Singapore Changi Airport handled 62 Million Passengers in 2017 and is one of Asias biggest airports. Changi Airport is a hub for Jetstar Asia Airlines, Scoot, SilkAir and Singapore Airlines. The airport is expanding very fast and a new terminal 5 and two runways are beeing build on the former military part.
The Airport is served by airlines from the most parts of the world except South America. The main targets are in Asia and Europe. The airport is also served by all major cargo airlines to desitinations all around the globe. The airlines handles a couple of different Airbus A380 a day including Singapore Airlines, Emirates and Lufthansa.
Changi Airport is no longer a spotter friendly airport. Spots disappeared and no photo signs everywhere around the airport area. Even if you just stand on the overpass which can see the runway, police will come and ask you to leave.
Written by Patrick Weis, Marcus, Ho Zong Xi, Thomas Okaty, Stephan Weidenhiller. Last update: January 2023
How was your trip? Rate this airport!
| (39 votes, average: 4.03 out of 5)
|02L/20R||4.000 m (13.123ft)|
|02C/20C||4.000 m (13.123ft)|
|02R/20L||4.000 m (13.123ft)|
|Terminal 1 (north)||SkyTeam and Oneworld, partly Star Alliance,|
|Terminal 2 (east)||Singapore Airl., Silk Air, Scoot and mainly Star Allaince|
|Terminal 3 (west)||Singapore Airlines, Carriers from Asia and Oceania|
|Terminal 4 (south)||Cathay, Cebu Pacific, Vietnam, Vietjet and some more asian carriers|
|Ladder||Not necessary as it’s not allowed to stand at the fence|
|Car/Public Transport||Most of the spots can be reached by train and/or bus. A good alternative is taking a taxi or a “Grab” (similar as Uber or Lyft in the USA) as this will get you right to your desired spotting location hassle-free. Both are affordable, but Grab is usually slightly cheaper, just download the App on your smartphone (Apple or Android). The app is free of charge and is pretty much self-explanatory and you don’t necessarily need to communicate with the driver, however, most taxi and Grab drivers sufficiently speak and understand English.|
|Restrooms||There is a public toilets at the Beach and in the Terminal|
|Drinks/Food||Take drinks and snacks with you at the moring spot. At the terminal and at the afthernoon beach spot there is a restaurant|
|Hotels||The are a few Hotels arround the Airport but they are very expensive.|
|Season||The best month to travel are February to September. You can go here the whole year round but it rains more from Oktober – January|
|Security||– No photography from the fenceline, signs have been in place (don’t photograph from outside into the airfield)
– No photography of restricted area including but not limited to apron/ramp, taxiway and runway areas from outside of the airfield and the landside (applies to all airports and restricted areas/protected places on the state land of Singapore)
– Comply with all safety notices put up by the airport or Airport Police Division.
– When approaches by figures of authority (police officers/ airport police/ auxilary police officers), do not attempt to run away. Show full cooperation and do not defy their orders as that could mean serious trouble. If asked to delete photos, please do so without hesitation.
|General Info||Until March 2023, 02 L/R are the prefered runway directions.|
|02L/20R||Mainly in use for landings|
|02C/20C||UPDATE 2023: Actually closed due to construction work of future terminal5. Check NOTAM!|
|02R/20L||Mainly in use for departures|
|WHERE||This spot is located at a bus stop between the ferry terminal and the Changi Beach on the morning side of the Airport. Bus stops, ferry terminal and parking are directly at this location.|
|WHAT||You will get most of the traffic on arival into Singapore|
|TIME||Best light conditions in the winter are from sunrise till 11:00|
|MISC.||There is a rubbish bin and a bench at the spot. Restaurant/Supermarket/toilet at spot #2.|
|WHERE||This spot is located at the Changi Beach near the restaurant at the beach. Depends where you spot the angle is different. Bus stops, ferry terminal and parking are directly at this location.|
|WHAT||This spot is good for Aircrafts arriving into Runway 20R|
|TIME||Best light conditions are from 14:00 to sunset|
|MISC.||There is a restaurant, a supermarket, public toilets and benches. Along the pedestrian/bike path there are a few places to sit that have a roof to protect you from sun or rain. From there you can still take pictures.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||100-400 mm|
|WHERE||This spot is located in the Changi Buisness Park Central Road. From MTR “Tanah Merah” take bus 47 or from MTR “Expo” take bus 47 or 118 to Changi Business Park Bus Terminal. From there it is just a short walk to find your preferred location. There are several places to be in the shade. In case of a rain shower find a shelter at the bus terminal. You can also walk up the Changi South Ave 1 until you’re at the Changi Buisness Park Central Road. Turn right and choose you’re position for spotting the planes.
