Singapore Airlines (SIA) will become the first airline to fly the Airbus A380 to India, when new services to Delhi and Mumbai commence next month.
From 30 May 2014, the airline will replace one of the daily Boeing 777 flights currently operating to the Indian two cities with the A380. The other daily service will continue to be operated by a Boeing 777, meaning that SIA will serve both Delhi and Mumbai with 14 weekly flights.
Earlier this year India lifted a ban on airlines operating A380s to the country, which had been imposed in protect domestic carriers from an influx of foreign capacity. Singapore and India also recently penned a new bilateral agreement, expanding air capacity between the two countries.
“We have been keen to operate the Airbus A380 to India and are glad that the Air Services Agreement between Singapore and India now allows us to do so,” said SIA’ senior vice president of marketing planning, Lee Wen Fen.
“India is a particularly important market for Singapore Airlines and we are very pleased that more of our customers will soon be able to experience the spaciousness and comfort of the world’s largest aircraft,” she added.
The A380 will operate the evening flights to both Mumbai and Delhi. On the Singapore-Mumbai route, SIA’s outbound A380 flight will depart Changi Airport daily at 1915, while the return service will leave Mumbai at 0025. On the Delhi route, the A380 will leave Singapore at 1725 and the return leg will depart the Indian capital at 2205.
SIA is currently the world’s second biggest A380 operator, with 19 aircraft in service and outstanding orders for a further five. It operates the aircraft with 471 seats in three classes, including 12 seats in first class, 60 in business class and 399 in economy.
Delhi and Mumbai join the airline’s existing network of A380 destinations, which currently includes Sydney, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New York, Paris, Shanghai, Tokyo and Zurich.
Lufthansa has also said it plans to deploy its A380s to India in the near future.