1.7k: A333, A380 via SIN obviously. Wow..relatively inexpensive, new subtype (333) and new bird (A380!!!). No brainer? Me thinks so! Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

I'll be honest: I did plan my BOM summer in this way last year: TG A333 to BKK (they used to operate it back then), TG A380 to HKG, SQ A380 to SIN, SQ B77W to BOM. This was my first crazy plan to get shot down by Dad. I saw that coming. Rolling Eyes
Interestingly, a combination of CX 773 to BKK and EK A380 onwards to HKG was much much cheaper than the base price, including a longish transit, and the requirement of a tourist visa, eventually getting close to base price, so that was shelved. Plus the HKG-BKK A380 is a night flight so...

THE HOTEL(S)
Prime reason for this trip: visiting universities. The University of Hong Kong and The Chinese University of Hong Kong are two places which I am looking at for my higher education, starting 2015.
We decided to stay at the Harbour Grand Hong Kong, and the Regal Airport Hotel. You don't need a reason for the latter, do you? Wink
I chalked out an itinerary: we had planned 2 days more than required. 4 days was enough for us to experience our leftovers of Hong Kong. 2 days...what do we do?

NOW WHERE DO WE GO....?
Realizing the slight miscalculation in dates, we really did not want to let these 2 days go waste. Browsing through the records, I saw a picture Dad had taken just after we got off the ferry at Macau. An airline, belonging to the Republic of China.. 'TAIWAAAAAN!!!!' is what I yelled really loud late one night. New country, of course! This was then taken quite nicely by Mum and Dad, it was time to select the airline(s). Wow, 2 sets of airline selection in the same trip? I love that Razz

HX or 'Hong Kong Airlines' - combination of PW A332 and RR A333. The PW A332 would've meant that I would've been on all A332 sub types: GE, RR, PW. But not worth it, I felt.. Furthermore, its been covered by 'theairplaneguy4ever' already on this forum..
KA or 'Dragonair' - offering flights on CX, but all wide body flights were on A333s only. Some of them have the brand new IFE system (EK's Digital Widescreen HD type screens), others don't.. so it was a lottery..
CX or..come on you know this Razz - anything from an old 772/3/333 to the refitted 343/333/773/744 to the brand new 77W, while offering flights on KA...the combination of an A343 and B744 looked feasible..but then I've been on CX so...

It was down to the two airlines of Taiwan:
CI or 'China Airlines' (yeah, I used to think it belonged to the Peoples' Republic of China...) - again, the A343 and B744 combo looked nice: it sure is phenomenal to log in 3 quad-engine planes in one trip (all for the first time, that too..) but then again...there was one airline yet to show its hand...
BR or 'EVA Airways' (E-V-A Airways, not Eve-A Air Razz ) - combinations included flights on: A321, A332 (Hello Kitty), A333, B77W. But what really stood out were: MD90. B74E. Where E means a -400 Combi. Oh My GOD! Clearly a no brainer! I had to get up from my chair and walk around to contain my excitement: my hopes of being on a B744 were still alive, and this time onboard the rare combi version! Shocked
So then, it was on the bookings...

THE BOOKINGS..
Re-conforming the dates, we booked the hotels first.
Harbour Grand Hong Kong, 20th Aug - 23rd Aug
East Dragon Hotel, Ximending, Taipei 24th Aug - 25th Aug
Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong 25th Aug - 26th Aug

EVA Air was next, just to eliminate the excitement....or perhaps add to it? Hmm...
Very neat website BR have, I mean that's obvious for a member of Star Alliance! Details given in, an eticket itinerary was sent to my mailbox soon. I tried my luck in selecting the seats and VOILA it worked!

21H and K for Mum and Dad, 22K for me. Too much in the middle for my liking, if I be honest..
Interesting to note that BR's config is 3-2, while DL's MD90 is in a 2-3 configuration..


As you can see, 25A for me, 28A and C for Mum and Dad..
The hawk eye in you might've noticed that the seating arrangement on the B74E is in a 2-4-2 configuration. That's what you'd find onboard a bog standard A330 or A340, the 747 is much wider, capable of fitting a 3-4-3 configuration. Are EVA being overly generous? Nah, of course not! They're just selling premium economy seats on this short flight as economy. Its a mini victory for me!

SQ was the last set of bookings. Although there was a slight glitch initially (wherein the booking form reset itself, so we had to put in the data twice rather than once), the process was otherwise flawless. However, to my horror, almost ALL seats were blocked! But those were on the A333 CMB-SIN-CMB flights only, I got my desired seats for the A380...and I guess that matters more than anything else! Very Happy

So to summarize, the flights look something like this:
SQ469 CMB SIN 0120 0740 333 *A
SQ856 SIN HKG 0930 1330 380 *A
BR1852 HKG TPE 2200 2350 MD90 *A
BR871 TPE HKG 1640 1825 74E *A
SQ861 HKG SIN 1520 1910 380 *A
SQ468 SIN CMB 2255 0005 333 *A

So my first time on a *A airline, glad to have 2 members ticked in one go!
Incidentally, both PNRs started with the digit 8.. Hmm...

COUNTING DOWN TO THE TRIP
AND OTHER FLIGHTS I WASN'T ON!

The first few days after returning from Paris were particularly boring (as was the case in the summers prior..), but then I found plenty of things to keep me pretty occupied. In the midst of all of this, I decided to head over to SQ.com to see if the seats opened up: every single day.
A rude awakening one day meant that the university tours were completely booked, so the main reason for this trip was not going to happen. What even.

About a week before this trip, my elder brother came in. He wanted a quiet holiday, but he wasn't here for long. So Negombo was the most logical choice, of course with the planes taking off!
Jetwing Lagoon hotel was the place we spent a night in. Pretty good hotel with Sri Lanka's longest swimming pool, at 100m!


FR24 and a big lens...plane spotting in full swing! Wink


Pretty big room.


Equally big washroom!
To the left is the 'business area', center the bathtub, right the shower.


A6-EGY operating EK348 from DXB, later headed off to SIN.


Heavily delayed 4R-ADG operating UL848 to HRI and PEK


4R-ALG operating UL503 to LHR, my bird from CDG to CMB Smile


4R-EXM, FITS Air MD 82 Freighter..off to somewhere...
Optimus.Prime spotted her in BLR a few nights later.



4R-ADF operating UL127 to MAA, this bird would later bring in big brother from MAA. He flew into MAA on VT-SZF, SG308.

All looked good, as the plane landed into CMB 10 minutes before time. However, drama occurred when the pilot of ADF pulled into the wrong gate, so a tug had to be called to pull the aircraft into the correct gate! Oh, funny stuff happens in aviation!
A couple of pictures from the flight:




That night, 2 friends of mine were on board the late evening Emirates flight 653: it was a Boeing 777-300ER, A6-EBY. One of them was off to Male', the other to Dubai, where else Razz




Let me explain the on-goings of this picture: to the left, the fiery colors are the lights of the airport, the center is the moon, while lights in the sky are of A6-EBY, with the 2 friends of mine onboard Smile


WY372 operated by A4O-DC, an A332 to MCT..


