Welcome to our March 2020 Singapore Airlines fleet update. This month a brand new Airbus A350 Regional joined the fleet, for a few hours at least. Passengers on its inaugural flight were treated to a lap of the Java Sea before landing back in Singapore 5 hours later, due to a technical problem, and the aircraft has not flown since.
In other news the damaged A330, which suffered a tail strike in Yangon late last year, is still nowhere to be seen, we learned that SIA will take delivery of at least 12 A350s in the financial year 2020/21 and a SilkAir Boeing 737-800 has stopped flying, potentially signalling the advent of flat-bed single-aisle Business Class seats in the coming months.
Here are the Singapore Airlines passenger fleet totals at 8th March 2020.
The official registered aircraft data in combination with analysis of actual flight movements over the last few weeks allows us to determine the actual ‘in service’ fleet of 127 planes at 8th March 2020, 123 of which are currently active.
Click here to see the official CAAS list of registered aircraft in Singapore at 29th February 2020.
Singapore Airlines Fleet at 8th March 2020
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’).
Correct at 8th March 2020.
Differences between registered, in service and active aircraft in the table:
No longer in service (but still legally registered)
- A330-300 9V-SSA has already stopped flying for return to lessor. Onward operator unknown.
- A330-300 9V-SSB has already stopped flying for return to lessor. Onward operator is HiFly Malta.
- 777-200 9V-SQJ has already stopped flying for disposal.
- 777-200 9V-SQL has already stopped flying for disposal.
- 777-200 9V-SRM has already stopped flying for disposal.
Additional to the above, not currently active
- A330-300 9V-SSI had a landing accident in Yangon on 25th November 2019. It was ferried empty to Singapore on 14th December 2019 and remains grounded undergoing repairs.
- A350-900 Regional 9V-SHO is undergoing maintenance in Singapore.
- A380-800 v2 9V-SKN is undergoing maintenance and probably cabin refit in Singapore.
- 777-200ER 9V-SVM has stopped flying and may be for disposal.
Changes since our last update
Since February 2020 (and since the CAAS database at 31st January 2020) the following changes have been recorded:
- 9V-STQ, which stopped flying on 29th September 2019, has been de-registered. It is now registered to Air Canada as C-GKUG, but has yet to depart Paya Lebar to start flying for its new operator.
- 9V-STZ, which stopped flying on 16th November 2019, has been de-registered. It is now registered to HiFly Malta as 9H-HFE, but has yet to depart Paya Lebar to start flying for its new operator.
- The registered A330 fleet stands at 10 aircraft, with 8 in service and 7 active.
- 9V-SMK, in maintenance since early February, re-entered service to Mumbai on 14th February 2020.
- Currently 26 aircraft registered, all of which are active.
Airbus A350-900 Regional
- 9V-SHO was delivered on 22nd February 2020. It entered commercial service on 28th February 2020 to Brisbane, however due to a technical problem around 500 miles southeast of Bali the aircraft turned back to Singapore. It has not flown since and remains in maintenance.
- Currently 15 aircraft registered, 14 of which are active.
Airbus A350-900 ULR
- No changes, with 7 aircraft registered and active.
- 9V-SKH, in maintenance since early February, re-entered service to Auckland on 7th March 2020.
- Currently 19 aircraft registered and 18 active.
- 9V-SQM, which stopped flying on 31st December 2019, has been de-registered.
- Currently 4 aircraft registered with just 1 remaining aircraft active (9V-SQN).
- 9V-SVM stopped flying after returning from Bangkok on 29th February 2020. It is not yet known whether it is for maintenance or disposal, though with only 3 of these aircraft due in the fleet by the end of March 2020 it may well have been retired.
- Currently 4 aircraft registered with 3 active.
- No changes, with 5 aircraft registered and active.
- 9V-SWM, in maintenance since early February, re-entered service to Tokyo on 25th February 2020.
- 9V-SWW, in maintenance since mid-January, re-entered service to Hong Kong on 15th February 2020.
- Currently 27 aircraft registered, all of which are active.
- No changes, with 15 aircraft registered and active.
Upcoming fleet changes
Here’s how the current in service fleet looks in comparison to the published fleet development plan, set for the end of the current financial year on 31st March 2020.
|Aircraft Type||Passenger Fleet Totals|
|8 Mar ’20||Leaving||Joining||31 Mar ’20|
|All Types||127||– 1||126|
The fleet development plan is subject to change.
Only one remaining Boeing 777-200ER in the fleet is still set to leave this month (it looks like this might be 9V-SVM), with all other aircraft deliveries and retirements for Airbus A330s, A350s, 787s and other types now concluded for this financial year.
