Singapore Airlines has announced a few years back that it would resume non stop flights to the U.S. while placing orders for the new Airbus A350-900 including seven aircraft in ultra long range version.
I can still remember that these flights were testing my endurance. I flew the Los Angeles route a few times and the New York Newark route once in Business Class short before it was discontinued. I can’t imagine how it had to be flying this super long haul in Economy Class.
You can access Singapore Airlines Press Release here with all information concerning the new flight.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) will launch the world’s longest commercial flights in October, with non-stop services between Singapore and New York using the new Airbus A350-900ULR (ultra-long-range).
Flights are to be launched on 11 October 2018, to Newark Liberty International Airport. The route will initially be served three times a week, departing Singapore on Monday, Thursday and Saturday. Daily operations will commence from 18 October after an additional A350-900ULR aircraft enters service. …
The aircraft will be configured in a two-class layout, with 67 Business Class seats and 94 Premium Economy Class seats. …
Flights will cover a distance of approximately 9,000nm (16,700km), and travelling time will be up to 18hrs 45min. Singapore Airlines served the Singapore-Newark route until 2013, when services were suspended after the aircraft used at the time, Airbus A340-500s, were returned to Airbus. …
Non-stop Singapore-Los Angeles flights are also planned with the A350-900ULR, details of which will be announced at a later date.
The configuration is extremely interesting considering it’s two class only and includes only Business Class and Premium Economy. Singapore Airlines has decided to forego First Class and regular Economy Class on this route for which there are several possible reasons.
For one as I mentioned above these flights are extremely exhausting even in Business Class so doing them in regular Economy might be something not many passengers would like to endure and likely decide against booking this connection. First Class would certainly have allure to it for such a long route but the question is if the airline can actually turn enough revenue with First Class.
To install one row of First as it’s own cabin they’d have to sacrifice enough space for two rows of Business and that’s hard to justify unless you have a clear case that enough passengers would pay money for it. Not mileage to fly for free – actual cash!
The last few flights I took on Los Angeles to Singapore were all barely half full that was Business Class only. Maybe New York has a better yield but since Singapore Airlines is also planning on bringing SIN-LAX-SIN back it appears that SIA is banking on the demand for such direct flights being much greater than in the past including those kind of passengers who are willing to fly in Premium Economy.
While I’m generally a fan of Premium Economy products I can’t imagine 18 hours in a PE seat. Last week I had an eleven hour flight from Taipei to Vancouver and that was enough for me.