Singapore Bound: My Adventure Begins with Vietnam Airlines

vietnam air selfie

Flying Vietnam Airlines for the 1st Time

I’m Singapore bound, buzzing with excitement as I get comfy in my seat on this Vietnam Airlines flight. Singapore, a place I’ve dreamed about for years, is finally on deck. We lucked out big time and scored great seats at no extra cost. The flight attendants, in their traditional turquoise Vietnamese Áo Dài, look amazing. They’ve just served lunch, along with wine, which really puts me in vacation mode. Once I finish eating, I lean back, pop in my earbuds, and turn on one of my favorite movies. And just like that, my adventure to Singapore begins.

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But Some Things Never Change

I am tired. And we haven’t even left Daegu yet. I really screwed myself getting ready for this trip to Singapore with poor planning. I’ve known for months when we were leaving, and yet I scheduled my hair appointment and pedicure for the night before we left. And I ended up staying up most of the night packing in between bouts of unconsciousness. I finally said screw it around 4 am. I think I have more than enough socks and underwear. But I brushed my teeth and forgot to put my electric toothbrush back in my suitcase. So I guess that will be one of my first purchases when I get to Singapore.

Are you relocating to Daegu? Check out my Daegu Housing and Apartment Guide HERE. It’s loaded with helpful information, pictures, and packing tips.

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Gimpo Airport

My Vietnam Flight to Singapore

Flights out of Daegu are more expensive than Busan or Seoul, so we usually fly from one of them when we travel abroad. We laughed out loud wondering who in their right mind would take the Vietnam Air flight from Daegu to Seoul with a 21-hout layover.

Nine times out of ten, we drive to Busan because it’s much closer. We then park in long-term parking. When we fly out of Seoul, we take the limo bus directly to Incheon Airport. The drive from Daegu to Seoul takes about 4 hours with light traffic. You can take the train, but then you’ll have to transfer to Seoul. Our Vietnam Air flight to Ho Chi Minh is at 10 am, so we left the house around 6 am for the 90-minute road trip. We spent about 2 hours in the airport before boarding our Vietnam Air flight.

Click HERE if you are in Busan for a long layover. There are so many beautiful cafes to explore in this beautiful coastal city.

Angelinus

Angelinus Coffee is located near gate #11 in Gimpo Airport. I highly suggest you stop by there for the beef banh mi sandwich. It’s delicious and an amazing breakfast if you’re hungry. I had planned to eat it on the plane but didn’t because the food was so good.

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Vietnam Airlines

One of the things you have to be aware of is that Asians are pretty narrow. So economy airline seats usually reflect that. I will never get over my flight to Korea. The seat was so narrow. I felt a metal bar jabbing into my hip the entire flight. I also had to ask for a seat extender – one of the most embarrassing things I’ve ever had to do. And, I silently cried for several hours. It was the primary motivation for losing 50 lbs.

But this flight is much better. I even think I two years ago would be comfortable in these seats. I have a bit more wiggle room. The plane is older. It’s an Airbus 321. There are no USB ports or individual monitors in the seatbacks in front of us.

The flight attendants are dressed turquoise tradition Vietnamese clothing. They are all pretty and very thin. And they smile a lot.

The Inflight Meals on Vietnam Airlines

We enjoyed our mimosas which they took the time to garnish with an orange slice and a maraschino cherry. They also brought a bag of Wasabi-covered peanuts. It always surprises me that no flavor combination is off-limits here in Asia. Even at 10 in the morning.

Lunch was delicious. We had a choice between beef and fish. We both chose the fish– a teriyaki sea bass steak with sticky rice and broccoli and carrots and what tasted like a Hawaiian roll with salted butter that I generously spread. It also came with a side salad with a good-sized piece of thinly sliced salmon that smelled and tasted amazing at 30,000 feet. Dessert was a moist cake with a layer of mango puree on top. It was one of the best lunches I’ve had on a flight.

Afterwards, I made the mistake of having to go to the bathroom with half of the plane. If you remember my article about walking in Asia, you can imagine what it’s like navigating the narrow aisle of a plane. There is no decorum and definitely no queuing without the help of the flight attendants.

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A few minutes later, one of the flight attendants came down the aisle with two bottles of wine– one red and one white. I chose the red. As soon as I finished it, I looked around to mo avail. I should have gotten two glases.

My phone is at 31% and I know it’s going to die before we land. But I press on and watch an episode of House Hunters International anyway. I don’t remember when, but I fell asleep.

We made it Ho Chi Minh City. However, we arrived far from the terminal and had to take a bus to the international terminal– first ding on Vietnam Air. So much for 100% satisfaction. Unfortunately this ate into the one hour long layover we had in the city. Our connecting flight to Singapore left from gate 26. Which didn’t surprise me one bit, happened to be the furthest gate from embarkation. They were boarding when we arrived. I had just enough time to retrieve my charging cable before boarding the last flight of the day.

Vietnam Airlines Has Lots of Female Pilot

To my surprise, the voice welcoming us to Flight 655 was that of a woman. It’s so rare that pilots are women. I can only recall one other time “the man” turned out to be a woman, lol. Apparently, there are quite a few female pilots working for Vietnam Airlines.

This leg of the trip had a lot more turbulence, but nothing too terrible. The flight, was 1 hour and 35 minutes on another Airbus 321. However, the turbulence cut the coffee and tea service short. Luckily I got one last Vietnamese coffee before the flight attendants had to take a seat.

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Second Meal

As soon as we got to cruising altitude we were served a second meal. Again the choices were between beef and fish. And again we both chose the later. I’m not sure what kind of fish it was. But is was not sea bass. It was much lighter and served in a tomato sauce along with string beans and potatoes. Another bread roll, this time much more like a dinner roll, a banana, and one last Vietnamese coffee rounded off second dinner. I’m not a huge fan of airline food, especially fish, but both meals were really tasty.

Forty minutes later, our flight landed in Singapore’s Chiangi Airport. Unfortunately our luggage did not make that connection with us. I’m not sure if that delayed flight was Vietnam Air’s fault or not. But I am willing to give them the benefit of the doubt because both flights were enjoyable. We used the time to figure out where the famous Jewell was, purchase a 7-day SIM card as well as the tickets to the Cloud Forest, Flower Dome, and Floral Fantasy. We bundled it all together and paid roughly $150 USD. The price is slightly higher than the online bundle price, but our tickets could be used whenever we wanted. And I liked that fkexibility.

Our luggage joined the party on the next Vietnam Airlines flight an hour after us.

Click HERE to discover how grown-ups enjoy Changi Airport too. It’s not just for kids.

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