Singapore Announces Real Details of Their New US Flights (and Dropping of an A380)

This morning word leaked that Singapore Airlines would be announcing non-stop service between San Francisco and Singapore with an Airbus A350. That’s true.

But some details earlier were speculative, which Singapore has clarified, and they’ve announced a second new flight as well!

  • San Francisco – Singapore non-stop will be on an Airbus A350 “configured with 253 seats in three classes: 42 in Business, 24 in Premium Economy and 187 in Economy Class” (so not “around 170 seats”). In other words, it’s a standard Singapore A350 configuration.

  • It will launch October 23, 2016. There’s no first class, but it does have one of my favorite business class products.

    Singapore Airlines Business Class, Boeing 777-300ER

  • The flight will replace Singapore’s current SQ15/16 San Francisco – Seoul – Singapore service. San Francisco – Hong Kong – Singapore will continue.

  • Singapore Airlines will be introducing a second Los Angeles flight in October, Los Angeles – Seoul – Singapore, operated with a Boeing 777-300ER (which does offer first class).

    Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-300ER First Class

  • Los Angeles will be losing the Airbus A380. Existing Los Angeles – Tokyo Narita – Singapore service will be downgauged to a Boeing 777-300ER. (It doesn’t make sense to offer an A380 and a 777 out of LAX it seems.)

Singapore Airlines still plans to introduce non-stop Los Angeles and New York – Singapore service with the new Airbus A350ULR in 2018.

They’re able to offer non-stop service without the ‘ultra long range’ version of the aircraft because San Francisco is actually a shorter flight than Singapore – Los Angeles.

And it’s timely because United has launched non-stop service on the route. Singapore will certainly offer the more desirable inflight product.

I might question adding capacity between San Francisco and Singapore. Two non-stops on the route may be too much. But Singapore is replacing their Seoul flight, which was the weaker performing of the two, and shifting service via Seoul to Los Angeles where they’ll compete against Korean and Asiana but not also United as they do today in San Francisco.

This will make Singapore more competitive than they are today, and it’s great for consumers because the route becomes more competitive with more non-stop seats (so perhaps better price) and with a better inflight product which keeps up pressure on United.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Have an award in suites booked LAX-NRT-SIN Feb 2017. Anyone think SQ would let me change to go via JFK. Really wanted to be in the suites. It’s for my honeymoon.

  2. 🙁 Loved our A380 SQ Suites LAX-NRT-SIN, which it’s true is almost to book on miles now. But once it’s gone, it goes from nearly impossible to totally impossible. 🙁

  3. I wonder if this will put pressure on UA to move out of SFO-SIN and pick up the dropped ICN segment. Seems crazy to go to 2x SIN legs from 0 for partners in the same alliance.

  4. Hi Gary, I’m looking to see when LAX gets downgraded from A380 LAX – NRT – SIN, did you see this? I have a booking for January 2017, YIKES! Thanks

  5. Gary so does this mean that the A380 will be gone at the end of October for NRT-LAX. I have a suites booking then?

  6. I also have a suites booking LAX-SIN? Any word on the timing of A380 leaving that route?

  7. I also just booked a suites earlier this week SIN-NRT-LAX Suites for 2017. So sad :*(

  8. @AdamH
    They may be partners, but SQ and UA are competitors on the route to Singapore. They’ve never code shared (although that’s changing) and UA has done whatever it could for a long time to keep pax going to SIN on its own metal all the way there, rather than give the pax to SQ. UA will not be dropping the route at all because of this, and will continue to compete vigorously for each and every single passenger. UA already flies SFO-ICN, so really don’t understand your comment there.

  9. Does anyone know the date when the A380 will be dropped from the LAX-NRT route?!?! And what happens to those of us with Suites bookings?

  10. Gary when will this be official? I need to call Singapore to cancel my suite booking then. I saved those miles for this booking and now it’s taken away!!

  11. UA can barely run their flight adequately…cancellations two days in a row. Won’t last long at this rate once SQ starts if they can’t even deliver basic reliability.

  12. Waaaaaaaaah, Gary !!!! My suites, my suites – what will happen to my suites ?!?!?!?

    Gary doesn’t work for SIA – call them if you want to know instead of baby-crying all over this thread with 10 variations of the same question, since apparently none of you can read that the first entry already asked it …

  13. LOL- I don’t work for SQ either, but I know what will happen. For reservations after the change in airplane, SQ will offer people who had suites reservations accommodation in First class on the new plane. There are 8 suites on the A380, and 8 first class seats on the 777-300ER.

    @ Michael Hacker- I’m sure that SQ would let you change, and may even wave the $15 change fee, if you can find available Suites inventory on that route- good luck!

    @AdamH- partners- ha! I’m sure that SQ saw UAs launch of an SFO – SIN flight as an act of war akin to how Delta felt when Qatar launched Atlanta service. Worse, actually, because UAs move has real revenue implications for SQ, unlike Delta, which didn’t fly ATL – Doha…

  14. @George, thanks. Was thinking about asking for an accommodation or something to get on the JFK route. I know there is usually nothing available but we really want to take the suites….maybe some begging with a sympathetic agent. I find the SQ agents are as helpful as they can be.

    Thanks again!

  15. First thing I did actually was call SQ and the phone agent told me that my flight on Oct 27 LAX-NRT was still showing as being operated by an A380. Obviously that’s contrary to the published info on this and other sites. I assume that’s because the new info hasn’t been updated in their system. So, at least based on my experience, calling the airline now to explore options is futile.

  16. +1 on that experience; but I setup an aircraft alert on ExpertFlyer for now

  17. GDS seems to reflect today that yes, A380 will no longer be flying to LAX. For those who are wondering where it will be deployed, it seems to be switched to operating SQ306 to LHR as of 24 Oct.

  18. Just got notification for booked A380 suite SIN-LAX in April ’17 down graded to 777. So mad 🙁

    Everyone ewith suites already booked next year should complaint to Singapore on Twitter & Facebook.

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