The world’s longest flight returns – and it’s now longer

Singapore Airlines is returning to the Big Apple next month after suspending its service from the city-state on March 23

Singapore Airlines is expected to resume its nonstop flights to New York on November 9, but instead of using Newark, the 18-hour service will land at JFK.

According to the carrier, the move will allow it to better accommodate a mix of passenger and cargo traffic on its services to the city. It will also make the record-breaking connection – which previously spanned a great circle distance of 9,534 miles – just under three miles longer.

The carrier has rostered an A350-900ULR this time setup in a three-class configuration. Aviation Image Network/Simon Gregory

The outbound connection – SQ24 – will operate thrice-weekly from Singapore/Changi to New York/JFK and is expected to last 18 hrs 5mins. The return sector, SQ23, will also be a three-times-weekly service lasting 18 hrs 40mins.

The operator has rostered an Airbus A350-900ULR for the route, but instead of a two-class premium economy and business class configuration, Singapore Airlines has this time chosen to offer a three-class layout with 42 business, 24 premium economy and 187 economy class seats.

The New York route is the carrier's second in the US, after Los Angeles, to be resumed since the shutdown caused by the pandemic. Aviation Image Network/Simon Gregory

Lee Lik Hsin, executive vice president commercial for Singapore Airlines, said: “Operating these flights between Singapore and New York’s JFK International Airport represent an important step in the rebuilding of our global network. Non-stop ultra-long [connections] are the bedrock of our services to the key US market. We will continue to ramp up existing [links] and reinstate other points as the demand for both passenger and cargo services return.”

While passenger demand will likely remain suppressed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the firm anticipates a significant cargo requirement from the range of industries based in the New York metro area, including pharmaceuticals, e-commerce, and technology firms.

The New York service is the carrier’s second route to the US since the beginning of the crisis as it also operates a nonstop link between Singapore and Los Angeles.