Perhaps my best shot of the trip: QR659 operated by A7-ADT, an A321 to DOH..



EK651, aka 'Dobby's flight' (since my dog flew into SL on EK650..) operated by A6-ECZ, a B77W to you know where.
There was, as always, something special about a 777 flying overhead: the bank angle and wing flex, the sound of the GE90s, unique: yet so quiet! How graceful it looked as she took to the skies!

An update from my friend in Dubai - he and his family got seats on the A380 flight to Los Angeles, however, in Y class.

I'd say, he went for the Sri Lankan Lamb Curry.. Dinner on the MLE-DXB sector


The WHALE is registered as EEL!



I felt my friend's pain when he texted: 'Economy. 16 hours. 12 infants. 60 kids....'

Big brother departed for DEL on the 17th, (on 4R-ABJ and VT-SPO) while accompanying granny up to MAA (who flew back to CCU on VT-IGH). Once they went, the house grew silent after a long time. But then for us it was on to completing the visa application for Taiwan, and gathering all sorts of papers and pictures for the visa. Thanks to this amazing website, plenty of questions I had about the application process were answered. Kudos to Sankara for replying to a query I had in under 9 minutes; that too quite late at night!

In the next part -
My first: flight with SQ, flight on a *A member, flight on an A330-300.

Keep the replies coming in! Very Happy

Regards
Jish
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sabya99
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Jishnu, it’s a job well done. You have become a world traveler ! That lamb curry looks spicy and delicious.
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airindia787
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jishnu, you make me so jealous. First Paris and now Hong Kong within a relatively short span of each other.

But I guess I really can't complain too much since I have done some pretty extensive travel this year.

Looking forward to another excellent TR of yours. Hope to see some great pics of Hong Kong and especially of the food!
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PAL@YWG
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jishnu, I thought you are coming to UBC!
Good planning so far, waiting for the main part!

Yet to read and comment on all the exciting TRs you and others posted. Waiting till early fall when things will slow down...Let me enjoy the summer for now Very Happy
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Nimish
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great start to the TR Jishnu - and glad you've finally got on the A380 - a SQ one at that!
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jbalonso777
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey all, thank you so much all for reading this TR!
It gives me great encouragement!
I will be posting the first flight in a short while.

sabya99 wrote:
@Jishnu, it’s a job well done. You have become a world traveler ! That lamb curry looks spicy and delicious.

Thank you, Sabya sir! I hope its a start of something!
Yeah, Sri Lankan food is notoriously spicy, so I will bet against this being something different!

airindia787 wrote:
Jishnu, you make me so jealous. First Paris and now Hong Kong within a relatively short span of each other.
But I guess I really can't complain too much since I have done some pretty extensive travel this year.
Looking forward to another excellent TR of yours. Hope to see some great pics of Hong Kong and especially of the food!

Arun, great to hear from you! Smile
Yup, this has been one heck of a set of holidays, what happens after this is the complete opposite: staying at home for the obvious exams.
Yeah, we look forward to reading an awesome TR from you too! Wink
Pictures (of the place AND food) while be up soon, stay tuned! Very Happy

PAL@YWG wrote:
Jishnu, I thought you are coming to UBC!
Good planning so far, waiting for the main part!
Yet to read and comment on all the exciting TRs you and others posted. Waiting till early fall when things will slow down...Let me enjoy the summer for now Very Happy

Me studying Canada is as good as a chance as me studying in Hong Kong or US - I've narrowed it down to these three, so there is still a chance! Very Happy
I hope you find the time soon to read my other writings as well!
Thank you

Nimish wrote:
Great start to the TR Jishnu - and glad you've finally got on the A380 - a SQ one at that!

Hey Nimish, thanks for your reply! Yup, A380 is done and dusted, over 24 hours later, I'm still pinching myself and struggling to believe that I have flown on the A380. Laughing

The next reply would the TR. Stay tuned! Very Happy

Regards
Jish
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Spiderguy252
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for another great TR!

You're quite possibly the most well travelled member on the forum at present. Smile

Meanwhile, I get to do boring domestic hops on 320s/737s. Evil or Very Mad
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Theairplaneguy4ever
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, Hong Kong! I am jealous Jishnu. You better take a million pictures!

Quote:
Wow..relatively inexpensive, new subtype (333) and new bird (A380!!!). No brainer? Me thinks so!


Since both the SQ A333 & the A380 have their best hard product, I think you're gonna be blown away!

Quote:
MD90. B74E. Where E means a -400 Combi. Oh My GOD! Clearly a no brainer! I had to get up from my chair and walk around to contain my excitement: my hopes of being on a B744 were still alive, and this time onboard the rare combi version! Shocked


Very impressive. I believe the MD90 is the rarest aircraft to fly out of the MD8-9 derivatives? Or is that me?

Quote:
BR1852 HKG TPE 2200 2350 MD90 *A


Those timings are total crap from a avgeeks perspective though Smile

BTW, could you split this TR into multiple posts. The pictures have never fully loaded for me on the previous Paris TR of yours, I only got to see the onward flight. But, that's just me.

Cheers

Aditya

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jbalonso777
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everyone, I do apologize for bringing you this part quite late; drama unfolded last night but its all OK now, more on this later.

FLIGHT #1: SQ469 COLOMBO-SINGAPORE 20TH AUGUST 2014
Big brother was with us for the last day before he went back to DEL, so we decided to maximize whatever less amount of time we had: by staying up till 1 in the morning, so that meant it was around about 72 hours prior to our SIN flight departure. I decided to try my luck in the selecting of seats, and eureka! Some of the seats had been released, not all them. But since the seat I wanted was available, I quickly blocked it for myself Smile

47A. Hopefully the ideal sunrise seat!

ONLINE CHECK IN
This was, as you'd expect, a walk in the park. Or taking candy from a kid, you can decide Razz
There were 3 pages:
1. Passenger selection
2. This would eventually lead to details (mostly relating to passport..)
3. Check in confirmation page (seats were already blocked)

So that night (morning?), I completed check in for both flights, i.e. SQ469 to SIN and SQ856 to HKG.




Screenshots and BP

I fiddled around with the phone a little bit: I installed the superb well-functioning app and updated some more details (such as adding Mum and Dad's FFP numbers, AI of course.)


That tickled my brain cells a bit, and then I decided to download EVA Air's mobile app. Again, fantastic app. I'm really glad airlines are focusing on this!


THE DAY!
19th of August went quite slowly, but all went according to plan for my third A330 flight in a row. Except for the fact that Hong Kong's weather would be quite similar to what we experienced when we left in 2010: RAIN! Bummer.
Anyways, in the afternoon (around 1630 IST), I checked the registrations for the birds operating SQ406 to DEL and SQ118 to KUL, since these birds would return to SIN and head for HKG (the next day) and CMB (straight after the short hop) respectively. 9V-SKH and 9V-SSA were the birds. Always fun to get the registration right, but for me? I’ve had probably one of the worst records ever: 1 prediction correct out a million flights. Wow.

