Today, 30 May 2017, it was finally time for Singapore Airlines to inaugurate its latest route from Stockholm to Singapore, five months after it was announced. The route will initially be operated five times per week with a stop at Moscow Domodedovo airport in both directions.
The new route
The route is operated using an Airbus A350 with 42 seats in Business Class, 24 seats in Premium Economy and 187 seats in Economy Class. There is no first class on this route.
The outbound flight SQ 362 departs Singapore at 00.20 and arrives in Moscow at 06.00. After 75 minutes on the ground it continues at 07.15, arriving in Stockholm at 08.25.
The return flight SQ 361 leaves Stockholm at 10.25, arriving in Moscow at 13.30. After 90 minutes at Moscow Domodedovo the flight continues at 15.00 and arrives in Singapore the following morning at 06.15.
The route is operates five times a week – on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
All passengers need to disembark in Moscow during both the outbound and the inbound flights, however there is a lounge to use for premium passengers during the layover at the airport.
Singapore Airlines also has traffic rights between Stockholm and Moscow, so it is possible to fly only that part of the route or use it to connect to or from another flight in Stockholm or Moscow.
Inauguration day at Stockholm Arlanda Airport
The inaugural events started already at 7 am in SkyCity at Arlanda airport. The cabin crew who were to work on the inaugural flight arrived at the airport more than four hours before the flight to participate in the inauguration ceremonies.
Several representatives from Singapore Airlines were also present at the airport, including the Scandinavian sales team of course.
There are also several banners in both SkyCity and terminal 5, the terminal used by Singapore Airlines, announcing the new route, an there is even a welcome message from Swedavia, the airport operator. It is not often new longhaul routes are opened at the airport so this is definitely a big day for the airport.
And in the departure hall at terminal 5 the check-in staff are busy preparing the check-in for the first ever Singapore Airlines departure to Singapore. A big day also for the airport staff, who are visibly excited.
There are balloons in the Swedish yellow and blue colours and even a blue carpet in front of the business class check-in desks.
The ground operations for Singapore Airlines seem to be handled by Aviator but there are also staff at check-in wearing the beige Singapore Airlines ground staff uniform, which you see frequently at Changi airport.
There are two desks open for Business Class passengers and Star Alliance Gold, one desk for Premium Economy and two desks for Economy Class.
And here is the check-in and ground staff team, ready to open check-in for the very first Singapore Airlines flight at the airport.
Unfortunately I did not have time to stay for the formal inauguration and the water salute, but as we were taxiing for takeoff from runway 19R I was fortunate to see the Singapore Airlines Airbus A350 approaching the parallel runway 19L.