Lost in Translation I: Prologue

Lost in Translation – Korea/Japan 23-27 Dec 2011

Part I: Prologue
Part II: OZ 752
Part III: Seoul 서울
Part IV: NH 1166
Part V: Tokyo 東京
Part VI: SQ 637
Part VII: Epilogue

Although I’ve yet to complete my Europe trip report, I decided to write about this first since I (thought that I) could finish it quickly.

I’ve used BMI miles to redeem my ticket from Istanbul (Zone 2) to Singapore (Zone 7) in order to return from my trip to Europe. However in order to make the redemption cheaper, I had to add an additional flight to somewhere in East Asia (Zone 8). Initially I chose Hong Kong because taxes to there were the cheapest but in October I changed my destination to Tokyo as I hadn’t been to Japan before.

The BMI agent wasn’t able to book me on the direct SQ flight between Singapore and Tokyo although he could see availability. I tried getting him to route me on SQ through either Osaka or Fukuoka but neither was bookable. I realized that the issue was with SQ so I had to research on other alternatives.

The red-eye on Asiana to ICN was available on 23 Dec. Since I hadn’t been to Seoul since 1998, I decided to take advantage of BMI’s <24 hours transit rule and spend the day in the city. My connection to Tokyo wouldn't be until 14 hours later, on NH1166, the last flight of the day between GMP and HND.

The return flight was an easy choice with SQ on the 27th. I was quite excited to try SQ's 'new' business class on its 77W and A388 fleet. I ruled out SQ 11 (A388) which arrives in SIN at 3am in the morning and went with SQ637 on 777-300ER. The total outlay is roughly S$900, very good value for J class over the festive period.

The route will be:

23/12 SIN – ICN OZ 752 C
24/12 GMP – HND NH 1166 C
27/12 NRT – SIN SQ 637 C

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