…and as it turned out, 9V-STV (9V-SURAT) took off from SIN slightly behind schedule to head for CMB. She operated the DEL 401/402 rotation before heading for CMB. I was hoping for other A333s because they did have cooler alternates (STG would be Stig; STR would be Scuderia Toro Rosso, F1 team; STD would be….never mind Rolling Eyes ) I was hoping for the SS* series of birds since these are just over half a year old. New planes. But oh well.

We called for a cab - bang on time, and the cabbie didn’t require directions either. And it was the first time we called them! Well done to them Smile
On the way to the airport (in an extremely underpowered Chinese spoof of a Proton), I spotted EY’s A320 departure to AUH.
Once at the airport, the usual 1:10 ratio was followed: 10 people seeing off 1 passenger. Through this human chicane we maneuvered, as the first 2 of our 3 security checks got completed. I met a fellow prefect along the way, who wished me a happy journey.
A slight wait of about 15 minutes later, check in for our flight was called, some 2 hours 45 minutes before departure time.

BAGGAGE DROP
There were plenty of counters for SQ, 2 for Business, 1 for OLCI, about about 6 for economy. Line was long, and with slightly confused entry and exits, it looked like it be a while before we got our boarding.
But this was not to last long as we got called to a J class line. In under 5 minutes, 6 boarding passes and 4 luggage tags were printed out. And this was with the slight chit chattering of the staff manning the counters. Good stuff!



The fact that ‘MAIN’ was written on the SIN-HKG boarding brought about a smile on my face - A380! Very Happy
Heading out of the growing maze, I encountered a friend who was with me on the Paris trip! Great, so 3 330 flights with him. Woohoo Razz
CX had a decently long line, EK were empty, while MH clearly have much less passengers now, judging by the length of the lines at check in!

PRE-BOARDING STUFF
Immigration was quick. No rudeness, nothing. Pretty straightforward. A heavily delayed (4 hours!) Mihin flight to Sharjah was boarding from one of the bus gets, as we leisurely walked towards our usual Palm Strip restaurant.
Took our spots, found 4 UL A320s. I didn’t even bother taking pictures. But I did…


The UL crew, most likely for the CDG flight (wonderful!) were sitting around using their smartphones. Us? Well, Mum and Dad stuck to their iPads, while I typed this TR out. Turned back after a while, only to see the heavens and opened and my God did it start pouring!
9M-MXD soon arrived in the rain from KUL, while the wait for 9V-STV from SIN, our plane, was on.


As the rain slowly subsided, 9V-STV got rid of all the standing water (okay, most of it) on the runway as the reverse thrusters were deployed on the RR engines. The beauty slowly taxied AWAY from us. And Gate 11 was supposed to be in front of us! Unannaounced gate change, that’s what. And that’s when the rain came down again. All of a sudden, gate changed to Gate 8. Not 11 as shown in the boarding pass.



The ThaiSmile A320 came in and headed for Gate 6. Ironically, it saddens me that its the ThaiSmile A320 service rather than the mainline Thai (A330) service. It was time for us to leave. Once again, the Palm Strips restaurant helped us to relax a bit, while doing (in this case, bare minimum) the usual spotting. Toilets were a bit messy, both airside and landside. This is something quite rare in Colombo to be honest….







BOARDING
Gate 11 had changed to Gate 8, right beside the UL A332 to CDG (Gate 9, replicating my Paris trip). A long line had formed, almost hallway between gates 8/9 and 6/7! Simple, this was because of the common security hold area for Gates 8 and 9. Both the UL flight and my SQ flight seemed to be quite full. Add to that, a seemingly packed CX flight to BKK and HKG. But then, the CX gate changed from 8 to 7, so many passengers were caught unaware. And hence, they waited in line for long, for no reason.
Anyways. security was…interesting. While they insisted I open my shoes, they allowed me to keep my laptop in the bag only, no need to remove it for the extra frisk!


Anyways, a cheerful SQ (yeah, one of the few..) agent greeted me, tore the stub off and wished me a pleasant flight. 242 pax + 5 infants, read the numbers on the screen. Finding a place to sit was kinda difficult, but we found places to sit. The pre-boarding announcement was made at 0050. This prompted most of the passengers to walk up and casually board the plane….and they were allowed to!
Once boarding was called (Business and PP flyer, then KrisWorld higher statuses and families, and then finally rows 50-63, then 30-63). It was a quick and uninterrupted process, and I soon stepped on board 9V-STV.




I was shown my way by a Singapore Girl, but then…really it didn’t feel as warm as I expected it to be. I reached my seat, it is in the first of 2 economy sections, row 46. A pillow, blanket and headphones were already placed on the seat. A very friendly Australian man occupied 46C. I say friendly, he more than obliged to put my bag into the overhead bin.


Pillow, blanket, legroom...

My Paris trip friend and his family occupied the center part of row 47. And all of a sudden, I was a bit startled to see a Singapore Girl appear from no where give me a hot towel! And by hot, I mean piping hot, its not even a joke. I saw the steam coming off it, but it was too less to be caught on camera.




Metallica! Death Magnetic! \m/

Overhead bins were closed as we looked set for an on-time departure. Menu cards were distributed and as expected, it was a choice between fish and chicken. The towels were collected soon after. Special meal requests were confirmed, including Mum’s seafood meal.

DEPARTURE
The Captain introduced himself and his crew and gave some details about the flight…not all…he mentioned about some turbulence on arrival, and that was about it. Pushback commenced about 2 or 3 minutes behind scheduled as the 2 RR Trent 700 engines whirred into life.



Interesting.. the cushions were removed, us passengers had to put them back on..

There were some really sound hammering and thumping sounds. In fact, before the plane moved or braked, there would something which sounded like iron rods falling before finally stopping or moving.. Curiously, I found these similar sounds on 9W’s A330 in 2010 (when it was about 2 years old), but none on UL’s classy old A332s. I wonder what happened there… (stealthpilot...little help?)
We slowly taxied towards the active, Runway 22 as the Cathay B773 taxied in after arrival. After squeaking and screeching, the pilots aligned STV with the runway and performed a smooth take off to lift STV into the skies gracefully. And once again, it had started to pour. I wonder why that day was chosen as the rainy one!

INFLIGHT
The similar sound of ‘stones running through the fuselage’ occurred as we went higher into the sky. That sound, I’ve heard on 9Ws and ULs A332s. The seat belt signs take a while to be swathed off, and it eventually does quite a bit later, as we set into a smooth cruise of 37000 feet, while groundspeed rarely went over 830 km/h.

A separate Formula One section...2 Metallica albums...is SQ my favorite airline?




The menu. I think SQ have the best beverage selection in Y. Period.

A drink service started (being served from the tray) which was inclusive of a glass of water, orange juice, white wine and beer. I went for the obvious one (OJ).
The special meals were then distributed one by one, seafood meal being the last one to be served. Almost an hour had passed by on this flight and still the drinks were being refilled. This included wines being served from a bottle. So I watched a documentary on how engine performance (the minute differences) affects F1’s pecking order. It was pretty okay; I mean, it was shot before the opening race, so we know a lot by now than we did back a few months ago. I also found that there’s not one but TWO Metallica albums on the KrisWorld system: The Black Album and Death Magnetic.


