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What do you do when you land at 3:30a in SIN?

What do you do when you land at 3:30a in SIN?

Sep 5th, 2014, 02:01 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2007
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What do you do when you land at 3:30a in SIN?

HI,
With all my traveling, I've never landed at 3:30am after an overseas flight. Our Singapore Airlines flight from LAX arrives at that ungodly hour. Do we have to book a hotel for the night before (seems awfully wasteful)….or do Singaporean hotels allow an extremely early check in?
I'm sure there are many of you who have experienced this…what did you do?
barefootbeach is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 02:12 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Book in the night before.
Bokhara2 is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 02:30 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2005
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It's not that wasteful; you'll have 10 hours of the hotel that you wouldn't have had with a next day check-in; get settled, dump the luggage, relax, nap, breakfast, check out the waterfront and the Merlion, or the Islamic quarter, or Chinese heritage museum; lots to do!
sylvia3 is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 02:55 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I'd book a hotel for the night before and go into the city.

Some people would opt to stay at the hotel in the airport (Ambassador) which rents in 4 hour blocks. You must make reservations in advance - and it books up quickly. There is a more expensive hotel in the airport, but you can get a much better hotel in the city for the same price.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 03:21 PM
  #5  
 
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If you are not in transit, do book for the night before at the hotel that you intend to stay at in the city. 20-30 minutes to get there, max...
Craig is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 03:25 PM
  #6  
 
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>>>What do you do when you land at 3:30a in SIN?<<<


Warm greetings again barefoot, from end of work week in San Francisco Bay Area, and thanks again for your years of brilliant trip reports and posts; always appreciated and savoured. Glad you will be spending time in our fine home of Singapore; honoured to offer SIN lodging, dining, recreational options.

Now, suspect you will be arriving SIN ~ 3am via "our" SQ 11, ex-NRT? Before procuring a Singapore residence, the Four Seasons was my primary SIN business travel property and that wondrous staff never failed to efficiently accommodate my late night/early morning arrivals. (Should add, I was a fairly regular corporate client; my SQ arrivals at all hours - from Narita, Incheon, Bangkok, Hong Kong and a few others - never a problem.) Other Singapore hotels that have always been most accommodating to me and family are Raffles and the Regent.

[Off topic, but noticed beloved Kyoto, Japan may be on your itinerary. Can't help with lodging (have almost always stayed with long-time family friends), but will propose a special dining evening at Kikunoi, as noted on my profile page; enjoy.]

Finally, congratulations on flying SIA for some of your holiday sectors; well done. If flying SQ economy, will suggest looking into preferred seating and special meals. Flying SIA ex-NRT, I have always considered SQ's Narita catering to be one of her better cuisine satellites. Should you be flying "up front", will suggest SQ's Book the Cook -- and should you be flying Suites (A380s), well, I do salute you.

Savour your planning barefoot; very happy for you. Warm weekend wishes to you and all from SF Bay Area,

macintosh (robert)


... Singapore Girl, You're a Great Way to Fly ...
AskOksena is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 03:27 PM
  #7  
 
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Whether you can check in early will depend on how full the hotel was the night before.

If you land at 3:30 it will probably be 4:30 at least by the time you clear immigration and customs and get into town. I am far too frugal to book a night-before hotel arriving that late. Especially as Changi has so many facilities. In a similar situation in Vancouver (although I had only flown from New York) I settled in at Starbucks and wrote a blog post. However, at Changi I'd probably go sleep for a few hours at the Rainforest Lounge. See http://www.changiairport.com/at-chan...ces/rest-areas
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 07:30 PM
  #8  
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Thank you so much for your wise suggestions…and I love you macintosh, robert!
barefootbeach is offline  
Sep 5th, 2014, 09:53 PM
  #9  
 
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I've done this route many times as I'm from L.A. I just sent a request to the transit hotel, at Changi, this morning for my upcoming winter trip as my flight will also arrive at 3:30AM on Singapore Air from L.A. I will then fly on to my next destination later that morning.

If you're in transit, and want to stay at the transit hotel, then you book a minimum of a 6-hour block. It's best to book into the transit hotel in the terminal of your outgoing flight.

http://www.changiairport.com/in-transit/transit-hotel

Once I timed how long it took from the time my Singapore Air flight landed and the time that I got on the elevated train system and went to the terminal where the transit hotel was of my outgoing flight. It took all of only 30 minutes total to arrive at the transit hotel.

