As part of the new alliance between Singapore Airlines and Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines will be launching daily, nonstop A380 service between Singapore and Auckland as of October 27, 2014.
Per airlineroute.net, the schedule for the new service will be as follows:
SQ285 Singapore to Auckland departing 8:50PM arriving 11:45AM (+1 day)
SQ286 Auckland to Singapore departing 1:30PM arriving 7:00PM
With Singapore Airlines, the benefit of A380 service isn’t just more capacity, but also that the plane features Suites Class rather than First Class. The flight is currently operated by a 777-300ER, which features their nice standard first class product.
Meanwhile the A380 doesn’t have a first class cabin, but rather has Suites Class, featuring the famous “double bed.”
I’ve written in the past how Australia is one of the toughest destinations in the world to get to on miles, and that redeeming Singapore KrisFlyer miles for travel there can be a great value. New Zealand is an even tougher destination to get to on miles, so you really can’t beat flying there in Singapore A380 Suites Class the entire way from the US.
As a refresher, per Singapore’s award chart, here are the redemption rates for travel between the US and New Zealand using KrisFlyer miles in premium cabins (factoring in the 15% discount for booking online):
|Los Angeles/San Francisco to New Zealand||85,000 miles||119,000 miles|
|New York/Houston to New Zealand||91,375 miles||116,875 miles|
|Singapore to New Zealand||46,750 miles||63,750 miles|
I should also note that if you’re into “maximizing” experiences, Singapore to Auckland is more than 1,000 miles further than Singapore to Sydney, so should allow you to get more rest and enjoy the onboard experience more (the flight is blocked at 9hr55min eastbound and 10hr30min westbound).
Best of all, since this flight has just been loaded, award availability is spectacular. I see two Suites Class saver level seats available most dates, even over peak dates around the New Year. Space is usually almost impossible to find to New Zealand that time of year.
I don’t expect this will last, so if you’re interested I’d recommend booking something ASAP. Keep in mind that Singapore KrisFlyer has really reasonable change and cancellation fees, and partners with American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, and Starwood Preferred Guest.
This might just be what it takes to put me over the edge for planning another trip to one of my favorite places in the world.