UPDATE JAN 2023: construction works and fences are added between spot 3 and landing approach way. It’s very limited view now. (But still this is maybe the most usable spot now)
|WHAT||From this spot you can take all plane movements arriving on 02L|
|TIME||Best light conditions are from 14:00 till sunset|
|MISC.||Beware of the traffic here! No facilities and food stores at the spot. Take everything with you. At MTR “Expo” a shopping mall with a supermarket and food court is open all day. Several small local restaurants offering good and cheap food. A McDonald’s can be found there as well.|
|WHERE||This spot is located landside at terminal 1. Once you have arrived at the terminal, go to the center of the terminal and take the escalator (right behind the information desk) up to level 3. Then keep to the left and follow the signs to the Viewing Mall.|
|WHAT||From this spot you can take planes taxiing to and from the runways or from and to Terminal 1. The best view is through the emergency exit windows as these are not tinted. A lot of heat haze here! Limited angle to some parking spots and a short part of taxi way.|
|TIME||Best light conditions are from 11:00 till sunset depends which acitivities.|
|MISC.||Everything you need is in the terminal. Mind that in/near the viewing mall is also a kids playground so be prepared for kids noise.|
|WHERE||The hotel is located next to Terminal 3. Follow the signs inside the building to the Crowne Plaza Hotel. Ask for a runway view room on a high floor. You can also book it directly on the hotel website. Or take a cheaper room and walk to the open bridges on the 9th floor to take your pictures (see pic below). Rooms are from 400 USD. Before reservation apply for IHG Rewards membership to get discount and late check out.|
|WHAT||From this spot you can take all plane movements on Runway 02L/20R and everything taxying in front of you. Pictures can be taken from the room through tinted glass or from an outside bridge on each floor.|
|TIME||Best light conditions are from sunrise till 12:00 depends if runway or taxiing. Also night shots are possible.|
|MISC.||All you need is in the Terminal.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||100-400 mm|
|WHERE||The location is on a grassy area along Tanah Merah Road, next to the Tanah Merah Country Club (Garden Course). Be aware that Tanah Merah Country Club has two courses, one called Tampines Course and the other called Garden Course. There is no parking directly at the location so best is to take a cab to the country club. Parking is not possible there!
By public transport take Bus 35 from Tanah Merah MRT station and alight at bus stop “Tanah Merah Ferry Ter (962169)”. From there, it is a 20 minute walk to this location on a sidewalk.
|WHAT||This spot is only good for heavies climbing out as the narrow bodies and even the heavies with light loads would be quite high at this point. Walk further to the area where the road bends for afternoon 02C arrivals.|
|TIME||Best light conditions are from 14:00 to sunset.|
|MISC.||Absolutely nothing nearby. Just some trees spending shadow.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||Arrivals: 773 = 140mm; 738 = 210mm
Departures: Scoot 789 = 210mm; IL96 = 150mm
|WHERE||This spot is at the carpark or on the footpath just outside the Ferry Terminal. Take Bus 35 from Tanah Merah MRT station and alight at bus stop “Tanah Merah Ferry Ter (962169). Parking is available at the terminal if you arrive by car.|
|WHAT||From there you can spot Runway 02C departures in the morning and might also be able to get some nice banking shots.|
|TIME||From sunrise till noon.|
|MISC.||There are snacks/drinks and restrooms available inside the ferry terminal.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||A359 = 280mm; 77W = 240mm|
This is an alternative to the previous spot which is a bit quieter as you are not on a busy road. There is a small strip of grass between trees and the fence to the “National Service Resort and Country Club”, which you should also use as destination for the taxi to go there. The gate guards of the golf club will also be happy to call you a taxi when you have finished your work. Travel time from/to airport or MRT Expo is about 10 minutes by taxi.
|WHAT||All arrivals for Runway 02L during the morning hours|
|TIME||From sunrise till noon.|
|MISC.||No facilities at this spot.|
|WHERE||This spot is located nearby a canal at the northern part of the airport, not far from Changi Ferry Terminal. Take Bus 35 from Tanah Merah MRT station and alight at bus stop “Bef Changi Ferry Road (95161)”. From the bus stop walk back the road to the location. It is a 5-minute walk. It is the same bus that brings you to spot 6,7,8 so don’t wonder.
