Last Friday (Dec 28), a giant double-decker Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 arrived at San Francisco International from Hong Kong at 7:10pm, marking the first A380 flights between SFO and Asia. (SFO has seen A380s from Lufthansa and Air France previously.) Singapore Airlines is offering this “pop-up” service on the San Francisco>Hong Kong>Singapore route between now and March 24 only– and will switch back to standard Boeing 777 service after that.)
To mark the occasion, Singapore held a reception at the gate for its flight SQ 1, departing at 11:48pm for Hong Kong and then continuing on to Singapore. There were 438 passengers on the departing flight, with eight in the jumbo’s well-known luxury suites (first class); 45 in business class, and 385 in economy class.
The big bird departs from gate 101 at SFO’s international terminal– specially designed to accommodate passengers entering the upper and lower levels. When boarding, economy class passengers take an escalator down to the lower level for boarding. Business and first class passengers board from the terminal’s main level via a third jetway connected to the plane’s upper deck. (See photo)
Unlike other carriers, Singapore’s seat configuration on the A380-800 has its 12 first class suites at the front end of the lower deck, with 311 economy class seats behind. Upstairs, there are 60 business class seats in the front end of the deck, then 88 economy class seats behind that. (Here’s a link to the configuration.) There are staircases at both the front and the rear of the aircraft.
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