Published: Sun, October 14, 2018
Business | By Eloise Houston

World’s longest non-stop flight arrives in USA from Singapore

World’s longest non-stop flight arrives in USA from Singapore

Perhaps your first thought on hearing about this flight is how disgusting it would be to be stuck in an economy seat for 18 or 19 hours.

Yes, you heard it right: Passengers successfully boarded a marathon 19-hour Singapore Airlines flight on October 11, amidst the race between airlines for providing the longest flight inter-continentally.

Shortly before take-off the airline posted: 'Counting down to the launch of our non-stop flight to NY on the Airbus A350 Ultra Long Range!'

A spokeswoman for Singapore Airlines said that Flight SQ22 departed at approximately 11:35pm with 150 passengers and 17 crew aboard. In addition to the special "wellness" menu, there will be 1,200 hours of audio-visual entertainment to choose from to make the journey pleasing. "I have a lot of notes to read, hopefully I can sleep well".

Singapore Airlines will be flying its newest plane, the Airbus A350-900 Ultra Long Range (ULR), non-stop from Singapore to NY in a record 19 hours, starting today.

The Singapore-Newark route will top Qatar Airways' Doha-Auckland route as the world's longest, but Australia's Qantas Airways is considering the introduction of an even longer 20-hour Sydney-London flight from 2022. I flew here via Frankfurt and am flying back on this non-stop service.

The aircraft is designed with higher ceilings, larger windows and an extra wide body to help reduce jetlag and ensure that customers feel well rested and relaxed upon arrival.

"The biggest concern is Deep Vein Thrombosis from a combination of sitting for too long and also from dehydration", Gail Cross, an associate consultant at the National University Hospital in Singapore.

Singapore Airlines flew Newark-Singapore until 2013 using an all-business-class Airbus A340-500.

The launch of the Singapore-Newark service signifies a new era of growth for the important U.S. market, SIA's airline's senior vice-president for sales and marketing Campbell Wilson said.

According to the airline, the flight crew included two first officers and a 13-strong cabin contingent.

"They are hoping to capitalize and exploit a very niche market", he said.

"Ultra-long-haul services comprise an important component of that strategy", an airline spokesman told AFP. With 67 flat-bed seats in a 1-2-1 configuration for business class and 94 premium economy places in a mostly 2-4-2 arrangement at the rear.While the premium-economy seats offer an eight-inch recline, the pitch - the distance between yours and the one in front is a standard 38 inches, 4 inches less than on some of Japan Airlines' long-haul flights. The first aircraft was delivered in September, and six more are due to arrive before the end of the year.

"What the new aircraft offers us, and traveling public, is a new set of options for saving time and traveling in greater comfort", said Boyd.

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