Singapore Airlines is proudly commemorating 40 years of service to Auckland today and plans to mark the occasion throughout the month of May with events and celebrations.
On 2 May 1976, a Boeing 707, flight number SQ766, took off from Changi Airport enroute to Auckland, via Sydney. The new service – initially just twice weekly– set the stage for the direct twice daily flights to Auckland that Singapore Airlines proudly operates today.
Auckland has since been serviced by a number of different aircraft, including DC10s, the Boeing 747 series, Airbus 340, several versions of Boeing 777 aircraft, and the Airbus A380. Today New Zealanders can enjoy the latest in comfort and design of Singapore Airlines’ Next Generation cabin products aboard the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.
Singapore Airlines General Manager, New Zealand, Mr Simon Turcotte says the service has made a significant contribution to inbound and outbound tourism.
“When we first began, Auckland was linked to a Singapore – Sydney flight,” Mr Turcotte said. “Today we operate twice daily, direct services together with our alliance partner, Air New Zealand.
“In 1976 just 30,000 New Zealanders visited Singapore, while in 2015 more than 125,000 ventured to the city island, an increase of more than 400 per cent.
“Similarly New Zealand’s inbound tourism has grown from just over 380,000 a year to more than 3.1 million people in 2015.
“We are incredibly proud to have helped bring the world to New Zealand as well as taking New Zealanders to Singapore and the world.
“It has been an honour to provide New Zealanders with our award winning service for the past 40 years. It has been made possible with the support of Auckland Airport since that first flight in 1976. We have a great partnership with the airport, one we’re keen to continue for many decades to come.”
Mr Norris Carter, Auckland Airport’s general manager – aeronautical commercial, says, “Auckland Airport congratulates Singapore Airlines on its 40 years of flying to Auckland. During that time the airline, with its industry leading reputation for service, has brought many visitors to New Zealand and taken many Kiwis to Asia and Europe.
“We look forward to welcoming Singapore Airlines’ passengers and working with their crew and ground staff, for the next 40 years and beyond.”
At the time of the first flight, Singapore Airlines flew to 28 cities in 23 countries. Now the airline’s global passenger route network covers 60 destinations in 33 countries, and continues to expand. In July Düsseldorf in Germany joins the network, while in September, Wellington and Canberra will be added when Singapore Airlines launches the ‘Capital Express’ service connecting the two capitals through to Singapore four times a week