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Which is best to EU - Singapore or Etihad?

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Rdarby

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Aug 1, 2011
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I have to book a flight to London, but it may be Madrid, from Brisbane.

Using the Virgin website it seems like the choices are Singapore or Etihad.

Prices are similar, Etihad seems to take slightly longer.

Has anyone experienced these two, they are not airlines I really know. Which would you recommend?

If they recognise much of it, I am a Plat and will probably book a flexi as the prices are about the same as the saver at the moment.

Thanks
Ryan
 

pblackie

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I've flown both and both Airlines are very good. Never had any recognition from SQ apart from priority check in etc but have had upgrades on EY (as gold and Plat), you can also look at flying VA to AUH (from SYD) which means you can use points for upgrades etc .
 

GRstrawb

Junior Member
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Sep 1, 2014
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I have flown both on numerous occasions (not to London though) and both rate very highly. Both are in the world's top 10 airlines. One thing to consider will be that with Singapore, you will get a short first leg then a long second leg. With Etihad it will be the other way around but with less variance between the two legs. Departure time from Brisbane and what leg you want to sleep on should then be a consideration.
 

rtyuiop

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Feb 12, 2009
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If it's before Jun 2015, note that Etihad goes BNE-SIN-AUH (changes to direct in June) - the extra stop is a bit of a pain in J, but it might be nice to stretch out a bit in Y. EY doesn't fly to Spain, I don't think - or at least they didn't last time I checked.

Most of my flying these days is in Singapore Y, and it's just about as good as economy gets - I haven't done Etihad in Y, but I certainly expect it's not as good as SQ!
 

bullerdude

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Dec 26, 2011
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On Etihad the major benefit is having access to the First Class lounge in Abu Dhabi and the First/Business Class lounges in London and Sydney (if you go that way).

On Singapore you will only have access to the Gold Lounge in Singapore, which is an average lounge with no toilets or shower facilities, but SilverKris lounges in Brisbane, Sydney ,London.

Personally, I would go Etihad but get on the SYD-AUH flight on VA Metal as you will get good Plat recognition on that flight and the chance to upgrade.
 

rtyuiop

Active Member
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Feb 12, 2009
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Oh, one other thing - assuming you're talking about economy, the Etihad lounges in but AUH and LHR (First in AUH, shared in LHR), are leaps and bounds better than the average (in LHR) and below average (SIN) lounges you'll get access to on SQ.
 

Rdarby

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Aug 1, 2011
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Yes it's economy. Sounds like the Etihad lounges are the attraction, and it gives me a long sleep on the final leg. And I can then try for a VA flight for part and use points to upgrade the final leg coming home (so sleep).

Thanks for the advice!
 

jpk

Active Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2006
Messages
605
I've flown on all 3 airlines in Y a lot over the last 2 years. Agree with all the above.

On board - neither SQ/EY recognise your status on board (and it's a good idea to show your card to them at checkin). VA will but it's usually just to say hello and give you first choice from the menu. You'll get opupped if it's rammed down the back on VA, but don't count on a Plat shadow as they continue to be terrible at that. SQ have consistently been as good as economy gets, EY can be highly variable, VA I don't really enjoy long haul. If you get a 10 across EY 777 then it is a tight squeeze and can feel claustrophobic. IFE on most SQ planes is great (watch out for refurbished 777-300s), EY is also pretty good, VA is the same as the domestic A330s.
Lounge - EY lounges are awesome. SQ is good except in SIN where it's ok but no shower or toilet. Transit in SIN is easy, at AUH it can take a while to rescreen depending on arrival time.
Ground - all offer priority check in and boarding, so no difference here.
Booking - you get more points if on a VA code, but if it's a codeshare then you usually can't do seat selection and don't get better seats. If I'm on SQ now I forego the extra points and book direct as then I can choose a seat & check in online, otherwise you could end up in a middle.

What would I do? If I need SC I book a flexy with SQ - cheaper than VA flexy, can manage my own booking, good on board experience, and plenty of flight times to choose from. If I prefer points then I'd book on the VA codes. If cost is most important then I just book the cheapest and also look at oneWorld options. I don't bother upgrading, and find the longer transit through SYD more hassle than it's worth so I avoid the VA flight these days - would make sense for someone in SYD though.

