Want a picture inside an X-Wing fighter? What about photos next to a TIE fighter and storm troopers? For those booking travel through Singapore until January 5, 2016, you could make these two possibilities a reality. Changi Airport has made it fairly easy to experience both installations, even if you just have a layover. We were able to see both under 30 minutes, so depending on your itinerary and the amount of pictures or video you want to take, you could rush to both. Not flying into or out of Changi Airport? The exhibits are in public areas outside of security so that anyone can see them − no plane ticket required.
For those arriving or departing, which starcraft you visit first could be determined by the terminal you are coming from/going to. The TIE fighter and storm troopers are adjacent to Terminal 2’s check-in counters.
The Imperial fighter was smaller that I expected, but it makes sense when you think about how it is never presented in the films as being much larger than a person. Five mannequins dressed as storm troopers are fanned out in front of the spaceship. They are menacingly armed with blasters and look like they are charging forward.
Although roped off from the public, you can still get close enough to make your friends jealous. We seemed to be the only super serious people taking pictures, so we spent probably 10 minutes getting a variety of images, but the amount of sightseers waxed and waned, though it never felt too crowded. If you are flying solo, the steady supply of new gawkers makes it easy to ask someone to take a picture of you (in case you left your selfie stick at home).
After we got our fill of TIE fighter and storm trooper pictures, we walked (since the tram from Terminal 2 to Terminal 3 was out of service) to the X-Wing. If you have bags, grab a cart, as it will take about 10 minutes to walk (with two elevator rides, or two escalator rides if you do not need the cart). The X-Wing is a real treat to se, and it’s just in front of the Terminal 3 departure immigration area. Since it’s situated below a food court that’s a level above, you can ride a nearby escalator for a unique perspective of the Rebel craft.
After snagging a couple shots of the X-Wing from above, we circled the exhibit. There seemed to more people milling about this exhibit, at least in comparison to the TIE fighter, but even so, most people were respectful (stepping in, taking a picture, offering to take a picture of you) and we probably spent another 10 minutes admiring and snapping pictures here. As a backdrop, there’s a video screen playing various clips from the upcoming movie.
Unfortunately for us, our timing (coming and going) did not sync with photo sessions they offer. These occur every day from 10am-noon, 1-3pm, 4-6pm, 7-9pm, except on Saturdays when they skip 4-6pm due to a character appearance from 4-5pm. This really crushed me, because they had a range of costumes you could try on in addition to being able to sit in the cockpit of the X-Wing. We just missed the window by 15 minutes and people we already queuing for the next session, so if you are interested in getting a picture, make sure you get there early.
There are a lot of cool things to do and see in Changi Airport, but visitors can now add this cool experience to the list, at least until early next year.