Singapore Airlines has done something remarkable with an A380 – put it on a one hour flight.
The A380 is the largest passenger airline in the world; a superjumbo made for long haul flying. The A380 is famous for two things: for being huge, and being quiet (for those inside the cabin).
Next month, however, Singapore Airlines is going to put an A380 on a short-haul flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur. This flight lasts just 60 minutes, and is “believed to be the shortest A380 passenger flight currently in service,” CNN reports.
Emirates previously operated the shortest A380 flight between Dubai and Muscat (coming in at an hour 15 minutes), a route which was suspended due to the pandemic.
CNN reports that the A380 will fly on an “ad hoc basis” between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur (on the morning flight route) three times a week from November the 4th to December the 2nd, 2021. From November the 5th to December the 3rd, an A380 will be on the evening flight route four times weekly.
A Singapore Airlines’ spokesperson told CNN the A380 had been scheduled “for operational requirements.”
The A380 is also coming back for certain flights from Singpore to London from mid November – a route which is part of Singapore’s vaccinated travel lane network.
Who knows, maybe the A380 isn’t dead after all?
That being said, the much loved jet has certainly been on the decline lately, as it needs booming passenger numbers to make sense to run. Before the pandemic there were 14 airlines operating A380s.
Now there are a lot fewer in the sky. There was a point in 2020 where Air France had retired its 10 A380s, Lufthansa had retired its 14 A380s (with the option to reactivate them), Qatar Airways’ CEO had said the airline’s 10 A380s won’t fly for at least a couple more years, Etihad’s CEO had said the jury was “still out” on the airline’s 10 A380s ever flying again and Qantas had said its 12 A380s wouldn’t fly for at least several years.
Now, in October 2021, Lufthansa might be bringing its A380s back to Munich for summer 2022 (though this news remains speculative), 5 of Qatar Airways’ A380s set to come back in November (maybe even 10, depending on demand), Etihad is taking a “never say never” (but probably not) approach to the superjumbo (Simple Flying reports) and Qantas has been tipped by Australian Aviation to be returning 5 of its 12 Airbus A380s “ahead of schedule.”