Singapore Airlines’ Illogical Business Class Meals On The World’s Longest Flight

Filed Under: Singapore, Travel

Hello from Newark! I just flew Singapore Airlines’ A350-900ULR service nonstop from Singapore, which had a flight time of 17hr15min. It’s the longest flight in the world, and it launched just a couple of weeks ago.

I have a lot of thoughts about this flight, and I’ll be sharing them in a few different posts. In this post I wanted to address one specific issue — how tough it is to come up with a business class service procedure that makes sense. Let me explain.

Why it’s tough to tailor service on Singapore to Newark

This flight departs Singapore at around 1AM local time, and lands in New York at around 6:30AM local time.

Put another way, Newark time the flight takes off at 1PM and lands at 6:30AM, and Singapore time the flight takes off at 1AM and lands at 6:30PM. So in general people have three ways they approach sleep on this flight:

  • Some people try to immediately adjust to US time, and that means staying up for the first half of the flight and sleeping for the second half of the flight
  • Some people succumb to exhaustion, and sleep for the first half of the flight, and then are awake for the second half of the flight
  • Some people find a happy medium and nap for a few hours after takeoff, and then nap for a few hours before landing

I decided to do some research while onboard. The plane has 67 business class seats. Four hours into the flight all but 10 people were asleep, while four hours before landing about half of the people were awake. So it’s safe to say that most people weren’t prioritizing adjusting to US time, or more accurately, couldn’t overcome the hurdle of staying up through the night in a dark cabin.

How do you develop a meal plan around that?

If you’re not going to offer a complete dine on demand schedule, in general it would make sense to offer one meal at the beginning of the flight, one meal around the middle of the flight, and one meal at the end of the flight.

It makes sense that they service a supper-style meal after takeoff, but what about later in the flight? Do you serve breakfast on Singapore time (mid-flight) or New York time (before landing)? There’s no right answer.

To me this means the only logical service protocol is to offer a full dine on demand service. On a flight this long, people should be able to eat what they want when they want.

The downside to dine on demand

This might come as a surprise, but I don’t actually think a dine on demand system is necessarily best. It of course sounds great, but the problem with dine on demand is that it means that people are basically eating every minute of the flight.

That might not be a huge issue to some, but if you’re a fairly light sleeper, it can make a huge difference. It greatly increases the noise and light in the cabin, and means the cabin always has a different odor. Personally I have a much easier time sleeping when the cabin is dark and most other people are sleeping. But of course that’s not always realistic — I can’t control when other people are hungry and tired.

Singapore Airlines’ business class menu on this flight

Here’s the menu for the flight, and I’ll let you guys try to make sense of it:

As you can see, there’s a lot of repetition in the menu between meals, and the third and fourth menu pages are recommended mid-flight meal plans.

Why this menu makes little sense

So after takeoff the airline serves a meal. This is actually more of a snack, and based on the menu itself, you don’t have the option of making this a bigger meal. It’s just one main and some fruit.

Then you have dine on demand for hours 8-16. But that’s not really how it works. Instead at the midway point of the flight they turn on all the cabin lights, they roll a satay cart through the cabin, etc. Most people were asleep when this service started, but by the end of it just about everyone was awake.

Then you can just sort of order more snacks or food as you’d like before landing.

On top of that, you’re having three meals, but the menu has such limited breakfast options. Out of the three meals that most people eat onboard, there are only two options — a cheese omelet and a yogurt parfait (and I guess dim sum, which can really be any meal of the day). That’s it.

This just seems poorly thought out, in my opinion. What would I do differently, assuming the airline isn’t going to go offer “dine on demand?”

  • I’d provide the option to have a bigger meal after takeoff, since some people may want to enjoy a full meal before getting a full night of sleep, given many people are connecting from elsewhere
  • I’d provide a full meal before landing, with the choice of having either a full breakfast or full dinner option (which gets at how everyone will be on a different schedule at this point in the flight); it’s logical that the main meals should be at the very beginning of end of the flights, since that’s when people are most consistently awake
  • I’d have a light dine on demand menu available throughout the middle of the night; in other words, what’s currently served pre-landing should be served mid-flight, and vice versa

But to serve the main meal at the halfway point of a 17+ hour flight so that the cabin lights aren’t dimmed for more than six consecutive hours seems like an odd choice.