The first time I've found F1 related stuff on a plane! But then again, I remembered the Singapore GP from 2014 onwards will be called the Singapore Airlines Grand Prix...something along those lines!


Coat hook and cup holder. Neat!


Good that these are there...but honestly, who is going to bring in so many wires on a plane?!


Laptop barely fits in!


Footrest. Even more comfortable than what meets the eye!



Ah, the much talked about light under the monitor. IMO, these are amazing, and helped big time. It eliminates the need for a reading light...which might fall on the co-passengers face when he/she is asleep.


Top Gear Burma Special Part 1!


0218 IST, 0448 SGT: lights on!

With just one drink down, I was feeling quite thirsty. Time for a drink! I called an FA, and asked for a Bitter Lemon. She politely declined, telling me that since meal service would commence soon, I can ask for it then.
But that was not to be as the very same FA came down the aisle with a smile, holding a glass of Bitter Lemon! Good stuff, SQ! Smile




Hello ladies Wink




The food trolley was rolled out from the front galley at 0228 IST, 0458 SGT. At 0245 IST, a bit over 15 minutes and 100 odd passengers served later, I got my meal tray. And I ask for a peppermint tea. At first, I thought this was ignored but before I knew it, another FA came down the aisle giving me the tea on a separate small tray. Meal trays were being taken back at 0315 IST, but I took a bit longer to finish than usual. When I was done, the FA offered me a drink. How could I say no? I asked for a Coke.


No seeds in the fresh fruit...and for once: actual fresh fruit!


My God what a salad! Cold but soft potatoes, precisely boiled shrimp, flavors balanced with the sauce - yum!


Okay, I'm lost for words here....the best main course in Y for me...ever? Mash was awesome, chicken was mind blowing, and the boiled veggies were equally awesome! I'm sorry, the meal was just too good for me to describe Laughing


Peppermint tea!


Post meal Coke!

KrisWorld is a pretty decent IFE system. The content might not match that of I.C.E, but it functions well. Its also rather unique because its not a touchscreen. I decided to watch the Top Gear Burma Special Part 1; the show got stuck thrice while at times the music would voices and I couldn’t understand what Clarkson, Hammond and May were saying. Also, I kept checking the connecting gates information; it showed that details will be available one hour before landing. I tried: 1 hour, 56 minutes, 52 minutes, 47 minutes, 33 minutes….7 minutes before landing, nothing popped up. This was a vital piece of info for us, and since we were heading back to base in SIN, this feature not working is surely not a good thing at all...
We were cruising at 37000 feet, groundspeed barely reaching over 850 km/h. Duty free sales started at 0319 hours IST, and once this was complete, lights were finally turned off for passenger to sleep. I didn’t sleep, of course Razz
I had to visit the washroom, however just when I got up, the seatbelt signs were turned on. SQ is known for zero tolerance on this: if the Captain puts the seat belt sign on, you better be sitting your butt down. However for me…it was getting a bit out of control. An FA walked out of the lavatory and she saw me standing there.. ‘Sir please return to your seat’, she said. I told her ‘Please, just 2 minutes..’ to which she smiled and said ‘Okay sir, but please be careful!’.

I set about my usual business; quick pitstop and then toilet inspection. For a flight of this length, I must say I was a tad disappointed looking at the condition…especially straight after being serviced by the crew. As I stepped out, the FA ushered me to my seat…yeah, she was standing there all the time Embarassed

The soggy tissue...even after being serviced by the FA Rolling Eyes



Cologne was empty, sadly...

With nothing much to do, I set about writing bits of this trip report, just when I saw a few signs of the sun rising.


Gradually, the sun rose and oh what a treat it was to see! Passengers gradually started waking up to see this beautiful work of art unfold. And soon, the Captain back over the radio from the cockpit and briefed us on the situation in Singapore. While of these happened in the lift, the Singapore Girls (and boys) kept checking on the passengers, by doing rounds of OJ/water, switching off PTV monitors for those asleep, etc.

Its a new-ish day!


Medan


Beautiful, innit?

44 minutes from arrival, the plane clocked a speed of 846 km/h, perhaps the highest reached through out the course of the flight. 37 minutes from arrival, the Captain came over the PA to give us the details: slight haze in SIN, 26 deg celcius, local time (time zone difference to set watches) and a 0750 hours time of touchdown, and a further 10 minutes of taxiing around. 20 minutes after schedule. The Captain apologized , saying that this happened due to headwinds, and there was nothing he could do to eliminate the delay. An FA had problems communicating with an elderly woman, as she spoke only Sinhala. The FA came up and asked me if I knew Sinhala, to which I denied, but she smiled and said it wasn’t an issue, and found someone else..
This is where EK really wins, with the multi-lingual crew. But then again, would they have a Sinhala/Tamil speaking crew on the CMB-SIN flight is another story as a whole.




Why do all SQ birds have red paints on the edge of the fairings? Question


The sun went through the windows and on to other (sleeping) passengers' faces. Importantly, it wasn't only the avgeek with the window open, so that's Jishnu 1, others 0.










ARRIVAL
After a few more rounds of water, the crew prepared the cabin for arrival. Slowly and steadily, STV was brought closer and closer to the ground. A slightly hard touchdown was made at Singapore Changi, and we began our long taxi towards Terminal 2. I still wonder why they didn’t use the runway closest to Terminal 2?! It would’ve saved a lot of time. Anyways, the windows fogged up so taking pictures was senseless. I did see 9V-SSA: her engine cowlings were opened up. God knows why. I also saw 2 Jet Airways 737-800s. It felt really good to see something homely! There were so MANY A380s! I felt it really hard to figure out which one would take me to Hong Kong! We docked at Gate E5 and most pax rushed out since they had transit flights to catch. I was off to HKG, my friend off to Ho Chi Minh…. (yeah, that flight was operated by none other than STV!) And SO many Australians and / or Sri Lankans heading to Australia. Hmm, I wonder how many of the seats on this flight are actually O/D… As we got off, there was one person handling the transits, and he was calling all of the passengers going to Hong Kong and Taipei. Hmm, Hong Kong? That’s us! But just to reconfirm, I asked him ‘SQ856?’. He said loudly, ‘NO, NOT 856!’ Jeez, okay man! Rolling Eyes This flight, is the 777-200ER service to HKG, departing at 0830-ish.



I will be putting up the videos soon, stay tuned!

In the next part: the A380! Very Happy

Regards
Jish
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spiderguy252 wrote:
Thanks for another great TR!

Thanks Varun! Its just the start, please do stay tuned! Very Happy

Spiderguy252 wrote:
You're quite possibly the most well travelled member on the forum at present. Smile

Hahaha! As long as the holidays last, yeah, I guess so!

quote="Spiderguy252"]Meanwhile, I get to do boring domestic hops on 320s/737s. Evil or Very Mad[/quote]
Those domestic flights do get very very boring after a while....but since I fly so less, back in 2011 I always was excited before each of my 20+ flights...all of them on the A320s and B737s...but that's me! Rolling Eyes

Theairplaneguy4ever wrote:
Wow, Hong Kong! I am jealous Jishnu. You better take a million pictures!

