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How to Get the Best Economy Seat on a Singapore Airlines A380

Flying economy (coach) or premium economy on Singapore Airlines (SQ) and want to get the best seat on board? Passengers on Singapore Airlines can purchase allocated seats in advance of their flight – these can be either Extra Legroom Seats, Forward Zone Seats or Standard Seats.

Singapore Airlines Extra Legroom Seats

Extra Legroom Seats (formerly Preferred Seats) are seats located on the emergency exit rows or on the bulkhead rows in the economy and premium economy cabins. Depending on the route these cost between US$20 and US$144 per flight sector.

The seats can be purchased at anytime up to 48 hours before departure – either when booking the ticket or using the “Manage Booking” facility on the Singapore Airlines website.

It is possible to check the availability of Extra Legroom Seats during the booking procedure before actually completing the purchase.

Passengers booking exit seats should be able to fulfill the standard eligibility requirements for flight safety reasons.

The cost of booking an Extra Legroom Seat is as follows:

Band 1 – US$20-30
Band 2 – US$48-72 (Singapore-Australia)
Band 3 – US$72-108 (Singapore-Europe)
Band 4 – US$96-144 (Singapore-US)

Band 1: Between Singapore and Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam; within Australia; between Australia and New Zealand; between Russia and Sweden.
Band 2: Between Singapore and Australia, Bangladesh, Hong Kong SAR, China, India. Japan, Korea, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and U.A.E.
Band 3: Between Singapore and Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and United Kingdom; between United States and Germany, Hong Kong SAR, Japan, Korea, and United Kingdom.
Band 4: Between Singapore and United States.

Although the fees are quoted in USD, the seats are normally charged in the local booking currency.

Extra Legroom Seats on Singapore Airlines Airbus A380

The number of possible Extra Legroom Seats varies by aircraft type and configuration. Let’s first take a look at the largest aircraft, the Airbus A380.

Singapore Airlines was the launch customer for the plane and currently has 4 different seating configurations for its Airbus A380-800:

(1) The original Airbus A380-800 layout (shown below) which has economy cabins on both the main deck and upper deck. This means the highest number of Extra Legroom Seats available with a total of 25 economy seats and 4 premium economy seats.

singapore airlines airbus a380 seat map

(2) The Airbus A380-800 with all business-class layout on the upper deck. This has 13 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class and 4 seats in premium economy.

(3) The new suites and business class layout on the upper deck. This configuration has 18 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class and 4 seats in premium economy.

(4) The new suites and business class layout on the upper deck which has been retrofitted to some aircraft. This configuration has 19 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class and 4 seats in premium economy.

So what are the best economy seats to book on a Singapore Airlines A380?

It obviously depends on which aircraft is flying on your route.

For the original A380 layout (1) we would advise sitting on the upper deck economy cabin as it has a 2-4-2 rather than 3-4-3 seating layout. The upper economy deck has a quieter and more intimate ambiance than the large cabins on the lower deck.

singapore airlines a380 upper deck seatsThe pick of the bunch are the seat pairs on row 81 – seats A/C or H/K in the “mini” cabin right at the back.

We enjoyed flying in seat 81C on a London-Singapore flight a number of years ago, although the cost at the time was only US$50. Today the price has increased to £70 (US$90) for London-Singapore flights.

Do be aware that all the A and K “window” seats which are designated Extra Legroom Seats on the original (1) and all-business (2) layouts have exit doors and are all therefore windowless.

However on the new suites class configuration (3 and 4), the best economy seats are the seat pairs 41B/C and 41H/J or the extra legroom 42A/K window seats – these are just behind the premium economy cabin. Or at the back you have seat pairs 70B/C and 70H/J or the extra legroom 71A/K window seats.

All the premium economy extra legroom seats are on row 31A/C or 31H/K on all 4 aircraft layouts. The best are on the new suites layouts as the premium economy cabin is right at the front of the main deck.

To check out Singapore’s A380 seating maps in more detail click here

Extra Legroom Seats on other SQ Aircraft

The Airbus A350-900 long-haul configuration with Singapore’s new seating has 6 Extra Legroom Seats in economy and 4 in premium economy. These are all very good. Premium economy again has seating pairs 31A/C and 31H/K; economy class has 2 seat pairs 47B/C and 47H/J – great for couples travelling together. For lone travellers there is the extra legroom window seats at 48A or 48K.

singapore airlines airbus a350

The A350 ultra-long range has 4 Extra Legroom seats in premium economy (31A/C and 31H/K) – it has no economy cabin. The A350 medium-haul config has 6 Extra Legroom Seats – pairs 55B/C and 55H/J and extra legroom window seats at 56A and 56K.

The Boeing 787-10 has 6 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class, all on exit row 58 A/B/C and H/J/K.

The Airbus A330-300 has 4 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class. These are seat pairs 48A/C and 48H/K.

Singapore Airlines has a number of different Boeing 777 aircraft and configurations which have between 3 and 10 Extra Legroom Seats on board.

For example let’s take a look at the Boeing 700-300ER. This 4-class config has 10 Extra Legroom Seats in economy class (rows 41 and 49) plus 4 premium economy seats (row 31). For other configs do check the seat map.

singapore airlines new economy seats

Extra Legroom Seats are also on sale for SilkAir flights which is a short-haul fleet.

Note Singapore Airlines has a strict no refunds policy for Extra Legroom Seats if a passenger cancels the flight. Also, Extra Legroom Seats are non-transferable – they cannot be given to someone else nor can one select another Extra Legroom Seat without re-paying the fee.

Is it possible to get Extra Legroom Seats for free?

Technically yes, once online check-in opens 48 hours before departure any unassigned Extra Legroom Seats should be made available for free selection.

It’s always worthwhile checking the availability of Extra Legroom Seats a day or so before online check-in opens to get an idea of possible available seats. Do this via the ‘Manage Booking’ facility or perhaps use an online availability tool such as ExpertFlyer.

PPS Club members (Singapore’s elite status, members need to spend a minimum of S$25,000 annually) also get free Extra Legroom Seats, subject to availability. Note that KrisFlyer Elite Gold (Star Alliance Gold) do not get complimentary Extra Legroom Seat assignment.

Other Singapore Airlines Seat Selection

Singapore Airlines first introduced Preferred Seats back in 2008. At the end of 2017 these were re-branded as Extra Legroom Seats with the price changes for different bands. The following seat assignments were also introduced:

Forward Zone Seats are seat rows designated to be closer to the doors. Advance seat assignment costs as follows:

Band 1 – US$8-11
Band 2 – US$15-20 (Singapore-Australia)
Band 3 – US$25-33 (Singapore-Europe)
Band 4 – US$28-42(Singapore-US)

There is no fee for those on Flexi fare tickets.

Standard Seats are any other seat (excluding Extra Legroom and Forward Zone seats) which can be purchased by those travelling on Lite fares with prices:

Band 1 – US$5-8
Band 2 – US$10-15 (Singapore-Australia)
Band 3 – US$15-23 (Singapore-Europe)
Band 4 – US$20-24 (Singapore-US)

There are no Standard Seat fees for passengers on Standard or Flexi fares. KrisFlyer Elite Gold members do get complimentary Forward Zone Seats and Standard Seats assignment.

One final note, Singapore Airlines offers free seat assignment for Suites, First and Business Class passengers.

If flying long-haul in economy class on Singapore Airlines it may be worth spending a few extra dollars to guarantee some more legroom. On a 13 hour flight the comfort can certainly make all the difference.

Article originally published November 18 2011. Last updated November 28 2019.

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