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SIA expects to see rising demand, activates 80% of aircraft fleet

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Singapore Airlines (SIA1) (SINGY) is preparing for an increase in air travel demand. Singapore’s flag carrier’s chief executive officer, Goh Choon Phong, acknowledged to the media that the airline has reactivated about 80% of its aircraft fleet and restored a significant portion of its pre-pandemic staff.

The airline’s CEO stated to the public on November 12, 2021, that the company today employs 92 percent of the flight crew and 86 percent of the cabin personnel it had before the worldwide demand downturn. Meanwhile, 79 percent of the carrier’s fleet has been reactivated.

The decision was made on the assumption that since Singapore has relaxed air travel restrictions for passengers traveling from and to ten countries, including the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, and South Korea, exempting vaccinated travelers from mandatory quarantine, the airline will see a significant increase in business.

“At the level we are operating now, which is 37% of pre-COVID capacity, going up to 43% in December, we are quite comfortable with this return rate,” the CEO explained.

While China, a big market for Singapore Airlines (SIA1) (SINGY), is unlikely to open its borders anytime soon, Malaysia, another important international route for an airline, is slated to enhance daily frequency between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur on November 29, 2021.

On September 8, 2021, Singapore began reopening its borders by launching vaccinated travel lanes (VTL) between Brunei and Germany. Since then, new travel lanes have been added to significant locations including Australia, France, South Korea, the United States, and the United Kingdom.

Gosh added: “A China [a major market for Singapore Airlines (SIA1) (SINGY) – ed. note] opening is not likely to happen at the moment, but we are ready to capitalize on any other opportunities that come our way.“

The carrier has already seen evidence of a steady recovery with the presentation of its half-year financial results on November 11, 2021, for the six months ending September 30, 2021, as it managed to lower its net loss.

Singapore Airlines (SIA1) (SINGY) reported a financial loss of SGD837 million ($618 million) in the first half of 2021, down from SGD3.47 billion ($2.5 billion) a year ago, as revenue increased by 73 percent.

Meanwhile, the company’s cargo revenue hit a new high of SGD1.9 billion ($1.4 billion), owing to persistent capacity constraints in both ocean and air freight, as well as supply chain disruptions.

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