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.
Here are the Singapore Airlines passenger fleet totals at 20th June 2020.
|In maintenance / stored:||-66|
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’).
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 Regional||10||9||12|
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.
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
|9V-SMF||83 days||16 Jun 2020||17 Jun 2020
|9V-SMI||71 days||13 Jun 2020||14 Jun 2020
|9V-SHB||82 days||11 Jun 2020||12 Jun 2020
|9V-SHC||84 days||12 Jun 2020||15 Jun 2020
|9V-SHH||82 days||12 Jun 2020||17 Jun 2020
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.
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.