With fuel prices plummeting, one common question has been why most airlines haven’t lowered fuel surcharges. After all, they’re super quick to raise these surcharges when oil prices go up, but when they go down they conveniently seem to forget about them.
While lowering fuel surcharges wouldn’t impact the actual cost of revenue tickets, it would impact the cost of award tickets for the airlines which do impose fuel surcharges on awards. Some airlines have been in the process of lowering fuel surcharges, including British Airways and Japan Airlines.
It looks like we can add another airline to the list — Singapore Airlines will be lowering fuel surcharges for tickets issued as of February 26, 2015.
Singapore Airlines A380
With these changes, we’ll apparently see Singapore Airlines fuel surcharges drop between US$5 (S$6.80) and US$83 (S$113) per sector.
Why should you care?
- Singapore KrisFlyer imposes fuel surcharges for virtually all awards on their own flights, so the cash component of redeeming miles on Singapore Airlines will go down
- Singapore KrisFlyer is the only program through which you can book most Singapore Airlines premium cabin awards, so there are no “arbitrage” opportunities by booking through other programs
- Singapore Airlines has among the world’s best premium cabin products, so you should want to fly them 😉
Singapore Airlines A380 Suites Class
Singapore Airlines actually has fairly reasonable fuel surcharges to begin with, in the grand scheme of things. The European airlines are the worst when it comes to fuel surcharges, so by comparison Singapore is very reasonable.
How much are Singapore’s fuel surcharges?
A one-way Suites Class ticket between New York and Frankfurt has ~$211 in fuel surcharges:
Meanwhile a one-way Suites Class ticket between Los Angeles and Singapore has ~$323 in fuel surcharges:
The above are among the higher fuel surcharges that Singapore Airlines imposes, so I would expect those will probably decrease in price in the $60-83 range each way, which is exciting.
For further context, here are the redemption rates through Singapore’s KrisFlyer program (factoring in the 15% discount you receive for booking online):
|Route||Business Class (One-Way)||First Class (One-Way)||Aircraft|
|San Francisco to Hong Kong||63,750 miles + $112.40||70,125 miles + $112.40||Boeing 777-300ER|
|San Francisco to Hong Kong to Singapore||68,000 miles + $312.50||91,375 miles + $325.50||Boeing 777-300ER|
|San Francisco to Seoul||65,875 miles + $205.50||74,375 miles + $218.50||Boeing 777-300ER|
|San Francisco to Seoul to Singapore||68,000 miles + $312.50||91,375 miles + $325.50||Boeing 777-300ER|
|Los Angeles to Tokyo||65,875 miles + $172.80||74,375 miles + $172.80||Airbus A380|
|Los Angeles to Tokyo to Singapore||68,000 miles + $327.96||91,375 miles + $340.96||Airbus A380|
|New York to Frankfurt||48,875 miles + $205.50||57,375 miles + $218.50||Airbus A380|
|New York to Frankfurt to Singapore||72,250 miles + $340.81||93,500 miles + $353.81||Airbus A380|
|Houston to Moscow||48,875 miles + $213.90||57,375 miles + $226.90||Boeing 777-300ER|
|Houston to Moscow to Singapore||72,250 miles + $320.90||93,500 miles + $333.90||Boeing 777-300ER|
- Singapore will soon be reconfiguring their 777-300ERs, and the size of first class cabins will shrink from eight seats to four seats — I’d definitely redeem miles for Singapore Airlines first class sooner rather than later
- Unfortunately Singapore Airlines hasn’t been very generous lately with releasing A380 Suites Class award availability to the US, though 777-300ER First Class award availability remains fairly open
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer is transfer partners with American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest, so there are plenty of ways to rack up points that can be redeemed on Singapore
Here are some of the best ways to rack up those points through credit cards:
|Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card||• $95 Annual fee|
• Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
|American Express® Business Gold Card||• $295 Annual Fee (Rates & Fees)|
• Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month. 4X points apply to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year.* The bonus categories are as follows: Airfare purchased directly from airlines; U.S. purchases for advertising in select media; U.S. purchases at gas stations; U.S. purchases at restaurants; U.S. purchases for shipping; U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||• $550 Annual fee (Rates & Fees)|
• No Foreign transaction fees
• 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
• 5X Membership Rewards® points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com.
$200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
|The Business Platinum Card® from American Express||• Annual fee: $595 (Rates & Fees)|
• No Foreign transaction fees
• Lounge access with Delta, Priority Pass Select, and others; access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts; a $200 annual airline fee credit
|American Express® Gold Card||• 3X points for flights booked directly with airlines. 4X points at restaurants, 4x at US supermarkets (up to $25,000/year and then 1x). 1X points on other purchases.|
• No Foreign Transaction Fees.
• $250 Annual Fee (Rates & Fees)
Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class
Kudos to Singapore Airlines for dropping fuel surcharges, and doing so in a pretty substantial way. A couple of weeks from now is certainly a “sweet spot” time to book those Singapore Airlines premium cabin tickets, before they start scheduling too many 777s with just four first class seats.
The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: American Express® Business Gold Card (Rates & Fees), American Express® Gold Card (Rates & Fees), The Business Platinum® Card from American Express (Rates & Fees), and The Platinum Card® from American Express (Rates & Fees).