Singapore Airlines Introduces Business Class Amenity Kits, At Last

Filed Under: Singapore

2020 continues to be full of surprises in the airline industry…

Singapore Airlines’ business class amenity kit quirk

Singapore Airlines is known for having one of the world’s best business class products, but historically the airline hasn’t offered amenity kits. That seems strange on the surface, since amenities kits in business class on long haul flights are almost a basic expectation.

Instead, on long haul flights the airline has offered slippers, eye shades, and socks. Then the lavatories would be stocked with most of the items you’d usually find in amenity kits, like dental kits, combs, etc.

Singapore Airlines’ business class slippers, socks, and eye shades

On Singapore Airlines’ relaunched longest flights between Singapore and Newark, the airline was almost starting to warm up to the concept of offering amenity kits. Flight attendants came around with baskets where you could choose the items you wanted, and then there was an even a pouch you could place the items in. This suggested that the airline has been working towards introducing amenity kits.

Business class amenities on Singapore Airlines’ longest flight

Why hasn’t Singapore Airlines historically offered amenity kits?

  • Offering them costs millions of dollars per year, and the airline thought money could better be spent on the passenger experience in other ways
  • With most other airlines offering amenity kits, it’s not an area where the airline could even really differentiate itself
  • Many passengers simply leave them behind, and they’re wasteful

I both agree and disagree with this perspective:

  • I’m not sure I buy that other airlines offer them, and therefore it can’t be a competitive advantage; other airlines also offer food, drinks, Wi-Fi, entertainment, etc., but that doesn’t stop Singapore Airlines from offering those things either
  • I do agree that amenity kits are rather wasteful, since you do see a lot of them left behind

Well, it looks like Singapore Airlines has had a change of heart on amenity kits…

Singapore Airlines introduces business class amenity kits

Singapore Airlines recently announced a series of “Discover Your Singapore Airlines” experiences, and with the announcements of one of the packages, the airline revealed that it would be introducing amenity kits in business class:

“Enjoy our specially designed Lalique amenities or be the first to receive our Business Class Penhaligon’s amenity kit.”

It’s interesting that this is the first announcement of Singapore Airlines finally introducing business class amenity kits.

A photo of the Penhaligon’s amenity kit shows that it contains lip balm, hand lotion, and face mist.

Singapore Airlines’ new business class amenity kit

It’s expected that the airline will reveal more details about the amenity kits soon. I’ll be curious to see if the kits just contain the above three items, and they continue to distribute socks and eyeshades separately, or if everything will be put in the kit.

On the one had, 2020 seems like a strange year to invest in something like this. On the other hand, maybe coronavirus actually increased the usefulness of amenity kits:

  • It’s no longer as sanitary to offer amenities in communal spaces, like the lavatories
  • Amenity kits allow the airline to reduce contact between passengers and crew, so that individual amenities don’t have to be handed out

Bottom line

Singapore Airlines will finally be introducing amenity kits in business class. Many have been surprised that one of the world’s top airlines didn’t offer amenity kits, but that’s now finally changing. We should find out all of the details about the kits soon, including which flights will receive them.

What do you make of Singapore Airlines introducing business class amenity kits?

(Tip of the hat to The Milelion)

  1. I think this is a smart move from Singapore Airlines on two counts. One, it does reduce the contact between staff and passengers with different amenity requests. Secondly, by using Penhaligon’s it is a top class brand which still differentiates Singapore Airlines from their competitors.

  2. Finally. I know a billionaire cheapskates hoarder, who refuses to fly Business class in SQ (where first is not served) because there’s no amenity kits. Tell me about it. I fly about 6-8 trans pacific r/t per year and had plenty of rimowa from BR, and tumi from delta and samsonite from hainan despite flying to Singapore. Yes. I am kiasu (like many Singaporean) and cheap and i like free stuff! Can’t wait to fly again.

  3. I really don’t like Penhaligon. They have stores in London that blows perfume outside the store so when you are walking in front of their store you get a whiff on your face and they use some very strong scents that is not appealing to everyone.

  4. Keen on the Lalique one over Penhaligons.

    Are they going to be offered too?

    SQ use Lalique in F, so wonder if it won’t be for J

  5. It is NEVER sanitary to offer amenities in the lavatories anyway not just right now, even before covid, do you seriously trust every single passenger take a dump, wash their hands before they use the amenities ?

