Flight Review: Malaysia Airlines A330 Business Class, MH613 KUL-SIN

The flag carrier of Malaysia is one of several airlines that ply the popular Kuala Lumpur (KUL) - Singapore (SIN) route. With a flight distance of less than 200 miles, which translates to an approximately 1 hour flight, the route is also offered by full-service airlines and low-cost carriers such as Singapore Airlines, Silk Air, Malindo Air, Air Asia, Scoot, and Jetstar. There are also services by Firefly that connect Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport (SZB) in Selangor with Singapore's Seletar Airport (XSP).

Malaysia Airlines operate several flights daily, with flight times varying between 55 minutes to 1 hour and 10 minutes. These are operated mostly with their Boeing 737-800 fleet. Flight MH613 however, which departs at 17:20 hours and arrives 18:25 hours, operates with an Airbus A330-300, which has a larger capacity presumably to cater to business travellers and to connect passengers flying on codeshare partners to Singapore.

Business Class "throne" seat 1K on the Malaysia Airlines A330-300

The flight departs from Terminal M (Main) of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, and as I was travelling on business class, I received a fast track ticket through immigration at check-in, enabled me to use the priority immigration counters. An lounge invitation was also extended, and this was printed on the boarding pass itself. There are in fact three Golden Lounges - namely the Satellite, Regional and Domestic, which are aptly named. Passengers should take the internal Aerotrain to the Golden Lounge Satellite on level 2 of the satellite building, which was near the gate where the flight was due to depart.

The flight time meant that it was neither during lunch or dinner time when I visited the lounge, but I still had something to fill my stomach. It was not crowded at all, which was good as I had plenty of seat options.

The serving area, Golden Lounge Satellite

Seating area, with view of tarmac on right

I settled for some hot noodles and a sandwich, which were both made to order. Fruits and drink were also available for self-service.

Noodles and sandwich

Soon after, I proceeded to the gate for boarding. I had pre-booked one of the coveted "throne seats" in advance (which are seats 1K, 4K, 6K), which meant a window seat, direct aisle access and personal space on both my left and right. As Malaysia Airlines did not charge for seat reservations, at least at the time of my booking, I would strongly encourage solo travellers to grab one of these in advance. The "bad" seats for solo travellers would be 2H/K, 5H/K and 7H/K as these are paired together; do note that there is no row 3 onboard.

There are 27 business class seats onboard, with fully horizontal lie-flat beds with a maximum bed length of 76 inches. It also came with ample storage compartment space, in-seat power and USB port.

In-flight entertainment control, electronic seat control and personal lamp

A drink was offered before take-off, and a sandwich as refreshments midair. It was not particularly memorable but it did not matter as I had filled myself up at the lounge earlier. Some flights serve the signature satay (grilled skewered meat with peanut sauce) on-board, but it was not one of the options on this flight.

Refreshments on-board

View from seat 1K

Overall, this was a reasonably timed flight, arriving before sunset. It was also good value-for-money, especially when compared to Singapore Airlines although it deploys an A350-900 (on SQ117/119) to cover the short distance, which would be a step higher in terms of comfort.


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