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Business or First

Lemon_Party

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The main difference between first and business is personal space, privacy and level of service. IMO business is really flying with the minimum acceptable level of comfort and First is flying in luxury.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Apr 27, 2005
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Is one of the main benefits of business over economy and especially first over business to do with the quality of alcohol served? I dont really drink much alcohol and never really drink it on planes (hate having to get up and go to the bathrooms as well as also the idea of being tipsy or having a headache / hangover while on a flight doesnt seem like it will be fun).

Sounds like there are different types of seats for business as well, i thought they would all have been flat beds on SQ, what are side bends?
The main difference between first and business class these days is the small private cabin with dedicated crew and a schedule that is based on your needs rather than the cabin as a whole. Flying SIN-AU overnight is a short flight - 6 hours 30 minutes (or less in some cases). In business class the lights are on (even though dimmed) with the breakfast service around 2 hours before arrival. In F the cabin is quite and blacked out until they wake you 20 minutes before landing (with a hot towel and strong coffee :)). F is all about you. J is still about you, but everyone else at the same time :)

Both cabins have flat beds, but the size is markedly different. F doesn't usually have an cubby holes, cut-outs or tubes for your feet. So you get a better, unrestricted, sleep.
 

lonewolf

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Nov 5, 2009
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The main difference between first and business class these days is the small private cabin with dedicated crew and a schedule that is based on your needs rather than the cabin as a whole. Flying SIN-AU overnight is a short flight - 6 hours 30 minutes (or less in some cases). In business class the lights are on (even though dimmed) with the breakfast service around 2 hours before arrival. In F the cabin is quite and blacked out until they wake you 20 minutes before landing (with a hot towel and strong coffee :)). F is all about you. J is still about you, but everyone else at the same time :)

Both cabins have flat beds, but the size is markedly different. F doesn't usually have an cubby holes, cut-outs or tubes for your feet. So you get a better, unrestricted, sleep.
Oh so in First class they dont just serve you food at specific times? Do you have to request it? is that same for drinks etc? I am not used to calling the FAs or requesting from them unless i am desperate otherwise i feel like i am putting them out.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Oh so in First class they dont just serve you food at specific times? Do you have to request it? is that same for drinks etc? I am not used to calling the FAs or requesting from them unless i am desperate otherwise i feel like i am putting them out.
Depends on the airline. But most airlines (notable exception being Qantas) will serve you your meal 'on demand'. They will discuss this with you are part of the pre-departure formalities :)

Outside meal times (and meal prep times) you shouldn't worry about using the call bell. In fact on some airlines (Cathay for example) they will leave you undisturbed unless you use the bell (there's a story of a very unhappy Cathay first class passenger who waited the entire flight from America to Hong Kong without a bed because he was waiting for the crew to offer it. The first question everyone asked was 'did you use the call bell?')
 

tiartrop

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Joined
Nov 13, 2014
Messages
2
A380 I'd go with first because I'd get the suite.
777 I'd just go with business, the first class isn't worth it imo.
Dunno about the others like A350, only tried the economy.

But it also depends from where you're flying from, the Changi airport lounges are nice, and with first you do get dedicated check-in area and personal room (though check first, I heard they're being renovated).

And don't forget to book for the special meal (i.e. book the chef), up to 24 hour before the flight, they're so much better than the normal ones. Business/first/pps people get access to free wifi, with limited data and only when wifi is available on the flight though.

Though honestly, I can never sleep on planes (combination of being insomniac, fear of flying, noises, lights, etc) so I'd rather fly economy dayflight and rest somewhere nice before/after. I fly alone and it's one of the occasions where I don't have to deal with other people and sometimes I feel the attention I get in non-economy cabins can be overwhelming. I do like that I don't really need to line up to get in though, but I almost missed out some flights because of this.

SQ business/first are nice and I think you'll enjoy them!
 

lovetravellingoz

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Jul 13, 2006
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Unless you have points to burn if it is a night flight I would just go with J.

To me with F the extra value is mainly realised if it is a day flight when you can lap up the higher level of service and enjoy the better food and drink.

For example I view getting F from SIN-Europe a pretty much wasted experience when you are boarding at around midnight as personally I do not want to eat and drink much then (I will have already had dinner hours earlier), and so that leaves as your only real meal the breakfast before landing and where you are unlikely to want to have much alcohol.

So for these flights I would normal go in J as I just get on board, have a single drink, watch a show and then crash. Once asleep it matters not to me whether I am in J or F.

