News SilkAir Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines to almost completely suspend flights for 2 weeks

Only one regular daily flight remains from midnight on Saturday, as Singapore Airlines takes a knife to almost every destination in its first phase of flight cuts

SQ A330 Tail Sunset (Uskarp SS)

Earlier today Singapore Airlines announced a radical cut to its flying schedules for April 2020, grounding 185 of its 196 aircraft across the three SIA Group airlines and scaling back capacity by an astonishing 96% during the month.

The airline has now confirmed the passenger services it still plans to operate across the SIA and SilkAir brands between 29th March and 11th April 2020, the first two weeks of the northern summer season.

Further cancellations from 12th April 2020 have not yet been announced.

Just 82 74 Singapore Airlines flights and 16 2 SilkAir services will operate during the 14-day period, the first phase of announced cuts, which would normally see around 5,000 services flown by the two airlines.

Numbers updated on 24th March from latest information.

Flights still operating

Singapore Airlines and SilkAir will be running the following flights to and from just seven cities on their respective networks between 29th March and 11th April 2020.

All other flights not listed below are cancelled during this period.

SIA Flights Operating
(29 Mar to 11 Apr 2020)
South East Asia
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ148 SIN – BWN 29 Mar, 5 Apr 320*
SQ147 BWN – SIN 29 Mar, 5 Apr 320*
Europe
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ308 SIN – LHR 29 Mar – 31 Mar 388
SQ317 LHR – SIN 29 Mar – 31 Mar 388
SQ318 SIN – LHR 29 Mar – 31 Mar 77W
SQ319 LHR – SIN 29 Mar – 31 Mar 388
SQ322 SIN – LHR 29 Mar – 31 Mar 388
SQ321 LHR – SIN 29 Mar – 31 Mar 77W
North Asia
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ850 SIN – CAN 1 Apr, 3 Apr, 6 Apr, 8 Apr, 10 Apr 787
SQ851 CAN – SIN 1 Apr, 3 Apr, 6 Apr, 8 Apr, 10 Apr 787
SQ802
(Cargo only)
SIN – PEK
(Cargo only)
29 Mar – 11 Apr 77W
SQ833 PEK – SIN 29 Mar – 11 Apr 77W
SQ830 SIN – PVG 29 Mar – 11 Apr 77W
SQ833 PVG – SIN 29 Mar – 11 Apr 77W
USA
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ38 SIN – LAX 29 Mar 359 ULR
SQ37 LAX – SIN 30 Mar 359 ULR
West Asia
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ446 SIN – DAC 1 Apr, 2 Apr, 4-9 Apr, 11 Apr 359R
SQ447 DAC – SIN 1 Apr, 2 Apr, 4-9 Apr, 11 Apr 359R
South West Pacific
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
SQ222 SYD – SIN 29 Mar 77W

* A320 services under SQ flight numbers to and from Brunei are operated by SilkAir.

Note that daily SQ802 Singapore – Beijing flights will operate during this period as belly-hold cargo only services (international passenger flights to Beijing are temporarily suspended). SQ807 Beijing – Singapore services will also carry passengers.

Note that once SQ319 arrives back from London on Wednesday 1st April 2020, no further Airbus A380 flights are planned for the remainder of this first phase of flight cancellations. We strongly expect the airline’s entire fleet of 19 Airbus A380s will be stored as part of these cuts, owing to their high capacity and operating costs.

SilkAir Flights Operating
(29 Mar to 11 Apr 2020)
Flight Route Dates Aircraft
MI972 SIN – CKG 6 Apr 738
MI971 CKG – SIN 6 Apr 738
MI482 SIN – MLE 29 Mar, 2-5 Apr, 9-11 Apr 738
MI481 MLE – SIN 29 Mar, 2-5 Apr, 9-11 Apr 738

SilkAir is only operating eight return Malé services during this two-week period using Boeing 737-800 aircraft, in addition to its wet-lease flights to and from Brunei for Singapore Airlines using the Airbus A320, plus a Chongqing flight.

Update 24th March: SilkAir’s Malé and SIA’s Dhaka flights remained bookable at the time of writing, however they were later removed and will not operate during this period. Two return Guangzhou flights will however operate and have been added.

This is only ‘Phase 1’

These cancellations represent SIA’s initial plan to almost completely cut capacity in the short term, removing the vast majority of its flights and grounding nearly its entire fleet for the first two weeks of the northern winter timetable.

The airline has updated its PDF lists of cancelled flights to reflect these cancellations, which you can download here (last updated 23rd March 2020, 4.30pm SGT).

MI and SQ Tails
Many more Singapore Airlines and SilkAir flights are likely to be removed from the schedules from 12th April onwards, though this has yet to be announced

From 12th April 2020 there are no further changes since SIA last updated its cancelled flights list, meaning daily services to a host of cities like Sydney, London and Perth will be reinstated.

That is largely theoretical at the moment. Many further cuts to the schedule for the second two weeks of April are highly likely to come through over the next few days and weeks. In other words, don’t count on anything from that date onwards until much closer to the time.

Summary

An absolutely devastating and almost complete shutdown of Singapore Airlines and SilkAir from midnight on Saturday will see only a handful of flights operate over a two-week period, a cancellation rate of nearly 99% in this first phase of cuts.

Services to Europe and Australia, including staunch SIA routes like Sydney, will have all services withdrawn. Even regionally the cuts are substantial, with Bangkok, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur all gone.

Indeed Shanghai is the only city retaining a daily service throughout this period, with destinations like London only seeing flights through to the end of March before being suspended until 12th April (provisionally).

Shanghai Skyline
Shanghai will be the only city to receive regular daily SIA flights for a two-week period, an almost unbelievable and completely unprecedented situation

The news comes as SIA’s low-cost subsidiary Scoot suspends almost its entire network until 6th April, joining local Qantas spinoff Jetstar Asia with the latter carrier applying a total grounding until 15th April.

As always we’ll update you as soon as any further changes are made, however in the current climate with the coronavirus pandemic and strict border restrictions, expect more of the same cuts for SIA from 12th April onwards.

(Cover Photo: Uskarp / Shutterstock)

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