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Singapore Airlines Fleet & Storage Report: June 2020

Parked Aircraft (SS)

This month Singapore Airlines began to ramp up its passenger flying programme for the first time since early April 2020, while at the same time continuing to increase its cargo-only operations using passenger aircraft, necessitating reactivation of a number of Airbus A350s.

Despite the increased activity, the airline seems to be reducing its use of the less efficient Boeing 777-300 and Boeing 777-300ER aircraft types, though all 15 of its Boeing 787-10s remain in regular operation.

Overall, less than half the fleet remains flying, with the airline keeping 61 Airbus A350s, Boeing 777-300 / -300ERs and Boeing 787-10s active over the last few weeks. Five SIA aircraft types remain firmly out of service, including all Airbus A330s and Airbus A380s.

Headline numbers

Here are the Singapore Airlines passenger fleet totals at 20th June 2020.

CAAS Database: 130
For disposal: -3
In Service: 127
In maintenance / stored: -66
Active: 61

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 (available to the airline) of 127 planes at 20th June 2020, 61 of which are currently active.

Click here to see the official CAAS list of registered aircraft in Singapore at 31st May 2020.

Singapore Airlines Fleet at 20th June 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 or cargo flights (‘Active’).

Type
Registered In Service Active
A330-300
!A330v3.png(full details)
9
8 0
A350-900
!A359.png(full details)
26 26 21
A350-900 Regional
!A359.png(full details)
15
15 12
A350-900 ULR
!A359.png(full details)
7 7 0
A380-800 v1
!A388.png(full details)
6 6 0
A380-800 v2
!A388.png(full details)
6 6 0
A380-800 v3
!A388.png(full details)
7 7 0
777-200
!B772.png(full details)
3 1 0
777-200ER
!B772.png(full details)
4 4 0
777-300
!B773.png(full details)
5 5 2
777-300ER
!B773.png(full details)
27 27 11
787-10
!B78X.png(full details)
15 15 15
Total 130 127 61

Correct at 20th June 2020.

Only five aircraft types remain in service with the airline, as shown in the table below outlining the number in use at each of our monthly ‘snapshots’.

SIA fleet activity timeline
Aircraft Apr 2020 May 2020 Jun 2020
Airbus A350 16 14 21
Airbus A350 Regional 10 9 12
Boeing 777-300 4 3 2
Boeing 777-300ER 18 18 11
Boeing 787-10 15 15 15

All 15 Boeing 787-10s are in consistent use, with Airbus A350s ramping up in June 2020, while the use of Boeing 777-300s and -300ERs is being progressively reduced.

Five aircraft types in the Singapore Airlines fleet remain in storage this month and are not currently being flown at all, which has been the case since early April 2020:

  • Airbus A330
  • Airbus A350 ULR
  • Airbus A380
  • Boeing 777-200
  • Boeing 777-200ER

Here are the differences between the registered and in service fleet totals in the table above:

No longer in service (but still legally registered)

  • A330-300 9V-SSB has already stopped flying for return to lessor. Onward operator is HiFly Malta (with registration 9H-HFF), though it currently remains registered to SIA. Following a test flight on 8th May 2020, the aircraft was flown to Frankfurt on 5th June 2020 as SQ8893, still carrying its Singapore registration.
  • 777-200 9V-SQJ has already stopped flying for disposal.
  • 777-200 9V-SRM has already stopped flying for disposal. Following two test flights on 23rd April 2020 and 12th May 2020, the aircraft was flown to Phoenix Goodyear Airport as N777BC, for storage.

Flight tests

Singapore Airlines has conducted at least six test flights on its (previously stored) Airbus A350s this month, before returning them to passenger and cargo service.

This is presumably a requirement because the aircraft in question had been disused or in storage for an extended period.

A350 Test Flights
Aircraft Ground Time Test Flight Return to Service
9V-SMC 75 days 10 Jun 2020 12 Jun 2020
to KUL
9V-SMF 83 days 16 Jun 2020 17 Jun 2020
to AKL
9V-SMI 71 days 13 Jun 2020 14 Jun 2020
to BLR
9V-SHB 82 days 11 Jun 2020 12 Jun 2020
to MEL
9V-SHC 84 days 12 Jun 2020 15 Jun 2020
to MEL
9V-SHH 82 days 12 Jun 2020 17 Jun 2020
to ICN
A350R Parked (Adelaide Airport)
Airbus A350 Regional 9V-SHB is back in service this month, but only after a one-hour test flight to make sure it was still in ‘top shape’. (Photo: Adelaide Airport)

Other Airbus A350s returned to service in June without making a test flight had been on the ground for between 56 and 66 days, leading us to assume that once an aircraft has been grounded for approximately 70 days or more, a test flight is required.

If that’s the case, expect to see more of these test flights over the coming weeks and months.

