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We know first-hand both the pleasures and the pains associated with the world’s longest flight. And soon, you may too — because Singapore Airlines may soon bring back that long (very long) jaunt, following a brief hiatus.
Per the folks over at Bloomberg Business, officials at Singapore Airlines have been in talks with Airbus and Boeing, reviewing flight plans, airplane orders and other items in hopes of launching a new version of the world’s longest flight. Through late 2013, Singapore Airlines was offering nearly 19-hour direct flights from Newark to Singapore — but these all-business class flights just weren't profitable enough to sustain themselves. To that point, there are still plenty of details related to fuel efficiency, long-range plane capabilities and cash flow that Singapore Airlines will need to iron out before reviving a marathon flight.
So nothing has been finalized as of yet, and and even some of the potential airplanes for the service —like the Boeing 777X — are still in development. In the meanwhile, want to live that long flight vicariously through a Jaunted correspondent? Check out an hour-by-hour look at the 2013 experience here.
[Photos: Cynthia Drescher/Jaunted]
Videos / Airlines / British Airways / LHR / SIN / Airbus / A380 / Airplanes / BA A380 / Airline Routes / → All Tags
When it comes right down to it, all aircraft are works of art. One particular masterpiece of recent is the super-jumbo A380, with its double-decker curves and four-engine strength. British Airways is particularly enthralled with their sparkling new A380s and thus created a piece of video art in homage to it.
The British carrier has swapped canvas for fuselage to celebrate their newest non-stop route between London-Heathrow and Singapore with a stunning video that's right out of the cool 4D trend of late. You knowwhen a projection on a building gives the illusion of it coming alive right before your very eyes.
First Class Travel / Business Class Travel / Economy Class Travel / Singapore Airlines / Singapore Travel / A380 / SIN / → All Tags
Not gonna lie, Singapore Airlines deserves their reputation (and many awards) as one of the world's best airlines.
From the fluffy pillows with shams (even in Economy Class!) to the flight attendants who've been trained in both etiquette and oenology, Singapore is top-notch, a fact recently underscored by a review of their Suites Class. It's only too bad that much of that review was plagiarized. Also, the title is misleading; the $23,000 refers to the ticket's cost in Singapore Dollars. Priced in USD, it is closer to $18,000, but October flights in Suites are ringing up lower, around $7,000 each way/$14,000 roundtrip. Business Class is half that, with many of the same perks.
Regardless, the personalized service and thoughtful details are a hallmark of Singapore Airlines across all classes. Here's several semi-secret specialties you'll find on every Singapore Airlines flight:
Layovers / Airports / Airport Workouts / ORD / DTW / YVR / YYZ / DXB / ZHR / SIN / Health Travel / Wellness Travel / Fitness Travel / → All Tags
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]
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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.
Food Travel / SIN / Airport News / Singapore Travel / Airports / Airport Restaurants / Airport Dining / Airport Eats / → All Tags
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.
British Airways / London Travel / Singapore Travel / BA A380 / LHR / SIN / Airline News / A380 / → All Tags
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.