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In a true sign of the return to travel, Singapore Airlines is bringing its best first-class product on its biggest plane to the US. Beginning in March 2022, Singapore Airlines will relaunch its double-decker Airbus A380 on its route from New York (JFK) to Singapore (SIN), which stops in Frankfurt (FRA) en route.
The move marks the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic that Singapore will fly its A380 aircraft to the US. In addition, the relaunch of the A380 will mark the first time ever that Singapore’s famed new Suites first class will operate to the US.
Prior to the start of the pandemic, Singapore operated its A380 to the US, but never with the new Suites first class. So, what’s so special about the new A380 Suites? It’s widely considered to be one of the best first-class seats in the world.
Inside each of the six suites in the first-class cabin, flyers will find both a swivel seat and a bed. If you’re traveling with someone, you can book a Double Suite, which allows you to connect the beds in neighboring suites to form a double bed. Yes, a double bed in the sky.
Each of the suites also features a sliding door for privacy, a 32-inch HD touchscreen in-flight entertainment system and some of the best onboard catering you’ll find on any flight. In fact, Singapore Airlines’ famed dish on its flights in first class is a lobster thermidor.
Ultimately, the new Singapore Suites on the A380 is one of the best ways to fly. And, with the product making its debut in the US market beginning March 27, 2022, there’s plenty of reason to get excited.
Additionally, with the introduction of the new A380 Suites to the US, flyers will also have access to the airline’s new and improved business-class cabin. Seats in the business-class cabin can also be combined to form a double bed if you’re traveling with a partner, and each of the seats has direct aisle access.
“After nearly two years of restrictions, we are seeing tremendous demand for international travel, and that includes premium cabins,” said Joey Seow, Regional VP – Americas for Singapore Airlines.
It’s actually possible to use Singapore Airlines miles — which are known as KrisFlyer miles — to secure a seat in Singapore Suites or business class for almost free. You’ll just have to pay the taxes and fees on the ticket, which are usually minimal.
But perhaps you’ve never flown Singapore Airlines, so you don’t have any Singapore Airlines miles? Well, you’re in luck, because there are easy ways to get Singapore Airlines miles through a number of US credit cards, even if you’ve never been on a Singapore Airlines plane. That’s because Singapore Airlines is a partner of all of the major credit card transferable points programs. In other words, you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One miles and Citi ThankYou Rewards to Singapore Airlines.
For example, if you’ve got Chase Ultimate Rewards points earned from a credit card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, you can transfer them at a one-to-one rate to Singapore Airlines, meaning 1,000 Chase points is equal to 1,000 Singapore Airlines miles. Currently, the Sapphire Preferred card comes with a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first three months after opening the account, putting you well on your way toward grabbing a Suites seat.
Similarly, if you’ve got a slew of Capital One miles from the sign-up bonus on the new Capital One Venture X card, those miles also transfer to Singapore Airlines at a one-to-one rate. So, the current 100,000-mile sign-up bonus on that card could get you a one-way flight from New York to Europe in Singapore Airlines Suites for just 86,000 miles and $5.60 in taxes and fees, provided you can find award availability. More on that in a moment.
Just keep in mind that points don’t typically transfer instantly to Singapore Airlines — it can take up to 48 hours in some cases. So you’ll want to plan ahead if you’re thinking of transferring points or miles into your Singapore KrisFlyer account.
How to book Singapore Suites using points and miles
Before starting your search to redeem miles for this first-class experience, you’ll want to make sure that you have a Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer frequent flyer account. Memberships are free and require just your basic personal information.
After you’ve got a membership, you can begin looking at how you want to fly. To search for award availability, you’ll want to head to Singapore’s website, click “Redeem flights” on the home page and enter your account credentials. Set your departure airport as New York (JFK) and your destination as either Singapore (SIN) if you want to travel the full distance of the flight, or Frankfurt (FRA) if you want to hop off the plane in Europe instead.
Ensure that you select the class as “First/Suites” and then your date — or dates — of travel. Finally, select “Search” to see if and when there’s award availability.
For a one-way flight from New York to Frankfurt, you can expect to pay 86,000 miles for a seat in Suites at the lowest “Saver” level, but only when Singapore has released award space at that level for the day you want to travel. Otherwise, you’ll need to book at the higher “Advantage” level, which costs 140,000 miles. Of course, you’ll need more if you plan on traveling all the way to Singapore versus stopping in Frankfurt.
In our searches, we didn’t find any Saver award availability for Suites throughout 2022, but it’s possible that some will become available down the line. In the meantime, we did find many days with Advantage availability, as well as the ability to waitlist for a lower-priced Saver award.
As you may guess, waitlisting a Saver award means you’ll be able to lock in the lower mileage cost, but you’re not actually confirmed on the flight. You’ll find out at least two weeks before your scheduled departure date if your waitlist booking clears or not. If you’ve got flexible travel plans, this could be a good option. However, if you’ve got concrete plans, you may not want to risk missing your flight if the waitlist booking doesn’t clear.
In the below example, you’ll see the pricing available on this one-way flight from New York to Frankfurt. At the Saver level, you’ll have to pay just 86,000 Singapore Airlines miles and $5.60 in taxes in fees. As a point of comparison, this same flight on the same date currently costs $8,616 if you buy it with cash.
If you want to travel all the way to Singapore from New York, you’ll have to stop for nearly two hours in Frankfurt, but will then continue on the same plane to Singapore. Similar to our searches from JFK to Frankfurt, we didn’t find any Saver-level availability for JFK to Singapore, but the option to waitlist was available on a number of days.
A one-way flight from New York to Singapore costs 132,000 miles at the Saver level or 237,000 miles at the Advantage level. In terms of taxes and fees, you can expect to pay just $30.40 for this flight. The normal cash price of this one-way flight from NYC to Singapore in Singapore Suites is currently $10,460, representing terrific value for your points and miles for an experience that might otherwise be unattainable.
If you’re looking at redeeming miles to fly in business class on the A380, it’ll cost you 99,000 miles at the Saver level (140,000 at the Advantage level) all the way to Singapore, or 72,000 miles at the Saver level (85,000 at the Advantage level) to Frankfurt. In our searches, we found more award availability in the business-class cabin. So if you can’t find any dates with Suites availability, consider booking in business for a still-terrific premium flying experience.
Ultimately, the reintroduction of the A380 on flights to the US is a promising sign from Singapore Airlines for the return of travel and pent-up demand. And, better yet, one of the world’s best first-class products is making its way stateside for the first time ever. If you’ve got the chance, this is a great way to put your travel rewards to use.
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