Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines Fleet: May 2019

SQ SRJ Tail (Edwin Leong)

While engine issues continue to keep two of Singapore Airlines’ Boeing 787-10s out of action, it was generally a more settled month for the fleet towards the end of April.

We learned of the planned departure of at least five more A330s this year, but perhaps the biggest news is a reshuffle of the upcoming A350 delivery allocation to include five aircraft in the standard 3-class configuration, in a mix of otherwise regionally-configured aircraft.

You can read on to learn more about that, but we’ll start with the usual fleet overview. There were 125 registered aircraft in the Singapore Airlines fleet as reported by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) on 30th April 2019. Additionally one new aircraft was delivered since that date, and is therefore reflected in our analysis.

As always, we look at how these planes are distributed across the fleet, which are in active service and which are set for disposal.

Headline numbers

Here’s how the Singapore Airlines fleet totals look at 6th May 2019.

CAAS Database: 125
For disposal: -3
Recent Deliveries: +1
In Service: 123
In maintenance, or delivered but yet to enter service: -6
Active: 117

The official registered aircraft data in combination with analysis of actual flight data over the last few weeks allows us to determine the actual ‘in service’ fleet of 123 planes at 6th May 2019, 117 of which are currently active.

Click here to see the official CAAS list of registered aircraft in Singapore at 30th April 2019.

Singapore Airlines Fleet at 6th May 2019

This table shows the Singapore Airlines fleet including how many of each aircraft type are legally registered (‘Registered’), available to the airline (‘In Service’) and currently operating revenue passenger flights (‘Active’).

Type
& Layout
Registered In Service Active
A330-300
30 J (2009 RJ)
255 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
18 17 17
A350-900
42 J (2013 J)
24 W (2015 W)
187 Y (2013 Y)

(full details)
21 21 21
A350-900 Regional
40 J (2018 RJ)
263 Y (2017 Y)

(full details)
5 5 5
A350-900 ULR
67 J (2013 J)
94 W (2018 W)

(full details)
7 7 7
A380-800 v1
12 R (2006 R)
60 J (2006 J)
36 W (2015 W)
333 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
6 6 5
A380-800 v2
12 R (2006 R)
86 J (2006 J)
36 W (2015 W)
245 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
8 8 6
A380-800 v3
6 R (2017 R)
78 J (2017 J)
44 W (2015 W)
343 Y (2017 Y)

(full details)
5 5 5
777-200
38 J (2009 RJ)
228 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
8 6 6
777-200ER
26 J (2006 J)
245 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
5 5 5
777-300
8 F (2006 F)
50 J (2009 RJ)
226 Y (2006 Y)

(full details)
5 5 5
777-300ER
4 F (2013 F)
48 J (2013 J)
28 W (2015 W)
184 Y (2013 Y)

(full details)
27 27 26
787-10
36 J (2018 RJ)
301 Y (2017 Y)

(full details)
11* 11 9
Total 126* 123 117

Correct at 6th May 2019.
* Includes one aircraft delivered in early May, not reflected in the CAAS registered aircraft database.

Differences between registered, in service and active aircraft in the table:

No longer in service (but still legally registered)

  • A330-300 9V-STO has already stopped flying for return to lessor, onwards to Star Alliance carrier Brussels Airlines.
  • 777-200 9V-SQJ has already stopped flying for disposal.
  • 777-200 9V-SRP has already stopped flying for disposal.

Additional to the above, not currently active

  • A380-800 v1 9V-SKH is undergoing maintenance in Singapore.
  • A380-800 v2 9V-SKS is undergoing maintenance in Singapore.
  • A380-800 v2 9V-SKT is undergoing maintenance in Singapore.
  • 777-300ER 9V-SWN is undergoing maintenance in Singapore.
  • 787-10 9V-SCD is grounded in Singapore due to Rolls-Royce engine issues.
  • 787-10 9V-SCI is grounded in Singapore due to Rolls-Royce engine issues.

Changes this month

Since March 2019 (and since the CAAS database at 31st March 2019) the following changes have been recorded:

Airbus A330-300

  • 9V-STT was formally de-registered in April and was ferried to its new operator Evelop Airlines in Spain as EC-NBP.
9V-STT (Dillon Chong).jpg
9V-STT on a test flight prior to handover to Evelop Airlines. (Photo: Dillon Chong)
  • Since the weekend the aircraft started operating London to New York flights on wet-lease to Norwegian Air (another airline plagued by 787 Rolls-Royce engine issues), with SIA’s original seats still installed.
9VSTT Evelop.jpg
A new lease of life for 9V-STT
  • 9V-STO flew its last flight for SIA from Taipei to Singapore on 2nd April. Onward to Brussels Airlines as OO-SFF.
  • The registered A330 fleet stands at 18 aircraft, with 17 in service and active.