SMC Test
9V-SMC’s one-hour test flight on 10th June 2020

Test flights seem to last just over one hour and involve flying the aircraft up to around 35,000ft before returning to Changi.

The flying network

June 2020 saw the first uptick for Singapore Airlines passenger services in over two months, with 10 cities added to the network for a total of 24 routes.

Services were restarted to cities including Amsterdam, Osaka, Barcelona and Melbourne.

This increase means there are now 106 weekly passenger services across the network for the rest of June and through 31st July 2020.

SQ Routemap JunJul APAC
(click to enlarge)
SQ Routemap JunJul EURUS
(click to enlarge)

There are also four SilkAir routes in June and July (an expansion from a single route previously), plus six Scoot routes (an expansion from two routes previously).

Fun fact: For every passenger flight operated by Singapore Airlines at the moment there are three cargo-only flights using passenger aircraft, covering a much wider network of cities.

The storage report: June 2020

Here’s how the fleet activity looked on 18th June 2020, which gives us an indication of which aircraft are stored (last flew > 14 days ago), compared to those in ‘active storage’ (last flew more recently).

Last flew > 60 days ago
Last flew 14-59 days ago
Last flew < 14 days ago

‘Last flew’ dates relate to the aircraft’s last revenue passenger or cargo-only flight.

Airbus A330-300

All the airline’s available A330 aircraft remain stored in Singapore. None have flown for well over two months.

!A330v3 Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-STC SIN 2 Apr 20 78
9V-SSC SIN 27 Mar 20 84
9V-SSD SIN 31 Mar 20 80
9V-SSE SIN 27 Mar 20 84
9V-SSF SIN 13 Mar 20 98
9V-SSG SIN 23 Mar 20 88
9V-SSH SIN 28 Mar 20 83
9V-SSI SIN 25 Nov 19 207

9V-SSI has not made an appearance, even on a test flight, since sustaining tail damage during a landing accident in November 2019.

Airbus A350-900

Seven of SIA’s 3-class (long-haul) Airbus A350s have been activated since our update in May 2020, meaning there are now only five of the type stored in Singapore.

The other 21 aircraft are in ‘active storage’, continuing to fly an average of around 2 flights per week (one return service each) since the start of April 2020.

Aircraft returned to service this month are:

  • 9V-SMC
  • 9V-SMD
  • 9V-SMF
  • 9V-SMG
  • 9V-SMH
  • 9V-SMI
  • 9V-SMP
!A359 Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SMA SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SMB SIN 29 Mar 20 82
9V-SMC SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMD SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SME SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SMF SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SMG SIN 15 Jun 20 4
9V-SMH SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMI SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMJ SIN 15 Jun 20 4
9V-SMK SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SML SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMM SIN 20 Apr 20 60
9V-SMN SIN 24 Apr 20 56
9V-SMO SIN 9 Jun 20 10
9V-SMP SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMQ SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SMR SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SMS SIN 16 Jun 20 3
9V-SMT SIN 16 Jun 20 3
9V-SMU SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SMV SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMW SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SMY SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SMZ SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SJA SIN 18 Jun 20 1

Airbus A350-900 Regional

3 more Airbus A350 Regional models returned to the skies in June:

  • 9V-SHB
  • 9V-SHC
  • 9V-SHH

This leaves only 3 of the type stored in Singapore.

!A359R Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SHA SIN 21 Mar 20 90
9V-SHB SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHC SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHD SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHE SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHF SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SHG SIN 25 Apr 20 55
9V-SHH SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SHI SIN 24 Mar 20 87
9V-SHJ SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SHK SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHL SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHM SIN 12 Jun 20 7
9V-SHN SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SHO SIN 14 Jun 20 5

Airbus A350-900 ULR

All the airline’s 7 Airbus A350-900 ULR aircraft remain stored in Singapore, having not flown at all since March 2020.

!A359 ULR Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SGA SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SGB SIN 22 Mar 20 89
9V-SGC SIN 30 Mar 20 81
9V-SGD SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SGE SIN 24 Mar 20 87
9V-SGF SIN 27 Mar 20 84
9V-SGG SIN 23 Mar 20 88

Non-stop SIA flights to and from Los Angeles continue to be operated by 3-class long-haul Airbus A350-900s, which are coping with the non-stop westbound LAX-SIN flight against the headwinds without issue, probably due to low payload allowing more fuel to be carried.

Airbus A380-800

Four of the airline’s A380 Version 3 aircraft remain in long-term storage at Alice Springs, with the other 15 aircraft stored at Changi.

No revenue flights with the A380s have been flown since March 2020, and they are not being used in the current schedule through 31st July 2020.