If staying at the transit hotel, you can not collect your luggage, so take a carry-on bag with whatever you need to use overnight. Plus, you do not go through customs. There will be signs pointing you in the direction of the transit hotel. It's super easy and convenient and after traveling that many hours I'm REALLY glad that the transit hotel exists.

If you're not in transit and you plan to stay in Singapore for some time, then you'll need to book a regular hotel for the day before your arrival.

What I've done in the past is book myself into the YMCA International House Hotel after those 3:30AM arrivals. Although I've stayed at many hotels in Singapore and from no star ones to 5-star ones, I like the Y and have stayed there since the late 1990s. Plus, when arriving to a hotel at around 4:30AM, I don't want to pay a lot of money for a hotel room, although the Y is no longer cheap. But, it's cheaper than staying at a lot of other hotels in Singapore and it has prime location at #1 Orchard Road. I'm used to staying at more than one hotel in a city and on the same trip in that city as I like transferring hotels and experiencing different ones and in different areas.

http://www.ymcaih.com.sg/

Happy Travels!
Guenmai is online now  
Sep 6th, 2014, 12:53 AM
  #10  
 
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I just received an e-mail from the transit hotel in Changi and the elevated train system (skytrain) presently only runs between 5AM and 11PM. Before I remember taking a sky train upon arrival at 3:30AM. So, now I will book the transit hotel in the terminal that I'll either arrive into or one nearby. Then, after I sleep and get up and am ready to fly on, I'll just go over to my departure terminal.

Below is part of the e-mail that I just received from the transit hotel.

"As we are situated in Departure Transit Lounge (Restricted Area) of Changi Airport,
Please be informed that during your arrival, the skytrain will not be operating.
(operates from 0500hrs to 0230hrs).

If you arrive in a terminal which is different from your booking, during the Skytrain non-operational hours, passengers who are within the transit areas are advised to make use of the inter-terminal travellators which may take about 45 minutes by walking."

Happy Travels!
Guenmai is online now  
Sep 6th, 2014, 06:36 AM
  #11  
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Guenmai,
Thank you for taking the time to provide such a detailed explanation of how the transit hotel works…..I had neglected to mention that I will be staying in Singapore for several days before a cruise so will not be in transit….but I'm sure there are many Fodorites who will benefit from your post.

Again, thanks to all the previous posters for great suggestions. Not sure which approach I'll take, but probably just book the hotel I'll be staying in for convenience and to maximize my sightseeing in Singapore.
barefootbeach is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 08:29 AM
  #12  
 
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I landed in Singapore yesterday took approx 17 minutes from landing to clearing immigration and getting my bag to getting in a taxi, I doubt very much it will take 1 hour + to get through immigration etc
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 08:32 AM
  #13  
 
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Sorry I mistyped that would be all of 21 minutes.... Puts Heathrow and especially JFK to shame!
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 08:52 AM
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@Smeagol - I was including the time to reach the downtown hotel. And we don't all take taxis, there are several other options.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 09:13 AM
  #15  
 
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@thursdayd at 3:30am in the morning not that many. Anyway I was only pointing out that immigration etc is super efficient at Changi, and I have very recent experience...., wasn't actually a dig at your post.
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 12:35 PM
  #16  
 
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Yes, Changi is a model airport! I did their city tour one time when I was in transit, and it was great.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 02:03 PM
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Yes, Changi Airport is very efficient. Depending on what time I have landed there, whether from L.A. at 3:30AM or from Bangkok , during the day time and for a few days before continuing on my way back to L.A., I've never had any problems with transportation into town.

If it's a situation of landing at 3:30AM and actually staying in Singapore, then from the time that I landed, got my luggage, exchanged some some money, and arrived at my downtown hotel, I was able to do it all within about 45 minutes.

If it was when I was arriving into Singapore, in the day time, and I took the airport train into town then I could arrive at my hotel (The Fairmont) within an hour after the plane had landed as the MRT station (City Hall MRT) is under the hotel and mall.

One reason why I fly into Singapore is due to its efficiency in general and my first airline preference is Singapore Air. For my upcoming, high-season trip, I was able to get round-trip airfare, from Los Angeles and in economy, for a little over $1,400 which is well worth it to me.

