United to Operate San Francisco – Singapore Non-Stop, Longest US Carrier Route

The rumor has proved accurate, United Airlines has announced non-stop service from San Francisco (SFO) to Singapore (SIN). The route will be operated by a B787-9 Dreamliner beginning June 1st and join SFO’s other new routes launching this summer including Auckland (AKL), Tel Aviv (TLV), and Xi’an (XIY).

At a distance of 8,446 miles and 16 hours and 20 minutes, this will be the longest route operated by a US Carrier. It will also be the only non-stop US-Singapore route until Singapore resumes New York and LA flights in 2018 (see – Breaking: Singapore to Restore Non-Stop Flights to NYC & LAX! Regain Longest Flight Title).

UA001 SFO2325 – 0645+2SIN 789 D
UA002 SIN0845 – 0915SFO 789 D (eff 03JUN16)

The flight essentially marks the end of United’s Tokyo (NRT) hub.  With the SFO-SIN announcement came news that United will suspend their NRT-SIN flight. That will leave only a 738 flight to Seoul (ICN) from Tokyo. However, UA will maintain their Hong Kong (HKG) to Singapore flight to facilitate Newark (EWR) and Chicago (ORD) connections which are still shorter via HKG.

With the launch of nonstop San Francisco – Singapore service, United will terminate service between Singapore and Tokyo/Narita effective June 2, 2016 (eastbound).  However, United customers in Singapore may continue to choose to fly to Tokyo/Narita by using daily flights on ANA, United’s trans-Pacific joint venture partner, and to make connections at Narita to many cities in the U.S. on multiple flights operated both by United and ANA. United will maintain its daily service between Singapore and Hong Kong.

United’s corporate customer announcement:

America’s longest flight is a boon to Asia business travelers

8,446 miles. 16 hours, 20 minutes.

Our newly announced daily nonstop San Francisco-Singapore route is the only nonstop route between Singapore and the U.S. It’s the longest scheduled flight by distance operated by any U.S. carrier. And it will be operated with the world’s most advanced passenger airplane, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.

But what’s most important, and the reason we launched this flight, is that it enables us to better meet the needs of our business travelers who fly to and from Southeast Asia regularly.

“We’re improving the way we serve the Singapore market to better benefit our customers – and in the process of determining how to best do that, we designed a schedule that directly took into account their needs,” said Andy Buchanan, United’s managing director of international planning. “We listened to the overwhelming feedback favoring an overnight flight to Singapore and a later departure time out of Singapore.”

Previously, customers left the U.S. on a mid-day flight and connected in Tokyo or Hong Kong to connect to Singapore, arriving around midnight. The return services departed Singapore early in the morning. With our new nonstop San Francisco-Singapore service, customers will depart San Francisco in the evening – allowing them to have a full business day in the U.S. – and arrive in Singapore in the morning. The return flight will depart Singapore mid-morning and arrive in San Francisco the same day at 9:15 a.m.

These new nonstop flights will save customers up to four hours’ journey time each way, as compared with the current United one-stop service and competitors’ schedules.

The new route also provides convenient one-stop connections for those traveling from 26 U.S. cities that previously required two stops. For example, customers in Cleveland will no longer need to fly Cleveland-Chicago-Tokyo-Singapore; they will fly Cleveland-San Francisco-Singapore – saving them up to six hours of travel time.

In addition to the route’s convenient schedule, we’ll operate the flight with the aircraft our customers have told us they most prefer – the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

With all of its comfort-inducing features, the 787 is specifically designed to handle a long route such as San Francisco-Singapore: It has enhanced LED lighting, which can gently simulate a full flying day for longer flights, gradually changing through a spectrum of lighting from day into night; larger windows that are dimmable; the biggest overhead bins in the industry, offering plenty of space for carry-on baggage; cleaner cabin air than any other commercial airplane due to an advanced ventilation system that removes odor while improving humidity; Smoother Ride Technology that leads to an eightfold reduction in the number of passengers who experience motion sickness; and an all-composite fuselage that allows it to be pressurized to a lower cabin pressure, which helps customers experience fewer headaches and less dizziness, while feeling more refreshed after the flight.

“Our business and leisure passengers will arrive less fatigued, and most experience a significant reduction in jet lag – a very important attribute to starting the day in Singapore without the usual effects of long-haul flight,” said Ron Baur, United’s VP of fleet. “With more 787s and more flights between North America and Asia than any other U.S. airline, United is poised to offer this new San Francisco-Singapore route with the highest level of comfort and convenience possible.”

United Airlines logo. (PRNewsFoto/United Airlines)

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