Lastly, let me just note that the crew was exemplary. None of the fault for this lies on them, as they delivered on the published service correctly, and couldn’t have been kinder and harder working.

I’m curious what you guys make of this — how do you think dining on a 17+ hour flight like this should be structured? Does Singapore’s service flow make sense to you?

  1. Why wouldn’t you serve the main meal? Unless people in business never have flown business, nobody who regularly flies can sleep more than 6 hours at once in a plane anyway.

  2. I don’t recall you complaining about dine on demand when you fly 16 hrs in CX F!

    As a compromise to the noise, I would suggest a one-tray “executive” service for dine-on-demand, so the meal is served in one shot.

  3. I think the right way to approach this

    Medium size meal immediately
    Sleep five to eight hours
    Larger meal
    Work/sleep or whatever for a few hours
    Light meal

    So I actually think they got it close to right.

    My question is why the peculiar departure time – this flight used to depart Singapore in the morning (10:55 AM) and arrive at Newark in the Evening (5:50 PM), which seems much more civilized.

  4. Also given how large the business class cabin is, may be have a “sleep zone” where there is minimal service and the lights are kept off for the bulk of the flight?

  5. You’re probably right. So:

    1. Why did they decide to do it this way? They must have a reason. What was it?
    2. What did they do the last time they flew this route? Was it different/better? Were the kitchens in the 340s bigger/able to accommodate more flexibility?

  6. Wait, you are saying Hello from Newark, but you would of landed there at 6:30am…

    Already in transit to NBO today on the inaugural flight or staying in NY for a night?

  7. hainan chix rice, lobster wonton in stock, and a nice enough breakfast. It’s like they gathered up a hawker center and rolled it up into an airplane.

  8. What impressed me about the menu is that they managed to avoid having a single vegetarian entree (save the omelette)

  9. They’ve actually done research into the menu offerings and the timings, as well as experimenting to try and optimize.
    If a majority of passengers agree with you, then I’m sure it’ll change, but for the moment I don’t see a problem with how it’s set up. I’m not really sure there’s a better option that takes into account the wide variety of ways people structure their time on a flight this long.

  10. I’d try to stay up and adjust to NY time. However, Singapore noted the smaller meal portions as part of their canyon ranch partnership. So it seems that is intentional.

  11. Had a similar issue with Korean Air’s flights to/from JFK. The second (and final) meal service began at hour nine of a 14.5hr flight. I would’ve preferred a longer uninterrupted sleep before they commenced the second meal service.

  12. This seems like another reason to avoid this route unless absolutely necessary. Based on the reviews of uncomfortable beds and lack of thought to meal timing, I have a hard time imagining saving three+ hours or whatever is worth it compared to a stop in Tokyo, Seoul, etc.

  13. @Chuck: eggs are vegetarian (no animal died for it), though not vegan. At least that’s the European definition of vegetarian.

  14. Eggs are vegetarian because they are not meat. You mean vegan, eggs are not vegan. If you want a vegan meal you can always request it in advance.

  15. @James please don’t make the mistake of thinking your experience is everyone’s experience.

    @Neil S. love the immediate business mind. Great questions to ask! My assumption is that Singapore did market research to determine this schedule so it’d be interesting to understand why they arrived at this approach. My original thinking on this flight was that people would take it because they needed a direct flight for the opportunity to get the most amount of sleep but the service makes that impossible.

    @anon I laughed! Very funny.

  16. I guess it’s logical. As you said, people were just connecting from elsewhere (KUL/BKK/CGK), or perhaps if they originated from Singapore, they’ve already had a full course dinner. So the first meal was just to help passengers sleep.

    The second meal is questionable, and should be more flexible. But someone said it right, if you’re flying, the most you’d sleep is probably 6 hours. So this heavy main meal in the middle of the flight is probably to help people feel full and then sleep some more.

    Then, just before the flight arrives, a lighter meal because people don’t want to go into morning meetings feeling stuffed/needing to go to the bathroom.

    They’ve come close, but I’d add more flexibility to the main meal in the middle. I’ve never favoured food carts for business class, as they come across impersonal. But this time around it should be removed so as not to disrupt sleeping passengers. On another note, I do like that they seem to have added plenty of local Singaporean flavours, as in my experience SQ tends to do better serving Singaporean meals than western meals.

  17. SQ sometimes does have issues with their meal schedules.
    For example, on Moscow-Singapore in economy they started serving dinner around 1,5 hours after take-off and were really slow about it, so the trays were cleared around 2,5 hours after take-off (on a 10-hour flight). Then, they woke everyone up around 3,5 hours before landing to serve breakfast, lights on, seatbacks up and everything. So on a 10-hour red-eye night flight they left us about 4 hours to relax and sleep, which is atrocious, considering the level of economy meal service – which is never that good.
    They could use some extra planning.

  18. Most people connecting were also coming off a business class flight and had been fed there. If not, they have lounge access and would have got a proper meal there given the late departure.
    I honestly find this to be alright. Now if say my incoming flight was late and i hadn’t eaten on that one either then i might be hungrier. But even that first meal looks filling enough.

    I guess this meal service is probably optimised to ensure people get some decent rest and not just overeat and arrive with stomachs aching. Wasn’t Quantas touting how their meal service is optimised keeping the health of passengers in mind?

  19. QR Suites for the win! Dine on demand, plus walls to block out some of the light and noise from other passengers!

  20. @anon: “@James A, take the meat out of any entree and its vegetarian”

    If you take the meat out of the entree, it’s no longer an entree. Not very hard to include one vegetarian option. I suspect the demand is there.

  21. SQ is not known for their veg options for guests in premium cabin unless ordered in advance. You would think that whether someone is paying or using miles that they should have all options available to them without advance order. Alas, SQ simply does not care.

  22. Cathay used to do a mid-flight meal service about 8 hours in on the HKG-JFK nonstops that left in the evening and it was truly infuriating. To all those who are saying it’s impossible to sleep more than 6 hours on a plane anyway that is nonsense; with a comfortable enough set up (at least a decent reverse herringbone like CX provides on their 77W) it’s possible to get a full 8 hours,and it’s always preferable not to have that interrupted in mid-flight – the point at which nearly everyone sleeps.

    I can’t stand SQ’s awkward and uncomfortable biz class layout though, with the beds that are never long enough unless one is contorted into a bizarre angle, so I would never take this flight anyway.

  23. I think the timing of the flight makes perfect sense; it allows for a full workday, even for passengers connecting into Singapore, then a long period of rest, and arrival in time for the business day in New York.

    As for the meals, I think it sounds like a sensible scheme, as someone pointed out, a lot of passengers will have been well fed on connecting flights or in the lounge, and probably very tired and ready to go to sleep. But 8 hours into the flight is a little soon to be turning on the cabin lights and start a noisy meal service.

  24. One thing this flight really needs is a lounge. If there is any flight that needs it, this is it. It would also enable people to eat at any time without disturbing others.

  25. Definitely dine on demand my choice! I could hardly sleep on this flight from the noise in the galley (seat 15), as they seemed to be preparing meals all the time anyway. Our dining experience was unsatisfactory on this flight.
    1. Considering it was such a long flight with extensive menu I thought it would not be necessary to book the cook or order in advance. Wrong. I eat fish (no shells preferably) and mostly vegan diet. There was a fish option to start, but had bacon! I ordered ceviche at the start for the later meal, but when it came they said they had run out of lavash. Ordered the veggie panini and it came almost frozen. Surprised that a flight originating in Asia had hardly vegetarian options.
    2. Traveling with my husband (seating together on middle seats). His meal was served first, by the time mine came he had already finished his. It would have been nice to eat together, it is the first flight we have not been served at the same time. Plus First service took too long to be served, I was falling asleep by then.
    3. Missed the cart services later as was trying to sleep. Too tired to get up and eat something but not asleep enough to not hear them.
    4.It was uncomfortable to eat while on the “lie-flat” position, and too complicated to keep changing the seat back to a comfortable position each time.
    The staff were very friendly and trying to accommodate everyone’s wishes but they seemed a bit confused themselves. Later I learned, that it was also their first flight on the route.

