Singapore Airlines cuts almost all flights amid travel restrictions

With travellers banned from visiting Singapore and transiting through it, Singapore Airlines pares its network to the bone.

By Chris Chamberlin , March 23 2020
Singapore Airlines cuts almost all flights amid travel restrictions

Singapore Airlines will almost grind its international flight network to a halt in light of the Singaporean Government’s ban on visitors and transit travellers, and similar bans in many countries to which it flies.

Between them, Singapore Airlines and SilkAir will ground 138 aircraft, out of a total fleet of 147 jets – leaving just nine aircraft flying – with low-cost subsidiary Scoot parking 47 of its 49 planes.

Until at least the end of April 2020 there will be flights to just five destinations – Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Jakarta and Brunei – representing a staggering 96% capacity reduction.

"The resultant collapse in the demand for air travel has led to a significant decline in SIA’s passenger revenues," the airline said in a statement.

"It is unclear when the SIA Group can begin to resume normal services, given the uncertainty as to when the stringent border controls will be lifted."

Many of Singapore Airlines' flights to Australia and other destinations were already slated to be wound back or cancelled from late March until at least the end of April, with these changes serving as a further reduction.

As Singapore is a city-state with no commercial domestic flights, the impacts of global travel restrictions on the airline will be significant.

In February 2020, Singapore Airlines and SilkAir ran up to 155 return flights per week between Australia and Singapore: plus, five return flights per week between Melbourne and Wellington.

Singapore Airlines cancellations: what to do if you're affected

Alternative travel options can be clarified once Singapore Airlines reveals which flights have been cancelled and which remain, with a standing policy that  "affected customers will be notified and re-accommodated onto other flights."

The airlines' current waiver policy is to allow tickets to become open-dated, to change flights without fees, or retain the value of the ticket for future travel before 31 March 2021.

For urgent assistance within 72 hours of your flight, contact the reservations team at 13 10 11 from Australia or +65 6223 8888 from overseas if you booked directly with Singapore Airlines. If you booked through a travel agency, contact that agency.

If your travel isn't as imminent, then you can contact the team through an online form. As a last resort, if you can't get in touch and miss your flight departing between 16 to 31 March 2020, all no-show fees will be waived when you rebook or change your ticket to open-dated.

You can keep track of Singapore Airlines' latest advisories, including new flight cancellations and ticket waiver policies, on its website.

Also read: Singapore now bans transit passengers, visitors

Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, a theatre ticket and a glass of wine!


23 Mar 2020

Total posts 1

Hi, i have been in Perth since 7th January, this was an extended holiday visiting my daughter and grandson. I am due to fly home on the 3rd April. ETA visa only allows 93 days stay at any time,

I have been trying for over a week to speak to someone at Singapore airlines but have had no response from any of the emails or inquiry forms, and no one picks up the phones. How the hell are we meant to get home. I have family in the UK

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 744

You could always trip out to the airport and talk to their ticketing people. However they may or may not be there. It's an option.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

05 Sep 2013

Total posts 29

See UK Civil Aviation Authority advice for UK citizens currently abroad here:

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

11 Dec 2017

Total posts 46

QF is showing an economy Perth departure on 25 March, and a business departure a few days later - don't know how long it'll last!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

15 Aug 2017

Total posts 91

Yes just take the Qantas PER-LHR direct and get the refund later if you do really need to get back. Hope you used travel insurance.

27 Aug 2018

Total posts 5

How does this waiver/open ended ticket apply to awards tickets? Ideally i would just like my points put back into my account but when i go to cancel it says there is a 218SGD cancellation fee as per normal.

24 Mar 2020

Total posts 1

Hi , I am on confirmed tickets transit travelling to Auckland NZ on 29th match from Singapore . Am I allowed ? Flight is Air New Zealand

24 Mar 2020

Total posts 1

Hi, i have been booked on a return flight from adelaide to singapore since may 2019 (3 adults) to travel march 18th and return april. We were to go on a cruise from singapore but that was cancelled and we have received the full refund from princess cruises. I rang the airline to cancel flights and rebook next year so they changed my tickets to open tickets. I also paid for 3 x seating preferences each way. These tickets will expire in may 2020. I want to rebook now but have tried phoning them and have been on hold for more than an hour each time. I have sent them an email through their online form. When i go online to manage booking and enter my booking ref, which starts with S2. It stases no booking found. When i enter ticket number which starts with 618 it says no booking found. What else can i do? Thanks.

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