Singapore Airlines: healthy 'wellness' meals for non-stop NY flights

By David Flynn, August 16 2018

Singapore Airlines will join Qantas in putting 'wellness' on the menu for ultra long-range flights, beginning with the launch of its 19 hour non-stop flights to New York on October 11, 2018.

The Star Alliance member will partner with US wellness firm Canyon Ranch for an extensive program covering not just meals but flexible meal times, along with relaxation, rest and general well-being.

That 19-hour flight will be the world's longest, pipping Qantas' Perth-London service by a good two hours.

But Canyon Ranch – which employs a team of doctors, nutritionists and sleep experts - aims to have passengers step off the Airbus A350 flights feeling and looking great.

The trick isn't just the quality of the ingredients but how they impact the human body.

"Food needs to be clean and fresh, so nothing that is processed; no sweeteners or additives and no preservatives either," explains Canyon Ranch CEO Susan Docherty, who adds that the menu will be built around whole grains and proteins served free of hormones and antibiotics.

While salt and sugar are cut down, spices such as turmeric and fennel are added to not only add flavour but aid digestion and offer anti-inflammatory benefits.

But don't think this means bland and boring. Not by a long shot. One of the dishes will be seared chicken and zucchini pappardelle served with parmesan cheese and braised tomatoes.

And for breakfast, it'll be hard to resist the 'Lox Eggs Benedict' : a wholewheat English muffin, chive cream cheese, smoked salmon, an organic egg omelette and yoghurt hollandaise.

The non-stop flight between Singapore and New York will see three main meals serves, with snacks in between, although business class travellers will be able to eat whenever they choose.

Premium economy passengers will see the first meal served just after take-off, with a second several hours into the flight and a third meal before landing, although there will also be the option to be served at different times.

The A350's LED lighting system will contain a custom-designed patten with hues of orange, yellow and red lights which Canyon Ranch says is proven to help people doze off.

The lie-flat business class seats will include a comforting mattress topper and two pillows, one firm and one soft.

The same wellness-oriented inflight program will later be extended to Singapore Airlines' Airbus A350 services to Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Also read: The feel-good factor – how Qantas wants to change long-haul flying


David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.


04 Apr 2014

Total posts 153

Sorry, “wellness” meals?. Please! Get up and walk around a bit
There is a lot more to these types of menus than you could achieve just by 'walking around', and some form of movement is always advisable on any long flight. I think you need to get a bit more informed about travel health.

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 745

These wellness meals leave a lot to be desired.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Sep 2017

Total posts 139

“Menu will be built around whole grains....”?! Oh please!

10 Jun 2018

Total posts 2

Sadly, to me it looks like too many 'wellness gurus' have had too much input! And a marketing dept working overtime to try and come up with the meal descriptions to make them sound... well... normal. Until the plate hit the table! lol

zucchini pappardelle - where's the pasta? since when did slices of zucchini become pappardelle?

lox eggs benedict - made with organic egg omelette? again, since when is eggs benedict made with an omelette and not poached egg?

I wonder how many people who criticise these menus have actually been on an ultra long haul flight which serves them such as QF9 PER-LHR in order to make informed judgement? I have flown QF9/10 twice now and the 'wellness meals' really do make a difference. You can still go for the traditional 'comfort food' but if you follow the advice of experts and have the healthier meals and drinks you arrive feeling so much better. It's a noticeable difference!

Qantas - QFF Platinum

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 213

Nice one Martin, on QF9/10 in J for the first time next month and keen to try the healthier options. In the last 2-3 years I've started to avoid heavy dishes such as red meat and carbohydrates and I've found it makes a noticeable difference in coping with jet lag and exhaustion.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2351

I agree, Josh. Everybody I know who has sampled the Qantas 'wellness menu' on QF9 reports feeling much better on arrival compared to previous trips. Even on a regular flight you can be more mindful of what you eat. For example, for many of my flights from Sydney to Hong Kong I will have a more substantial meal in the lounge and make sure there's a side of greens to aid digestion. On the flight itself I skip the first (main) meal which is usually served not long after take-off, but will sometimes have the crew put aside one of the light starters, which I will have midway through the flight, and I take green tea to aid in digestion. I rarely drink on a flight and I avoid the heavier meals. All of these things add up.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2017

Total posts 87

I agree with this concept!


04 Apr 2014

Total posts 153

Actually yes, I regularly do 15 hr flights as well as longer trips with connections. Thing is, I also have a house on the coast in SoCal and the area is rife with health food / wellness / retreat places. Maybe I’m just immune now to the associated marketing.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2351

I'd agree that there is a limit to how much kale and quinoa any person can have! That said, when I first was exposed to the healthy Qantas breakfast bowl during a trial I was a bit "Get that hippie-dippy stuff away from me and bring me a bacon & egg roll with BBQ sauce, STAT!". But I tried the breakfast bowl - poached egg, avocado, kale, grains etc etc - and to my surprise I found it delicious, and now it's my go-to whenever it's on the menu. I've moved to a more health-aware diet over the past few years and it's made quite a difference, especially when flying.


04 Apr 2014

Total posts 153

Agreed, the endless kale and quinoa is a bit much. Add to that matcha green tea and acai bowls and you'll find me running a mile :). My preferred dish on a long flight is generally whatever grilled fish they have, putting aside the 'no seafood more than 100 km from the coast' rule. For sure the menu's are much better now than in the old days but then we always have US domestic flights to remind us of that!

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

13 Jan 2015

Total posts 591

tbh I'm more interested in trying the new mattress topper...wish they would provide these across all their flights


11 Jul 2014

Total posts 303

This week I did a 36 hour door to door trip and I lost a day due to feeling like crap, anything to help stay on top is worth it.

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