Have been taking Singapore Airlines with its Airbus 380 which is absolutely the hugest flight since 2008 I have a very high expectation on the competitor flight which I chose to fly with this year. I have never been disappointed by Singapore Airlines. They have the best services, good food, and quality aeroplane. What I like the most about Singapore Airlines is the leg-space and wide-seat. That really gives me some room to roll over.

However, this year Singapore Airlines was too pricy. I could not afford it as it was about 200 Euro more expensive than Emirates. I asked some of my friends who flew Emirates before. They gave me a very good feedback, but the main problem was they never flew Singapore Airlines. However, their opinions influenced me to buy the ticket. I was excited by the possibility seeing Dubai although just for a transit. Everyone knows what kind of buildings they built there.

So, today is my flying day. The route is Dublin-Birmingham-Dubai-Jakarta. Today did not start well for me. I waited almost 10 minutes to get a taxi. This is the longest ever for me! Then, I got a seat which I really hate when I flew from Dublin to Birmingham. It is not on the aisle or window. It is in the middle. Luckily the flight was on time and even arrived 10 minutes earlier. It was a surprise from Aer Lingus. Being cramped in the middle for 1 hour gave me a real headache and so I had to eat at Burger King and took a Panadol. What a waste!

That wasn’t all. After I passed security check in Birmingham, a guard called me. He asked for my passport. He saw the picture on my passport is different with me in term of hairstyle. Then he asked me, “You got a different hairstyle now. Why?” Gosh! Can’t I have a different hairstyle? Do I have to have a reason why I cut my hair? And, the picture was taken 2 years ago when I renewed my passport! Oh My God! I think he really thought I was an illegal immigrant or whatever. But, with me wearing a suit, bringing a macbook and samsonite cabin baggage? He must be in different world. Anyway, he asked me how much money I got. He did not believe when I said I have few hundreds Euro only and few hundreds thousands Rupiah. He checked my wallet. Next thing he asked me, “How long have you been in the UK?” I answered, “I am transiting only.” He insisted, “Yes, but how many days, weeks, months have you been staying in England?” Alamak! I answered him, “I just arrived from Ireland and going to Dubai now. Do you want to see my boarding card and tickets?” He replied, “That’s okay. You’ve been in Ireland for quite long time. Why?” Then I said, “I’m studying there, do you need my university letter?” (I got a piece of ‘To Whom It May Concern’ from RCSI in my bag. Aha!) He then returned my passports and let me go. I really can’t believe it. I passed London, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Singapore, Chennai, Guang Zhou, and Jakarta without any problems. I only got problems when I arrive in Malaysia. I’m sorry for being honest, but Malaysia Immigration irritate me a lot. More than 5 cases I can tell you about them and the last one was they thought I wanted to enter Penang and stay there illegally just because I had a student visa which has expired for 2 years and I have got 2 Irish student visas. From that case, I always believe my study in Malaysia was a mistake. I’m sorry but it is an honest feeling.

Alright, back to my journey home today. After leaving that Indian security officer, I boarded the flight. I thought it would be as great as I heard. When I entered I saw a really huge seat. For a second I thought, “WOW! THIS IS FANTASTIC.” The next second, “Wait. Wait. Wait. This is business class. Then I walked down the corridor. My cabin bag stuck in between 2 seats. I realised there were some seats broken and so as mine! Then I took off my coat. I hold it and wait for someone to hang it. No one came. The guy next me asked them to hang it, they did not reply in a good answer. So, I decided not to ask them. It never happens in Singapore Airlines. the flight attendant in Singapore Airlines have always asked me if I would like to hang my coat or even just a jacket!

After taking off my coat, I felt so hot. For a second I felt like taking Lion air or Adam air from Jakarta to Medan. It was so hot inside the plane. I had to unbutton my shirts up to 3 buttons. Then I went to the lavatory, I checked if there was any toothbrushes. No! and they did not give any also! Compared to Singapore Airlines? Singapore Airlines gives a pair of socks and a toothbrush. Next thing, of course, I tested the seat. I could not move my ass a lot. Obviously it is narrower than A380 as the plane was Boeing 777. However that was not the only case. I could feel sitting on a iron bar. The seat was not in good maintenance I believe. Lastly, the most I got irritated is from the way they give announcement. They gave in 3 languages and it took ages as English was the last one. I guess I can only say you got what you paid.

Although, it is not all bad news from Emirates, the food was actually very nice. The in-flight entertainments is also very good. If there is something Emirates is better than Singapore Airlines is the camera they have on the plane. Yes, you can see what is going on below your aeroplane from the monitor. Also, they have a wide variety of steward and stewardess. They have from Swahili to Filipino to Korean.

That is all about Emirates as I arrived in Dubai International Airport. I thought Dubai Airport will be something amazing with those skyscrapers in my mind. In fact it is not. Dubai Airport is just as good as London Heathrow Terminal 3 and 5 or Amsterdam Schiphol. It is modern, huge and lots of free spaces but the similar shops from area to area, a very typical modern airport. The only ridiculous thing was after the security check I had to go down 2 levels and go up 4 levels to be in Departure Hall. Why did they make it so difficult? Anyway, this airport did not disappoint me so much after I found a free wi-fi and that explains why I am here writing a LIVE-BLOG from Dubai International Airport.

I also had a chance to see Dubai from a distance when I was in the bus from aeroplane to terminal. Dubai is as polluted as Jakarta! I don’t see much buildings because of the smoky-air. So, it is not a shameful thing when I said Jakarta is polluted, because so is Dubai.

My next flight to Jakarta will be in 1.5 hours time from now. That concludes my 4 hours transits here. I can’t buy anything as I don’t have Dirhams and I am lazy to exchange my Euro.

If I had to rate Emirates I would give them 3.5 stars. I can’t give more than that. They are not as good as Singapore Airlines in term of services. Even if you compared between Boeing 777 Emirates and Boeing 747 Singapore Airlines, which I flew with on 2007, Emirates is still on the lower rate. Lastly, although I don’t really like Singapore as a country, I will still fly Singapore Airlines as my first choice if their price is affordable. (I hope Singapore Airlines will give me at least 1 free ride for saying that! Aha!)

That is all from me now and hopefully I will get a better service on my next flight. I have seen a lot of other passengers who will be on the same flight as me. I know what their occupations are from their faces. I don’t look them down. I respect them as I always need one of them but they are just too noisy in the flight most of the time. I hope not for this one.

P.S: this is not a complaint to Emirates. I’m just comparing them to my expectation and experience. I don’t intend to make any bad brand of them. It is purely my experience.


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