Hey, great to hear from you, Aditya! Yup, plenty of pictures taken! Very Happy

Theairplaneguy4ever wrote:
Since both the SQ A333 & the A380 have their best hard product, I think you're gonna be blown away!

No intention to nitpick, but if you think about it..its their second best product, considering the fact that SQ's post Sep '13 B77Ws have a better product! But then again, the A333/A380 product is fantastic anyways, and pretty much industry standard!

Theairplaneguy4ever wrote:
Very impressive. I believe the MD90 is the rarest aircraft to fly out of the MD8-9 derivatives? Or is that me?

Er, I'm not too sure about this...I think there are plenty of MD-8/9 opportunities in the US, but outside the States, its rare.

Theairplaneguy4ever wrote:
Those timings are total crap from a avgeeks perspective though Smile

True story. But then, there are compromises you have to make in order to get something...timing here is one..but it should be fun! Very Happy

Theairplaneguy4ever wrote:
BTW, could you split this TR into multiple posts. The pictures have never fully loaded for me on the previous Paris TR of yours, I only got to see the onward flight. But, that's just me.

Sorry about that..
I eventually did end up spamming the Paris TR, since I did not want to delay it too much and forget stuff about this TR! That was in multiple posts, too..but yeah..I spammed it all too much.
I'll shorten this TR considerably and the ones after this...no worries! Smile

Regards
Jish
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Superb report Jishnu! Amazing attention to detail as always! Been off whatsapp for a few days after the "smart (ass) phone" conked & missed your continuous updates!

Loved the in flight pictures and descriptions. Amazing bit of planning to manage a dream itinerary. Your enthusiasm in flying the A380 clearly coming through & brought back memories of my flight on 9V-SKA in March 2008.

And one last bit about the spotting pictures, you have managed crazy and beautiful angles, something I dream of capturing daily!

Regards,
Pats
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FLIGHT #2: SQ856 SINGAPORE-HONG KONG 20TH AUGUST 2014
IN TRANSIT


T2 spotting along the way...

Duty free shops

SQ operates out of both T2 and T3 in SIN. T2 is for the tier 2 cities (India, SL, Middle East, etc) while T3 is for the top tier cities (Australia, Europe, China, Japan, etc). So connecting between these is very simple: the SkyTrain! Due to some royal screw up in our watches, we somehow ‘lost’ 30 minutes, and by the time we were waiting to board the SkyTrain, boarding for SQ856 was well underway. How we messed up, I do not know. But anyways, we took the SkyTrain to T3, and began a long walk to gate A4.

Sky train..leaving T2, heading for T3

SIN ATC and the hotel we so nearly came and stayed in!

Inside the SkyTrain

The long walk reminded me of Dubai’s T3, in fact, even the atmosphere was just like that of DXB T3, but SIN’s T3 felt more roomier and less congested, making for an overall better impression. I found the 9W cabin crew, and an AI pilot. I remembered, that’s another B787 then! An array of shops were present, while parts of this terminal were being refurbished. The walk from the SkyTrain to any of the A gates is quite long, and we did have to rush a little bit.


M&M's holding (and eating) durian. Please, may that not be a sign of durian flavored chocolate! Shocked


Massive terminal!

By the time we reached the common security for gates A1-A5, boarding had commenced. Security was quick despite the long lines, SIN efficiency at its best. I saw a bit of the A380’s head…but it was only when I got oh so close…face to face…that’s when it struck me: this whale is larger than I thought! The wingspan: LONG! The engines: HUGE! And the fuselage: ENORMOUS! No, it didn’t look this big when my bus to board the plane in DXB drove right in front of it! I had to walk almost 15 rows of chairs just to get the registration: guess what? I was wrong as usual! Laughing Not SKG, it was 9V-SKB. The second A380 to enter commercial service.

A challenge for my wide-angle lens just to get the entire wingspan!

They call it the WhaleJet or the SuperJumbo, I call it the Ugly Egg Head Twisted Evil
No but seriously, there is something about the forehead which bothers me...

BOARDING
Boarding was being announced when we got there. Then boarding for rows 40 (?) onwards was announced, and boarding for the upper deck separately. In the gate beside us, there were plenty of passengers sitting there. They were waiting to board the A333 (9V-STE) to BNE. As we joined the line, a Boeing 777-300ER of EK (who else? Wink ) landed in from DXB. This was A6-EGU. The line grew short very quickly as boarding was being completed. Boarding stubs weren’t torn off, the third time for me here in SIN. And the third airline. I walked closer and closer to the A380. Two failures later this was finally happening!

It doesn't look very pretty from this angle Sad


9V-SKG from DEL. The plane which I thought would operate my flight...


Finally! I get a decent picture of this view! Pity the upper deck aerobridge along the way...

And once I stepped in on the red carpet in the galley (wasn't very clean to be honest..), a warm smile greeted me as I walked into the whale’s tummy, she pointed the way to my seat. This was the Singapore Airlines I always expected! Along the way, two other FAs greeted me while another one offered me to take my bag and show me to my seat 48K.

The dirt is evident Shocked

I was beyond impressed at this point. But what was more impressive - the Airbus A380. This plane is one in which you can see SPACE written all over! The overhead bins were significantly different from the A333, a prime reason for the increased space. Then of course, a comfortably fit in 3-4-3 seating: quite a wide body! Also, a huge gap between the seat and the wall, ideal for tall people to sleep. Dad was already in his seat 47K, and judging by his facial expression, he too was beyond amazed by what he was going to be in for the next few hours. I took my seat, and looked out of the window: ‘Holy mother f…wow!’ (I saved myself from saying a very bad word in front of my Dad Laughing ): that wing! And add to that, another A380! (Which was: 9V-SKG, the bird I thought would operate my flight but no I’m wrong!) I made myself comfortable in the already assessed seat. Very comfortable, these are ideal for the ULH flight! As boarding goes on, I start to observe what’s going on: the brown carpet had some stains over it, while the stickers on my seat were peeling off. The overhead bins had many black spots…each and everyone of them! How and why I do not know. Still though, I wasn’t complaining as I was glad to be on an A380, finally!


THAT WING! Shocked


Okay, let me get the confusion sorted: the A380 does NOT have huge windows. The actual window through which you see things are TINY. A320 tiny. But I must say the amount of plastic there is impressive Razz

You can actually feel how wide this plane is! 48A seems to be miles away!

Stickers peeling off. Interesting.


Piping hot towels!

Meal confirmations were being done (same, seafood for Mum) while others received the menu cards. MORE beverages on this route, while there is a menu in Chinese text as well! There were 2 choices: chicken and pork. Took me a long long time to decide…
An announcement was made for all passengers who cannot fit their luggage in the overhead bins, to check them in.

