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Record-breaking 9,534 mile flight from Singapore to New York relaunches today

The Independent logo The Independent 11/10/2018
a large passenger jet flying through a blue sky © Provided by Independent Digital News & Media Limited

The title for the world’s longest commercial flight will be reclaimed by Singapore Airlines today as it relaunches its Singapore to New York route.

The 10,400 mile route was was cancelled five years ago due to rising oil costs.

Taking up to 18 hours and 25 minutes to reach New York from Singapore, the three-times-weekly flight overtakes Qatar Airways’ Doha to Auckland route as the world’s longest in terms of distance.

This record-breaking service isn't cheap: a one-way fare from Singapore to New York on next Monday's flight costs £1,600.

Previously, passengers from Singapore had to fly to New York via Frankfurt.

The news comes six months after Qantas launched direct London to Perth flights. The Australian flag carrier said last month that it would offer direct London to Sydney flights by 2022.

So, what can passengers expect from this record-breaking service?

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Route

The Asian carrier, which also plans to introduce non-stop services to Los Angeles in November, will operate an Airbus A350-900 Ultra Long Range aircraft on the route.

There are three routes from Singapore Changi Airport to Newark Liberty Airport, which will be chosen depending on things like wind direction.

The Nopac route (North Pacific) will cross the Pacific Ocean, heading east from Singapore; the Polar routes will cross Russia; and the Atlantic route will only be used for New York-Singapore flights.

Space

With just two passenger classes – business and premium economy – the number of passengers has dropped from 253, the average number onboard the carrier’s existing A350-900s, to just 161.

Business class passengers have 67 flat-bed seats in a 2-4-2 arrangement at the rear of the plane, while the 94 premium economy seats have a pitch – the distance between the back of your seat and the back of the seat in front – of 38 inches and an eight-inch recline.

The high-spec aircraft also has bigger windows, a higher ceiling and a wider body, with less noise in the cabin and LED lighting aimed at reducing jet lag. The A350 is also able to tolerate higher cabin pressure, which means more oxygen and moisture in the air for passengers.

Related: Palaces in the sky: Inside the world's most expensive private jets (Lovemoney)

Crew

There will be two sets of crew onboard, with two captains and two first officers. Upon arrival in New York, pilots are given three nights off before they fly back to Singapore. There are 13 cabin crew onboard each ultra long haul route.

Food

As well as Singapore Airlines' regular meal choices that include rib-eye steak, lobster thermidor or a burger, passengers on this record-breaking route will be served a "wellness" menu developed by Canyon Ranch, a US wellness brand.

According to Canyon Ranch, the menu "aims to counteract minimal body movement and long flight duration". Example dishes include prawn ceviche, organic chicken and courgette pappardelle and lox eggs benedict.

a plate of food: singapore-airlines-food.jpg © Provided by Independent Digital News & Media Limited singapore-airlines-food.jpg

The organic chicken from the Canyon Ranch wellness menu (Singapore Airlines)

Premium economy passengers will be served two meals at fixed times during the flight plus a snack, while business class passengers will be served two meals that they can request to eat whenever and can choose extras from a refreshment menu.

Inflight entertainment

An extra 200 hours of films and TV shows have been added to the system, making 1,200 hours of content available onboard each Singapore to New York flight. Blockbuster films screening this month include Ocean's 8 and Incredibles 2.

WiFi is available onboard for a fee.

The world’s longest flights

  1. Singapore to New York (Singapore Airlines): 18 hours and 25 minutes, 9,534 miles
  2. Auckland to Doha (Qatar): 18 hours and 5 minutes, 9,032 miles
  3. London to Perth (Qantas): 17 hours and 20 minutes, 9,025 miles
  4. Auckland to Dubai (Emirates): 17 hours and 5 minutes, 8,824 miles
  5. Los Angeles to Singapore (United): 17 hours and 50 minutes, 8,770 miles
  6. Houston to Sydney (United): 17 hours and 30 minutes, 8,596 miles
  7. Dallas Ft. Worth to Sydney (Qantas): 17 hours and 15 minutes, 8,578 miles
  8. San Francisco to Singapore (United and Singapore Airlines): 17 hours and 5 minutes (United), 16 hours and 40 minutes (Singapore Airlines), 8,447 miles
  9. Johannesburg to Atlanta (Atlanta): 16 hours and 50 minutes, 8,436 miles
  10. Abu Dhabi to Los Angeles (Etihad): 16 hours and 30 minutes, 8,390 miles
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