Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Singapore Airport

The reason I have not titled this Changi Airport, Singapore is too keep it simple. Thats all. Obviously as well, not every one is familiar with the name Changi so best not use it.

So, the Airport. Having recently been to it and stayed inside it for a good few hours, here are some more observations and maybe some hints and tips to it. However, I only ever visit Terminal 3 because thats where Lion Air are based so what T1 or T2 is like, I have no idea.

But, should you find yourself with plenty of time at the Airport and can't be bothered to go into the city then you can use the monorail and go to those terminals and find out for yourself.

Lion Air arrive at T3 and I  arrived at the furthest gate from Immigration, gate 19 and had the choice of the monorail to the main building or the travelator thing which is always fun to get on but more of a challenge to get off. I walked, I had plenty of time.

The nice thing about Singapore and the airport is the fact that it is a western oasis in the middle of Asia and so everything is organised and tidy and clean and people are helpful or more helpful and they wont try and rip you off because they can.

The details.

If you want a beer after your flight then there is a small convenience store opposite the taxi stand which sells beers and food.
If you want to eat something other than fancy cafe food or Ducks or Chinese food, then there is always the golden arches near to the taxi stand where they do double quarter pounders with cheese and hot fresh fries.
Subway is in departures and so is BK.
I dont do Chinese restaurants or sushi so I don't know.
The taxi queue around 1pm seemed to be going on forever and people were queueing well over 30 minutes for a taxi.
The internet is free. So all you need to do is ask at the information desk for the code and show your passport and then its free for 6 hours.
Lion Air is at stand 1, there are 11 stands as far as I remember.
The Crown Plaza hotel is at the other end.
There is a load of restaurants on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the airport and some expensive general shops. However the area was being renovated so some parts could not be reached.
A bouncy castle and things for the kids can be found near the entrance of the Hotel.

Thats pretty much it for arrivals.

In departures, there is a huge array of duty free shops behind immigration and Smirnoff starts at $17 (singapore dollars) a litre and then the skys the limit. The alcohol is cheap enough and there is plenty of it.
As there is for perfume and make up, sunglasses and handbags. There are some electronic stores with Apple, Sony, Samsung etc selling their wares and a couple of book stores.
A small toy store lies amongst it all and sells a range of toys, lego and books.
The Cocoa Tree chocolate stores are being refurbished so there is only one open at the moment and the starbucks has gone. But there is a Costa coffee, Dunkin Doughnuts and many other places to drink at.
Highlight was the new Carlsberg sports bar selling draught lager but at a price. $19 dollars for a pint or $16 dollars for a 500ml can. But its beer and it was cold and it was worth it.

The restaurants are around the main part of the duty free area and some more upstairs and there is a good choice or range of things to eat.

The gates are a long way though from duty free so make sure you have enough time to walk it.

And thats Singapore Airport T3 in a nutshell. Nothing great but now you know. However, why I spent 5 hours in there will remain for now a mystery. But the fact I did not want to go into the heat and the city are both true.

I never found the butterflies, the cinema, the showers or overnight seating areas but they are there tucked away somewhere and I probably never will.


I borrowed photos from here

and here

and here

If I compare this to Jakarta Airport then I prefer Singapore Airport. The airport in Jakarta has modernised and is a bit more focused on tourists leaving etc and there is even a WHSmith inside the dearture area at Terminal 2 as well as a Starbucks and am Old town Coffee shop but thats about it really. The checkin desks are always messy and never well signed but immigration is clear and simple enough to follow.

Coming back in Visa on Arrival is really badly laid out but that might be done on purpose and its narrow and old. The exit to outside after customs is confusing with all its glass walls.

But the worse thing for me now is the fact that if you want to buy something to drink once you leave the acutal terminal building then you will be charged pretty much double than you would pay for the same drinks in a local Alfamart or Indomaret.

And thats well, Indonesia.

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