Singapore Airlines and TAM became the newest airlines to join the A350 flying family, taking delivery of their aircraft on March 2, 2016 and December 17, 2015 respectively. Singapore Airlines is the second airline to fly the planes in Asia and TAM is the first in South America.
Qatar, Finnair and Vietnam were the first three carriers to operate the aircraft type.
On May 9, 2016, Singapore Airlines will fly the inaugural revenue long haul flight to Amsterdam (AMS) from Singapore as SQ324. The return flight is SQ323. The flight is scheduled for 13:20 and will operate daily.
They are also introducing service from Singapore to Dusseldorf which starts on July 21, 2016, three times a week with more destinations to follow. Until these two flights operate, there will be flights intra- Asia for crew training as well as proving runs and to ensure that the airline becomes familiar with the aircraft and its operations, which is pretty typical when a new aircraft type enters an airline fleet.
The aircraft which has a total of 253 seats is configured with 42 Business Class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, 24 Premium Economy in a 2-4-2 configuration and 187 Economy Class with the typical 3-3-3 configuration.
Another version of the A350-900ULR is to be used for ultra long haul flights from Singapore to the U.S. Singapore used to operate these flights with the A340-500 to New York and Los Angeles, but have since terminated the services. Singapore Airlines has seven of these on order.
All the A350s will be fitted with a new version of the KrisWorld IFE system which offers up to 295 movies, more than 450 CD choices and over 470 TV programs each month. The new IFE system can be controlled by the new Singapore IFE App which you can download before your flight. The App allows you to preview the offerings and create play lists.
TAM flew its inaugural passenger flight in January 2016 from São Paulo-Guarulhos to Manaus, Brazil. Like the other carriers these flights serves for crew training and familiarization and also to show customers the airplane.
TAM flew its first revenue international passenger flight (JJ9610) to North America on March 17, 2016 on its maiden flight to Miami International (MIA) from São Paulo-Guarulhos (GRU). Then on May 1, 2016 service will begin to Madrid, Spain (MAD) from São Paulo/Guarulhos as JJ8064.
TAM will begin flying the São Paulo-Guarulhos (GRU) to New York-JFK using the A350 starting July 23, 2016. This will replace the current Boeing 767-300/777-300ER service. The frequency will be three times a week initially then moving to daily. July will also see the A350 being used on the new São Paulo-Guarulhos (GRU) to Orlando, FL (MCO) route as well.
Note that all schedules are subject to change.
TAM is utilizing a two-cabin configuration on some of its A350s with a total of 348 seats configured 30 in Premium Business Class flat bed seats in a 2-2-2 configuration and 318 in Economy in a 2-4-2 configuration.
There is also a second configuration which will see the airplane with Economy Plus seats offering more legroom in Economy class similar to the top three U.S. carriers. The configuration of the airplane will then become a total of 339 seats consisting of 30 in Premium Business Class flat beds (2-2-2), 63 in Economy Plus (2-4-2) and 246 in Economy Class (2-4-2).
To round it out, for entertainment in Business Class, TAM features 15.4″ screens in Premium Business Class.