There are many choices to fly direct between Singapore and Bangkok – low cost carriers such as Air Asia, Jetstar Asia and Tiger Air, full service airlines such as Singapore Airlines, Silk Air and Thai Airways, then theres airlines with one stop such as Malaysia Airlines, via Kuala Lumpur or Bangkok Airways via Koh Samui. While planning my recent trip to Asia I studied all these options. Obviously, the low cost carriers were the cheapest and Air Asia came in with the lowest price. Having a membership with the Qantas Frequent Flyer program, part of the OneWorld Alliance, I wanted to stay on an airline I would earn points and status credits for this sector, so it came down to a choice of Malaysia Airlines or Jetstar Asia. With the latter, the total fare, including all the extras, was AUD$111.87 – around a third of the price of Malaysia Airlines.
Those extras included 20kgs of baggage and the ‘plus bundle’, which entitled me to earn those Qantas Frequent Flyer Points and Status Credits, a meal + drink and standard seat selection. During the booking process I chose an aisle seat in the last row of the aircraft – 30D – that way I would be one of the first to board and have more chance for a few seats to myself. The meal and drink I would choose on board.
As one of the first to board, I made my way to row 30 at the rear of the Airbus a320 aircraft. I was slightly surprised at the seats in this row, the seat back was almost vertical against the lavatory wall. I sat down and pressed the recline button and the seat didn’t move.
Jetstar claims its seat pitch is an ‘average’ 29 inches and I think this row must have been under that average. The cabin was only half full and I had the whole row to myself, so the seat pitch didn’t really bother me on this 2 hour flight. I wasn’t long after take off that one of the flight attendants came to me and asked what I would like from the menu – included in my ‘plus bundle’. There were three choices available from the ten hot meals listed in the ‘Jetstar Cafe Inflight Menu’ – Teriyaki Chicken with Steamed Jasmine Rice, Irish Lamb Stew with Parsley Flavoured Rice and Mock Braised Chicken with Steamed Jasmine Rice (braised in a mushroom sauce – the vegetarian option).
I chose the Teriyaki Chicken and Steamed Jasmine Rice with a Pepsi and both were delivered within a few minutes – well, I was in the last row, just in front of the galley 🙂 The dish, small cubes of marinated chicken meat sitting alongside the jasmine rice, was not visually appealing but it wasn’t as bad as it looked with the chicken soft and juicy and the rice maintaining a nice flavour.
After my meal was cleared by the polite, yet non-chatty flight attendant, it was time to indulge in some J.P Chenet French white wine – the wine I think every low cost carrier sells – for SGD$8.00 (AUD$6.78) per 187ml bottle.
We landed on time into Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport. Overall it was a decent flight, nothing fancy, but the aircraft was clean and tidy and the service polite and responsive.
I’m excited about taking a tour of Jetstars new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner next week in Sydney before taking a flight in the Business Class cabin in a few weeks time – stay tuned!