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PSA: All Singapore Airlines Phuket flights get recliner Business Class seats in September

All Singapore Airlines Phuket services will be operated by Boeing 737-800s from 5th to 30th September, with inferior cabin products.

If you’ve been following our coverage of SIA’s introduction of the Boeing 737-8 MAX aircraft into service, you’ll probably recall that Phuket was the first port of call for the new birds, with the inaugural passenger flight jetting off to the popular holiday destination on 23rd November 2021.

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The latest addition to the airline’s fleet was noteworthy at the time, mostly for a new flat-bed regional Business Class product by the UK’s Thompson Aerospace, a far cry from the older ex-SilkAir recliner Business Class seats on Boeing 737-800 jets.

SQ728 from Singapore to Phuket was the airline’s inaugural 737 MAX flight. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Unfortunately there are still seven of those older 737-800s in the SIA fleet for the next couple of years, and there’s some bad news for a popular route we though had seen the last of them.

Phuket downgrades for September

While the Singapore – Phuket route represented SIA’s first introduction of the MAX to its network, and the type has largely been used exclusively on the city pair over the last few months, older ex-SilkAir Boeing 737-800s have been creeping back in on selected days since late August.

Unfortunately the news gets worse for Thailand-bound travellers, with the airline now confirming a switch of all its Phuket flights to the Boeing 737-800 for four weeks, from Monday 5th September through to Friday 30th September.

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That means if you’re booked in Business Class it’s a significant downgrade from flat-bed seats with enhanced privacy, like this:

SIA Boeing 737-8 MAX Business Class. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

to side-by-side recliners with little privacy (and a recline of just 8 inches), like this:

SIA Boeing 737-800 Business Class. (Photo: Martin Memo / Executive Traveller)

For most of our readers, these are certainly not seats to waste your KrisFlyer miles on.

In Economy Class there will be no device charging option, while both cabins lack a built-in entertainment system and Wi-Fi connectivity.

SIA Boeing 737-800 Economy Class. (Photo: Singapore Airlines)

You can stream entertainment content onto your personal device from an onboard server on the 737-800, but it’s no match for the full KrisWorld system on the MAXs.

The lack of Wi-Fi is certainly a shame, with Singapore Airlines currently trialling an unlimited connection for Business Class and a complimentary 2-hour surf package for KrisFlyer members until further notice, though sadly neither of those perks will be of any use on these Phuket flights.

The schedule (September 2022)

Singapore Airlines has trimmed its usual four times daily Phuket flights down to three times daily for all of September, with the late morning SQ728 and SQ727 flights taking a break for the month.

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From 5th September 2022 these three daily Singapore Airlines flights to and from Phuket will downgauge to the Boeing 737-800, as shown in the following schedule.

Singapore    Phuket

5th September 2022
to 30th September 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
SQ726
737-8 MAX
737-800

SIN
08:30
HKT
09:35
SQ736
737-8 MAX
737-800

SIN
16:20
HKT
17:10
SQ740
737-8 MAX
737-800

SIN
18:30
HKT
19:20

Phuket    Singapore

5th September 2022
to 30th September 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
SQ725
737-8 MAX
737-800

HKT
10:25
SIN
13:25
SQ735
737-8 MAX
737-800

HKT
18:10
SIN
21:00
SQ739
737-8 MAX
737-800

HKT
20:10
SIN
22:55

Before you ask, unfortunately there is no ‘downgrade’ compensation due from the airline, either in the form of cash or miles.

Like most other airlines, in SIA’s eyes, Business Class is Business Class.

The schedule (from October 2022)

Come 1st October the Phuket route returns to four times daily again for SIA (SQ728/727 is back), with all services scheduled to be flown by the Boeing 737-8 MAX again, as shown in the following schedule.

Note that timings change slightly from the start of the northern winter season on 30th October 2022, but the same flight numbers and aircraft type are used.

Singapore    Phuket

From 1st October 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
SQ726
737-8 MAX
SIN
08:30
HKT
09:35
SQ728
737-8 MAX
SIN
10:00
HKT
10:50
SQ736
737-8 MAX
SIN
16:20
HKT
17:10
SQ740
737-8 MAX
SIN
18:30
HKT
19:20

Phuket    Singapore

From 1st October 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
SQ725
737-8 MAX
HKT
10:25
SIN
13:25
SQ727
737-8 MAX
HKT
11:40
SIN
14:40
SQ735
737-8 MAX
HKT
18:10
SIN
21:00
SQ739
737-8 MAX