Singapore Airlines Is Launching Flights Between Moscow & Stockholm

I sure do love a fun fifth freedom route, especially when it’s operated by one of the world’s best airlines. For those of you not familiar with fifth freedom routes, it’s when an airline operates a flight between two foreign countries (by “foreign” I mean countries where the airline isn’t based). Examples include Singapore Airlines’ flight between New York and Frankfurt, Cathay Pacific’s flight between New York and Vancouver, LATAM’s flight between Madrid and Frankfurt, etc.

Singapore Airlines has just announced their newest fifth freedom route, and it’s a fun one.

Singapore Airlines will operate 5x weekly flights between Moscow, Russia, and Stockholm, Sweden, as of May 30, 2017. This flight will operate as a continuation of their existing flight between Singapore and Moscow, though passengers will be able to book a ticket exclusively between Moscow and Stockholm if they’d like. The entire flight operates with the following schedule:

SQ362 Singapore to Moscow departing 12:20AM arriving 6:00AM
SQ362 Moscow to Stockholm departing 7:15AM arriving 8:25AM
SQ361 Stockholm to Moscow departing 10:25AM arriving 1:30PM
SQ361 Moscow to Singapore departing 3:00PM arriving 6:15AM (+1 day)

The Moscow to Stockholm  flight covers a distance of ~760 miles, with a flight time of 2hr10min westbound and 2hr5min eastbound.

The flight will be operated using a brand new Airbus A350-900 aircraft, featuring 253 seats, including 42 business class seats, 24 premium economy seats, and 187 economy seats.

singapore-a350
Singapore Airlines’ A350 business class

Per Singapore Airlines’ press release, SAS will also codeshare on this new route, as this will operate as part of a joint venture between SAS and Singapore Airlines.

This is an extremely comfortable way to fly within Europe, given that intra-Europe business class typically only consists of economy seats with a blocked middle seat and slightly improved service. So Singapore’s fully flat beds with direct aisle access are a huge upgrade over that.

lufthansa-business-class-a320-1
Typical intra-Europe business class

The background on this flight is a fun one as well:

  • Singapore Airlines used to operate a flight from Singapore to Moscow to Houston
  • Singapore Airlines used to operate a flight from Singapore to Munich to Manchester
  • They’ve sort of reversed these routes a bit, as Singapore now operates their Singapore to Houston flight via Manchester, and operates their European fifth freedom route via Moscow

This new Moscow to Stockholm route doesn’t yet seem to have award availability, but once it does, the one way cost should be just 6,375 KrisFlyer miles in economy, or 12,750 KrisFlyer miles in premium economy, or 19,125 miles in business class, which is a solid deal. I suspect award availability will be excellent, as is generally the case on these fifth freedom routes.

Bottom line

I love cool fifth freedom routes like this, especially on world class airlines like Singapore, and especially when they’re a good use of miles. While this isn’t an especially long flight, Singapore’s A350 business class sure is a comfortable way to fly within Europe. I had a great trip to Russia over the summer, and next time would certainly consider taking this Singapore flight from Stockholm to Moscow to get there (though I also recently flew Aeroflot, and they greatly exceeded my expectations).

What do you make of Singapore’s new flight between Moscow and Stockholm?

(Tip of the hat to Thomas)

Comments

  1. Lucky,

    Few questions for the avgeeks:

    Do airlines have duces pilots for fixed routes? I e the same pilotsize plying the routes to and fro?

    How do pilits find their way from the run way to the gate? What do all the signs and different lights mean.

  2. I notice you keep referring to LAN Chile in your reporting, just wanted to mention that they changed their name to LATAM Chile 🙂

  3. If you’re going from Stockholm to Southeast Asia/North Asia, the stop in Moscow won’t be that attractive I think thus making the flight less competitive; so clearly SQ feels that there is enough traffic to be had between Moscow and Stockholm and Stockholm and Singapore.

    Thai Airways can get people to Bangkok non-stop and Emirates and Qatar can get people to most points in Asia with just one stop.

    I wish the route success but I think they’ll have tough going of this.

  4. The old Malaysia Airlines flight out of New York used to stop in Stockholm and it was a great route, flew it several times. A far more interesting way to get to S.E. Asia, and Stockholm Arlanda is great. Would love to see Singapore do that route again. Their Frankfurt route is great though, certainly better than having to stop in Moscow.

  5. 12,750 KF miles for one-way J on a 2hr flight? Seriously considering.
    19,125 KF miles for one-way J on a 2hr flight? Not a chance.
    For me, there’s way too much value to be had in KF’s intra-Asian J -class award space to even consider this one.

  6. 15000 SEK = 1544 EUR r/t ARN-SIN ticket in business class. Count me in, SQ cabin crew and new A350 is far superior to any other airline flying from Scandinavia.

  7. Hi Ben,

    Finally I got the miles needing on my Kris flyer account to made a online reservation dec 13 – with
    Singapore Airlines new a359 – DUS-SIN. – May 2017 – Business

    After doing seat assignment and finally check and (accept the very high Fuel surcharge EUR 277.64) (even on SQ own web) last step payment with AM-Aeroplan CR – shortly after
    Followng messege shown up
    “Due to a technical error, we cannot issue your tickets right now. Your credit/debit card hasn’t been charged, although the amount has been put on hold on your card. We’ve requested for your bank to release the hold, which is expected to be processed in a few days. Our reservations office will be in touch with you soon to assist with your booking.
    For urgent assistance, get in touch with your local Singapore Airlines office. We apologise for the inconvenience.”
    Paid via AM-AEROPLAN – 2016-DEC 13 – 10:28 AM
    4 hours later a make a payment-reservation via Aeroplan (46.40 CAD) and use same card with NO proplem. (SIN-TPE-YVR-EVA)
    Yesterday 24 hours later I talk to AM express and was told nothing was wrong with my credit card and I was told it happen sometimes.
    Only reason I book via Krisflyer (SQ) even with skyhight levy since via AEROPLAN is extremely hard to get access to Business Class in A388 or A359
    Have you or any other good people out there had similar experience and what was the reason?
    Thanks for taking your time

  8. I’ll be flying this route on my way from Oslo to Melbourne. Does this mean I’ll have to disembark and board again in Moscow?

    I had such a stop last year on Cathay Pacific. I was flying from Hong Kong to Fukuoka, but had a stop in Taipei. Even though it was the same aircraft and same flight number, we all had to disembark and go through a security check before being allow to board the same plane again.

  9. This is actually a major tactical blunder by Singapore Airlines. They are either completely unaware or have just ignored the fact that Swedes in general don’t like Russia and have problems with Russians. This cultural aspect is important to recognize and SIA will make a poor business decision because they haven’t.

    The route between Stockholm and Moscow to Singapore will never be popular and will most likely be avoided by all Swedes heading to Singapore. There are even better connections through e.g. Helsinki with Finnair which is a lot quicker. Another issue is that you have to exit the airplane at Moscow which will just result in more hustle and bustle than necessary (not a direct flight). I would not be surprised if SIA actually decides to discontinue this “fifth freedom” route after realizing the low demand and traffic volume coming out from Stockholm-Arlanda for this particular flight.

  10. @John – I agree wholeheartedly with your comment re ARN-DME to SIN and beyond. Major gaffe for SQ imo. It’s worth the extra time it takes to reach FRA and depart from there, which provides a more sublime and refined experience for Swedes et al.

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