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The first refitted Singapore Airlines A380 is heading to Sydney in 11 days time

Singapore Airlines teases the Sydney route with double daily A380s fitted with the new Suites and Business Class during June and July

Zurich Airport

Note 8th June 2019: Introduction of the new A380 products on the Sydney route has been postponed by one week, and will now start from 17th June 2019 according to the latest schedules.

Note 16th June 2019: Introduction on SQ231/222 has been pushed back again to 20th June 2019.

In a schedule update yesterday evening, Singapore Airlines finally revealed the route for its first refitted Airbus A380, one of 14 older jets planned to be kitted out with the very latest Suites and Business Class products.

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(Image: Singapore Airlines)

Like many that have gone before it, Sydney is the chosen destination, with the airline doubling down on the new A380 cabins each day from 10th 20th June 2019 by shifting the SQ231/222 flight pairing to the latest fit.

It’s short lived though, as the flight switches back to an older A380 on the Sydney schedule after 1st August 2019, with a new destination on the cards after that for the newest jet.

What we know

The first aircraft refitted with the new cabin products will set course for Sydney as SQ231, a flight currently operated by an A380 Version 1, in the early hours of 10th June 2019. That’s less than 11 days from now.

SQ231 Suites.jpg

It was a long time coming, with the airline proposing a complete refit of the 14 older aircraft would be finished by the end of 2020.

That timetable now seems optimistic, with at least 12 more planes to finish in the next 18 months, but rolling out the first aircraft is an important milestone.

The schedule

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This is how the current schedule of five daily flights looks between Singapore and Sydney:

Current schedule SIN-SYD (until 9th June 2019)
Flight From / To Aircraft Seats
SQ231 SIN0045 – SYD1025 388 2006 R / 2006 J
SQ241 SIN0710 – SYD1650 77W 2013 F / J
SQ211 SIN0935 – SYD1915 77W 2013 F / J
SQ288 SIN1030 – SYD2010 77W 2013 F / J
SQ221 SIN2020 – SYD0555* 388 2017 R / 2017 J

* Next day. All flights operate daily.

Current schedule SYD-SIN (until 9th June 2019)
Flight From / To Aircraft Seats
SQ212 SYD0755 – SIN1415 77W 2013 F / J
SQ232 SYD1100 – SIN1730 388 2017 R / 2017 J
SQ222 SYD1500 – SIN2120 388 2006 R / 2006 J
SQ242 SYD1805 – SIN0020* 77W 2013 F / J
SQ288 SYD2120 – SIN0515* 77W 2013 F / J

* Next day. All flights operate daily.

And here’s how it looks from 10th 20th June 2019:

New schedule SIN-SYD (10th 20th June 2019 to 1st August 2019)
Flight From / To Aircraft Seats
SQ231 SIN0045 – SYD1025 388 2017 R / 2017 J
SQ241 SIN0710 – SYD1650 77W 2013 F / J
SQ211 SIN0935 – SYD1915 77W 2013 F / J
SQ288 SIN1030 – SYD2010 77W 2013 F / J
SQ221 SIN2020 – SYD0555* 388 2017 R / 2017 J

* Next day. All flights operate daily.

New schedule SYD-SIN (10th 20th June 2019 to 1st August 2019)
Flight From / To Aircraft Seats
SQ212 SYD0755 – SIN1415 77W 2013 F / J
SQ232 SYD1100 – SIN1730 388 2017 R / 2017 J
SQ222 SYD1500 – SIN2120 388 2017 R / 2017 J
SQ242 SYD1805 – SIN0020* 77W 2013 F / J
SQ288 SYD2120 – SIN0515* 77W 2013 F / J

* Next day. All flights operate daily.

The later overnight option from Singapore to Sydney (perfect for a good sleep on board), and the mid afternoon Sydney to Singapore flight (perfect for a lazy morning in your hotel before you have to head to the airport), now have the latest aircraft confirmed on these dates.

If you’re lucky enough to be booked in Suites, or even the Business Class cabin, between 10th 20th June 2019 and 1st August 2019 on this route – you’re in for a treat.

These flights will now feature the latest A380 cabin products, joining the SQ221/232 pairing, which was the first to receive them back in 2017. Check out what we thought of the new Suites in our comprehensive review.

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Click here to read our review of the Singapore Airlines A380 New Suites

Business Class also gets an upgrade on these aircraft, with 78 of the latest seats installed in a 1-2-1 configuration, including some ‘double bed’ options at the middle pairs.

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Click here to read our review of the Singapore Airlines A380 New Business Class

What else we know

The rest of the A380 flying program with 2017 (i.e. new / refitted) products, to London, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Sydney (SQ221/232) and Zurich, is unaffected by this schedule addition.

This change must therefore only be possible because the sixth aircraft with the new cabin products installed is entering service. There are simply insufficient gaps in the current schedule for the five newest aircraft (SKU-SKZ) to support this extra flight on a daily basis.

Which plane is it?

As we understand from our sources, 9V-SKS and 9V-SKT are are the first two A380s being refitted with the new cabin products.

SKS apparently had some additional maintenance requirements, hence its long downtime now in excess of 6 months, and it’s suggested that this will be the first refitted aircraft to enter service in less than two weeks from now.

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(Photo: Peter Gronemann)

Whichever of the pair it is, the interesting question will be what tweaks, if any, Singapore Airlines has applied to the cabins. There were some design criticisms, especially in Suites, so we’ll be keen to see how these have been addressed.

Award availability

If you were hoping to jump on a saver award ticket in Suites on this flight after it switches to the new cabin products, unfortunately it is either unavailable or waitlisted in the saver category during this period, in both directions.

In Business Class you can pick up saver awards on SQ231/222 in June and July, not too surprising with the new aircraft version equipped with 78 seats in this cabin, a 30% increase over the aircraft it is replacing.

If you can secure an award, here are the KrisFlyer redemption rates you’ll pay by cabin on this route:

KFtrans

KrisFlyer Redemption Singapore – Sydney
Saver Advantage
Economy 28,000 55,000
Premium Economy 47,000 n/a
Business 62,000 90,000
First / Suites 85,000 155,000

What’s next?

After this relatively short stint on the Sydney route the refitted aircraft picks up a brand new roster from August 2019. Stay tuned for the latest destinations in an upcoming post.

(Cover Photo: Peter Gronemann)

3 comments

  1. Got a call from SG airlines. My flight on 11th June is now being changed back to the 12 seater configuration! So might want to see what happened to the newly refitted one!

    1. Oh that’s a shame for your flight. Looks like the SYD schedule now gets the new fit from 17th June so they have pushed it back by a week.

      The first refitted aircraft was due for a test flight on 4th June then postponed until today, according to SQTalk, but still hasn’t flown so it sounds like there are last minute issues to resolve.

      1. yeah what a shame…would have wanted to check out if they did any modifications to the aircraft F class layout and report to you all.

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