Singapore Airlines Restarting Nonstop Flights To New York

Singapore Airlines Airbus A350-900
Singapore Airlines Airbus A350-900
Credit: Rob Finlayson

SINGAPORE—Seeing a potential uptick in air cargo and transit passengers to metro New York, Singapore Airlines (SIA) will resume the world’s longest scheduled flight between Singapore and New York-JFK starting Nov. 9.

The flight will replace SIA’s Singapore-Newark (EWR) route, which has been suspended since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The flag-carrier said flying to JFK allows SIA to better accommodate a mix of passenger and cargo traffic in the current operating climate while also meeting forecast air cargo demand to support pharmaceuticals, e-commerce and technology companies. The flight will be the only air cargo link between Singapore and the U.S. northeast. 

Currently, Los Angeles (LAX) is SIA’s only U.S. destination. SIA’s JFK service was previously served by an Airbus A380 via Frankfurt. 

The route will be mounted 3X-weekly on a “standard” A350-900, instead of the A350-900 ultra long range (ULR) variant. The standard A350-900 seats 42 in business, 24 in premium economy and 187 in economy. The ULR has 67 and 94 seats in business and premium economy respectively and is used specifically for the U.S. market.

“Nonstop ultra-long services are the bedrock of our services to the key U.S. market,” SIA EVP commercial Lee Lik Hsin said. “We will continue to ramp up existing services and reinstate other points as the demand for both passenger and cargo services return.” 

Lee added that there are some “early signs of optimism” on the recovery of the sector and that customers are “increasingly confident” about air travel because of implemented health and safety measures, along with easing of restrictions for transit and inbound passengers. 

At its height, SIA had as many as 1,750 weekly one-way seats between New York and Singapore, split between JFK and EWR, according to CAPA/OAG data.

Traveling from Singapore to New York JFK is an 18 hr., 5 min flight. In the opposite direction, the flight from JFK to Singapore Changi takes 18 hrs., 40 min.

Chen Chuanren

Chen Chuanren is the Southeast Asia and China Editor for the Aviation Week Network’s (AWN) Air Transport World (ATW) and the Asia-Pacific Defense Correspondent for AWN, joining the team in 2017.


1 Comment
If they can operate Singapore-JFK nonstop with the standard A350-900 (with 92 more seats than the ULR version), the question arises why they needed the ULR variant for the previous Singapore-Newark service?