Be sure to check out part 1 (flying Chicago-Istanbul) and part 2 (flying Istanbul to Singapore) first.

For part 1 Click HERE.

For part 2 Click HERE.

FLIGHT #3: SINGAPORE (Changi)-MALE (Velana)

Aviation Geek Details:

  • Airline and flight number: Singapore Airlines flight # SQ452
  • Route: Singapore (Changi)-Male (Velana)
  • Aircraft: Airbus A330-300
  • Airplane (registration and year built): 9V-STW built 2013
  • Miles flown: 2,162 miles
  • Flight duration: 3 hours and 52 minutes
  • Class of Service and Seat: Business Class, seat 12A (window)
  • This is my: 675th flight on 94 airlines.
  • This is my: 9th flight on Singapore Airlines
  • This is my: 31st flight on an A330 family aircraft

The Routing:

 

Singapore Airlines flight SQ452 to Male was scheduled to depart gate F58 at 8:40 PM. Business Class and Star Gold boarding started at 8:10 PM and we were soon…

 

entering the pristine cabin of 9V-STW, a 2014 built Airbus A330-300 with the regional Business Class product.

 

Okay, this “regional” Business Class product beats the pants off of any regional premium cabin products in the US or Europe!

 

Proof of life pic number 3 as boarding continues for SQ452.

 

The friendly cabin crew offered pre-departure beverages (OJ, water or champaign) and I went for the OJ.

 

Some people complain that the “Singapore girls” can be a bit too robotic but I found them, and the “Singapore boys”, to be warm and engaging.

 

Each seat also had a pillow and a blanket waiting.

 

I fired up the KrisWorld in-flight entertainment system and…

 

enjoyed the sweetness of life and my orange juice.

 

Hot towels were distributed…

 

Maldivian landing cards were distributed and …

 

dinner orders were taken.

 

Okay, folks, this time I wasn’t slipping and I checked out the contents of the literature pocket at the start of the flight. Here is the KrisWorld in-flight entertainment guide.

 

and SilverKris, the Singapore Airlines in-flight magazine.

 

Singapore Airlines fleet. I have to be honest and say that I had no idea that the 787-10 was already flying with SQ. Bad aerophile, bad! (slapping my hands).

 

Singapore Airlines flight network.

 

Safety first, or I guess in this case safety second…

 

since I already thumbed through the SilverKris magazine before…

 

checking out the Airbus A330 safety information card.

 

The console in-flight entertainment control of the regional Business Class seats.

 

The safety video started as we made our way to the active runway and soon our 5-year-old Airbus was hurdling into the skies over Singapore.

 

I’m not going to lie, folks, it took me a while to figure out where the controls to recline the seat were. In my defense, the controls are well hidden, when the panel is closed, it just looks flush with the seat.

 

Noise canceling headphones were distributed, followed by…

 

mixed nuts.

 

Close-up, see, they really are mixed nuts.

 

I just wanted to charge my iPhone (you know you have to charge those suckers every few hours!) but apparently, you can also play media from your device.

 

Next up, the linens were laid and…

 

I kicked back and watched the movie Game Night, which was pretty funny, while the in-flight service was getting started.

 

A smoked salmon appetizer started the service along with…

 

offerings from the bread basket, I went for the garlic bread.

 

My wife and I “booked the cook” online, so we didn’t see a menu. There was no way that I could fly Singapore Airlines and not order the Lobster Thermador. And guess what?…

 

I eviscerated that lobster, it was delicious! This is a proof of death pic!

 

Next up was the dessert cart.

 

You can keep the fruit Y’all, I’ll have…

 

the ice cream!

 

A quick visit to the loo…oh look, flowers.

 

Am I really that middle-aged guy taking selfies in the mirror? At least I have my shirt on!

 

Another well-stocked bathroom and another…

 

no-touch garbage can! I’m in love!!

 

Back in my seat, I freshened up with another hot towel,…

 

reclined my seat and enjoyed the rest of Game Night.

 

We were cruising along at 38,000 feet and close to 600mph about halfway between Singapore and Male.

 

Once the movie finished, I reclined my seat and stole a few ZZZ’s before the cabin lights came on and fast track passes were distributed.

 

A quick descent followed and we touched down in Male a few minutes ahead of schedule.

 

We de-planed from airstairs, unfortunately, I was told not to take pictures or video on the tarmac.

 

Thanks to the orange Priority tags, our bags arrived quickly and immigration was a breeze meaning we were in the arrivals hall in a matter of minutes searching among the sea of drivers for someone holding a sign saying “Ocean Grand” hotel. Our arrival after dark meant that we would have to spend the night in Male before our seaplane flight to the Conrad Rangali island the next morning (strict VFR for the seaplanes).

Flight Review:

  • Experience/Total stars: Excellent/ 4.5 out of 5 stars.
  • Check-in: N/A
  • Lounge: 4 out of 5. The Silver Kris lounge in terminal 3 was heads and tales above most domestic U.S. lounges but after the Turkish Istanbul lounge, it seemed a bit spartan though it had everything needed for a three-hour layover.
  • Boarding: 4 out of 5. There was a call for priority boarding and separate doors for Business Class and Economy Class. The only thing that was odd was the fact that boarding passes were scanned when entering the boarding lounge but no one was actually standing at the boarding door when boarding was called, so it was a bit confusing which gate was actually being used.
  • Seat: 4 out of 5. Really good for a regional premium class product. The only drawbacks were the narrowness of the footwell in fully reclined position and the seating controls are not very intuitive.
  • In-Flight Entertainment: 4 of 5. Kris World still has a great selection but I missed the live TV and free wifi provided by Turkish Airlines.
  • Meals: 5 of 5. What can beat “Book the Cook” and delicious Lobster Thermador?
  • Cabin Crew: 5 of 5. Very attentive, polite and engaging.
  • Cabin ambiance: 4 of 5. The cabin was bright and clean, it was just kind of spartan and lacked character.
  • Cabin cleanliness: 5 of 5. Spotless, no complaints there. Touch-free garbage cans, A+!
  • Price paid and value for money: 5 of 5. Paid for using Mileage Plus miles at the lowest rate.
  • Thumbs up: Great crew, food, and seat for a regional flight.
  • Thumbs down: Boarding was a bit chaotic and seat could have been more comfortable in the fully reclined mode.

Check out my flight video report for SQ#452 Singapore-Male:

 

MALE LAYOVER:

The confines of the Ocean Grand resort were a bit basic but sufficient for a good night’s sleep.

 

After a shower the next morning, the hotel experienced a blackout, which seems to be pretty routine for the island. Okay, I will admit that I am a person with a bunch of irrational phobias, and one of my phobias growing up was a fear of elevators (especially small elevators). My only thought jammed with my wife, a bellman and our luggage in the tiny elevator the night before was, I will freak the fig out if this sucker gets stuck. Thankfully I decided to walk the bags down that morning because I otherwise would have likely been stuck in that God forsaken tiny tinderbox when that blackout occurred.

 

 

Be sure to check out part 1 (flying Chicago-Istanbul). For part 1 Click HERE.

Be sure to check out part 2 (flying Istanbul to Singapore).For part 2 Click HERE.

Be sure to check out For part 4 (the seaplane flight to Rangali Island). For part 4 CLICK HERE.