SIA To Operate Special Farewell Flights To Commemorate B747 Retirement
17 February 2012 - Singapore Airlines will operate special commemorative flights between Singapore and Hong Kong on 6 April 2012 to mark the retirement of the Boeing 747 after nearly four decades of service.
Flight SQ747 from Singapore to Hong Kong and SQ748 from Hong Kong to Singapore will be operated with the B747-400, replacing existing flights SQ860 and SQ863, which are normally operated with Airbus A330-300s.
The special flights, which will be SIA’s last commercial passenger services with the B747, are now open for sale. In addition to more than 300 commercial passengers, on board will be employees who have worked on the aircraft throughout its storied history, as well as a group of underprivileged children and media.
“Saying farewell to the Queen of the Skies will not be easy. Over more than 38 years, the B747 has played an important role in helping SIA become the global airline that it is today. It enabled us to extend our network around the world and introduce innovative new products and services,” said SIA CEO, Mr Goh Choon Phong.
“These flights will mark the end of an era, but the spirit of innovation will live on at Singapore Airlines. With every new generation of aircraft that we introduce, we will continue to set new benchmarks in the premium air travel segment with industry leading product offerings for our customers.”
The commemorative flights will have an extended flying time of one hour to enable those on board to be treated to a unique inflight experience. This will include specially crafted meal services and inflight entertainment. Customers will also receive limited edition B747 memorabilia.
First Class customers will be provided an additional experience - an exclusive tour of the Airline’s cabin crew training facilities and B747-400 flight simulator in Singapore.
A dedicated website has been set up to commemorate the jumbo’s retirement, at www.SIAjourneys.com, featuring milestones and records set over the years, historical photographs and video footage, including interviews with staff and customers. Information about fares for flights SQ747 and SQ748 can also be found on the website.
Flight times will be as follows:
|SQ747 / 6 April||SQ748 / 6 April|
|SINGAPORE||0830 HRS||HONG KONG||1445 HRS|
|HONG KONG||1315 HRS||SINGAPORE||1930 HRS|
Singapore Airlines took delivery of its first B747-200 in 1973. By 2003 the SIA Group had a record 51 B747s, comprising 39 B747-400s and 12 B747-400 Freighters. Three B747-400 passenger aircraft remain in service today, while SIA
Cargo continues to operate 13 B747-400 Freighters.
SIA B747 Milestones
|3 Sep 1973||Delivery of first two B747-200s|
|1 Oct 1973||First B747-200 flight from Singapore to Tokyo via Hong Kong and Taipei|
|28 Apr 1983||Delivery of first B747-300, nicknamed ‘Big Top’|
|29 Oct 1984||First non-stop flight from London to Singapore|
|18 Mar 1989||Delivery of first B747-400, known as ‘MEGATOP 747’|
|27 Mar 1989||First airline to operate commercial flight across Pacific Ocean with MEGATOP 747|
|29 May 1989||First MEGATOP 747 non-stop Singapore-London flights|
|15 Apr 1992||Personal Cinema Systems introduced on long-haul flights, commencing with MEGATOP 747 on Singapore-Tokyo route|
|14 Oct 1993||Delivery of Boeing’s 1,000th B747; SIA’s 21st MEGATOP 747|
|29 Jan 1994||Became world’s largest B747-400 operator with 23rd jumbo|
|21 Apr 1995||Unveiled world’s most advanced inflight entertainment system, KrisWorld, on two MEGATOP 747s|
|30 Mar 1998||Introduced fully-reclining seats, also known as SkySuites, in First Class cabins of MEGATOP 747s|
|17 Aug 2001||Unveiled SpaceBed, biggest Business Class bed in the sky, on MEGATOP 747|
|31 Mar 2003||B747 fleet grows to a record 51 aircraft, comprising 39 B747-400 passenger aircraft and 12 B747-400 Freighters|
|25 Mar 2012||SIA’s last regular commercial B747-400 flight to be operated from Melbourne to Singapore|
|6 April 2012||Commemorative flights SQ747 and SQ748 to mark retirement of B747 from passenger fleet after more than 38 years|