What’s the Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge experience like during COVID-19?

Changi Terminal 3 hosts the only operating SilverKris lounge in the world right now. What can Singapore Airlines passengers expect when passing through?

Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s only one SilverKris lounge open in the whole wide world right now: Changi Airport Terminal 3. Singapore Airlines has already shut its facility in Terminal 2, following the terminal’s closure for renovations in May 2020.

SilverKris Lounges Worldwide. Note that the lounges in Adelaide, Kuala Lumpur and Delhi have been permanently closed

It’s not even a complete lounge. The First Class and Private Room sections have been closed indefinitely, as Singapore Airlines is currently not offering First Class. All the aircraft with First Class cabins (B777-300, B777-300ER, A380-800) are in storage, and Business Class is the highest cabin available. What a time we’re living in. 

Now I realise that most of us won’t be passing through an airport anytime soon, but if you’re curious as to what a mid-pandemic SilverKris Lounge looks like, a Milelion reader named David has some photos to share. I’ve put together the following account based on information he’s provided.

COVID-19 Changi Airport SilverKris Lounge experience

Singapore Airlines is currently doing its best to moderate expectations regarding the lounge experience. From the website

Please note that we have suspended buffet meal services and reduced all other food and beverage offerings at the lounge with the welfare of our customers and staff in mind.

Indeed, the buffet is gone. It’s completely surreal to see the oft-crowded SilverKris buffet line sitting silent and empty, but on the plus side, self-service drinks (including alcohol) are still available (it’s unclear if champagne is offered, although it never hurts to ask). 

Empty SilverKris Lounge buffet line
Empty SilverKris Lounge buffet line | Photo: David L
SilverKris Lounge self-serve drinks area
SilverKris Lounge self-serve drinks area | Photo: David L
Self-pour alcohol
Self-pour alcohol | Photo: David L

Just 12 Singapore Airlines flights depart from Changi on average each day in September, so it’s no surprise to see the lounge mostly empty. The lounge staff even escort each guest to a seat, treatment that was previously reserved only for First Class customers. 

SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3 | Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3 | Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3
SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3 | Photo: David L
SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3
SilverKris Lounge Changi Terminal 3 | Photo: David L

Fortunately, Singapore Airlines isn’t going down the “bread and water” route. Passengers can still enjoy a selection of hot food, prepared to order by the main kitchen. They’ll scan the following QR code to view the menu:

SilverKris Lounge menu
SilverKris Lounge menu | Photo: David L

This URL cannot be accessed unless you’re connected to the SilverKris Lounge Wi-Fi, which is smart I suppose (the last thing you want is someone posting the link online and trolls making gag orders). Thankfully, we have some screenshots. 

It’s hardly Qantas First Lounge stuff, but it seems churlish to complain about F&B offerings right now. Passengers can choose from two Western, one Asian, and two vegetarian options, as well as some finger food. 

  • Spaghetti with Chicken Bolognese
  • Fish Burger with French Fries
  • Steamed Rice with Glazed Teriyaki Chicken
  • Steamed Rice with Vegetarian Sides
  • Vegetarian Biryani
  • Chicken Nuggets with French Fries
  • Dim Sum

Once your order has been placed, you’ll be given a queue number and estimated wait time. 

There’s no table service; when your order is ready, you’ll be asked to proceed to the order collection area at the buffet line. 

Here’s a couple of shots of the food, as well as the mock-ups. In terms of quality, I’d hazard that it’s largely similar to what was served pre-pandemic, although with a smaller volume of passengers, it’s possible to plate with a bit more finesse. 

Chicken nuggets & fries with dim sum
Chicken nuggets & fries with dim sum | Photo: David L
Chicken nuggets & fries with dim sum
Chicken nuggets & fries with dim sum | Photo: David L
SilverKris Lounge food mockups
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: David L
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY
SilverKris Lounge food mockups| Photo: CY

That’s more or less it. The SilverKris lounge was rather no frills even before the pandemic (no spa, games room or nap rooms like what you’d find in other lounges), and that hasn’t really changed.

It’s a comfortable place to get some work done and grab a meal before your flight, and that’s all you can ask for in a time like this. 

Conclusion

So that’s the SilverKris lounge experience, pandemic edition. I’d be curious to see how these service routines evolve as travel restrictions are gradually lifted and more people take back to the skies. Will it still be possible to offer dine-on-demand when lounge utilization increases? Will they reopen the First Class lounge just to keep Solitaire members happy? How will social distancing be managed during peak periods? 

It’s all academic for now I guess, but interesting nonetheless. 

Have you passed through the SilverKris lounge in Changi recently? Do share your photos and experiences. 

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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Kel

Real extreme cost cutting.

Restaurateur

Logistics wise, it is quite more expensive for them to serve food made-to-order than the previous buffet style.

Kel

Cost may be higher on a per pax basis but if they going with single serve ala carte, the quality should at least be on par with the previous options from the buffet. If I were flying J and I see the options, it’s like an unspoken request to skip the lounge.

Alian

I don’t think it’s no frills. It is perfect for an airline with only 12 flights a day out and not even sure if they are fully.

I do think SQ has adapted well in such a difficult situation and the offerings are “frills” in this covid age. New norms means we have to accept and compare with what others like CX offer and not compare to yesterday.

Gordon

Keeping hopes to see first class flights come back :’)

Chris

I visited 6 weeks ago and can confirm champagne is not available.

Michy

I don’t like the new normal, did we not quicksave before the pandemic?

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