Facebook Twitter E-mail RSS
magnify

Singapore Changi Airport Review

Singapore Changi Airport Review.

Singapore Changi Airport Sunflower Garden

Ah I’m flying to Bali.  That’s a 12-hr flight from the US->Tokyo, then a layover, then another 7 hour flight Tokyo->Singapore.  Then 14 hours in Singapore to wait.

I am just wrapping up the 14 hour layover in Changi. I decided to just stay in the airport instead of heading to town b/c I arrived at 1am. So I figured I’d write a review on the airport.

This is at the same time a great airport with a few incredibly frustrating features that bug me.

I’ll start with my gripes:

Gripe 1: Navigation.

This is hard to believe, and I think its more than jetlag, but trying to navigate Changi drove me crazy. I always walk. I could never tell which terminal I was in, or how to get to the next one. If I was running thru the airport late for a flight, I would have went bonkers. The huge signs just have gates, and only for nearby gates. After wandering for about 3 hours last night I still have no idea how to get around. Would it be so hard to have concourses (A,B,C) like any normal airport and then have [A][B][D] on a sign telling you those concourses are that way? Yes I understand if I took the trains it would be easier, but I almost never do.

Gripe 2: Transfer Lounges.

What the heck are these? And why are the called a lounge when its some really lame in-terminal boarding pass issuer. I know they have them in Japan and Korea too, so obviously someone copied someone else’s terrible idea here. The ones in Changi are the worst. I go up to one and they say they can’t issue my boarding pass yet. Huh? Ok, it’s 3am, maybe the night shift isn’t so smart. I go sleep, try again at 9am. Uh, very sorry sir, but can’t issue your pass until 3pm. Me: My flight’s at 4. Them: Sorry sir, cannot do. Come back at 3. So now I get to go back at 3 and wait in some huge line instead of relaxing over a beer in the lounge? WTF? Anyone understand these things? Is my complaint to Delta (who won’t issue my BP online now), KLM (delta-alliance, running the flight), or is this some Pan-Asian anachronistic TSA-like bureaucracy that won’t go away? Gripe 3: No free beer in Biz Lounges: I’m guessing the lounges I get for free with my Lounge Club card are on of the discount variety, but S$8 for a beer is a bit of a slap. I’ll head to the 7-11 around the corner and buy them for $3 :)

Gripe 4: Hot!

Man I so want to sit in this sunflower lounge but I’m afraid I’ll turn into a puddle of jetlagged American male.

Gripe 5: Designed by Vegas?

Sometimes it feels like a casino/mall. Place is a bit too big. Casinos and malls make their layouts confusing so you get lost and stay longer. Casinos pump oxygen in to keep you gambling all night. Changi has a bit of that feel. I guess I like American airports that are all cramped with stores in every inch instead of these center-mall areas.

Gripe 6: Duty free is a rip-off.

Really, no wine under $40? California wines selling for $10 at home are S$40? DFS, argh. I was picking up 15 year old rum in Nicaragua DF for $18! Things I like! This may be the best airport in the world. It’s kinda like an enjoyable day of shopping.

Ok enough griping – lets get on with the good stuff!

Rave 1: “Nightlife.”

Even at 2am, the place had a bit of life. I’ve overnighted in BKK (which is big but easy to get around BTW!:) and it’s just dead in the evening. Changi had movie theaters, comfy chairs galore, and a few places even had full reclining sleeping chairs! Big thumbs up!

Rave 2: 7-11!

Oh yeah! Want a cold beer but don’t want to spend $8? You got it! 7-11 wouldn’t sell me a beer at 2am but the non-affiliated minimart did. And it was Leo beer at that! :)

Rave 3: Movies!

I didn’t watch one but great idea, and right next to the minimart selling beer too! :)

Rave 4: Gardens.

Butterfly garden at 130 am with my jacket on was a bit too toasty and dark, but could tell it was a cool place. Ambassador Lounge looks over the sunflower garden, lovely! (Hot!)  See the pic of me in the lounge lookin’ over sunflower garden

Rave 5: Beer

Cheap beer @ minimarts (BKK has this too but its tough to find, keep lookin’!).  $3!

Rave 6: Airport Staff

Could we get thru an Asian airport review without mentioning the great outfits the young staff wear?

Rave 7: 2-hr singapore tour.

I couldn’t be bothered to take it, but great idea.

Rave 8:  Get in a walk

Walking around is a joy with all the landscaping. If only I didn’t get lost all the time. I walked out of one duty-free store, looked left, looked right, and couldn’t remember where I came from. Some world-traveler I am!

Rave 9: Reasonable food prices.

I didn’t eat anywhere but it looked awfully cheap. For $5 you could get a combo at subway! As an aside, even some of the airports in the US are getting cheaper it seems. I was in Philly for a bit and gone are the days of “no meal under $10 at an airport.”

Rave 10: Subway!

I love Subway and they don’t have it in Bali so last change for my fix.  $5 for a sub and drink combo?  Hope I fly home this way to get in my “fix!”

Rave 11: Comfort

Comfy seats. Bangkok, step aside with your all metal seats most with arm-rests. Comfy chairs abound!

This isn’t a rave cuz I think wifi should be free along with water, but you get 4 hrs free if you can find the desk giving out certificates. Beats the past 3 airports I’ve been to. Happy Travels!

Well that’s is from Singapore!  Another few hours and I’ll be happily back in Bali!

 
 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Reddit Share on LinkedIn
3 Comments  comments 

3 Responses

  1. Changi is a good place to hang out compared to other Asian airports. WiFi is in fact free at the airport. You should take a code from Information desk though.

  2. […] one waited inside. We all know the Singapore airport is a nice one to be stuck inside! You can read my review of the airport here The ticking doesn't open until 7am or so. Happy overnighting! I' __________________ Travel […]

%d bloggers like this: