You’re the guest of honour and cannot see another passenger from your seat. You’ve barely spent any time in a queue, boarded your plane at a leisurely pace and seem to have at least two different flight attendants ensuring all is as it should be.
If you are travelling with someone else, as I was, you will find yourself either perched on their expansive seat or standing in the traffic-free aisle, if you wish to chat. Though, you could instead focus on enjoying your pre-flight flute of champagne.
You will discover discreet stowage areas for whatever you need, and a mirror (with light, of course), hidden behind a panel, but within easy reach. It’s not about squeezing yourself and your belongings into your space, it’s about exploring the space and choosing what areas to use, which to leave. You could read the New York Times, or flick through the KrisShop magazine – perhaps order cosmetics, alcohol or some headphones by Porsche Design.
For night flights, there’s the option of food right after takeoff, or two hours before arrival – or both. I opted for breakfast only (having made the most of the KrisFlyer lounge) as I knew I would need the coffee to survive the timezone change. Though I could have chosen a selection of dim sum, an American breakfast, or beef noodle soup with apple focaccia sandwich, the lighter continental option was for me, with breakfast pastries, fresh fruit, and yoghurt. Whatever you choose, your white tablecloth will soon cover your table, the (real) cutlery will be laid out and the service will be impeccable.
Something to check is whether your flight is one with the ‘Book the Cook’ option. Available for travellers on the Singapore to Christchurch route, for example, it enables you to choose a meal created by a world-renowned chef like Japan’s Yoshihiro Murata, up to 24 hours before you fly, then enjoy wines to match both food and altitude. This is how you secure your lobster, or a quinoa and kale salad if you prefer.
Someone will close your window for you, so the sun doesn’t stream in as you fly through daybreak. And if you can’t figure out how to make your bed, a member of the crew will do it with ease, and with utmost courtesy. The comfy duvet and extra pillows – that actually have density to them, unlike the token ones provided in most Economy sections – do much to put you on your way to catch that evasive Sandman.
If you don’t want to pull that eye mask over your eyes quite yet, just relax – stretch out. Pull on the tube socks or slip on the slippers. Watch a movie, listen to music, read a book. No matter what, you’ll truly feel a million miles away.
Kate Preece flew Singapore Airlines from Singapore to
Brisbane to experience the A350, which will take travellers from
Christchurch to Singapore from January 8, 2019. Business Class
has 42 leather 71cm seats, each of which folds out to become a
flat 198cm bed.