Airbus A350-900

  • One aircraft, 9V-SMB, re-entered service following routine maintenance on 5th April with a flight to Tokyo-Haneda. Like -SMA, it was out of service for just a couple of weeks.
  • Another aircraft, 9V-SMM, entered routine maintenance on 28th April 2019 after a flight from Melbourne. It was another short stint in the hangar with this aircraft returning to service this morning, headed for Rome.
  • The registered A350-900 fleet stands at 21, with 21 active.

Airbus A350-900 Regional

  • 9V-SHE was delivered on 6th April and entered commercial service to Adelaide on 14th April.
  • The registered A350-900 Regional fleet stands at 5, all of which are active.

Airbus A350-900ULR

  • No changes, with 7 aircraft registered and active.

Airbus A380

  • One aircraft, 9V-SKG, re-entered service following routine maintenance on 10th April, to Delhi.
  • The same day (10th April), 9V-SKH entered routine maintenance at Changi after a flight from Melbourne.
  • 9V-SKT remains in routine maintenance in Singapore.
  • 9V-SKS remains in routine maintenance in Singapore.
  • These latter two aircraft have been out of service for 6 months and 3 months respectively, and it looks increasingly likely that at least one of them is now undergoing refits of the 2017 cabin products.
  • Currently 19 aircraft registered, 19 in service and 16 active.

Boeing 777-200

  • One aircraft, 9V-SRP, stopped flying for disposal, joining -SQJ with the same fate. It last flew into Changi from Hong Kong on 11th April.
  • Currently 8 aircraft registered and 6 active.

Boeing 777-200ER

  • No changes, with 5 aircraft registered and active.

Boeing 777-300

  • No changes, with 5 aircraft registered and active.

Boeing 777-300ER

  • One aircraft, 9V-SWM, re-entered service on 26th April 2019 – to Beijing. The aircraft had previously been ferried to Thailand following routine maintenance, for repainting in Star Alliance colours. It now operates with that livery.
  • 9V-SWN entered routine maintenance on 15th April 2019 after a flight from London Heathrow.
  • Currently 27 aircraft registered, 27 in service and 26 active.

Boeing 787-10

  • Premature cracking in the high pressure turbines on Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN engines fitted to SIA’s 787-10s resulted in many of the aircraft being grounded in early April 2019.
  • Two aircraft remain grounded at Changi as of 6th April: 9V-SCD and -SCI.
  • 9V-SCJ was delivered on 26th April, and commenced commercial service on 28th April to Bali. That’s one of the quickest introductions we’ve seen from delivery to service entry from Singapore Airlines (unlike some other airlines, they tend to tinker with their new planes for a week or two, for whatever reason). Fleet constraints due to Rolls-Royce engine issues presumably necessitated quicker introduction.
  • 9V-SCK was delivered on 3rd May, not reflected in the CAAS database yet as it occurred this month. The aircraft also entered service much more rapidly than usual for SIA, flying to Osaka just two days later on 5th May.
  • Currently 11 aircraft registered, with 9 active.

Farewell A330s

We got some more information on end of lease dates for a number of A330s in the fleet, with the following aircraft set to leave over the next few months:

  • 9V-STO – already stopped flying
  • 9V-STV – leaving June 2019
  • 9V-STU – leaving July 2019
  • 9V-STY – leaving September 2019
  • 9V-STZ – leaving by the end of 2019

As we mentioned last month 9V-STU is wearing a Star Alliance colour scheme temporarily as its lease was extended by only three months. This was actually designed to assist fleet capacity due to SilkAir’s six grounded 737 MAX aircraft, but it also happily coincided with the 787-10 engine issues as well.

If you’re wondering how much an arrangement like this costs, the lease rate for a brand new A330-300 is around US$750,000 a month. A six year old one like this should be at least a third less than that however.

By the end of 2019 the A330 fleet will have dwindled to 13, or potentially fewer, with the entire fleet due to leave the airline by late 2020. That means we’ll soon become used to seeing around one of these aircraft per month leaving for pastures new.

SQ A330s 2 (Robert Frola).jpg
Singapore Airlines A330s will soon be a distant memory, with the fleet planned to be replaced by the end of 2020. (Photo: Robert Frola)

3-class A350s are back

The next A350, 9V-SHF, is already at the delivery centre in Toulouse and should fly to Singapore within the coming days.

As the 34th example to join Singapore Airlines it marks the halfway point of the total order for 67 such aircraft. With some older 777s likely to be leaving and more A350s arriving, we still predict the A350 will become the largest fleet in the airline by late 2019.

