Month: May 2012

Once Was A Great Way To Fly

5 Jun 2012 Update: SQ’s Customer Service emailed to apologize and say that they have “alerted our engineers of the defective tray table and also reminded our engineering colleagues to step up their pre-flight checks to ensure that our cabin facilities and equipment are in working order prior to flight departure”, and that the Cabin Crew Manager will be monitoring the particular crew member’s performance closely. They are also giving us S$150 worth of inflight gift vouchers as a token. When we were on the SQ flight to Shanghai last Friday, I read an article in that day’s BT about the airline’s unprecedented consecutive quarter losses. In it, CEO Mr Goh Choon Phong said there was no basis to write off the airline. That may be true, because to write off the airline as a failure, a bankrupt enterprise would be wrong. SQ would still function as an airline, just not the best, just not the most innovative, just not the one with the inflight service that other airlines talk about. Last night, on our …

China Rising

So Changi Airport has slipped a couple of notches. So what? We got Changi Airport Millionaire Game! You got or not? But seriously though, Shanghai Airport in our books is doing pretty well because when we got to immigration, an officer lifted a barricade for us and let us through without having to queue. Priority for families with young children. Win. It’s been less than ten years since I made my first trips to China, and those first trips were full of me making fun of how backward China was, and how, once when I flew Air China overnight to Beijing without having dinner first, I starved all the way until I got to the hotel in Beijing because I turned down the plain porridge they served in-flight thinking there was going to be breakfast and refreshments before landing. There was also the illogical security checks at Guangzhou Airport in 2004, where one could take out any illegal items from one’s check-in luggage before putting them into the x-ray machine, and then placing the same …

When You Wake Up From The Singapore Dream

A month ago I was asked by this client if I wanted to be involved with a campaign for a retirement financial product. I was reluctant, until they told me of the story of Mr Leong, a former taxi driver and uni graduate. Mr Leong’s former assumptions of life, health, family and retirement haven’t panned out. He’s widowed, in remission from a blood cancer that’s stopped him from driving a cab (his sole income), his son has flown the coop, and he’s relying on the charity of other family members to get by. But Mr Leong’s isn’t a hard luck story – it’s turning out to be the average Singaporean’s story. He’s just telling it for the rest of us. Tweet