Singapore Airlines has become the latest airline to confirm the return of the mighty Airbus A380. The airline will place the jet on its vaccine travel lane flights to and from Heathrow starting in mid-November. The airline will join Emirates, British Airways, and Qatar Airways, flying the giant of the skies to and from the English capital.
At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, it looked uncertain if any carrier beyond Emirates would bring the gigantic Airbus A380 back into service. Now, it seems as though they can’t be kept on the ground with reactivations revealed by several airlines in the past month.
The A380: It’s a London thing
London Heathrow was the first destination for Emirates, Qatar Airways, and obviously British Airways when the Airbus A380 was returned to the airlines’ schedules. Now it’ll also be the first destination for Singapore Airlines’ A380.
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Singapore Airlines will bring the Airbus A830 back into service, departing Singapore from November 18th and London Heathrow from November 19th. Flights are provisionally scheduled until March 26th (when the IATA summer schedule starts) per the following schedule,
- SQ322 – Singapore (SIN) 23:45 – London Heathrow (LHR) 05:55+1 – 14h10m
- SQ317 – London Heathrow (LHR) 10:55 – Singapore (SIN) 07:50+1 – 12h55m
A vaccine travel lane flight
The flight from London Heathrow Airport to Singapore Changi Airport will be operated under Singapore’s Vaccine Travel Lane (VTL) scheme. Passengers traveling on such flights must be fully vaccinated but can avoid quarantine upon arrival in Singapore. Children aged 12 and under can also travel on these flights.
To travel on VTL flights, passengers must meet a strict list of restrictions. Firstly, they must book a designated VTL flight. Singapore Airlines also operates non-VTL flights from London. They must not have left a VTL country and must get approval before flying. They must also take several PCR tests at their own expense.
Suites are back
The return of the Singapore Airlines’ A380s also means the return of one of the most exclusive commercial aircraft cabins in the sky. The A380s operating to London Heathrow will all have a four-class cabin. Along with the traditional economy, premium economy, business, the first class cabin contains six luxury suites.
Each contains a separate bed and chair, making it stand out from most aircraft suits where a somewhat cramped seat is also the bed. Two pairs of suites can be converted into a double suite containing a double bed.
In addition, there are 343 economy seats and 44 premium economy seats on the main deck. Joining the suites on the upper deck are 78 business class seats. Commenting on the A380’s return to the skies, Singapore Airlines’ UK & Ireland General Manager, Mohamed Rafi Mar, said,
“The return of the Singapore Airlines A380 to the skies is a positive step towards international travel recovery. By bringing the aircraft back to the UK, we are delighted to offer our passengers enhanced travel options between London and Singapore.”
Are you excited to see another Airbus A380 returning to the skies above London? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!