SIA forgoes 'Flight to nowhere', wheels out dining and behind the scenes experiences

 Singapore Airlines (SIA) is dropping the idea of its "Flight to nowhere" experience, more than a week after it was first reported by media outlets. In place of this, it has launched the Discover Your Singapore Airlines suite of experiences, which comprises three initiatives that have been specially curated for consumers in Singapore. According to the airlines, these experiences are a result of a market study and a comprehensive review, which also considered factors such as the attractiveness of the initiatives to SIA’s customers and members of the public, the environmental implications, and their financial viability.

Restaurant A380 @Changi offers an exclusive dining experience inside the Airbus A380. Diners will receive KrisShop discounts, a limited-edition goodie bag and additional gifts when they turn up in traditional heritage wear, such as cheongsam, sarong kebaya and saree.

Meanwhile, the Inside Singapore Airlines experience offers an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of its training facilities. Visitors will be brought on a tour of more than 70 years of SIA’s history, get an opportunity to interact with its pilots and cabin crew, and find out more about the training they undergo. Craft activities and the opportunity to operate the full flight simulator are also available to consumers.

Lastly, SIA@Home is for consumers who are keen to enjoy the SIA in-flight dining experience in the comfort of their own home. They can choose from 10 menus featuring exclusive First Class and Business Class meals. Limited-edition dining ware and amenities are also available depending on the package chosen. All three experiences are exclusively available for booking via the KrisShop website and KrisFlyer members can redeem their miles to pay for these experiences, or earn miles on their purchases. 

When asked about its marketing strategy for the experiences, SIA's spokesperson said it is unable to provide specific details due to sensitive commercial reasons. "However, we can share that we developed a marketing strategy to publicise our Discover Your Singapore Airlines suite of experiences, and more details will be shared in due course," the spokesperson added.

SIA CEO Goh Choon Phong said with COVID-19 drastically reducing the number of flights operated by the SIA Group, it has created unique activities that would allow it to engage with fans and customers during this time.

"There has been a lot of interest in our customer engagement initiatives over the last few weeks, and I would like to thank everyone for their great ideas and suggestions. We are very encouraged by and grateful for the enthusiasm and passion that we have seen. All of us are eagerly looking forward to welcoming you to discover your Singapore Airlines," he added.

Separately, the airline has witnessed staff cuts amidst the pandemic, as it struggles to stay afloat. Earlier this month, it cut about 2,400 employees and the group expects to operate below 50% of its capacity at the end of the financial year in March 2021, The Straits Times reported. This is compared to the levels pre-COVID-19.

Companies in the tourism and hospitality industry have been coming up with interesting ways to engage with consumers. Malaysia Airports Holdings sold out all 40 slots for its two day one night airport staycation at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA). Done in partnership with Sama-Sama Hotel KLIA and Airport Fire Rescue Service, the staycation offered an exclusive tour to the airport fire station, allowing customers to be a "firefighter" for a day.

Meanwhile, Fairmont Singapore recently rolled out a staycation package targeted at mothers, known as "Mumcation", partnering with UNIQLO and Lush. The package will allow guests to have a massage, afternoon tea, and some "me" time to themselves.

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