SIA & Scoot forced to take longer routes to Europe to avoid Iranian airspace

Scoot and SIA flights Image Credits:

Travelers on Singapore Airlines (SIA) services between Singapore and most of its destinations in Europe are facing slightly longer flights as the airline avoids Iranian airspace as a precautionary measure amid rising tensions in the Middle East.

Over the weekend, Iran launched over 300 drones and missiles directly at Israel in its first attack on the country, in apparent retaliation for an attack on an Iranian consulate in Damascus, Syria earlier this month. 

In response to queries, an SIA spokesperson said their flights to these destinations have all been affected by the rerouting:

  • Amsterdam
  • Brussels
  • Copenhagen
  • Frankfurt
  • Istanbul
  • London
  • Manchester
  • Milan
  • Munich
  • Paris
  • Rome
  •  Zurich
  • New York’s JFK and Newark airports

“Some flights may take slightly longer than usual,” they noted, adding that SIA will assist any customers who miss connections due to extended flight times in being rebooked on alternative flights.

All Scoot flights between Singapore and Athens have also been impacted.

Previously, SIA flights between Singapore and Europe would typically fly over Iran.

However, they now must take a more northerly route over Central Asia, the Caspian Sea, and the Caucasus region, leading to longer flight times.

For example, on Monday, SIA flight SQ308 from Singapore to London Heathrow took 14 hours and 3 minutes compared to an average of 13 hours and 39 minutes.

SQ366 from Singapore to Rome was in the air for 13 hours and 3 minutes versus an average of 12 hours and 38 minutes last Sunday.

SIA flight in the air

Image Credits:

With that said, SIA’s nonstop services from New York to Singapore have also adjusted flight paths but do not appear to have been significantly lengthened.

This past Sunday, SQ21 from Newark matched its average of 18 hours and 8 minutes, while SQ23 from JFK only took 6 minutes longer than its typical 18 hours.

Scoot’s Singapore to Athens flight on Monday took 12 minutes more than average as well.

The spokesperson said SIA has not canceled any flights and will continue monitoring the Middle East situation, adjusting routes accordingly.

Mirroring SIA, other airlines including Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, and Qantas have also rerouted flights to avoid Iranian airspace.

On Tuesday, Lufthansa flight LH779 from Singapore to Frankfurt took a southerly route over Oman, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt before crossing the Mediterranean, arriving after 13 hours and 36 minutes compared to the typical 12 hours 30 minutes.

Turkish Airlines, Emirates, and Qatar Airways however continue using Iranian airspace for some flights.

Think you might be affected?

It’s good to check flight statuses on SIA’s website and subscribe to their mobile notifications for the latest updates.

Have a safe trip!

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