Happy Travels!
Guenmai is online now  
Sep 6th, 2014, 07:01 PM
  #18  
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For all your frequent Singaporean travelers, do you have a favorite hotel to stay in? I'll check out the Fairmont, per Guenmai's preference. It's my first time to the city, so we'll want to maximize our sightseeing….and see some of the interesting, ethnic neighborhoods. Shopping is low on my list since it's our first stop.
barefootbeach is offline  
Sep 6th, 2014, 07:09 PM
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I think it is hard to beat the Fairmont for locations, atop Raffles City shopping center and the MRT station. I've stayed other places, but I still think that is the best location. The most important thing is to be close to an MRT stop. AT the Fairmont, you don't even have to go out into the what to get on the MRT. Oh, wait, you do have to walk about 20 feet outdoors...
Kathie is offline  
Sep 7th, 2014, 02:14 AM
  #20  
 
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barefoot: I like the Fairmont the best, in its category, as it's a really good hotel. I first stayed there back when it was called Raffles Plaza, I think it was, and then after the renovation when it was called the Fairmont. When it changed to the Fairmont, I was given a renovated room that I was the first guest to stay in. The room was really nice and the bed so comfortable that I didn't want to get up.

Plus, I love that the hotel is not only above the MRT station, but is also connected to Raffles City Shopping Centre (Mall). One doesn't need to shop to take advantage of it, as there are lots of places to grab a bite in the mall. Plus, there's a grocery store on the lower level.

http://www.rafflescity.com.sg/store-guide/

If you click on, Choose Category, and then scroll to Gourmet Supermarket and click, you will see the supermarket. I like to drop into the supermarket to pick up bottled water, juices, and snacks. Plus, they have ready-made sandwiches, sushi, and a bakery . It's nice to have some food/beverage items in my day bag in case I get hungry/thirsty while out running around and it's cheaper to buy such items at the supermarket. Also on the bottom level of the mall, there's a really nice food court for grabbing a quick bite if one gets hungry later on in the evening.

Also, underneath the Raffles City Shopping Centre is Raffles Link. You exit the mall in the direction of the MRT station and then there's an escalator that goes down and underneath the mall there is a tunnel-like passageway with shops/eating places on both sides and one can walk to some parts of Singapore using that air conditioned passageway while underground.

I know you don't plan to shop in Singapore, but if you end up at the Raffles City Shopping Centre, I highly recommend that you check out the Rabeanco handbag boutique. I just noticed that there's one listed in that shopping center. I hope it's still there.

Rabeanco opened only 3 boutiques in the U.S. and all three were here in California. The first one opened, last year, at Westfield Mall in Arcadia and then the second one opened in Beverly Hills on Beverly Drive, a block north of Wilshire. The other one was in Santa Clara up by San Jose.

While doing some errands in Beverly Hiils (B.H.), a couple of weeks ago, I decided to walk over to the Rabeanco boutique only to find it closed down. I then googled the Arcadia one as that's the one that I usually go to and it seemed that it had also closed.

Rabeanco has been around for 10 years in Asia and is very popular. When my best friend and I were in the B.H. boutique, a few months ago, it was jam packed with shoppers so i don't know why they closed. The bags are beautiful and the prices are right.

http://www.rabeanco.com/

http://marjsia.com/2014/08/rabeanco-...all-east-wing/ To see the collection
better.

The CUBE was probably the hottest seller of the spring. I have it in 3 colors and my best friend picked it up in one color. She said that she was going to go back to pick it up in two more colors. When I called to inform her that the B.H. boutique had closed, she was not a happy camper. I have a feeling that I will need to arrive into Singapore with an empty suitcase. Smiles.

I'm glad that I picked up the CUBE, for my mom, at the Arcadia store. I bought her a red one and had to buy it straight out of the window display as they were sold out.

My mom is in her mid-80s and thinks it's the coolest thing. I'm in my 50s and love it and have had women in various ages, stop me on the street here in L.A., and also ask me at work where they can buy one. It is a take on the Givenchy Pandora, but at about one-sixth the cost of the Pandora. The other Rabeanco bags are also really cool.

Have fun in Singapore. It's one of the best places to both eat and shop (or window shop).

Happy Travels!
Guenmai is online now  

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