  6. Long overdue and a smart move by SQ. I would be perfectly happy with these three items + the usual slippers, socks and eye shades. I agree that the majority of items go to waste and everything else that you would normally need (toothbrush, etc) will only be used in the lavatory. (Though I personally find the Y kit to be even less used/more wasteful). While I still take amenity kits with me, there are very few that I actually like or find practical enough to use. I end up giving away 90%+ of other kits.

    The only thing I’d love to see are wipes or hand sanitizer!

  7. amenity kits are wasteful only because most airlines watch the cost, so they are boring in design, colors, and unimaginative, for airlines give out Rimowa kits, did you ever see them left behind ? Even to the UA spiderman kit, no one left them behind neither, so what does it tell you ?

  8. Lucky,

    You may be too young to know but SQ used to offer amenity kits even in economy prior to 09/11 if I recall correctly. (Back then, I was flying FRA-JFK a few times a year.)

  9. They had some in the past (occasionally) I once got one on their seasonal (Christmas) flight to Frankfurt and on the return to Singapore.

  10. Huge fan of Penhaligon’s here. And Quercus is a pleasant scent. Nice move to choose a company that would help them stand out a bit.

  11. I just use the earplugs and the tooth brush… so I could do without them. LX F I always keep though.

  12. I don’t object to the old Singapore Airlines way BECAUSE they have a pouch. When I get an amenity kit, the thing I want the most is the container or pouch. Lip balm is occasionally useful as are socks.

    The toothbrush that airlines get usually is low quality made in China or India so I have only occasional use for it (house guests and to scrub shoes or something else). If I fly a lot, I don’t need one every time.

  13. At my company we have a box for Amenity Kits, periodically, once it’s full it’s taken to a local homeless shelter.

  14. Personally couldn’t care less about amenity kits and always left thinking about how wasteful they are. I know that they spend real money on these and feel bad tossing them in the garbage, but never found a use for all of these fancy little bags.

  15. Eh, other than due to the current crises this comes off as tone-deaf to the times. If anything, more airlines should be eliminating amenity kits. Do we really need to introduce millions of little single-use containers of plastic in this day and age? Is flying not bad enough for the environment already?!? I have literally *never* selected a business class product based on the kits. It’s based on a reputation for operational excellence, service, hard product, entertainment, schedule, and food.

    I only ever saw the kitless move as a positive differentiator for SQ.

  16. Amenity kits are not wasteful….even if I have to cart 5 home after a trip, I give them to friends, a nice gift to hotel check in staff for a good deed if I am out of space. I’ve given them to shop assistants for going above and beyond. I also take about 20 at a time and give to the homeless shelter….along with hotel toiletries.

    With regard to less contact:
    From a higher perspective, humans need contact!…we are wired for contact. It’s why we like to touch each other, be close to one another. Without human contact, humanity dies.

    As simple as that!

    So everyone championing less human contact (excuse of covid) get ready for something worse than 2020.

  17. As a QFP1 I used to fly all the time and I tend to leave them behind as most are full of useless items imho. I bring my own kit for my needs & that’s what I use. Although I love Ian’s idea of a box to then give them away. I have to confess to keeping the Martin Grant PJs. On the other hand, back in the day when all airlines had kits even in economy, many were v chic. My mother used to always keep them and give them out when she got home. We used to cringe but she always thought everyone would be thrilled to receive them and it seems they were!! Not everyone was travelling in 70s/80s. When she died I found a big vintage supply!! The biggest surprise was 2 men who came up to me at her funeral and one had become a pilot because of her stories and introduction to the world and the other one a chef for the same reason! Not sure if it was her hilarious and glam travel tales that did the trick or the amenity kits that went with them

  18. Asians love free stuff. There’s a reason why i stopped buying shampoo, soap And toothbrush for guests because i took all shampoos and soaps from hotel stays during my business trip. Salvatore from Waldorf, shanghai tang from the conrad, aromatherapy from marriott, remede from st regis, and etc.

  19. If I saw left behind ammenity kits I’d snag as many as I could. Can’t have too many fancy hand lotions and lip balms.

  20. I think SQ is missing the altruistic vision to use amenity kits as a place to showcase Singaporean products.

    Alternatively, they missed the boat on free advertising for global brands. Why not open up the bidding for companies to provide samples? They don’t have to spend a single cent if it’s done right.

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