    Based on this, and the awkward seat design to sleep comfortably on such a long flight; I would not choose this route again.

  26. I don’t understand how you can do the amount of research that SQ supposedly did for this flight and land on “Let’s do a full, cart-based, lights-on meal service halfway through.” Regardless of the menu options, it seems like keeping the cabin quiet during the middle of the flight would be obvious.

  27. The first meal being light makes sense as it’s a “midnight” snack served around 2 am. Definitely a large meal right before sleeping would be the wrong choice, so kudos SQ.

    But I would definitely be pissed to be woken up after a mere 5 hours of sleep, especially as I would find it quite hard to fall into a deep sleep again (it would be almost 11 am body clock time). What a nightmare. I most definitely prefer QR’s dine on demand style (and QR crews can deliver it quietly) or CX/QF order a snack anytime — neither turns the main lights on — or a meal at hour 11.

    I agree with @Evan — I will continue booking myself through HKG. I have never been woken up by CX, and getting uninterrupted sleep makes a huge difference. Plus I always work in HKG and on HKG-SIN & v.v. so the extra time isn’t dead time.

    @Lucky — did you notice a difference on flying long haul on an A350 vs. 787? They both have similarly higher cabin pressure, but I am concluding that the noticeably lower noise of the A350 on 10+ hour flights definitely makes a difference — I arrive much less tired on an A350 vs a 787. I am now seeking A350s over anything else (I fly transpacific monthly).

  28. Make a variety buffet trolley going through aisle for several times and mini lounge bar for the best self service in cabine food station. Fully efficiency and many choices.

  29. CX from JFK/BOS to HKG are similar very long night flights. I don’t think they turn on cabin lights at any time in the middle of the flight. I remember waking up several hours before landing, having noodles in a dark cabin using my reading lights, then napping for a couple of hours before main lights were turned on.

    Same story on QF westbound flights from the US – one very long night, lights out.

    I think that service schedule similar to CX/QF would make the most sense for SQ22. There must be a lot of people trying to maximize available sleep time. I can handle light noise and smells, but bright cabin lights would completely break my sleep.

  30. On the CX flights from HKG-JFK I’m pretty sure I was able to get more than six hours sleep, but if I am fully woken up during a flight after sleeping more than 5 hours I am doubtful I will be able to get back to sleep. The meal service seems setup for the people who want to (and are able to fall asleep right after the first meal post takeoff). This is rough for people who want to get on EST since the flight arrives early and people have a full day ahead of them if they want to try to wait until the evening to sleep. Honestly though in my experience the vast majority of passengers don’t seem concerned with staying up and many are getting ready to go to sleep as soon as possible. Given that situation I can see why they are not serving the largest meal up front, because eating a massive meal immediately going to sleep isn’t the greatest. Besides if you are departing from singapore and the great food there you probably had a good dinner earlier in the evening. Those connecting through can get some food from the lounges. Looks to me that Singapore thought about all this and just went with what the majority of their customers were likely to do in terms of sleep. This isn’t a flight for light sleepers though. I do think they should have a bit more flexibility on when passengers can have their full meal. Maybe a semi-dine on demand where those who want the full meal up front can get it at the start and others who like the current setup can keep it.

  31. Not sure about the waking up issue, but the biggest meal at 1am is not a good idea. Then it’s just an extra meal as everyone will have had dinner.

    Better to skip the light meal than the big one given that after I sleep for the first 6-7 hours, there is still 10 to go. I’d just make The first interval a little longer.

  32. I imagine part of the reason of not starting with a big meal is that, if you wanted one, you could have enjoyed it in the Private Room.

