Singapore Airlines (SIA) has apologised to a woman who claimed that her 14-month-old son was not served any meals while they were on a 19-hour flight from New Jersey, United States to Singapore on Aug. 28.
In a statement to Mothership, SIA said it sincerely apologised to the passenger and her son for their experience and have since been in touch with the woman to provide further assistance.
The airlines added that it has helped to arrange “Book the Cook” meals for both mother and son for their return flights.
“Book The Cook” meals are special meals that need to be ordered in advance as they are created by a culinary panel of chefs who constantly come up with new dishes.
“If we may share, we strongly encourage customers to order child meals at least 24 hours prior to flight departure,” an SIA spokesperson added.
“Our investigations showed that [passenger] did not pre-order a child meal for her son on her flight from Newark to Singapore. After discussing the available options with [her], our cabin crew had also set aside a meal for her son’s dinner during the flight.”
Passenger’s experience: Booked meal months in advance
Sharing with Mothership, the passenger explained that she had bought her son his own seat.
She also claimed she ordered a meal for herself and her son months before they flew, but when she logged into the KrisFlyer app to check the day before their flight, she was unable to view his meal selection.
She shared that she assumed a standard meal would have been automatically offered on the plane if no specific bookings for meals were made.
On the day of the flight, she found out that it was not the case that a passenger will automatically be offered the standard “chicken or beef” option as default if no special meals were reserved in advance.
Only given a sandwich
The woman further claimed she was only served a sandwich after she asked the cabin crew why her child was not getting anything to eat.
A dinner that was supposedly set aside for her child, in response to the mother’s request, was then apparently not served at all, she further alleged.
It is not known if this was due to a miscommunication.
Found out she had to request for a meal in-flight
After the flight, the mother sought help through a text chat with a SIA customer service representative.
It was through this text conversation that the woman learned that she had to make an in-flight request with the crew for her son’s meal, as her order for a special meal for him was not logged.
The woman then questioned whether passengers ought to be automatically given a meal on a long-haul flight if no special orders were made.
The response, which was repeated more than once by the customer service representative, was that the passenger had to simply request for a meal from the in-flight staff, or else, none would be served.
Select inflight meals 15 days before departure
To ensure meals are served, SIA passengers can refer to the airlines’ website and make their selection within an appropriate period of time in advance.
For those SIA passengers who did not pre-select their meals beforehand, they will still be able to request for a meal on board.
According to the SIA website, passengers flying out of Newark can use the “Book the Cook” service at least 48 hours before the flight’s departure.
All meal requests must be made at least 24 hours before flight departure.
Meals can also be pre-ordered 15 days before flight departure for passengers in suites, first class, business class or premium economy class for flights above 1.5 hours long and for all meal services except for continental breakfast and refreshment.
Child and infant meal requests must be made at least 24 hours before flight departure.
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