As the pandemic stretches on and many planes remain grounded, one thing is becoming clear: People really miss flying. Flights to nowhere, in which planes take off and land at the same airport, are consistently selling out, and even just listening to airline boarding music has been a comfort to some formerly frequent fliers.
Now Singapore Airlines is giving would-be passengers another opportunity to recreate the air travel experience. For two days in October the carrier is converting one of its grounded Airbus A380 planes into a pop-up restaurant at Singapore’s Changi airport.
Customers can book seats in all four cabin classes—first, business, premium economy, and economy—on the airline’s largest jet for the lunchtime dining experience, which will last up to three hours. Each cabin will have its own special menus curated for the double-decker plane’s restaurant. Although exact menus (along with prices) will be unveiled when booking opens on October 12, the carrier says that meal options will include signature international Singapore Airlines dishes, as well as “the best dishes from our Peranakan menu, specially designed by acclaimed Singaporean chef Shermay Lee.” The meal will also include two complimentary alcoholic beverages and unlimited nonalcoholic drinks.
Although the superjumbo jet won’t be leaving the ground, it’s still a great opportunity to experience one of the world’s top airlines, and to see the increasingly rare colossal plane in person. (Many A380 fleets are grounded due to the pandemic, and Airbus will stop manufacturing the jets next year.) Additionally, customers can book a behind-the-scenes tour of the A380, which is about 15 minutes long and includes a “look at private access areas” on board. Tours take place before lunch and are open to a limited number of guests who book them on a first-come, first-served basis.
As far as logistics, the carrier will arrange Changi airport passes so customers can access the gate area, where pre-lunch activities and “boarding” for the A380 restaurant will take place. All diners must also complete a digital questionnaire to confirm they haven’t been in close contact with anyone who has contracted COVID-19. To complete the in-flight experience, Singapore Airlines’ pilots and cabin crew will also be on hand at the event, and guests will be able to watch a movie or TV show on the entertainment screens while they dine.
Before they leave, all customers will receive a limited edition keepsake souvenir. As an added bonus, those who arrive for their reservation in traditional clothing reflecting their heritage—like a sarong kebaya, cheongsam, saree, batik shirt, or kilt, for instance—will receive an additional special gift.
Reservations for the dining experience open on October 12, for lunches on October 24 and 25. Members of the airline’s frequent flier program, KrisFlyer, can use points to book their spots. Both the dining packages and A380 tours can be purchased starting October 12 on Singapore Airlines’ website or on its shopping site, krisshop.com. Customers who book in first, business, and premium economy cabins can pre-select their menus, while those in economy can make their meal choices on the day of the restaurant experience.
Even though the plane won’t be landing in a far-flung locale, this could still be a travel highlight of the year.
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