!A388 Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SKF SIN 24 Mar 20 87
9V-SKG SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SKH SIN 22 Mar 20 89
9V-SKI SIN 20 Mar 20 91
9V-SKJ SIN 20 Mar 20 91
9V-SKK SIN 21 Mar 20 90
9V-SKL SIN 27 Mar 20 84
9V-SKM SIN 21 Mar 20 90
9V-SKN SIN 15 Oct 19 248
9V-SKP SIN 24 Mar 20 87
9V-SKQ SIN 26 Mar 20 85
9V-SKR SIN 19 Mar 20 92
9V-SKS SIN 12 Mar 20 99
9V-SKT ASP 18 Mar 20 93
9V-SKU SIN 25 Mar 20 86
9V-SKV SIN 28 Mar 20 83
9V-SKW ASP 26 Mar 20 85
9V-SKY ASP 27 Mar 20 84
9V-SKZ ASP 30 Mar 20 81

9V-SKN, in maintenance since October 2019, has now almost certainly had its cabin refit to Version 3 completed. We expect it may make a test flight in the coming weeks.

Boeing 777-200

The single Boeing 777-200 available to SIA, 9V-SQN, is stored at Changi having not flown any passenger flights since mid-March.

The aircraft flew a short test flight on 1st May 2020, but has since flown a longer two-hour test flight on 14th May 2020.

!B772 Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SQN SIN 20 Mar 20 91

It is almost certainly for disposal.

Boeing 777-200ER

3 of the airline’s Boeing 777-200ERs are stored in Alice Springs, likely to be a long-term arrangement, while its sole remaining aircraft (9V-SVM) is still in Changi.

The aircraft last flew passengers in February 2020, but it flew a 2-hour test flight on 8th June 2020. It is likely for disposal.

!B772ER Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SVB ASP 17 Mar 20 94
9V-SVC ASP 19 Mar 20 92
9V-SVE ASP 21 Mar 20 90
9V-SVM SIN 29 Feb 20 111

In its recent analyst briefing, Singapore Airlines effectively wrote off the Boeing 777-200 and -200ERs, with no chance for their return to the active fleet.

Boeing 777-300

9V-SYH has joined 9V-SYF and 9V-SYI in storage at Changi this month, reducing the number of active Boeing 777-300 aircraft from 3 to 2.

The remaining two in in ‘active storage’ are solely flying cargo-only services.

!B773 Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SYF SIN 10 Apr 20 70
9V-SYH SIN 5 May 20 45
9V-SYI SIN 22 Mar 20 89
9V-SYJ SIN 10 Jun 20 9
9V-SYL SIN 17 Jun 20 2

Lately these aircraft are making only occasional flights to Tokyo Narita, Yangon and Surabaya.

Boeing 777-300ER

Singapore Airlines has stopped flying 7 of the 18 Boeing 777-300ERs that were operating in May 2020, meaning only 11 are now active in the last two weeks with 16 stored at Changi, having not flown for over a month in most cases.

These aircraft are now dedicated to cargo-only operation in the current schedule through 31st July 2020, having ceased passenger services earlier in June 2020.

!B773ER Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SWA SIN 29 Mar 20 82
9V-SWB SIN 24 Mar 20 87
9V-SWD SIN 19 Mar 20 92
9V-SWE SIN 2 Jun 20 17
9V-SWF SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SWG SIN 30 May 20 20
9V-SWH SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SWI SIN 6 May 20 44
9V-SWJ SIN 4 May 20 46
9V-SWK SIN 4 May 20 46
9V-SWL SIN 6 May 20 44
9V-SWM SIN 2 May 20 48
9V-SWN SIN 16 Jun 20 3
9V-SWO SIN 2 Apr 20 78
9V-SWP SIN 29 Mar 20 82
9V-SWQ SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SWR SIN 16 Jun 20 3
9V-SWS SIN 5 Apr 20 75
9V-SWT SIN 23 Mar 20 88
9V-SWU SIN 30 Apr 20 50
9V-SWV SIN 12 Jun 20 7
9V-SWW SIN 13 Jun 20 6
9V-SWY SIN 8 Jun 20 11
9V-SWZ SIN 9 Jun 20 10
9V-SNA SIN 8 Jun 20 11
9V-SNB SIN 16 Mar 20 95
9V-SNC SIN 14 Jun 20 5

Looking at the last 7 days in isolation, only 8 Boeing 777-300ERs are more recently active, suggesting additional aircraft are being stored at the time of writing.

Boeing 787-10

All 15 of the airline’s Boeing 787-10s are still flying in active storage mode.

!B78X Label
Aircraft Location Last flew Days ago
9V-SCA SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCB SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SCC SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCD SIN 15 Jun 20 4
9V-SCE SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCF SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCG SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCH SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCI SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCJ SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCK SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCL SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCM SIN 17 Jun 20 2
9V-SCN SIN 18 Jun 20 1
9V-SCO SIN 17 Jun 20 2

This remains by far the busiest fleet in the airline at the moment, with each aircraft flying around six return flights per week on average, close to two-thirds of the type’s usual utilisation.