Whereas departing on a day departure such as SIN late morning I can fully enjoy the F experience. I will treat the breakfast as my lunch as I will have had breakfast in the TPR. For "breakfast" on the plane I will pre-select the Japanese offering as it is the equivalent of a lunch/dinner and ask that it be served slightly later. I will then enjoy the alcohol with that.

The scheduled lunch I will treat as dinner and in terms of local time in Europe it is dinner time.
 

lonewolf

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Nov 5, 2009
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95
Wow crazy, I have no idea it was like that, so its almost like they are your maid / butler ...Feels awkward in a way for me to call them every time , maybe its because i fly economy but i never liked using the call button unless i was desperate as i felt like i was putting them out and sometimes i know they dont like being called or get exasperated or annoyed when they get called and you can tell by the look on their face.

Then again this was more on some airlines that i dont rate as highly for their customer service and its also probably to do with being in economy i guess.

This will be something to get used to for me i guess, So you need to call them to have the bed made? Is it hard to get done? i just assumed you push a button and it slides out as a bed.

What happens if you are hungry enough more than twice in one flight as in, can you then get extra meals during the course of the flight? For instance majority of my flights will be syd - sing or syd to south east asia via singapore. So basically a 7 - 8hr flight. In the past i used to prefer over night flights and try to nap for a few hours during the night but sounds like with business and first its better to fly daytime and be awake to enjoy the experience more if possible.

I have about 690k points saved up so have to get around to using them soon. So much to keep track of it sounds like. The Private room sounds nice so is it just a room for each passenger (First class)? And this book a chef, so you tell them what you want? Or pick from a selection of book a chef? I had heard changi airport is doing renovations at the moment which probably stuffs me up a bit as i am only planning on using the points over the next year or 2, hopefully the renovations get finished soon.

So it sounds like i will be using the lounge in sydney and in Singapore (as I will usually be flying on to some other asian country). But most flights transit in singapore isnt for that long so i probably dont get to spend as much time in the lounges there sadly.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Apr 27, 2005
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No. They are not your maid or butler. They are the cabin crew who are primarily there for your safety, but also deliver the ‘service’ element of your flight. That service element is the same as if you go to visit and stay with friends. Or perhaps a bit like restaurant staff or hotel staff. They are not servants, they are there for hospitality.

On some Singapore airlines flights the bed forms via a button, in others it has to be constructed (takes a minute or two). But in all cases the bed needs to be made up with mattress pads or sheets and other accessories.

The lounge renovations at Singapore airport won’t affect your lounge experience.

The ability to book meals in advance is done on line, before departure. You have 50 or so meals from a range of 10 or so cuisines to choose from.

If you are hungry outside mealtimes you can request a snack, or choose something else from the main menu if they have it left.

As for using the call bell... believe it or not it can actually be boring sitting in a galley for four hours between meal times and crew rest. Answering a call bell gives the crew something to keep them occupied. Most crew don’t mind answering a call bell. Of course there will be some crew who can’t be bothered, but the majority of times that’s not the case.
 

SponsorSFC

Active Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2014
Messages
598
@lonewolf It is called Book the Cook not Chef.

You can see examples of what is offered here:


In my experience you will not really need the call button in SQ F they are very attentive, but if you do need to use it the FA has always arrived with a smile on their face.

TPR is a separate lounge at SIN for those flying F on SQ metal only. There is a dining room, casual seating areas and some small quiet rooms with a chair but it is not a separate room for each passenger.
 

Mikana

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2015
Messages
13
IMHO, it’s all about privacy, lessening the hassle of travel, service ethos and space. SQ F maximizes space, service, and privacy and minimizes the hard labor of the airport. SQ J does that too, effectively, but not to the same levels as F. Food and booze are just adjuncts to the rest and quite unimportant. As for the side bend. All SQ J seats except bulkhead rows have a cubbyhole for your feet when in flat bed position. These are set to the side of the space. Some people (not I) find this uncomfortable.
 

Mikana

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2015
Messages
13
I should add that although I don’t fly to eat and drink, if I do eat, I expect it to be good and nicely plated/served.
 

PDF

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2018
Messages
25
I burned some points last year on a leisure trip, SQ J on a couple of sectors (old style seats, the really wide ones), F suites (old style) on the way back. Mind blowing experience from somebody who is virtually always in economy. I understand that the newer SQ J seats are a bit narrower and more cramped at the feet, but you still have direct aisle access and very decent food.

I agree with everyone else says. I found J very comfortable, in the sense you aren't elbowing people next to you, lie-flat bed, big TV screen. Food is great. I slept well. Very rarely any queue for the dunnies. I was giddy with excitement the whole flight. The second J flight was a redeye and I slept well enough that I was functional for most of the next day as a tourist in Singapore, not losing a day of travel.

