Those dreaded hours in the terminal waiting for the next flight – delayed! – will just fly away in Changi Airport. Weary travelers call it a second home. Locals – weekend fun at their own Singaporean version of Disneyland. And shopaholics – a sweet, tax-free addiction.
Changi Airport – Shopper’s Heaven on Singaporean Land
The world class airport measures to more than its intended purpose, which is being the Southeast Asian mother base for a fleet of international flights. It’s a ‘city’ catering to the skies. There are too many facilities at Changi Airport to list them all, so we’ll only name the highlights, such as the Sunflower and Butterfly Gardens, Kinetic Rain, a free cinema, the Social Tree, fish massage spas, the Entertainment Deck and the Sports Lounge.
There’s one feature, though, that places Changi Airport on a very distinctive map. Luxury shopping here is an experience in itself. A diverse array of retails, spacious aisles, and the absence of throngs of customers queuing the … see thousands of avid travelers spending a small fortune at Changi. If not in transit, they would probably dig deeper holes in their pockets.
Only last year, Changi Airport made a whopping $2.2 billion in retail sales. A study conducted by Generation Research, a Swedish duty-free and travel retail consultancy, placed it at an honorable third position in the spending preferences of travelers.
What were the top travel must-haves that shoppers lugged in their bags up the airplane? Apparently, wines and spirits had the most appeal, followed close by cosmetics and perfume.
It’s relatively easy to get lost on these indoors shopping avenues, especially when your senses are overwhelmed by all the enticing offers. So we’ve drawn a small map to help you find your shopping coordinates.
Changi Airport – The Map of High-End Shopping
Terminal 1 and 2 – Just Warming Up with the Fashion Gallery
More than 30 upscale and midscale brands set headquarters on this shopping boulevard of Changi Airport. The vast price range, encompassing items that go as low as $45,00 and as high as $64,200, offers a first sample to veteran shoppers.
Hugo Boss Reigns in Terminal 2
If you’re wary of unbuckling your belt every time you pass the many security checks, Hugo Boss can solve that annoyance. Without you losing your pants on the way. The luxury brand’s traveler leather belt is designed not to set off the alarm. Changi Airport is the only place where you can buy it for a price between $382.24 and $419.63.
Terminal 3 – The Shilla Beauty Loft
The news of the South Korean brand’s first luxury spa opening at Changi made headlines last year. The leading travel retailer boasts the largest beauty offering in Singapore custom-made for tired, tense travelers.
Over 500 world famous brands in fashion, cosmetics, watches, and what not crowded for a spot in the two-storey outlet. Want a facial treatment from Chanel to nurture your skin for that long Transpacific flight? Or an arm massage with la crème de la crème from La Prairie to melt away the tension in your muscles? Shilla Beauty Loft will give your spirit wings of a different sort.
Terminal 3 is also home to Zara’s first duplex in the airport.
Terminal 4 – Shopping Megacity
Imagine a retail space of 17,000 square meters, complete with every imaginable item on earth that can carry a price tag. Your wildest thoughts will materialize under the roof of Terminal 4. Michael Kors, Charles & Keith, and other heritage-themed brands are planned to open next year at Changi Airport.
If you don’t plan to see, or better said gawk at the Marina Bay Sands Skypark in Singapore anytime soon, that doesn’t mean you can’t shop at Changi. iShopChangi is an e-commerce platform that allows you to purchase tax and duty-free items from the airport’s retail shops. They will deliver the products to your flight gate right before you board your plane.
After all, Changi Airport throws the savior rope for those travelers who find themselves too much on the sky road to book some time for shopping as well.