Passengers stopped boarding, overhead bins were closed, the crew were walking around checking on the passengers. It was getting warm onboard. Something told me…a delay was imminent. No word from the captain, nothing happening on the ground. Meanwhile, the ground shook a little as a miniature 77W (<- I actually said that Rolling Eyes) in the albino *A livery got its engines started. The fuselage looked tiny compared to what I was on…but the engines being impressive as ever. Another A380 of SQ departed, followed by a Jet Airways B737! This delay was sure…when the Captain came over the PA to give us some information about the flight at 0942 hours, 12 minutes after departure time. He mentioned the usual, but highlighting the fact that due to ATC delays, we’ll only be in the air earliest at 1005 (so, later than that..), while pushback should commence within 2-3 minutes time…..

Checking out KrisWorld. Singapore Airlines is the main sponsor for the 2014 Singapore GP, that's evident...

One A380, another A380!


Spacious cabin


Aww look at you little fella! Laughing

Ground shaking start, as usual!

DEPARTURE
And about 7 minutes later, we finally pushed back. I saw SKG (which came in from DEL) with one of its engine cowlings open. Slowly, all 4 of the Rolls Royce Trent 900 engines were brought into life…and compared to the GE90, this was heaven for some…while hell for me since I love the loud GE90s! But anyways, the silence was unbelievable for an aircraft of this size! The flap whine too was…wow.. Never have I heard flaps that loud!
Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 pushback in Singapore

Its just an enlarged A320...
Its just an enlarged A320...
No! Its not! This is a fantastic piece of engineering!


Once the start up procedure was complete, slowly SKB started taxiing towards runway 20C for departure. And of course, like STV this bird too had that sound of ‘iron rods falling’ before actually moving. Or braking. A long taxi lasting nearly 25 minutes followed, as we passed by an annoying UL A320, 2 EK 77Ws, a Globemaster, and followed a SQ Boeing 747-400F for departure. I also figured that the AI flight was not a B787, but in fact the long serving A332, due to some unsurprising Dream)liner issues.

9V-SKG


That's some work going on...


Next time, stay away from my sights when I'm not in Sri Lanka, please? Smile


2 EK 77Ws


Well, that's interesting! (UAE Air Force)


AI A332!


She's rare these days...especially since the cargo version is gone..


A long day's rest!
Once we lined up on the runway, full power was applied to the 4 Rolls Royce Trent 900 engines as SKB slowly but surely thundered down the runway, albeit very quietly! There was a puff of black smoke as the 4 engines were powered up…that looked a tad scary! I had a good view of Singapore city as we departed into some moderately thick clouds.
Singapore Airlines A380 take off from Singapore

This thing can actually bank....wow.


INFLIGHT
Once the seatbelt signs were turned off, announcements were made for the onboard WiFi service (at rip off prices…but pretty OK for emails and light browsing), while the FA made an apology for not having a hot beverage service due to turbulence. Accepted. Almost instantaneously the water and Orange Juice rounds were done…while the actual brunch service started at 1037, with the distribution of the special and pre-ordered meals. Meal service eventually started a few minutes later, but since I was sitting in the middle of the economy section, and with 2 trolleys (one from the very front, the other from the rear) serving, I was one of the last ones to be served. Still quite confused about what to eat, I quickly asked for a pork, the Asian meal option. The size of the tray was of the normal SQ size, while the portion was a bit smaller than I was expecting…Especially because this was a flight to one of SQ’s Tier 1 destination(s).....

Well well, aren't you for the elite? Smile


Exact same menu as on CMB-SIN-CMB...except the fact that Soya Bean Milk is served too..


They both look and sound delicious...but the western breakfast is something I've always had onboard....


In Chinese as well!


OJ from the first drinks service



WiFi brochure


A380 safety card. Not in the best of conditions, is it? Sad


Very different from the ones on the A330. But this set probably makes more sense...


Overhead stuff


Meal time! Went for the pork...


Looks shabby, tasted the complete opposite!


'Orange Cooler'


Freshly cut fruit and dessert - all very nice! Very Happy
However, the meal tasted quite good. Yes, the main course looked a bit 'messed up’, but it tasted much much better than that. The pork slices were quite honestly: divine! There was a decent amount of gravy to go along with that, so the rice noodles tasted quite good. The bun was a bit cold when I got it, there were plenty of preservatives to go along with that. Fruits were fresh and unseeded, while the dessert was…wow! Well done to SQ on the meal front again! Very Happy

Trays were collected at 1145 hours, while drinks were served along with that. I went for one of the non-alcoholic cocktails: orange cooler. I think its just orange juice and soda, maybe something else, but my God this was amazing! Really, SQ have a high standard in catering!
An hour and 15 minutes remained as I watched the second part of the Top Gear Burma Special. That, never gets old. I laughed all the way again Razz

'The Perfect Lap' - a documentary about how little things can be change to make big gains....good for those who do not watch F1. I switched over to Top Gear..

Top Gear done? Time for Metallica!


Massive space!

Clear day! Perfect for flying!

Asked the Singaporean lady and Kiwi man to move over because I wanted to walk around a bit - and visit the washroom. There was a line at the end of my economy section, so I walked further down to the end of the last Y section. There is a massive waiting area there, in front of the stairs! It really felt like a washroom waiting area for any cruise ship! An FA serviced my washroom was I started dancing around a bit (the massive area does allow space for dancing.. Rolling Eyes ) Finally, I did my little thing quickly, took a few photos: I was amazed to find dental kits left in the washroom, all for Y folk use! Again, well done to SQ! However, the washroom was a bit out of shape, probably showing its signs of aging. Went back to my seat and fell asleep for a bit.


Always special to be standing close to a flight of stairs on a plane Smile


Notice the 2 shades of carpeting...just like 2 different shades of seat covers..


Door Smile


Elevator of some sort!


For the Y folk Smile


Loaded and ready for use!


I like those lights!


Flush button with that TRON ring!


Strangely, it was a very smooth flight all along!


Not a massive A320..
Not a massive A320..


I slept for…perhaps 15 or 20 odd minutes..
But that felt like about 5 or 6 hours. And I also felt that I was on the aircraft for a good 8 or 9 hours, and I was feeling quite tired. Probably the signs of a sleepless night. This overly multiplied feel made me want to get out of this otherwise comfortable plane.
Checked the beverages menu - what could Soya Bean Milk taste like? I was curious. I asked for a sweetened one. An FA came by with a smile, asking me what I want…and then eventually he got it from me from the galley behind me. As you’d expect, I loved this one. A new thing try on Singapore Airlines, and once again it was fabulous!

Sweetened soya bean milk...here's hoping you're found in Sri Lanka too!

We were cruising at 39000 feet, closing in to Hong Kong. The Captain came over the PA system just a few minutes before decent as he gave details of our arrival into Hong Kong: a slight chance of rain, 82 deg F, arrival time of 1340 hours, 10 minutes later than scheduled.
After his announcement, he asked for the crew to secure the cabin for arrival.

Almost there!


Here we go..the first real turbulence on the A380...


