australian aviation logo

Canberra Airport talks up performance of SIA’s international flights

written by australianaviation.com.au | January 16, 2017

Singapore Airlines’ Boeing 777-200s to Canberra and Wellington are configured with 38 angled lie-flat business class and 228 economy class seats. (Paul Sadler)

Canberra Airport has described the first three months of Singapore Airlines’ (SIA) international flights as an “outstanding success”.

SIA’s four times a week Singapore-Canberra-Wellington flights kicked off in late September 2016, returning international service to the Australian capital for the first time in more than a decade.

Canberra Airport said on Monday official figures showed the Boeing 777-200 operated flights achieved average load factors of 83 per cent in September/October 2016.

Further, Canberra Airport head of aviation Matthew Brown said the performance of the route was “even stronger” in November and December.

““This is a remarkably strong performance for a new route. We are very happy with this result, as is Singapore Airlines,” Brown said in a statement.


““Based on these figures, the viability of the route shows that it is well established and becoming more popular”.”

Canberra is SIA’s sixth destination in Australia alongside Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. The airline group’s regional wing Silkair also serves Cairns and Darwin with narrowbody equipment.

It is the first scheduled international passenger service to Canberra since the short-lived Air Pacific (now Fiji Airways) flights to Nadi ended in 2004.


The flight also links the capitals of New Zealand and Australia for the first time.

Brown said the airport was hopeful SIA would add to its current schedule of four flights a week in the period ahead.

“We are in constant dialogue with Singapore Airlines and are pushing for the addition of the fifth service in the near future, but understand that this will be a commercial decision by the airline”,” Brown said.

There might be more international seats to fill out of Canberra from as early as the second half of calendar 2017, with Qatar Airways planning to launch service to the Australian capital.

In November, Qatar named Canberra as one of eight new destinations being added to its fast-growing network.

The oneworld alliance member indicated flights to Canberra would begin some time in the 2017/18 timeframe, without providing any further details, such as frequencies and operating aircraft type.

The Australian capital would be Qatar’s fifth destination in this country. It currently serves Adelaide, Perth, Melbourne and Sydney nonstop from its Doha hub.

Comments (9)

  • Brad


    Bravo SIA and Canberra! As someone who lives in regional NSW, it is just as easy to get to Canberra as it is to Sydney. I just need to remember to look for departures from Canberra when travelling to Asia and beyond.

    Does anyone know how the prices have been comparing between SYD and CBR to SIN?

  • Dave


    On January 9th AA reported “Singapore Airlines’ Canberra flights about half full in October”
    On January 16th AA reported they were 83% full in Sep/Oct 2016.
    AA, which is it?

  • Dave


    Brad. How is it apples and oranges, its the same flights with the same plane in the same month? One report says its empty, another says its full.

    AA is usually excellent at sorting through the statements and providing readers with some analysis and reasonable conclusions, that’s why I read it. This time, I’ve read two contradictory stories so can’t conclude which statement is correct.

  • Peter


    If you read the BITRE report for October Table 5, the inbound from SIN is 2,599 (54%), outbound to WLG is 1,222 (25%), totaling 3821 (80%), However, this is only destination traffic not transiting traffic which BITRE doesn’t report on in these tables. Without knowing that information from Singapore Airlines, it would be difficult to determine exact load factors.

  • Frequent Fyer


    I can say as a passenger the service is well patronised in all directions.
    In fact, I prefer to fly out of Canberra to Asia and beyond rather than out of Sydney or Melbourne from now on.

  • Anthony Robinson


    17 hours layover in SIN BOTH ways on flights to BCN. Pretty useless.

  • Peter Last


    I would not expect many passengers wishing to travel from CBR to BCN (Barcelona) and vv.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Each day, our subscribers are more informed with the right information.

SIGN UP to the Australian Aviation magazine for high-quality news and features for just $99.95 per year

You don't have credit card details available. You will be redirected to update payment method page. Click OK to continue.