Singapore airlines has finally announced news that’s been rumoured for more than a few months and that will be music to the ears for a lot of US flyers – they’re bringing back non-stop service between Singapore and the US.
Singapore airlines last flew non-stops between Singapore and the US back in 2013 using Airbus A340-500 aircraft but, when those aircraft were retired, the routes were cancelled and the US hasn’t had a non-stop flight to Singapore since.
Now that’s all about to change – although not exactly immediately.
Singapore Airlines has signed an agreement with Airbus to be their launch customer for an ultra-long-range variant of their A350 aircraft (something which has been muted for most of this year). Per the Singapore Airlines press release (bolding is mine):
Singapore Airlines has 63 A350-900s on firm order and the new agreement with Airbus will see seven of these upgraded to orders for the A350-900ULR, which will have a range of up to 8,700nm. The Airline also has 20 purchase options, four of which will be converted into firm A350-900 orders. This will lift to 67 the total number of A350s on firm order with Airbus, plus 16 options.
Deliveries of the A350-900ULR aircraft are scheduled to take place in 2018, enabling the re-launch of the world’s longest non-stop flights, between Singapore and both Los Angeles and New York. The aircraft will be fitted with all-new cabin products which are currently under development. Non-stop flights between Singapore and additional points in the US are also under consideration.
It’s interesting to see how the landscape of the airline industry is changing with the advent of new, more economical aircraft. Routes that were once considered uneconomical are coming back and even more routes are now being considered.
Naturally we’ll have to wait and see how Singapore plans to equip their new toy before we know how comfortable such a long flight will be if you’re flying in Coach (I’m not sure I fancy that idea!). But there’s one thing you can be absolutely 100% sure of and that’s that the premium cabin product that they develop for this aircraft will be absolutely amazing.
From 2018 I think we may have a new “ultimate aspirational award” – a first class award between Singapore and the US. I just hope there’s enough time between now and then to rack up the thousands of Kris Miles I’ll need!