ARRIVAL
The clouds grew thicker and darker as SKB lowered closer and closer towards Hong Kong. There was some bloody strong turbulence…and for once, I was scared of turbulence: come on, the A380 is a massive plane. And the larger a plane is, the lesser turbulence is felt. And since this bird dropped significantly, this was clear indication of a high amount of turbulence! Spots of rain fell on the window as I saw a few of the tall sky scrapers through the gaps in between the thick black clouds. Slowly, the flaps were lowered, making the amazing whine sounds. The clouds grew thicker and the rain got heavier as we were now on final approach into Hong Kong. A smooth-ish touchdown was followed by extremely hard braking: almost like a Boeing 737 landing in Mumbai, trying to make the rapid exit towards Terminal 1B. Slowly, SKB taxied towards the Gate. Once all doors were disarmed, it started to get quite cold. And dark. The orange mood lighting helped…




Singapore Airlines A380 landing in Hong Kong



^^ Rishul, those are for you Smile





Soon, all of the passengers disembarked. I was, as usual, one of the last ones to get off the planes. Once off the bird, it was time to head for arrivals. This included traveling the super-fast passenger mover. Immigration was once again a quick affair, while taking bags took a while. I was reminded then, after my IndiGo flight a few years ago, the Captain told me not to fly on the A380 unless I have priority tags, since it would take forever for the bags to arrive. And that’s exactly what happened…well, not forever, but it took longer than normal..much longer. Incidentally, bags of the CMB/BKK CX flight was just on the belt alongside! Exchanged some currency, and then headed off to get an octopus card done. Jason, if you’re reading this: your details and description of the place to get the Octopus Card done helped big time, and saved time too! Thanks! Smile

Useful!


Middle cabin..cream and brown seats, brown carpet


Front cabin..green-ish brown and blue seats, blue carpet


Oh, you ugly yet magnificent bird!




So many bags!


Arrivals section...bustling as ever!

Our original plan was to take a bus (a looooong bus rude) to the Harbour Grand Hotel, but later we were told that taking the Airport Express would be more convenient as there are shuttle buses straight up to the hotel. Not taking the Airport Express in 2010 disappointed me a bit, but then this time, it happened unknowingly. So this was good Very Happy The rain had gone away by now as the train rushed through the outskirts and underwater of Hong Kong.

All aboard the Airport Express!

It was a longish wait for the shuttle bus to arrive, but once it did, we finally got to the hotel. Rain had arrived once again, and this time its a torrential downpour. I had planned to finish off where we left off: we missed out the Victoria Peak in 2010, but this time, I wanted to it, first things first. However, the weather decided to be the same as where we left off, a thunderstorm in the vicinity…..

I wil be putting up the next part very soon..
Till then please let your replies coming in!

So in the next part: drama in Hong Kong

Regards
Jish

Edit: Thanks for your reply, Pats! Very Happy
Sorry to hear about your phone, but funny comment Razz
Now I guess you can follow the trip report here Smile

The spotting angles - well, no choice there really, since there is a massive lagoon in front..unless I hired a boat and positioned it properly! Speaking of spotting, there are plenty of spotting pictures coming your way! Stay tuned!

Everyone, I also uploaded the videos of SQ469 to SIN
Start up and pushback
Take off
Landing

Regards again
Jish
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ameya
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Super pics Jishnu. Enjoyed the TR
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ameya sir, thank you! Very Happy

Everyone, after a lot of thinking, I have decided to split this TR into many parts. Considering the fact that many of you might not have the internet speed to load all pictures, I will be posting separate parts:
1. Hong Kong non-aviation stuff
2. Hong Kong spotting (before TPE)
3. Taipei flights (both)
4. Taipei non-aviation stuff
5. Hong Kong spotting (many parts to this, I still need to think about it...)
6. The two return SQ flights.

So there's plenty coming up, I hope this enhances the reading experience...

Please please do give me feedback, because I will make changes accordingly for my next TR onwards, let this be an experiment.

Regards
Jishnu
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The SQ 330s look nice. Then again everything except the old SQ cabins are probably good. Food looked good + IFE looked good- that's the basics for me.

Do you listen to a lot of the audio selection(s) on flights? I never do- just movies/TV shows, come to think of it I don't even bother checking what music they have I just listen to my own.

They gave temperatures in fahrenheit?

jbalonso777 wrote:
Curiously, I found these similar sounds on 9W’s A330 in 2010 (when it was about 2 years old), but none on UL’s classy old A332s. I wonder what happened there… (stealthpilot...little help?)

Hammering and thumping sounds ...... no idea Laughing

jbalonso777 wrote:
Due to some royal screw up in our watches, we somehow ‘lost’ 30 minutes, and by the time we were waiting to board the SkyTrain, boarding for SQ856 was well underway. How we messed up, I do not know.

Yup that's India/SLs silliness. With their x:30 mins off GMT. Just have to be different and confusing.

jbalonso777 wrote:
They call it the WhaleJet or the SuperJumbo, I call it the Ugly Egg Head Twisted Evil

A face only a mother could love Wink She's not the prettiest but she is the awesomest (until the 350 comes along hehehehe)
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your reply, Nikhil! Very Happy
stealthpilot wrote:
Do you listen to a lot of the audio selection(s) on flights? I never do- just movies/TV shows, come to think of it I don't even bother checking what music they have I just listen to my own.

I just check the music section to see if Metallica are there or not...its an obsession. Embarassed Anyhow, I mostly watch TV shows, my flights haven't been long enough (yet) to watch a movie comfortably.

stealthpilot wrote:
They gave temperatures in fahrenheit?

FA announces both C and F after landing, but pilots often miss out on giving the temp in C...

stealthpilot wrote:
Hammering and thumping sounds ...... no idea Laughing

Let me help Razz
In this video, that thump comes at around 0:21 (just after the sneeze Rolling Eyes )
And here at 3:09 and 4:08. I think its something to do with the brakes, it was equally loud on the A380, almost the same as a car brake disc Shocked


stealthpilot wrote:
A face only a mother could love Wink She's not the prettiest but she is the awesomest (until the 350 comes along hehehehe)

Agreed Smile
Magnificent, she is.
But in all honesty, the A330 looks good, too! Very Happy

Stay tuned for the other parts as well!

Regards
Jish
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for posting a detailed report and I like your description of the A380 - Ugly Egg Head which I think is a great description. I have not flown on Singapore Airlines for quite a while now (thanks to my companies low fare policy) so it was good to know the standards are still maintained.

Regarding the noise “stones running through the fuselage’ I hear that when the flaps are being lowered and during braking on A330 and sometimes on A380. It is more audible on the A330 as compared to the A380 thoug.

Honk Kong landing is always a stomach churning rollercoaster. As the aircraft comes over the south china sea there are heavy wind drafts specially if it rains and as a frequent traveler I have seen myself holding on to the hand rest when we come into landing. Many a times I can feel the pilot trying hard to keep the airplane to the centre line of the runway. Anyways it is much safer now than the previous Kai Tak Airport where the planes had to maneuver tall skyscrapers before coming into land.

