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VTL Flights - Will Singapore allow other airlines to operate?

VTL Flights - Will Singapore allow other airlines to operate?

Old Oct 12, 21, 8:06 am
  #1  
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VTL Flights - Will Singapore allow other airlines to operate?

It looks like for now, as far as USA is concerned, the only VTL flights are SQ flights
I wonder if any of the other non Singaporean airlines would want reciprocal rights to operate VTL flights.

The same thing happened in India where for a long time Air India had monopoly of the Vande Bharat flights, but USA and UA brought pressure on India after which India allowed UA to operate the USA-India flights too

Last edited by SingaporeDon; Oct 12, 21 at 8:42 am
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Old Oct 12, 21, 9:09 am
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In the past , only UA fly direct to Singapore. I think delta pull out. AA also did not fly.

they will make their own commercial decision on whether to fly to Singapore.

most likely they would rather Focus on their own domestic demand first ?
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Old Oct 12, 21, 10:32 am
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It's not about if UA is allowed to operate VTL flights, but if UA wants to do so. UA doesn't even fly to Singapore at the moment.

If you look at other destinations, non-Singaporean airlines are allowed to operate VTL flights. KL, AF, LH, BA, KE, OZ are all listed on the ICA website.
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Old Oct 12, 21, 5:34 pm
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What is the precise difference between VTL and non VTL flights bar the quarantine restriction on arrival?

Are VTL flights only open to residents of the countries on the approved list (or people who have only been in those countries in the last 2 weeks) - so someone could say board a VTL flight at Heathrow after having travelled say from Copenhagen or Paris or Amsterdam but not from Dublin or Stockholm or Oslo (as Ireland, Norway and Sweden aren't on the approved list).

It seems to be entirely about numbers and money - larger European nations who are likely to send more tourists to Singapore being prioritise ahead of smaller ones irrespective of caseloads?

Unless its to prevent mixing of residents of approved and non approved nations why aren't all flights from approved nations VTL?
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Old Oct 12, 21, 5:38 pm
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Originally Posted by sbs2716g View Post
In the past , only UA fly direct to Singapore. I think delta pull out. AA also did not fly.

they will make their own commercial decision on whether to fly to Singapore.

most likely they would rather Focus on their own domestic demand first ?
PMNW and then DL served SIN through their NRT hub. Now DL routes through ICN, with a connection to its close partner KE.
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Old Oct 12, 21, 8:06 pm
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Originally Posted by MARTYM8 View Post
What is the precise difference between VTL and non VTL flights bar the quarantine restriction on arrival?

Are VTL flights only open to residents of the countries on the approved list (or people who have only been in those countries in the last 2 weeks) - so someone could say board a VTL flight at Heathrow after having travelled say from Copenhagen or Paris or Amsterdam but not from Dublin or Stockholm or Oslo (as Ireland, Norway and Sweden aren't on the approved list).

It seems to be entirely about numbers and money - larger European nations who are likely to send more tourists to Singapore being prioritise ahead of smaller ones irrespective of caseloads?

Unless its to prevent mixing of residents of approved and non approved nations why aren't all flights from approved nations VTL?
simply because there are still many paxes going other places (transit in Singapore) without any vaccination.

there might be paxes returning to Australia, indonesia , Thailand etc and they are not vaccinated for one reason or another.

so imagine if all flights from UK are VTL, then what will happen to these paxes? SQ will have rebooked them via other departure points instead.
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Old Oct 12, 21, 8:14 pm
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Originally Posted by MARTYM8 View Post
What is the precise difference between VTL and non VTL flights bar the quarantine restriction on arrival?

Are VTL flights only open to residents of the countries on the approved list (or people who have only been in those countries in the last 2 weeks) - so someone could say board a VTL flight at Heathrow after having travelled say from Copenhagen or Paris or Amsterdam but not from Dublin or Stockholm or Oslo (as Ireland, Norway and Sweden aren't on the approved list).

It seems to be entirely about numbers and money - larger European nations who are likely to send more tourists to Singapore being prioritise ahead of smaller ones irrespective of caseloads?

Unless its to prevent mixing of residents of approved and non approved nations why aren't all flights from approved nations VTL?
VTL passengers need to fulfill an (onerous) list of requirements, non-VTL passengers do not need to.

VTL passengers, regardless of citizenship or residency, need to spend the past 14 days in one of the 11 VTL approved countries, and also have been fully-vaccinated in one of the 11 VTL approved countries or Singapore.

Dont think it is necessarily driven by $. Did SQ ever have non-stops to DUB/OSL/ARN prior to March 2020? I dont think so. So why would SQ suddenly start launching flights from these cities then? It is only natural that Singapore will prioritize the countries for which SQ already has an established route as part of their initial country re-opening, instead of relying on a foreign carrier to do the job

Not everybody from VTL countries need to board VTL flight. This is because not everybody plans to enter Singapore. If you only intend to transit at SIN, you can take a non-VTL flight if the timing works better for you
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Old Oct 13, 21, 2:33 am
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Naturally, SQ will direct operations to routes that support the greatest economic, education and tourist links. SQ is after all a for profit institution and in that sense it is driven by money and is behaving as any normal airline would. As for 'caseload', Singapore includes Norway, Sweden and Ireland in the same risk bucket (Cat 2) as the UK, France and the Netherlands. Thus, on a non-VTL flight all 6 of these points of origination are treated the same upon arrival in Singapore.

As Singapore is attempting a controlled opening, the VTL flights offer a way for Singapore to manage traffic appropriately. Just as other countries have amended Covid rules and restrictions, I would expect Singapore to do the same in the coming weeks. As long as the situation in Singapore remains stable and the VTL traffic does not trigger any case increases, I suspect you'll see a step by step broadening of country eligibility. Bottom line, it's in SQ's interest to operate at maximum capacity and the Singapore Government is fully aware of this.


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Old Oct 13, 21, 6:50 pm
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I don't doubt for a second that an American flag carrier could operate VTL flights to SIN, if they wished to. Problem is, right before covid, I believe none of them operated a flight that would fulfill the VTL conditions as it stands now. Economics and capacity aren't any better now. Don't even think any US flagged commercial carrier has the equipment to regularly operate non-stop from JFK or LAX - eg. 350ULR or A345.

ICN is still a month away; things could change.
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Old Oct 13, 21, 7:12 pm
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Originally Posted by pWei View Post
I don't doubt for a second that an American flag carrier could operate VTL flights to SIN, if they wished to. Problem is, right before covid, I believe none of them operated a flight that would fulfill the VTL conditions as it stands now. Economics and capacity aren't any better now. Don't even think any US flagged commercial carrier has the equipment to regularly operate non-stop from JFK or LAX - eg. 350ULR or A345.

ICN is still a month away; things could change.
LAX yes (UA used to do LAX-SIN plus SFO-SIN on 787-9, but couldn't compete with SQ LAX-SIN, so UA switched to twice daily SFO-SIN)
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