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No pressure, BA. Singapore Airlines launches its new First and Business Class.

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So, no pressure Alex.  If you want to make British Airways First Class and Club World a leading global product, Singapore Airlines has just raised the bar on what needs to be done.

Singapore Airlines has announced a new look for its Airbus A380 fleet.  They aren’t wasting any time either, with the new arrangement launching on Singapore to Sydney on 18th December.  London Heathrow is expected to follow next.

The new look will initially debut on five new A380 aircraft currently being delivered.  The existing A380 fleet will be refurbished, but that will not kick off until late 2018 and will take two years.

The big change is in First Class, where the current 12 seats will drop to six.  In an arrangement not entirely unlike the Etihad First Class Apartment I reviewed here, the beds will be facing away from the windows.

There is a special Singapore Airlines website highlighting the changes here.

Take a look at this (click to enlarge):

Singapore Airlines new A380 First Class suite

Apparently the bed can be stowed away when not in use, although I’m not sure what you’d do with the space created.  Without getting too Alan Partridge, you’ll be excited to know that the ‘the chair has a swivel capability of between 135 and 270 degrees’.

Travelling with your partner?  Even better, as you can join two adjacent suites together to make a cosy double bed:

Singapore Airlines new A380 First Class suite

There are two smart bathrooms for the six passengers to share.  Amenity kits will be branded Lalique.

Singapore Airlines new A380 First Class suite

Business Class is also getting a new look.  First Class and Business Class will be on the A380 upper deck, with Premium Economy and Economy on the lower deck.  There will be 78 Business Class seats per aircraft.

Singapore Airlines new A380 Business Class

The layout is 1-2-1.  The innovation is the cocoon-like shell which gives you a higher degree of privacy than usual.

Copying the new Qatar Airways Qsuite reviewed here, you can also join together pairs of middle seats to create a double bed:

Singapore Airlines new A380 Business Class

Of course, with only six First Class suites per plane, the chances of getting one using Singapore Airlines Krisflyer miles are probably slim.

Don’t even bother trying to book using any other Star Alliance mileage currency, as Singapore Airlines usually restricts First Class reward availability to its own members.

I flew the current First Class Suite a few years ago (review here) from New York to Frankfurt.  That was a short overnight flight so I couldn’t make the most of it.  If I try this then I really need to ensure it is a day flight.  One option might be to book something currently showing as the old configuration and hope it gets switched over ……

That said, on the two occasions I have flown the Etihad First Class Apartment I have felt a bit lonely, closed off in a huge suite.  I’m not sure if this will be different.

You can find out more on the Singapore Airlines website here.

Comments (117)

  • Catalan says:

    The new suites look great. But it will be for such a neiche market that there will be slim chances of the like of airline miles savers like us from ever sampling it. In that regard I don’t think the likes of BA, AF, VS, LH etc have anything to worry about. The ME3 though should take note.

    • W says:

      Judging by latest results, looks like they are struggling a bit. Personally I’d rather go through Singapore or HKG (which are proper cities) than the gulf but the ME3 always get a bloated rep imho.

  • W says:

    Done already just before the announcement! Hugely excited though judging by FT, looks unlikely our flight will be changed. C’est la vie.

  • Paul says:

    It look stunning and I love the concept.

    However the SQ forum on Flyertalk has been underwhelmed ( tough gig that lot)

    BA can’t and won’t follow as their market is Tatty … I mean TATL from LHR, bucket and spade from Gatwick and Avios. They don’t face the competitive pressure SQ does as the have fortress Heathrow, some questionable revenue sharing agreements and a frequent flyer programme that has no real competition.
    They can and therefore do offer the absolute minimum on shorthaul, and just about match the best of rest across the pond. They can’t match true premium carriers such as SQ QF CX and from my standpoint won’t do so anytime soon

  • Drav says:

    yep, as already alluded to by a few people, this has no effect on BA because their strategy is so different.

    but anyway this isnt about BA. both the new business and first class products look stunning, with so much space. I cant wait to try them.
    no on board showers is a ridiculous complaint IMO. there are only 2 products in the world that have onboard showers….

  • Alan says:

    Should be potentially bookable on LHR route based on guessing service (OMAAT did this for Sydney one), or by making A380 booking for end of next year as all eventually due to be converted – free changes also allowed on SQ rewards.

  • Ken says:

    Rob, Have a look at the SQ website for the new first class suites. The base of the bed is fairly thin – like a camp-bed but made of a strong material. The mattress is taken off and the bed folds up the side of the wall that comes down to make a double suite.

    The question is where the mattress goes in the bed is in the up-mode. SQ crew working FC will need to be building up their muscles when sorting out the mattresses.

    • Sarah says:

      I got the impression from a You Tube video in the SQ forum that the mattress folded up with the bed

  • pauldb says:

    OT: A few bullets on avios from the BA Capital Markets Day. Slide 112 – I lose track of what;s new!

    • New management team in progress
    • Avios launched with EI and VY programmes
    • Single group points bank by June 2018
    • Customer improvements planned for BA and IB programmes
    • Progressive introduction of Dynamic Pricing from 2018
    • Group loyalty review in progress

    • Genghis says:

      I don’t like the sound of the dynamic pricing and a move to a price redemption model.

      • Mr(s) Entitled says:

        I don’t like the sound of “Customer improvements”. Oxymoron with BA

        • Worzel says:

          Yep, point 4 = devaluation and a few extra seats here and there.

        • Drav says:

          “our members tell us that redemptions are hard to obtain so we have decided to double the number of avios required for all of our routes”. or something along those lines.

  • James says:

    If BA ever get anywhere near this we’ll see Avios redemption costs multiply ten-fold.

    • Penelope Buchannan-Smith says:

      hahahahah that’s bloody true mate

    • Talay says:

      You mean that if BA ever get as far as picking up the secondhand equipment being dumped by SQ to make way for this then Avios redemptions will go up by 10x 🙂

      BA has 8 across in business on LHR-BKK and SQ has 1-2-1 on LHR-SIN 🙁

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