The new fleet development plan will be published in May 2020, and with further new deliveries of Boeing 787s and Airbus A350s starting as early as April we would expect the sole remaining Boeing 777-200 (9V-SQN) and trio of Boeing 777-200ERs to be retired soon.
Future aircraft deliveries
Singapore Airlines has the following aircraft on order, with approximate delivery dates provided where known.
|Outstanding orders as of 8th March 2020:||19|
|Plus 7 additional deliveries thereafter|
Delivery dates are estimated and therefore approximate.
As you can see there are 12 Airbus A350s due for delivery in the 2020/21 financial year, with potential for a 13th in March 2021 depending on unannounced delivery slots.
The first three of these arriving in June and July 2020 will be the Regional variant, confirmed by assigned registrations in the -SH series.
After that the variant selection has not yet been confirmed, with some aircraft likely to be in the 3-class long-haul layout (-SJ series). That may be necessary due to SIA resurrecting the Brussels route using this layout, plus more San Francisco flights switching to the 3-class model from late October 2020.
We’ll update the table in future monthly fleet updates once the variants are known.
|Outstanding orders as of 8th March 2020:||29|
|Plus 26 additional deliveries thereafter|
Delivery dates are estimated and therefore approximate.
The 1,000th Boeing 787-10 built (9V-SCP) is the next aircraft delivery for Singapore Airlines, in approximately late April or early May 2020.
Thereafter there are another pair due in approximately September / October, ahead of the northern winter schedule. Alongside A350 Regionals, these are likely to continue replacing the remaining Airbus A330s and older Boeing 777s over the coming year.
We don’t have visibility of the Boeing 787 delivery schedule beyond October 2020 at this stage, so there are potentially a few more slated to arrive in the 2020/21 financial year (our guess would be at least another three between November 2020 and March 2021).
9V-SHO’s ‘false start’
Singapore Airlines likes debuting its new A350 Regional aircraft on the Brisbane route lately, either by luck or design. 9V-SHL, -SHM and -SHN all made their first commercial flights to the Australian city after delivery.
9V-SHO was no exception, taking off on its first ever passenger flight as SQ235 to Brisbane at around 10pm on 28th February 2020.
Things did not go exactly to plan however, with a technical problem believed to be related to the hydraulic system causing the aircraft to turn back to Singapore at approximately 12.30am, around 500 miles southeast of Bali and roughly halfway into its journey.
9V-SHO landed back in Changi shortly after 3am on 29th February 2020, just a couple of hours before it was originally due to arrive in Brisbane, and has not flown since (some 8 days later at the time of writing).
9V-SSI is still under repair
It’s been over three months now since SIA’s newest A330, 9V-SSI, suffered a landing accident in Yangon when the tail of the aircraft contacted the runway during landing.
The aircraft has been back in Singapore undergoing repairs for 12 weeks, but has yet to re-enter service or even conduct a test flight, suggesting the damage was substantial.
As the most recent A330 delivery, the aircraft is likely to be one of the last of the type to leave the fleet in 2020/21.
SilkAir flat-bed Business Class
As we revealed in November last year, SilkAir will start to fit new flat-bed Business Class seats on its Boeing 737-800s (rather than the MAX jets, which was ‘Plan A’) and transfer them to Singapore Airlines in the coming months.
The airline originally specified May 2020 as the start of the refit for flat-bed seats on its 737 MAX jets, but regardless of those aircraft being grounded SIA is sticking to its SilkAir-SIA integration process timetable, stating that it “remains on track”.
At last year’s analyst briefing SIA’s CEO and SVP Finance said the timetable was still fluid, with the refits to the 737-800s starting either in Q4 of FY19/20 or Q1 of FY20/21.
That’s a wide window (January to June 2020), but it should mean Singapore Airlines starting its own Boeing 737-800 narrow-body regional services with flat-bed seats in Business Class soon.
We have noticed that one SilkAir Boeing 737-800, four-year-old 9V-MGJ, stopped flying early last week (12 days ago at the time of writing), so this could be the first aircraft set for the refit.
As always 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.
- Airbus A330
- Airbus A350 (3 versions)
- Airbus A380 (3 versions)
- Boeing 777-200 (2 versions)
- Boeing 777-200ER
- Boeing 777-300
- Boeing 777-300ER
- Boeing 787-10
If the seat types and routes interest you more – see our Seats Guide.
You can also check our tracker pages for the new 2017 A380 cabin products and 2018 Regional cabin products, outlining the flights they are planned to operate across the network:
We also list the planned seat types for every Singapore Airlines service by flight number, so you can choose your next trip with confidence. It’s currently up to date through to the end of October 2020:
Stay tuned for the next fleet update in April 2020.
(Cover Photo: TK Kurikawa / Shutterstock)