Singapore Airlines ramps up Airbus A380 flights for Sydney and Melbourne
The superjumbo soars back to Melbourne while also doubling down on Sydney.
What we'll be covering
Singapore Airlines is bringing its flagship Airbus A380 back to Melbourne, with the superjumbo also doubling its presence in Sydney.
It’s a move that significantly upgrades the passenger experience at the front of the plane. That’s especially true for First Class on those flights to Melbourne. With the route currently served by the airline’s Boeing 777 jets with standard First Class, the swap to the A380 brings with it the carrier’s flagship Suites cabin.
The second daily Airbus A380 service for Sydney flyers also takes over from an Airbus A350 flight. With a daily Boeing 777 continuing to offer First Class as well, the move makes the airline’s most premium cabins available on three of its four daily departures from Australia’s busiest airport.
But it comes at the expense of travellers flying to New York. Once Sydney gets its second daily A380, Singapore Airlines’ Frankfurt-New York JFK flights lose the superjumbo. With the airline’s other Singapore-New York flights running non-stop on Airbus A350s, the Suites product will disappear from The Big Apple entirely.
Singapore Airlines’ Airbus A380 flights to Australia
For Sydneysiders, Singapore Airlines’ Airbus A380s run twice a day from 17 May 2023. They’ll take over SQ221 from Singapore and SQ232 from Sydney, currently served by a ‘medium-haul’ Airbus A350 jet.
This complements the airline’s existing Airbus A380 flights, SQ231 from Sydney and SQ2222 back from Singapore.
Melbourne’s reign with the superjumbo is seasonal instead. Between 16 May and 28 October 2023, the A380 can be spotted on SQ237 from Singapore and SQ228 from the Victorian capital.
Travel demand remains strong for 2023, particularly during the Northern Summer period. The relaxation of border controls in Southeast Asia and parts of East Asia has resulted in an uptick in travel which we expect will continue into the Northern Summer peak.
Deploying the A380 over the peak period will also see us exceed our pre-Covid seat capacity to Melbourne, operating at 110% when compared to our operations of January of 2020.– Louis Arul, Singapore Airlines Regional Vice President South West Pacific, 22 November 2022
At the time of writing, we haven’t been able to locate any ‘Suites Saver’ availability when spending KrisFlyer miles on these upgraded flights. Singapore Airlines appears only to be making reward seats available at the higher ‘Advantage’ rate for travel in its most premium cabin.
Even then, many of the flights are ‘Advantage waitlist’. This means you’d not only spend more miles than the customary ‘Saver’ rate to secure your seat, but you also wouldn’t get confirmation as to whether you’re even flying until closer to departure.
If you do happen to spot availability in the ‘Suites Saver’ cabin, book fast! That seat will be gone before you know it.
It’s great to see Singapore Airlines boosting its Airbus A380 flights to Australia. It’s a sure sign that travel demands are surging back – and the Airbus A380 has the most available seats of any jet in the airline’s network.
For those booking using miles, the move may provide more opportunities to secure seats in Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class over time. But in Suites, reward seat availability is likely to remain quite thin for now.
That’s because Singapore Airlines has reconfigured its Airbus A380s in recent years, as part of its latest Suites service launch. Now, the carrier’s superjumbos only have half as many Suites as before, when Saver reward seats were easier to obtain.
With people now valuing privacy and space even more, and many having ‘pandemic savings’ to spend on something special, the airline no longer needs to use miles to fill the cabin – especially at those favourable Saver rates.
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