United Airlines to Start Only U.S.-Singapore Non-Stop Flight

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Makes First Flight In US After 3-Month Grounding

A United Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Photographer: Scott Olson/Getty Images
  • Carrier to fly San Francisco-Singapore route starting June 1
  • Airline to offer economy, premium economy and business seats

United Airlines will start flying non-stop daily between San Francisco and Singapore this year in the longest direct service by a U.S. carrier as falling fuel costs allow more airlines to offer longer flights.

United will fly Boeing Co.’s 787-9 aircraft for the route which starts June 1, the airline said in a statement Thursday. The flight will take about 16 hours 20 minutes to Singapore, saving about four hours of travel time compared with the airline’s current services via Japan’s Narita airport.

The U.S. carrier joins Emirates and Qantas Airways Ltd. among airlines offering non-stop flights as new aircraft technology introduced by Airbus Group SE and Boeing, as well as lower fuel costs, make it possible to offer longer direct services. Singapore Airlines Ltd. plans to revive the world’s longest flight to New York in 2018 using the A350 ultra-long range plane.

The 252-seat flight, the only non-stop service to the U.S. from Singapore, will include 48 United “BusinessFirst” and 88 economy plus seats, with economy making up the rest, United said.

Singapore Airlines discontinued the world’s longest non-stop service, from Singapore to New York, in 2013 and also stopped flying direct to Los Angeles that year.

Emirates will overtake Qantas in February in offering the world’s longest direct flight, to Panama City from Dubai, using a Boeing 777-200LR aircraft. The Australian carrier’s Sydney-Dallas route is currently the world’s longest.