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SIA to restart flights to New York amid ‘early signs of optimism’ in air travel recovery

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SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) said on Tuesday (Oct 20) it will resume its flights to New York amid "early signs of optimism" of a recovery in air travel.

The nonstop thrice-weekly flights between Changi Airport and New York's John F Kennedy (JFK) airport will start on Nov 9, the airline said in a news release.

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“Operating to JFK International Airport would allow Singapore Airlines to better accommodate a mix of passenger and cargo traffic on its services to New York in the current operating climate,” SIA said.

The flights will also cater to the growing number of transfer passengers who can now transit via Changi Airport, it added.

READ: SIA Group passenger carriage down 98.1% in September amid ‘soft’ demand for air travel

SIA said it anticipates significant cargo demand from a range of industries based in the New York metro area, including pharmaceuticals, e-commerce and technology firms.

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"The new service will provide the only non-stop air cargo link from the US Northeast to Singapore, which serves as a regional distribution hub for many major US-based companies," it said.

SIA currently operates nonstop services to Los Angeles. The airline said it will continue to review its operations to the United States, and "assess the growing demand for air travel amid the ongoing recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic", before deciding to reinstate services to other points in the US.

The Big Read: Floored by COVID-19, can SIA soar again? Fate of Singapore’s aviation hub rests on it

"EARLY SIGNS OF OPTIMISM"

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The Singapore-New York flights are an important step in rebuilding SIA's global network, said Mr Lee Lik Hsin, the airline's executive vice-president for commercial.

“Nonstop ultra-long services are the bedrock of our services to the key US market. We will continue to ramp up existing services and reinstate other points as the demand for both passenger and cargo services return,” he said.

There were also some “early signs of optimism about a recovery in air travel”, Mr Lee said. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the importance of air travel remains unchanged and has a direct impact on economic growth and job creation, he added.

“That gives us confidence about the medium to long-term prospects for the industry."

Commentary: We must save Singapore Airlines from this existential crisis

The flight from Singapore to New York, operated under SQ24, will take 18 hours and five minutesRead More – Source

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