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SIA to increase flights to Japan, India; passenger capacity to reach 81% of pre-pandemic levels by end-2022

SIA to increase flights to Japan, India; passenger capacity to reach 81% of pre-pandemic levels by end-2022

File photo of a Singapore Airlines plane. (Photo: iStock/olyniteowl)

SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) will operate more flights to Japan and India in the coming months amid strong demand for air travel.

It will also add more flights to Los Angeles and Paris by December 2022 and continue with its direct services to Vancouver.

Together with adjustments to the Scoot network, SIA Group expects passenger capacity to reach about 81 per cent of pre-pandemic levels by December.

In a media release on Tuesday (Jul 5), SIA said it will operate daily services to Tokyo's Haneda Airport (SQ634) and Narita Airport (SQ638) from Jul 24.

"Together with the daily SQ12 service from Singapore to Los Angeles via Tokyo (Narita), SIA will operate three daily services into Japan's capital, up from 14 flights per week," it added.

From Oct 30, the daily SQ636 service to Haneda Airport will be reinstated, bringing the number of SIA flights to Tokyo to 28 weekly.

A second daily flight to Osaka will also be reinstated on Oct 30, while flights to Fukuoka will increase to three per week.

"With the thrice-weekly service to Nagoya, SIA will operate 62 per cent of its pre-COVID operating capacity to Japan by Oct 30, 2022," the company said.

Japan reopened its borders to some foreign tourists in June, including those from Singapore. But they must be on package tours and be chaperoned throughout their stay.

For flights to India, SIA will progressively operate 17 weekly services to Chennai from September, up from the current 10 weekly flights.

It will also increase services to Kochi to 14 times weekly. There will be 16 flights weekly to Bengaluru.

This will almost fully restore SIA's operating capacity to India to pre-pandemic levels by Oct 30.

SIA added that the SQ36 flight to Los Angeles will switch from being a thrice-weekly service to a daily one from Nov 30, putting the number of weekly services to Los Angeles to 21, up from 17.

From December, the airline will also increase the frequency of SQ332 to Paris to operate five times a week, complementing the current daily service (SQ336) to the French capital. With this, Paris will be served with 12 weekly flights.

SIA will also continue its thrice-weekly direct service to Vancouver in the northern winter.

"Japan is a key market for the SIA Group, and we will work closely with our partners to meet the demand for air travel as entry requirements gradually ease. Robust demand for travel to and from India, to points across the Group network, support an increase in our services in this important market," said SIA’s senior vice president for marketing planning JoAnn Tan.

"By stepping up services into the Northern Winter season, we give our customers even more flight options as they make their travel plans over the next few months."

SIA's passenger capacity hit 61 per cent of pre-pandemic levels in May, achieving the target it set out in April.

More than 1.7 million passengers flew on SIA and Scoot in May, a 14-fold increase from a year ago.

Source: CNA/nh(gs)