Archive for April 18th, 2007

If airlines were Southeast Asia travel options

Ok, I know I vented a little bit on the previous post regarding Lufthansa and how poor they are compared to Singapore Airlines.  Now I’m going to proceed to vent some more – perhaps this one will be more appealing to those of you who prefer visuals.

Singapore Airlines
 
This encompasses the Singapore Airlines experience.  No hurry, perfectly fine to dawdle.  You’re comfortable, soaking in the environment… lollygagging away watching their movies, listening to music, eating the delicious meals… simply letting time sail by you before you get to your next destination.  Ah, who knew the skies could be so peaceful?

Lufthansa

Ok, it’s rather crowded, but at least the people are nice.  We’ll get through this.  Everyone just keep smiling – we’re in it together.  Note baby on the right side that will start screaming when we start moving.

Any US Airline (except JetBlue)
 
Sardines in a can.  No one is happy except for the jerk (attendant) at the front of the vehicle.  Simply because he’s paid to work on this thing while the rest of us paid to be crammed into it.  Are we there yet?  My rear hurts.  And the person next to me keeps touching me.  There’s no food.  I hate you.

Another reason for Singapore Airlines
 
I love you.

Singapore Airlines vs. The World

On my flight from Paris back to Singapore, I realize just how much I do like Singapore Airlines. I’m flying on one of their new Boeing 777-ER’s. Finally, an airline that has ordered a plane designed for a passenger’s comfort and not just to transport people in the sky like cattle. Herd them in and lock them up seems to be the regular mentality, but with Singapore Airlines, even the economy class borders on being enjoyable.

Compare Singapore Airlines to another Star Alliance carrier, Lufthansa. I flew Lufthansa from Washington DC to Frankfurt (en route to Paris last week). That was one of the worst flights of my life. The service was fine but every other aspect was terrible. The seats were designed for people smaller than even me – and this is by a country whose people are known for their heft. I don’t know what they were thinking. No matter how you sit, your shoulders and arms will still be bumping into your neighbor. There is no sense of your own space, the seats are so small that you are squeezed into your neighbor’s space (and vice-versa). Terribly uncomfortable and impossible to sleep. It really does make one feel like just an animal in a cage.

Singapore Airlines – WIDESCREEN tv monitor at each seat. Fantastic entertainment selection (I’m listening to a custom playlist of audio tracks I built from the 100s of albums they have in their system) and I’ve watched 4 movies on this flight so far. Again, contrast that with Lufthansa where you get… one tiny monitor at the front of the cabin that everyone has to strain to see. Pick a movie? Fast forward or rewind? Get real.

So yes, I love Singapore Airlines (and this is without even getting into their stellar food and flight attendants). I feel bad for other airlines because they can’t be Singapore Airlines. I feel bad for other airlines that they can’t even come close. I especially feel bad for other airlines if they don’t at least aspire to be like Singapore Airlines.

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Ok, that’s enough effusive praise for now.

On this flight I am sitting in the last row – with two seats all to myself. Sitting right in front of the area where people can stand and relax as well as wait in line for the bathroom.

The bad thing about watching tearjerker movies is that all these strangers milling about and waiting for the bathroom glance over and see you trying to blink away the tears. How embarrassing.

(Even more embarrassing is that this is from watching Adam Sandler’s “Click.” Damn movies where they promote it as a comedy and it turns into a drama… gets me every time – i.e. “The Break Up”).

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A 12 hour flight to Singapore. I would do this in a heartbeat over another 7 hour flight with Lufthansa.

Oh – and a note to Delta and the other bankrupt airlines… you’re going bankrupt for a reason. Primarily because you guys suck even more than Lufthansa.