  33. @Lucky
    Do you even have a culinary degree? Somehow you think you know more than Canyon Ranch and Singapore Airlines. No wonder you keep losing more and more viewers to Sam Chui and Josh Cahill. lol

  34. When something like this happens in the future, call the airline and tell them to make a note of it and make sure that the correct name is on the “PNR” (Passenger Name Record) in the airline computer system. Many of the positive experiences recounted here were most likely due to the agent making sure that the name on the PNR was correct (ie, the name on the passport) irrespective of what the boarding pass or ticket says. It is a common problem especially when in the United States, someone of latino background may have “Maria Lopez”, for example on their lawful permanent residence card (Lopez being the married name) but their name on their native country passport is “Maria Rodriguez Perez de Lopez”, which is first name, father’s name, mother’s name, married name. As long as the PNR contains the latter, a boarding pass or ticket containing the former will be okay, even though they look like 2 completely different names.

  35. SQ continues to get the hard and soft details wrong vs far better options, yet loves to charge full whack for the pleasure.

    SQ also always slow to complete first meal and always way too early to ready for landing, shades up, seats up, etc, etc.

    Q-Suites to USA (or anywhere) beats this flight/SQ any day of the week and they pull off dine on demand without disrupting passengers.

    Will SQ ever return to glory? Seriously doubt it. I live in SIN, so wish they would, but heaps of other options to choose from so until that day….

  36. Lucky,

    What you said completely makes sense, I’d rather go to sleep uninterrupted throughout 16 hours flight, rather than to get woken up at the middle of the flight by noises and people eating beside me with knives, forks, spoons & plates tumbling while attendants picking them up.

    Air Canada does an excellent job for letting people sleep through 15-16 hour flights from North America to Asia by serving a full meal soon after taking off and a breakfast by waking up only 1.5 hours before landing.

    Even breakfast is not impressed, you can order on demand snacks throughout the flight which is better with no light brought on during sleeping hours in between 2 main meals.

  37. Obviously SQ management does not care. This has been the #1 complaint since day 1 with the lights turned on midway through the flight.

    Make one cabin dine on demand, another standard service. 20+ years ago VS started to offer sleeper/snooze service in the nose of the 747. You could still order small snacks, but the full service was not on offer, you would eat in the lounge. So its easy to create a “quieter zone”, and then one with more standard where you turn the lights on at the 8 hour mark (and blast ABBA perhaps)…lol

    The menu looks useless and baffling coming from SQ. I wonder what bet they lost to…..

  38. I am with @James A here, the biggest surprise here is an (almost) complete lack of veg offerings (what they have seems incredibly unappetizing). Basically, if you are vegetarian, and you either forgot to pre-order a veg meal (happened to me on my last CX flight – thankfully, their “standard” menu had veg options) or the airline forgot to load it (happened to me a few times), you are seriously SOL. A major miss in my opinion.

    Other than that, I think the meals order is a bit dumb but I’ve experienced a variety of “dumb” with airline meals, so it doesn’t bother me too much.

    Also, surprised by the first comment (James) re: anyone who flies in premium cabins regularly can’t sleep for more than 6 hours straight – seriously? This makes no sense to me. Have been there, done that, more than once (and will most certainly do it again).

  39. I flew this route last week and found the product to be horrid. In particular, the meals were disgusting, had poor texture and lacked flavour, all same time – very hard to achieve all simultaneously. I’m not intending on flying this route again. On a positive note, SQ reimbursed me for the journey and requested that I give the route another try soon in the future.

  40. Flying this route r/t in January. I’m going to gorge on as much food on the first meal, then pop a lunesta so I can sleep the following 10-hours. Silicone earplugs, eye-shades and DND sign.

  41. I think there are 2 ways about this:
    (1) Publish the service as largest meal before landing, but deliver it earlier and quietly to any pax who ask
    (2) Split seat assignments based on dining time– i.e. front half of the J cabin has largest meal at 9/10 hour mark while back half sleeps uninterrupted and vice versa

  42. For my money, this is just another example of the over-hyped SQ brand, what with the extensive media coverage on their “research” ahead of the “longest flight in the world”. Many airlines operate flights which are just marginally shorter, without media fuss and without waking passengers up in the middle of what for most passengers is a long night best spent in peace and quiet.