Hope this helps.
 

Caversham04

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2013
Messages
323
I've flown on all 3 airlines in Y a lot over the last 2 years. Agree with all the above.

On board - neither SQ/EY recognise your status on board (and it's a good idea to show your card to them at checkin). VA will but it's usually just to say hello and give you first choice from the menu. You'll get opupped if it's rammed down the back on VA, but don't count on a Plat shadow as they continue to be terrible at that. SQ have consistently been as good as economy gets, EY can be highly variable, VA I don't really enjoy long haul. If you get a 10 across EY 777 then it is a tight squeeze and can feel claustrophobic. IFE on most SQ planes is great (watch out for refurbished 777-300s), EY is also pretty good, VA is the same as the domestic A330s.
Lounge - EY lounges are awesome. SQ is good except in SIN where it's ok but no shower or toilet. Transit in SIN is easy, at AUH it can take a while to rescreen depending on arrival time.
Ground - all offer priority check in and boarding, so no difference here.
Booking - you get more points if on a VA code, but if it's a codeshare then you usually can't do seat selection and don't get better seats. If I'm on SQ now I forego the extra points and book direct as then I can choose a seat & check in online, otherwise you could end up in a middle.

What would I do? If I need SC I book a flexy with SQ - cheaper than VA flexy, can manage my own booking, good on board experience, and plenty of flight times to choose from. If I prefer points then I'd book on the VA codes. If cost is most important then I just book the cheapest and also look at oneWorld options. I don't bother upgrading, and find the longer transit through SYD more hassle than it's worth so I avoid the VA flight these days - would make sense for someone in SYD though.

Hope this helps.
I agree with most of the above. I generally fly ADL-SIN-LHR on SQ in economy (exit row seats) and they're consistently good. I've also flown ADL-SYD-AUH-LHR. I was in VA J for SYD-AUH after a successful upgrade bid so can't comment on their Y experience but was in Etihad economy for AUH-LHR. I still shudder when I think about the AUH-LHR leg - at 6 ft 3" tall, and correspondingly broad, the 10-per-row Etihad 777 was nothing short of purgatory. NEVER again.......

For me, a direct booking via the SQ website and the ability to choose your seat during the purchase process is worth more than any extra points from booking it as a VA codeshare. If you choose the Etihad option, take a good look at SeatGuru to see what you're getting.......
 

Rdarby

Intern
Joined
Aug 1, 2011
Messages
91
Thanks very much for all of the advice.

Have now booked using SQ. I used the VA website due to the double points promotion, at least I hope it applies! The reason for SQ instead of Etihad was the flight times which were a lot better for me and had much shorter layovers. I save 10 hours each way with SQ.

I have managed to get the SQ PNR from VA and I can select an aisle preference but no actual seat. Also can't work out how to pay for an exit row, which I would be happy to do.

I have no idea about the internal flights, that is a problem for later today!
 

scwappy

Active Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2009
Messages
565
Thanks very much for all of the advice.

Have now booked using SQ. I used the VA website due to the double points promotion, at least I hope it applies! The reason for SQ instead of Etihad was the flight times which were a lot better for me and had much shorter layovers. I save 10 hours each way with SQ.

I have managed to get the SQ PNR from VA and I can select an aisle preference but no actual seat. Also can't work out how to pay for an exit row, which I would be happy to do.

I have no idea about the internal flights, that is a problem for later today!
Your flight needs to be marketed and operated by VA. So unfortunately you won't receive double points. However SQ should be as good as it gets in economy and not a 10 abreast 777.
 
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Recommended by the Australian Frequent Flyer
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Feb 18, 2013
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Virgin
Gold
Sorry to tell you double points promotion doesn't apply to codeshare.


*To be eligible for the double Points promotion you must successfully register your Velocity membership number online between 12:01 AM 6 September 2014 and 11:59 PM 13 September and ensure it matches the membership number in your flight booking. You must also book between 6 September and 13 September 2014. You must travel on a flight that is both marketed and operated by Virgin Australia between 15 September 2014 and 26 March 2015 inclusive. Codeshare services marketed or operated by partner airlines are not eligible for this offer.
 
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