Airbus and Singapore Airlines (SIA) have agreed a delivery timetable for the first A380 aircraft, which will officially be handed over on Monday 15 October in Toulouse.
Public seats on the maiden scheduled flight, set for Thursday 25 October between Singapore and Sydney, will be auctioned off for charity, as reported by ABTN earlier this month. With 471 seats, the aircraft is configured in three classes: economy, business and the new Singapore Airlines Suites.
Singapore Airlines CEO, Chew Choon Seng, said the delivery would mark the beginning of a new chapter for the aviation industry.
”Everyone at Singapore Airlines is keenly anticipating the delivery of this new aircraft and our people are working hard on final preparation for its entry into service,” he said. ”The first flight promises to be one of the most exciting occasions in aviation history.
”We are overwhelmed by the support of the community from all over the world for the charity auction. And I would like to thank the many partners and service providers that have followed the lead of our fuel supplier, ExxonMobil and eBay, in donating their services for the first flight”s charitable causes.”
Seats across all three classes will be auctioned on the global online marketplace, eBay, commencing on Monday 27 August 2007. Seats in all three classes will be sold progressively across both legs of the flight and bids will be staggered to finish at various times during a two week period, ending 10 September.
The auction will be for single, double and multiple seats in each class, all sold on a one-way basis. People wanting to fly on both the outward and return inaugural flights will need to bid twice.
Money raised by the flight will go one-third to Singapore”s Community Chest, one-third split between the Children”s Hospital, Randwick, and the Children”s Hospital at Westmead, both in Sydney, with the balance to M”decins Sans Fronti”res, also known as Doctors Without Borders.
Readers who expect SIA to also introduce new and possibly trendy cabin gear at the same time are likely to be disappointed. The distinctive Singapore Girl uniform, by French couturier Pierre Balmain that is based on the traditional Malay sarong kebaya costume, has been around for 39 years and with one minor tweak in the collar in 1974 has never been changed.
It has now been officially recognised as an enduring creation by one of the world's most influential design magazines, Wallpaper, which calls it a classic. This term has not been used for any sort of uniform before. To this day, a team of tailors carry out a minimum of two fittings per year and each crew member is provided with four new uniforms annually.