    Big/medium meal in the beginning, light meal at the end, and snacks and some hot options on demand in between. That’s what everybody else does on those ULH flights, to most people’s satisfaction. I’ll let others suffer through SQ and their needless “innovations”.

  43. Wow that’s the dumbest schedule I’ve seen (and yet copied by most airlines). Who wants to dine at 2am local time? Idiotic. Most people have eaten a regular dinner and certainly don’t need a second one right before bed. Better option would be to do a quick drink service, let everybody sleep, offer dine on demand for hours 6-12 and then a big meal 2 hours before landing. Personally I am always starved about 50-75% through the flight but rarely does any airline offer me anything beyond a crappy sandwich, chips or cookies. Dine on demand rules but of course FAs hate it because it’s more work.

  44. SQ has never gotten the meal timings right on their flights; piss-poor when it comes to planning things out and practicalities. Not hard to fix: research the hell out of the passengers and know your customer base and then adjust accordingly.

    I do remember that when SQ22 was running back in the day, it wasn’t so bad – two meals and lots of snacks in between is what I remember.

    Also I have to agree with previous posts – the food on SQ has dropped precipitously in quality in J class. Had better food in Delta economy out of London in the summer!

  45. How do the cabin and flight deck crew handle their rest/sleep rotations, meal times and time zone adjustments? Which they then have to repeat a few days later on their return flight. They must be exhausted upon arrival.

    Although it’s the passengers who are paying for the flight, but it’s the crews that must come out worse as they are working rather than justing eating/sleeping/watching films/reading books etc. I’ve a cabin crew friend who flys from 1hr economy domestic to 14hr first class long haul and it don’t know how she does it; always picking up coughs/colds from passengers, crazy sleep patterns, short naps on aircraft rest breaks which is not really proper sleep on a +12hr flight and so on.

  46. Having just flown the worlds second longest flight from Doha to Auckland, I would recommend the dine in demand service. It worked very well for us.

    We got on the plane at around 0230 local time, had a few drinks & then slept for around 7 hours. On waking up had our main meal. Then 2 hours before landing had breakfast.

    Our hosts in Auckland were amazed that we arrived fresh & adjusted straight away to the NZ time considering we had travelled from the U.K. in one go.

    Dine on demand is good. Who knows how long one is going to sleep etc.?

  47. Having just flown the worlds second longest flight from Doha to Auckland, I would recommend the dine in demand service. It worked very well for us.

    We got on the plane at around 0230 local time, had a few drinks & then slept for around 7 hours. On waking up had our main meal. Then 2 hours before landing had breakfast.

    Our hosts in Auckland were amazed that we arrived fresh & adjusted straight away to the NZ time considering we had travelled from the U.K. in one go.

    Dine on demand is good. Who knows how long one is going to sleep etc.?

  48. SQ meals from SFO-SIN were the worst. Bad timing, mediocre food, almost no options the last 4 hours.

    I do think they got SIN-EWR right. Why do people eat massive meals before going to sleep. I never do. Not at home, not anywhere. Most people cant eat a massive meal then sleep, or be fit. Its hard to sleep when you are digesting a 3000 calorie airline meal. They are trying to make good decisions for you but it probably comes across as wrong.

  49. This is a flight to avoid due to the timing of everything. When I look at purchasing 14+ hour flights first thing I consider is what time does it depart, what time does it land, and due to the timing how likely are other passengers to drive me crazy based on their body clocks being maladjusted. For all the reasons you point out in this excellent article I’d avoid this flight. But then again Singapore is one of my least-favorite places so I’d avoid it anyhow next time going to e.g. nearby Malaysia.

  50. @Justin – no first class, so no private room on this flight? And presumptuous that people were arriving from one, of that merits access.

  51. @Rob – beef cheek is brilliant cooked slow. Different cuts of meat for different purposes. Ridiculous if you can’t appreciate that.