Thanks to AIB Family Flights, we have a recently updated list of assigned registrations for the next 14 Airbus A350s destined for Singapore Airlines. These help us to know the cabin configuration chosen, and there’s been some interesting changes made to ‘Plan A’.

MSN Registration Config Delivery
Original New
305 9V-SHF 9V-SHF Regional May 2019
309 9V-SHG 9V-SHG Regional Jun 2019
316 9V-SHH 9V-SHH Regional Jul 2019
322 9V-SHI 9V-SHI Regional Aug 2019
328 9V-SHJ 9V-SHJ Regional Sep 2019
329 9V-SHK 9V-SMV Standard Q4 2019
341 9V-SHL 9V-SMW Standard Q4 2019
344 9V-SHM 9V-SMY Standard Q4 2019
348 9V-SHN 9V-SMZ Standard Q4 2019
364 9V-SJA Standard Q1 2020
369 9V-SHK Regional Q1 2020
371 9V-SHL Regional Q1 2020
379 9V-SHM Regional Q1 2020
385 9V-SHN Regional Q1 2020

Delivery dates are provisional / estimated.

As you can see the next five aircraft joining the fleet will be the regional variant, however after that the original plan to continue with four further aircraft in this configuration has been changed, with the aircraft swapped out for five A350s in the standard 3-class configuration.

11A span.jpg
Five more 3-class A350s means hundreds more of the popular 2013 Business Class seats like these joining the fleet this year. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

After that the next four will revert to the regional configuration.

Note that SIA is continuing the standard configuration registrations with the -SJ* series once it runs out of -SM* letters. The SJ registration series was last used for the airline’s Airbus A340-300s.

There are no more A350 ULR deliveries proposed in the current financial year, though SIA still has the option to convert future deliveries if it wishes.

This production schedule runs to approximately March 2020, meaning we should see at least one A350 delivery per month between now and then.

As we expected the majority of deliveries this year will still be the regional variant, however the five standard 3-class aircraft are an interesting addition and may suggest the last remaining five 777-200ERs are next in line for the chop.

Could we finally see the Istanbul route switch to the 2013 J seats this year? We understand it cannot use the regional aircraft, as they lack the required crew rest compartment. A 3-class A350 seems the logical choice for the route.

787 deliveries

With two 787-10s recently delivered and the 12th one (9V-SCL) due in June according to 787 Blogger, there is then an approximate three month gap before the next three aircraft start to arrive in late 2019.

That’s probably a relief for SIA, as it gives them time to work with Rolls-Royce to get the engine issues resolved while taking additional A350s, which currently have no such problems with their Trent XWB engines.

Rolls-Royce Engine (Rolls-Royce).jpg
While Rolls-Royce engines on the A350 are behaving themselves, those fitted to SIA’s 787-10 are subject to more inspections and component replacement. (Photo: Rolls-Royce)

Full details

As usual you can see full details of each aircraft type in the Singapore Airlines fleet at the following links, including aircraft registrations specific to each configuration.

If the seat types and routes interest you more – see our Seats Guide. Don’t forget we list the planned seat types for every Singapore Airlines service by flight number, so you can choose your next trip with confidence. See the following pages:

First Class seat types by route and flight number
Business Class seat types by route and flight number

Stay tuned for the next fleet update in early June 2019.

(Cover Photo: Edwin Leong)

8 comments

  1. For the Boeing 777-300/ER undergoing maintenance, there is a registration mistake. It should be 9V-SWN instead of 9V-SMN (9V-SMN is already in use by an Airbus A350 XWB).

      1. Well, lucky for me, I am quite observant. For the Airbus A350 XWBs in standard configuration, it means that the 9V-SJ* plates will be inherited from the former Airbus A340-300s. Since half of the Airbus A350 XWB fleet came without a First Class cabin, I dunno whether there will be a First Class cabin or if there will be a new long-haul Business Class cabin for the remaining half after 9V-SJA is delivered.

      2. Don’t read too much into the registration letter switch, they have simply run out of letters in the SM* series.

        There are no plans to install First Class or newer long-haul Business Class seats on the A350s.

    1. No word on that yet, the new regional aircraft arriving are currently needed to replace A330s whose leases expire by next year, whereas SQ own the 777s so they can keep them for longer.

      There is also practically zero second hand market for 777-300s (non-ERs), so SQ will want to writedown their costs on the planes before shipping them off to the desert.

  2. Is it typical for an A380 to remain in maintenance for several months as two of these are? From what you’ve said, it doesn’t seem like their time out of service is due primarily to reconfiguration. Thanks!

  3. love your blog and site! btw do you see a380 retrofit to roll out before summer this year? since the two a380 has been in the hanger for extended period of time.

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