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Apart from sprinting through an airport terminal to make a flight, most travelers don't think much about squeezing in a workout around an itinerary. But, if you can resist temptation from the alluring scent of Auntie Anne's or Cinnabon, there are some airports which offer nearly full-service workout facilities for those who are in search of a good sweat.
Lately the trend has been to add a yoga room to terminals, but real gyms were there first. Best of all, the cost to access some of these centers is far cheaper than a one-day pass for some airline lounges.
We're suckers for a good time-lapse image or video of an airport, and this week we might have found our new favorite.
Photographer Milton Tan received a behind the scenes pass to Singapore Changi Airport, and as a result—well, just watch the video and go here for additional images.
It kind of makes us want to bust out the tripod and head over to the airport this afternoon to grab some photographs for ourselves. If you've got any good ones, be sure to send them our way.
[Photo / Video: Milton Tan]
[Photo / Video: Milton Tan]
EVA Air Hello Kitty / Hello Kitty / Airline News / Airlines / Cartoon Travel / Singapore Travel / SIN / Taiwan Travel / Taipei Travel / EVA Air / TPE / → All Tags
If we’ve learned one thing about the world in the last few years, it is that Hello Kitty is only gaining in ubiquity. From airport shops and her own Los Angeles convention to kitty-print toilet paper and every accessory under the sun, the cartoon cat missing a mouth has steamrolled beyond Barbie, the X-Men, and more in her quest for world domination.
Since 2005, that success has included airplanes, with Taiwanese carrier EVA Airways debuting Airbus A330s (and, last year, an extra special Boeing 777-300ER) covered tip to tail in Hello Kitty imagery. When we say tip to tail, we mean even the interior; the Hello Kitty flights, of which there are 6 regular routes originating in Taipei (Los Angeles, Seoul, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Fukuoka, Hokkaido), please passengers with Hello Kitty-theme in-flight shopping, in-flight entertainment, and in-flight meals.
Up next for the airport is some kind of billion dollar shopping dome, so that you can spend that extra foreign currency—or just swipe the credit card—before you head out of town. The whole thing is known as Project Jewel, and included in the construction will be five-stories of fancy pants shops as well as an indoor garden. The icing on the cake is the circular waterfall that will cascade down right in the middle of the whole building.
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We can hardly keep up with how great things are over at Changi Airport, but yet again we’re ready to share some news about what fun stuff they’re adding to the terminals and concourses.
This week the airport is adding a little bit of the local foodie scene, as they’re taking a creative spin on the airport food court. The new options are all included within what they’re calling "Singapore Food Street," as they’re introducing 13 local hawker stalls right into the airport.
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We’ve previously talked about Finnish carrier Finnair because of the continuing upgrade of its business class to (frosty blue) lie-flat seats and our first-hand experience of the latest product to and from Asia.
During a recent trip, we were able to see just how big a difference the upgrade is going to make once complete, spending one overnight flight in the newest seat and one in the very, very old one you see above. And despite the solid progress of phasing out the remaining angled lie-flat seats (more on that in a second), we expect this particular seat to be around for a while, as three of the airline’s oldest Airbus A340s will not be upgraded at all, remaining in the fleet until replaced by Airbus A350s, arriving from 2015 onwards.
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We consider ourselves pretty darn familiar with things related to travel loyalty programs. From airlines to rental cars we know most of the ins and outs about points, miles, and free credits. However, we do need to hit the books and study up on one of the latest options, as airports getting in on the loyalty scene is certainly new to us.
It’s the airport awesomeness that is Singapore’s Changi Airport that is changing up their Changi Rewards Program. Membership is free, and you’ll earn points for every dollar you spend.
Like most other loyalty programs, the folks at Changi have set up three levels: member, gold, platinum. Travelers can reach gold status by spending $4,000 within the year, and it’s a platinum card if you throw down over $8,000 (which can be easily done if you're in the market for duty-free luxury goods). The program offers up coupons and what not during the year, and the deals and discounts get better as you climb the loyalty ladder.
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The Economist Intelligence Unit has just named their "most expensive cities" for 2014 and, knocking Tokyo from the top, the year's winner is Singapore. As the headlines around this ranking circulate, we feel it's important to note that this is for living in a city, and not simply traveling there. Singapore is actually one of the more affordable city destinations, and caters to all budgets.
For example, travelers can pay over $400 per night for a stay at the historic Raffles Hotel, or to splash in the famous infinity pool of the Marina Bay Sands. On the flip side, a night at one of our favorite hostels, the 5footway Inn, is only $25-$40. A room in a great boutique hotel will average $130 per night, but the big chains love to go luxe in Singapore with a $225 average.
Airfare is on par with average fares to London or Paris, even though with a trip to Singapore, you get thousands and thousands more miles for your money. Budget travelers should even keep a look-out for Singapore Airlines' occasional flight deals, like a recent one which offered US to Singapore in the airline's award-winning economy class for $999 roundtrip.
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Yet another exciting destination is being added to the routes the latest British Airways aircraft are flying: the Airbus A380, which premiered at LAX in September, will be starting services from London Heathrow to Singapore Changi (SIN) on October 28.
Initially operating on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays (with the return to London the following day), the route will go daily A380 from February 9 next year. Why Singapore? Heathrow to Changi is an important route for both corporate and leisure traffic and competition is intense, with the original A380 flyer - Singapore Airlines - offering several double-decker services a day between the two cities.
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We have all had a terrible meal on a flight before. In fact, we have shown you some of the sadder trays slid in front of us. With this new series of amazing airline meals, we can revel in the airline culinary delights and give kudos to the airlines that got it right.
Can we actually get lucky twice and score some tasty grub at 36,000 feet for a second time on the same airline? In short, yes. The Last time we were wowed by some delicious business class meals from Singapore Airlines, we were on the (then) world's longest flight, but the airline has delivered once again on a slightly shorter route.
It's that time of the year again, the time when the year just plain ends. Alas, we can't just let 2013 go that easily, especially since travelers spent it both up in the air and up in arms over a crazy range of topics. Needless to say, we're ready to get going into 2014, but first we're taking a brief look back at the best of 2013 with the Jaunted Travel Awards,or as we fondly refer to themThe Jauntys.
It's tough to like an airport these days, let alone love one, but Singapore's Changi International Airport just kills it on so many levels that we have to hand the award for "best travel promo of 2013" to the marketing brains at SIN. This was the year they went above and beyond, attracting tourists book travel through their airport with the lure of free money.
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The king is dead, long live the king!
Just before dawn across the world at Singapore-Changi Airport, an Airbus A340-500 touched down and taxied to its gate. The passengers filed off, followed by the flight crew, and there was no fanfare for this last arrival of the longest flight in the world.
At nearly 18 hours and 9,500 miles, Singapore Airlines' SQ 21/22 between Newark and Singapore was a monster of a nonstop which only accommodated 100 travelers in all-Business Class comfort. All good things must come to an end, however, and Singapore dropped the route in order to trade in the old, gas-guzzling, four-engine A345s for some shiny and efficient A350s to come.
It's a smart move, but a sad one regardless. Singapore 21/22 will live on through the stories of those who flew it, and we're proud to add our hour-by-hour account to the aviation history books.
Moving on, another flight route must now ascend to the throne and claim the title of "longest flight in the world." For that, look no further than Texas.