With the exception of a few routes, Boeing 787s are being used predominantly on cargo-only services. Earlier this week we noted in our analysis that over 86% of SIA Boeing 787 flights (119 out of 138) were cargo-only services.

It’s largely due to services like Shanghai, Sydney and Perth still supporting regular flights but only with belly hold cargo.

Alice Springs storage

Seven Singapore Airlines aircraft are now in long-term storage at Alice Springs airport in Australia, where the hot, dry climate is fare more conducive to preservation.

SQ and MI at ASP (Steve Strike)
SIA Group aircraft in storage at Alice Springs include Airbus A380s and Boeing 777-200ERs. (Photo: Steve Strike)

They are joined by six SilkAir Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, four Scoot Airbus A320s and two NokScoot Boeing 777-200ERs

SIA and Scoot-branded aircraft
stored in Alice Springs
Airline Aircraft Total
Singapore_Airlines Airbus A380 4
Boeing 777-200ER 3
SilkAir Boeing 737 MAX 8 6
Scoot Airbus A320 4
Nok_Scoot Boeing 777-200ER 2

The NokScoot Boeing 777-200ERs were former Singapore Airlines aircraft:

  • HS-XBB (formerly 9V-SRG with SIA then 9V-OTF with Scoot)
  • HS-XBC (formerly 9V-SRH with SIA)

Mainly Miles understands there are slots for more SIA Group aircraft at Alice Springs, with the next batch flying there in late June 2020.

These could potentially include the other three Airbus A380 Version 3 models (9V-SKS, -SKU and -SKV).

It would be logical for Singapore Airlines to preserve all its A380 Version 3 aircraft in Alice Springs, as these are likely the ones they will wish to use long-term when demand recovers.

Asia Pacific Aircraft Storage in Alice Springs is expanding its capacity to house at least 70 aircraft.

Cargo is now big business

Earlier this week we updated our analysis of the airline’s current cargo-only operations, now a significant part of the business for SIA.

“On the cargo front, the significant reduction in belly hold capacity globally has resulted in strong demand for freighter services. We have accordingly focused our efforts on maximising freighter utilisation, and continuing to supplement freighter capacity with the deployment of passenger aircraft operating cargo-only flights to meet the demand from global supply chains.”

Singapore Airlines trading update, 8th May 2020

SQ A350 AKL Cargo (Jordan Tan)
Airbus A350 9V-SMU visiting Auckland for a cargo-only service on 8th June 2020. The airline has since returned to the city with two passenger flights each week. (Photo: Jordan Tan)

As our recent analysis showed, there are now 140 departures per week from Changi flying with passenger aircraft utilising only belly hold cargo (no passengers), more than three times the 46 departures per week flying the very limited passenger operation.

The airline is focusing these flights using passenger aircraft with the highest underfloor cargo capacity – the Boeing 777-300 / -300ER, Boeing 787-10 and Airbus A350 (non-ULR).

SQ Cargo 747 Nose (Singapore Airlines)
Several passenger aircraft are supplementing the airline’s Boeing 747-400 Freighters (pictured) in the effort to satisfy demand for cargo-only operations. (Photo: Singapore Airlines)

That’s in addition to the busy global schedule being flown by the airline’s dedicated Boeing 747-400 Freighter aircraft.

Future aircraft deliveries

The SIA Group still has large order books with Airbus and Boeing for its fleet modernisation and replacement strategy over the next few years. These comprise:

Orders May 2020 v3
(click to enlarge)

Additionally, Scoot is taking 10 Airbus A321neo aircraft through leasing companies over the coming years.

Singapore Airlines is currently in negotiations with Airbus and Boeing to reduce its new aircraft intake, potentially spreading out this large commitment for 140 additional new aircraft across a longer time period.

“We are in negotiations with aircraft manufacturers to adjust our delivery stream for existing aircraft orders, in view of prevailing market conditions, balancing that with our longer term fleet renewal programme”

Singapore Airlines trading update, 8th May 2020

At least 12 Airbus A350s and 3 Boeing 787-10s alone were originally scheduled to join the fleet during this financial year. We wouldn’t be surprised to see those totals more than halved, given what other airlines seem to be negotiating with the manufacturers.

SQ A350 Pushback (Alan Wilson)
The bulk of new aircraft deliveries this year was scheduled to be for the Airbus A350, though far fewer are now expected to arrive than first planned. (Photo: Alan Wilson)

There’s still no official word from the airline on how its capital expenditure on new aircraft purchases has been reduced yet, but we’ll be sure to report once they do so, hopefully with some concrete fleet numbers.

Full details

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.

If the seat types and routes interest you more – see our Seats Guide.

Stay tuned for the next fleet (and aircraft storage) update in July 2020.

(Cover Photo: Shutterstock)

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