From Singapore to New Delhi on Malaysia Airlines Economy Style

Passport and boarding pass

If it weren’t for a business trip, I would not have had to opportunity to take Malaysia Airlines to New Delhi. Being my first business trip (and to India no less), I would have preferred a direct flight (as usual), but alas I had to go with the cheaper option (which are all not direct flights). With the other available options, Malaysia Airlines was the best next option - it has a stopover at KL (Kuala Lumpur) before heading off to New Delhi. There was practically an hourly flight from Changi Airport to the KL Airport, so I chose the timing that was nearest to the takeoff to New Delhi.

Filled with some sort of anticipation, I made my way to Changi Airport 3 hours before the flight, just in time to have lunch with the family before taking off. I thought that I would be able to check-in online, but as it turned out since my booking was made via the travel agent, the online check-in option was not made available to me. Checking in the luggage was a simple affair: there was not much of a crowd at the Malaysia Airlines counter at 12:30pm and the flight tickets for both flights were issued. The luggage would be carried all the way through to New Delhi, so all I had was make my way to my New Delhi flight once I landed in KL.

MH624 – Singapore to KL

Since the flight to KL was but a short one, the flight was pleasant enough. The seats were comfortable enough. As for the cleanliness, it was not particularly clean but it was not that dirty either: a few peanut bits from the previous passengers were on a couple of seats. The plane was a smaller one, a 3-3 configuration in the economy section.

Malaysia Airlines
Overhead space
Malaysia Airlines
The 3-3 seating configuration. Since it is such a short flight, no pillows or blanket but there were peanuts.
The entertainment system, which was switched off during the short flight.
The entertainment system, which was switched off during the short flight.
Malaysia Airlines
Legroom was adequate.

The flight was about 60-70% full and the service rendered was the price that was paid; slightly better than budget airlines but not on par with other airlines like Singapore Airlines and Korean Airlines (but for that price, there really isn’t much to complain about).

Malaysia Airlines
Mandatory window seat photo!

Shortly after take-off we were offered light refreshments of peanuts, followed by drinks such as water, orange and apple juice. The drinks were already poured into plastic cups ready to be served straight from the tray and offered to anyone who wanted them.

It was a short flight and soon I was at the KL Airport. In order to get to the next gate for the flight to New Delhi, I had to take the train which was some distance away from the arrival gate. Despite having to take the train/tram, I managed to make it to the gate in good time. 

Shops along the way to the gate for the flight to New Delhi
Pretty light along the way
Waiting in line to catch the train to the gate. Frequency is between 3-5minutes.

It was almost evening time when I arrived at the gate, and it seemed that the air-conditioning was not really working as the air was stuffy. It was a slow wait as I met up with my colleague and waited for the flight boarding.

MH190 – KL to New Delhi

We were slightly delayed for about 25 minutes, but thankfully the luggage arrived safe and sound when we landed. The order in which the passengers were called for boarding was in an orderly manner, starting with the business class passengers and those with young children, followed by the rest.
Malaysia Airlines
Towards New Delhi we go!

The flight was almost full, with many Indians heading back home on this flight. The seating configuration for the flight was 2-4-2, and as usual I had my favorite window seat.

Malaysia Airlines
Passengers coming on board

The seats were clean enough, but it could have been better as there were yellow tinges on the pillow (case) provided.

Malaysia Airlines
The red seats, purple blankets and not so clean pillow cases
Malaysia Airlines
It was a 2-2 seating configuration for the flight to New Delhi

While the entertainment selection was average, I did appreciate (the concept) that the screen was touch-screen, though the sensitivity is another story. The sound system, at least with the headsets provided, was bad. There was so much feedback if it was turned up too loud, but if the volume was turned down, you couldn’t even hear a thing. In the end, I ended up entertaining myself with the podcasts on my phone instead (yes, the entertainment options were really quite limited).

Malaysia Airlines
The (not so responsive) touchscreen entertainment system
Malaysia Airlines
I managed to watch an episode of "The Mentalist" Season 7, but the sound was so bad I gave up halfway

I know it is not business class and all, but still the experience could have been better (there were certain areas where it was obvious there were some cost cutting measures such as the entertainment options and the cleanliness of the headsets etc..). Then again for that price, I really can’t complain.

Service was standard and the overall experience was acceptable, I wouldn’t say stellar but it was acceptable. It can be likened to a more elaborate budget airline experience? Where you do not have to pay extra for the food and luggage space, and the attitude of the crew was slightly better than those on budget flights (e.g. attentive, professional and friendly etc...), and the entertainment system (at least there is one) did have a few options (depends on how updated you want it to be after all, copyrights for the movies and dramas cost money too).

The food, thankfully, while a little lackluster was not as bad as it looked, but I’ve had better…

Malaysia Airlines
Dinner: chicken and rice with a side of cabbage, a salad with cottage cheese and some extremely sweet dessert (where's that ice-cream? lol)

There was an option between chicken or vegetarian. Needless to say I went with the non-vegetarian option. A pity they did not provide a menu detailing what exactly the meal entailed - you eat what you are served, unless you had a prior meal requirement reservation. Anyways, dinner was a fuss-less affair and the rice (and chicken) was not too bad. Cutlery was solid grey plastic molds, not very appetizing if you ask me. The tray was not slip proof in itself but it had a sheet of slip-proof paper between the meal and the tray.

Malaysia Airlines
The not so secure cup holder. I prefer the Singapore Airlines seat configuration where the cups are actually held a little more securely; at least the cup will not slide off the tray during turbulence
Malaysia Airlines
Highlight: we managed to catch the sunset as we flew across the sky from KL to New Delhi!

Overall, if the price (you might be able to save as much as S$100 or more) is right for you and you have the time to spare, Malaysia Airlines is pretty good option. Otherwise, a direct flight for slightly more might be more worth it.

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