On the way back from Singapore we were in the suites at the pointy end. Incredibly private and quiet all around. From the private check-in at Changi airport, private immigration agent, skip across the terminal a few steps, up the escalator and you'll be whisked away to The Private Room. I hate the term "celebrity", but that's kinda how you feel. Very exclusive and valued. [Edit: more "VIP" than "celebrity" now that I think about it ;)]

The cabin crew on the flight were fantastic. They'll keep an eye on you and have a good sense for when you need assistance, and when to be left alone. Food is abundant, and yes you get bragging rights to say you had Caviar and Lobster and bottomless Krug on a flight. So for that reason I'd recommend trying F at least once on a medium-long daytime sector, just so you know how high the bar is :)
 
Last edited:

CaptJCool

Active Member
Joined
May 31, 2012
Messages
852
A few photos here and links to other photos

Syd - Sin Singapore Airlines First Class Review (777 300) | The Champagne Mile
 

ninja-tim

Active Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2013
Messages
708
Re: Alcohol
First class you're looking at wines/champagnes that range $150-350ish
Business class wines/champagnes range from $30-70 roughly?
Economy class wines? I don't know, maybe $5-10?

Regardless of alcohol, you should be drinking water/fluids to keep hydrated in the air and that's going to make you go toilet anyways, but probably not as much compared to drinking quite a few glasses of wine/champagne.
Tipsy/headaches/hangover is all subjective and is based on each person's on tolerance and reaction to alcohol, how much you drink and also how long the flight is. The toilets are also a point of difference between the classes. Main difference is size, presentation and also how many others you have to share the toilet with.

The different types of business class seats are due to the planes types, the year the plane was fitted/refitted. The short inter-asia flights to Bali, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia run old regional business class seats, so the old angled seats. Bali does have the newer 787 with lie flat seats. But the miles required to fly to these countries is the same to Singapore. So may as well add an extra destination to your trip. Only cost $100 for a stopover In Singapore on a one way ticket or free if you do return ticket.

Then the longer inter-asia flights to HK, Korea, Japan will have a380 or 777 on them, so you'll have better business class seats, and first class, but also the redemption rate is a bit higher.

I would hazard a guess that most people who redeem points on this forum would most likely add an extra destination to their tripl rather than SYD-SIN-SYD.

With your current points (690k?) you can do Short distance Inter-asia return in J or F, HK return in J or F, Japan/Korea/China One way F and return in J, Europe return in J or just one way in F.
 

travelislife

AFF Supporter
Joined
Feb 9, 2011
Messages
2,141
Do you guys generally book the F/R several months in advance because generally that seems to be the only option otherwise they are all booked out.

Also is there a big difference from the A380s and the 777 for F/R and J? As predominantly the flights i was looking at were just sydney to singapore and then i will just get a short flight from singapore to another asian country as thats where i spend majority of my travel anyway. I figured no point wasting points flying business and above for a 1-3 hour flight?

I notice the A380 seats seem to go so much quicker than the 777s...
You will be able to include the Singapore to Asian destination on the same ticket in business class (as First generally not offered). Don't go buying a separate cash ticket for that short flight.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Apr 27, 2005
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I have been lucky enough to do a number of sectors in F/suites and have never had a need to use the call button.
People have different travelling patterns I guess. If you have the doors closed not sure how the crew will know if you need something other than using the call bell (like if you wake up at 3am in a dark cabin and need a new bottle of water).
 

get me outta here

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At all times I make sure I have two bottles of water. It’s all I drink and I’m a person who likes to be prepared. ;). And, I do like to stand up and stretch a bit. It’s not a policy I have to not use the call button. But I will try it on my next suites flights.

People have different travelling patterns I guess. If you have the doors closed not sure how the crew will know if you need something other than using the call bell (like if you wake up at 3am in a dark cabin and need a new bottle of water).
 

CaptJCool

Active Member
Joined
May 31, 2012
Messages
852
At all times I make sure I have two bottles of water. It’s all I drink and I’m a person who likes to be prepared. ;). And, I do like to stand up and stretch a bit. It’s not a policy I have to not use the call button. But I will try it on my next suites flights.
At first I read it as two bottle of Krug. LOL

IM SURE MY MIND was playing DOM Tricks on me....

We used to live in a world where modesty prevailed.

Of course, being at beck and call isn’t good either

I didn’t imagine airlines employ Mind readers as their Flighties So a modest use of the call button is a happy medium for ideal service
 

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