The closest public carpark is available at Changi Beach Carpark 7. From there, it is an estimated 10 minute walk to the location. Otherwise take a cab and jump out at the Changi Ferry Terminal.
|WHAT||From here, you can spot Runway 02C departures or Runway 20C arrivals. You might also be able to get some banking shots here.|
|TIME||From sunrise till noon.|
|MISC.||Nothing available at this location. There are snacks/drinks and restrooms available inside the ferry terminal.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||A380 = 180mm; 748 = 140mm|
Update as of Jan 2023.
Changi Airport now using only 02L/20R mainly for landing. 02R/20L for takeoff. 02C/20C is closed due to construction work of future terminal5. So the spots for 02C/20C is not usable now. (Spot 6,7,9)
During Nov – March, mainly using 02L, 02R. (Spot 1,2 are not usable).
Spot 3 now doing construction works and fences are added between spot 3 and landing approach way. It’s very limited view now. (But still this is maybe the most usable spot now)
Spot 4 only have very limited angle to some parking spots and a short part of taxi way.
Spot 5 is still a good spot but the hotel’s runway view room’s price has raised more than 50% (from USD 250 raised to around USD 400)
I feel Changi Airport is no longer a spotter friendly airport now. Disappeared spots, no photo signs everywhere around the airport area. Even you just stand on the overpass which can see the runway, police will come and ask you to leave.
Thanks for the updates Zen, I have added it to the guide.
An expensive option is the Crown Plaza Hotel – rooms facing 02/20R offer a very good view and there is at least 2 outdoor staircases each side of the building) which allow for good photos from either landing or take- off-depending on wind direction (I stayed in November 22 and had a room facing 02/20L and with help from FR24 all could be logged and a quick run across the corridor was able to get good pictures on 02R
The hotel is already mentioned in the guide as position #5 😉
Where is the best spot in Singapore to shoot a picture of XiamenAir 787-9? What about Gulf Air 787-9? Is it Changi Business Park or Changi Beach Park?
There is no place is in Singapore to spot closely.
Changi beach is good.
You get good view of the runway at “555 Thai Villa” restaurant but no approach/landing view.
I am going there this weekend and will try to get some photos to share here.
Here’s a latest update for anyone interested in coming over to Singapore for the World Economic Forum next year, and that’s if you can travel in.
Operations at Changi Airport has changed drastically with the COVID-19 situation and has seen one Terminal officially closed for renovation works as well as a major change to runway operations. Runway 2, notably Runway 02C/20C, has officially been closed by Changi Airport till further notice as works on Terminal 5 continues. With the closure of Runway 2, Changi has officially open a third runway, as part of the future of Terminal 5. Runway 3, notably Runway 02R/20L, opened back on 3rd December 2020 switching operations back to dual runway operations since the COVID-19 travel restrictions began. At this point in time Runway 02L/20R is still operational alongside the new runway. Runway 02R/20L is a distance away from Runway 02L/20R which makes getting to spotting locations a challenge. As of now, we can’t really pin point on how the operations are running at the airport as we are seeing a mixture of arrivals and departures on both runways. Do note that operations are dependent on weather and ATC and there is no fixed pattern. For those interested in catching the WEF movements next year, it will be a challenge. So good luck to those getting the movements!
Hey, I changed the infos for the runway but we don’t add COVID infos as it can change daily. Indeed, three runways so far apart is everything else than a spotters dream.
It would be great if you guys update the map as the new Jurassic Mile could open up to new opportunities of new spots for us aviators to enjoy soon.
Not recomended since it is near the fenceline and there are No Photography signs there.
Hi Plane spotting experts! I’m new to spotting at Changi and would really appreciate your help here:
I was at aviation park road on Sunday morning and waiting for arrivals at 20C, but they seemed to be arriving on 20R instead.
I was expecting some arrivals at 20C because I was previously there on a Friday night and saw several aircraft landing in succession (SIA Cargo 747, SIA A350, Scoot 787, Korean Air 777).
So since there there didn’t seem to be any arrivals on 20C, I moved over to Changi beach park to see arrivals at 20R, but instead I saw an Asiana Cargo 747 arriving on 20C!! This was pretty frustrating as I had gone from wrong spot to wrong spot.
So my question is, is there any updated information about which runway aircraft will be landing on at different times of day? The times of day mentioned in the guide above didn’t seem to apply in my case… Thanks in advance! 🙂
From my experience spotting in Singapore, given the current pandemic, Changi Airport is, at the moment, operating with only one runway. Mondays to Saturdays, they will open 20C/2C for operation, closing 20R/02L. On Sundays, this is reversed. Hope this helps!
Is it still the same pattern as of now? Im planning to go plane spotting on this Saturday. Your reply would help me.