Why the Longest Nonstop Flights Are Ending

Fuel costs are behind the demise of Singapore Air’s 19-hour nonstop
A technician inspects one of the Rolls-Royce engines powering a Singapore Airlines Airbus A340-500 Photograph by Bloomberg News

Manpreet Gill, the Singapore-based head of fixed income, currencies, and commodities investment strategy at Standard Chartered’s wealth management unit, is preparing for a loss on one of his most valuable assets: his time. On Nov. 25, Singapore Airlines will stop its 100-passenger daily run from Singapore to Newark, N.J., the world’s longest nonstop commercial flight. After that, Singapore Air passengers such as Gill who are used to making the 19-hour slog in one sitting will have to fly to New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport after a stop in Frankfurt—adding five hours to their journey. The carrier is stopping the all-business-class service on a four-engine Airbus A340-500 after ending the second-longest flight, from Los Angeles to the island city, on Oct. 22. The routes’ well-heeled flyers are not pleased. “The more time you add on the way,” says Gill, “the further it keeps you from either working or being at home.”

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