Check out you tube it has some incredible landing shots of the old airport and click on this link to see some great stock photos - http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2356942/Incredible-pictures-airplane-near-misses-EXACTLY-worlds-dangerous-airport-Hong-Kong-shut-15-years-ago.html
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Nimish
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Jishnu - thanks for posting the SQ outbound TR - seems like a good set of flights overall. I'm kind of glad you flew 2 great Airbus a/c - the 330 and the 380 Very Happy...

Isn't the 380 on SQ something else? The good news is that all airlines have a similar Y seat config on the 380s - 3-4-3, so all airline 380s feel similarly spacious. That being said SQ and EK are definitely kitted out better than LH's 380, so you've been on one of the best configs around. Looking forward to the rest of the TRs.
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jbalonso777
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2014 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honk Kong landing is always a stomach churning rollercoaster. As the aircraft comes over the south china sea there are heavy wind drafts specially if it rains and as a frequent traveler I have seen myself holding on to the hand rest when we come into landing. Many a times I can feel the pilot trying hard to keep the airplane to the centre line of the runway. Anyways it is much safer now than the previous Kai Tak Airport where the planes had to maneuver tall skyscrapers before coming into land.

Check out you tube it has some incredible landing shots of the old airport and click on this link to see some great stock photos -
Thanks for your reply, Sri! Very Happy

sri_bom wrote:
Thanks for posting a detailed report and I like your description of the A380 - Ugly Egg Head which I think is a great description.

It was the first thing that came into my head when I saw it, hehe Razz

sri_bom wrote:
Regarding the noise “stones running through the fuselage’ I hear that when the flaps are being lowered and during braking on A330 and sometimes on A380. It is more audible on the A330 as compared to the A380 thoug.

Hmm, interesting. I haven't heard it on the A380 on any of the 2 flights, but on ALL A330 flights I've had so far...

sri_bom wrote:
Honk Kong landing is always a stomach churning rollercoaster. As the aircraft comes over the south china sea there are heavy wind drafts specially if it rains and as a frequent traveler I have seen myself holding on to the hand rest when we come into landing. Many a times I can feel the pilot trying hard to keep the airplane to the centre line of the runway. Anyways it is much safer now than the previous Kai Tak Airport where the planes had to maneuver tall skyscrapers before coming into land.

Agreed whole heartedly. Hong Kong is THE place for avgeeks - scary approaches, awesome spotting opportunities! Very Happy

sri_bom wrote:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2356942/Incredible-pictures-airplane-near-misses-EXACTLY-worlds-dangerous-airport-Hong-Kong-shut-15-years-ago.html

Great find! Thanks for sharing! Very Happy
IMO, Kai Tak was the jewel in the airport's crown. Really too sad that it is now a ferry terminal, but HKG needed that change. Desperately.
However, I wonder what a 747-700 is! Shocked

Nimish wrote:
Hi Jishnu - thanks for posting the SQ outbound TR - seems like a good set of flights overall. I'm kind of glad you flew 2 great Airbus a/c - the 330 and the 380 Very Happy...

Hi there Nimish sir, thank you for your reply! Very Happy
Yup, decent service delivered by SQ on two of Airbus' finest planes (my opinion!)

Nimish wrote:
Isn't the 380 on SQ something else? The good news is that all airlines have a similar Y seat config on the 380s - 3-4-3, so all airline 380s feel similarly spacious. That being said SQ and EK are definitely kitted out better than LH's 380, so you've been on one of the best configs around. Looking forward to the rest of the TRs.

I was planning to say this in the end, but I'm glad you brought it up! Very Happy
Frequent flyers often say that the A380 is just aesthetically massive, while Y is just like any other wide body. I contradict this - I could actually feel the space, as a passenger on this flight. Comfort levels are absolutely unbelievable! EK, QF and SQ have perhaps the best A380s in the sky, soon EY will be alongside that list. The points on space and the best A380s are just my 50p!

Again, thanks for reading and replying! Very Happy

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Jish
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jbalonso777 wrote:
Frequent flyers often say that the A380 is just aesthetically massive, while Y is just like any other wide body. I contradict this - I could actually feel the space, as a passenger on this flight. Comfort levels are absolutely unbelievable! EK, QF and SQ have perhaps the best A380s in the sky, soon EY will be alongside that list. The points on space and the best A380s are just my 50p!


Fully agreed - and this might also explain why airlines regularly quote that their A380 flights have a distinct preference from pax - now the novelty factor is almost over - it's probably as pax prefer the more comfortable interiors. The only problem with the IMO though is on arrivals - waiting for the bags can be a nightmare Sad
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nimish wrote:
Fully agreed - and this might also explain why airlines regularly quote that their A380 flights have a distinct preference from pax - now the novelty factor is almost over - it's probably as pax prefer the more comfortable interiors. The only problem with the IMO though is on arrivals - waiting for the bags can be a nightmare Sad

Airbus labelled IT's A330 as the best they've ever built....I wonder their A380 would've been like if they were here today? But to be honest, I always thought this was a bit too ambitious. Then they never took their A345s for starters, then we all know what happened.....

True about the bags. But then again in massive airports like HKG, this is not a worry since the whole post-arrival process takes quite a lot of time. Of course, the fact that I stayed back a bit to get snaps of the cabin did help our case, but that's just us....

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2014 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...and I wondered as to why I wasn't quite getting the background for the trip. Simple, I should have read this one before the `drama in Hong Kong' one. Eminently stupid of me, but now, everything falls into place.
- Nice details of the detailed planning, and some great shots from Negombo! You are lucky to have aviation enthusiast friends, who share their goodies with you: thanks for keeping us abreast with the goings-on. It helps the reader imagine himself/herself to be in your position, exactly as events unfolded around you.
-It was nice to see a rain-swept CMB from your pictures of the start of the trip.
-Nice description of the SQ experience: sounds, looks, and smells good, if I may add!
- Did I miss the seat power-ports on the SQ A330, Sir?
- Lovely pictures of the food (Mmmm...), and the sunrise!
- All that I can say about the WhaleJet experience was...wow! In spite of the fact that the plane was a bit AI-esque unkempt from the inside. I can absolutely feel your excitement. The food portions look a bit small. Soya milk: I love it! Nice videos, as well.
Thanks for sharing this nice report with us, and needless to say, I look forward to the next part quite eagerly!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2014 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha Sumantra sir, you’ve been forgiven for that! Razz
I think this the first time I’ve ever been at a wet Bandaranayke International Airport, you see..and I’m sort of surprised the pictures came out..well, better than expected! Quite literally those were some hold-your-breath type pictures! SQ is a fantastic airline, as you’ll see in the upcoming parts Smile Nope, you did not miss out on the power ports in the A333, that’s in the return part! Very Happy About the food, yes. Portions were quite small to be honest, and its unsurprising you figured that out, haha! Laughing Thank you so much for your reply!

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey all, extracted some pictures out of Dad's iPad, here they are Smile


9V-STV


Seafood meal on SIN-HKG, SQ856

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