  52. After my experience on the 17hr flight from SFO to SIN. I passed on the opportunity to fly this route next February. I am glad I passed! I found my flight to be mess with them running out of certain drinks 4 hours into the flight. I agree with you on “On Demand”. SIA has a catering problem with these long flights.

  53. Lights on mid flight is truly daft.
    Perhaps designed by a mother, who has mastered broken sleep?
    I have not – I need uninterrupted time.

    I agree that they should split the cabin according to whether people want maximum sleep facilitation or not.

  54. @Tiffany
    Perhaps they did the research, and then took the average of what people wanted.
    Missing the point that that satisfies no-one!

  55. @Travis – I didn’t ask for it. An agent reached out to me and I provided my feedback, following which I was transferred to a CSR, who processed my refund and asked if I would be willing to fly again to gauge improvements. My wife and I are PPS Solitaire Club members, so that may be the reason.

  56. SQ has the best service and inflight catering in the world. Nobody can compete with SQ as their crews are the best I. The world. They offer a product far superior to any American or European product.

  57. Seems like you have never worked in F&B or Inflight Service or as cabin crew.

    Firstly, there minimum crew rest requirements mandated by airline regulators and unions. For 18 hour flight crew rest strategy has first priority minimum 6 hours per cabin crew in shifts.

    So crew rest out of the way, they now have 12 hours to attend passengers.

    Allow for for 1 hour from gate departure and one hour for arrival preparations, leaves you 10 hours to serve passengers.

    Divide that by 3 meal services allows 3.3 hours to serve 3 meals.

    Some passengers sleep, some eat, some request items on demand. Happy to serve you anyway you like on request I am sure…!

    Now having been on 4 of the last “4 launches” of the worlds longest flights (getting tiresome…!) most people sleep in flight between 6-7 hours. And doze in between…

    Regardless of departure time, flying has a different impact on body sleep requirements.

    I fly 3 out of 4 weeks every month globally.

    I have never seen or experienced the perfect inflight service and dine on demand is not the way to go, given my last seat buddy, woke me mid slumber to smash through his veg curry… the smell overpowering my need to sleep…!

    I firmly believe the crew of the SQ made an error in lighting the cabin fully for mid flight service, and having recently re-flown the SIN > EWR flight, the mid flight meal service was delivered with lights dimmed and in a quiet and calm manner without the bravado of a Xmas tree lighting ceremony…!

    As with SQ if you are hungry, they will never deny you a meal, large, small or otherwise, so you are just having a whinge and showing dislike for a well thought out service delivery, with some start up glitches.

    I don’t know any new service or new restaurant launch or theatre show that doesn’t have first night jitters.

    SQ clearly learning and adapting their way, to refine a world class service delivery.

    And you make no mention of the delicious canyon ranch meals, which are an absolute revelation in aircraft dining, again, well thought out, very tasty, and not your typical meal experience.

    Qantas fill you up with BBQ in their Perth lounge, prior to flight to LHR and this flight can’t be compared to the SQ flight, and arriving hungry to London is a regular occurrence with nuts and grains to bind you over…

    Did you arrive hungry to Singapore…!?
    I doubt it…

  58. Actually, the meal timing looks just about right for me. I used to take the A340 ULR when it was still running so I think I can speak with some confidence.

    First meal is to get people to sleep so it should be light. I really do not think many people are connecting, or if they are, connecting from anywhere far away (most likely KL/Bangkok/Jakarta – all in almost the same time zone). They would have eaten something in Changi for dinner.

    Last meal is definitely breakfast for most people, as it’s morning in New York. Most people taking this flight are business travelers, they have meetings to go to after a quick refresh somewhere. A big meal will screw up their timings. Remember, quite a few people taking this flight are going to be in New York for just 3 days or so, they don’t really have time to adjust.

    So that leaves the middle meal as the big meal. Or you could have dimsum if you wanted something lighter.

    So actually, I think for the typical business traveler i.e. the people who actually take this flight regularly, it’s pretty logical.

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