SQ11/12 to be operated by Airbus 380s starting March 27!

Nooooooooooooo!

Singapore Airlines flight 11 flies from Los Angeles to Tokyo to Singapore, and Singapore Airlines flight 12 flies from Singapore to Tokyo to Los Angeles. Up until now these flights have been operated by Boeing 747s. While the 747 isn’t equipped with the world’s best “hard product” (they have Singapore’s old “SkySuites”), the service and food on Singapore Airlines are simply top notch. While Singapore Airlines hasn’t been great about releasing award seats on these flights, they have reliably opened space up four days before departure for several months now, especially in first class. So while it’s not an ideal situation, at least first class was attainable if you were flexible and willing to wait until the last minute to book.

Well, these flights will now be operated by the Airbus 380, which Singapore Airlines (arrogantly) blocks for premium cabin award redemptions. Technically there’s no first class, only “Suites Class,” but the same applies for business class, where they don’t release any award space either.

Also, the new flight times are just horrible (I guess it takes longer to turn an Airbus 380 than Boeing 747):

SQ12 Singapore to Tokyo departing at 9:25AM and arriving at 5:30PM
SQ12 Tokyo to Los Angeles departing at 7:15PM and arriving at 1:30PM
SQ11 Los Angeles to Tokyo departing at 3:45PM and arriving at 7:15PM (+1)
SQ11 Tokyo to Singapore departing at 8:50PM and arriving at 3:10AM (+1)

The pre-2AM arrival was bad enough for jetlag, but now 3:10AM? Ouch!

This means that the only route operated to the US by Singapore’s 747s is now New York to Frankfurt.

Comments

  1. Having recently flown SQ11 & SQ12 getting into SIN at 3:10AM is much better than the current 1:04AM arrival time. I’m thrilled about the A380 as those 747s are really showing their age & should have been replaced quite awhile ago. (Why they can’t do 777 is beyond me.)

    As for SQ staff,,,,(I’m SQ Gold)….I honestly think that Asiana has better in cabin service. The LAX/NRT crew & NRT/LAX crew seem to have adopted the US mentality…..certainly not the same caliber as inter/intra Asia SQ flight crews. (I’d certainly rather deal with a slightly surly SQ crew than a regular United crew.)

  2. NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wanted to book a special someone on this flight as a surprise a few days out! 🙁 Now that chance is gone 🙁

  3. The upside of the later departure of NRT-SIN is that at least when you misconnect on the UA NRT-SIN, you have a better shot of getting out the same night! And it still gets to SIN in time to catch the outbound SIN-NRT/HKG on UA and thus preserve a quick-turn MR!

    Yes, I’ve thought about these issues. It happened to my +1 about 18 months ago!

  4. Glad we got to try it once. One day down the road, the A-380 will be the old, tired plane, and we’ll be able to redeem for the Suites.

  5. The A380 is awesome. Dramatically quieter and more spacious. It’s a shame it’s not available as an award, but for paid passengers this is a major improvement.

  6. Saw some decent business class space on the A380 post-March 27 when I searched after hearing the news.

    And it wasn’t that SQ hadn’t fixed the fare buckets yet, as F was showing as not existing per expectation.

    Perhaps that’ll change but worth looking to see whether any advance business space remains, as the 380 has a nice business seat..

  7. Ugh…How much longer until the A380 stops being special….maybe the Rolls Royce incidents will finally be useful for something.

  8. Lucky, you know I think you’re a genius about this stuff, but I’m not sure that I would call Singapore refusing to give away a $20,000 product “arrogant.” Just saying 🙂

  9. C space is pretty good. I think every day except Fri and Sun in both directions. And ANA does not show F as existing at all like you said.

    It’s not like SQ is being arrogant. Nobody offers awards on the A380.

  10. Jared – The Suites are no more a $20k product than F being a $15k product. It’s SQ believing their own hype.

    Lucky – has it changed on the ANA tool yet? If not, isn’t now the time to book an award which SQ will then honour when the equipment changes.

  11. Ok, ok, AF, LH and EK offer them, but are you going to pay their ridiculously inflated award levels? And fuel surcharges are what not? That’s what I meant even if I wasn’t articulate about it. And I think all of those carriers restrict it to their own FF program’s members only.

  12. @ “@Alex” — Again, that’s not true. You can use Delta miles to redeem for Air France business class. You can use US Airways miles to redeem for Lufthansa business class. You can use Continental miles to redeem for Emirates business class. That’s all without fuel surcharges. Who said anything about first class? SQ doesn’t offer first class on the A380, only “Suites.”

  13. @ Nancy — For what it’s worth, the crews that operate the LAX-NRT-LAX routes also operate the SIN-NRT-SIN routes. For SQ11/12, flight attendants work all four segments. In other words, the crew that works Singapore to Tokyo today works Tokyo to Los Angeles tomorrow.

    @ Logan — Singapore also blocks award seats on their B777-300ER aircraft, as it features their new first and business class.

  14. @Jared,

    Nobody “gives away” award seats. The awarding airline *sells* the seats to the redeeming carrier. There’s money in them thar award redemptions!

  15. I note that they are still showing the 747 operating in the winter of 2011. I just booked a J reward NRT » LAX. Fingers crossed for the upgrade to the A380.

  16. Has this been confirmed? What is the source?

    I ask, because I see 2 available biz seats on SQ11 for the date I want to go to NRT next year, which is after March 27th. If this can be confirmed, I’m booking those seats ASAP.

  17. @ CDiddy — Try making a booking on the Singapore Airlines website. You’ll see the A380 listed. For what it’s worth, I have a seat selected in business class on the A380 for my flight in May.

  18. Thanks Lucky. I just booked SQ11 for late May. My confirmation email from United says 747, but the flight times match those of the 380. Guess I’ll call Singapore to see if I can get some seats assigned and figure out what kind of plane they say it is!

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