I have so many posts in the works I forgot to put this one up before the Singapore post. Here is how we got to Singapore!
Unfortunately, in the middle of our stay at Cocotino’s Beach Resort I fell quite ill. I think it was some noodles that I ate from the market near Gipsy Beach Bungalows that caused me to get very sick very quickly and so, when I woke up in the middle of night with chills and a fever, my wife brought me to a clinic and they determined that I might have dengue fever (turned out to be untrue later). We quickly made the decision to leave Lombok in search of better medical care in the nation-city of Singapore.
We booked SilkAir tickets quite quickly without regard for price much (although I believe on 4-hours notice the cost was around $275 each one-way inclusive of one free checked bag each) and headed to the airport. the ride was uneventful except that I was feeling sick for most of it. My wife was concerned for me – understandably – and so we made sure to be rested and have plenty of time to get out of the country and closer to better hospitals.
We arrived at the newly-constructed airport about 1.5 hours before our flight was to leave. We were glad to have that buffer time because it took about that much time to get through slow check-in counters and immigration (who were not even set up by the time we got to the gate area).
What really fascinated me was the fact that there was a lounge at the airport. And it took Priority Pass! This is by no means a large airport so when my wife told me that we had access to a lounge I was unbelieving. She convinced me to check it out (this is how you know I was sick – I didn’t want to go at first) and it was quite substantially stocked. It had a number of breakfast food items, pastries, fruits, drinks, and plenty of seats with electrical outlets. The bathrooms were even quite nice and were with Western sit-down toilets (the rest of the airport had squatting toilets to deal with).
Getting onto the plane was an annoying process in itself, however, as the immigration officials were not at their posts when we arrived. After visiting the lounge we returned to find the desks staffed and we passed through just fine. Then, we had to go through another security check to get into the gate area itself. I have only seen this in a few airports before, but our gate was sealed from the rest of the airport and didn’t even have bathrooms in it. We waited for quite some time for the plane to be readied and then boarded.
This is where I need to give international regional carriers their due. Despite the fact that the flight was only about two hours in length we still received amazing service – with food, too! The flight attendants were attentive (I was only sort of paying attention but my wife told me later they were) and it was a fairly comfortable ride.
While it was not the best reason to have to take a flight it was still quite a nice airplane with great service. If the price was right I would take SilkAir again in a heartbeat.