28 Mar 2024

Adelaide’s longest-serving international airline celebrates 40 years in SA


Singapore Airlines
Singapore Airlines

Adelaide’s longest-serving international airline, Singapore Airlines, will celebrate 40 years of flying to and from South Australia’s capital city – as data shows the airline generates nearly $100 million in tourism spend for the state each year.
Singapore Airlines will mark 40 years this Sunday, March 31. The airline’s inaugural service, a Boeing 747, landed in Adelaide on March 31 in 1984, less than 18 months after the opening of Adelaide Airport’s international terminal.
Data from the South Australian Tourism Commission shows the tourism expenditure of daily direct Singapore Airlines’ flights is estimated to generate $96 million for the state per year.
These figures are set to grow with plans by the airline to increase its flights to Adelaide to 10 per week in October.
Singapore Airlines has strongly supported the South Australian market since it started flying to Adelaide in 1984 and has operated continuously other than for a short period in 2020 at the height of the COVID pandemic.
In October 2023, the carrier upgraded its aircraft on the Singapore-Adelaide route from the 303-seat Airbus A350 to the 337-seat Boeing 787 (Dreamliner).
Singapore is currently South Australia’s 4th largest market in terms of visitor expenditure.
Data from Tourism Research Australia shows the state welcomed 15,000 visitors from Singapore in the year-ending December 2023.

Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison said it is a wonderful milestone, with 40 years of Singapore Airlines flying in and out of Adelaide – making it the state’s longest-serving international airline.
“Singapore Airlines has brought substantial benefits to South Australia, with the current schedule of daily direct flights generating an estimated $96 million in tourism expenditure per year – and this is tipped to grow with an increase this October from 7 to 10 flights per week,” Minister Bettison said.
“Bringing international passengers direct to Adelaide is crucial for growing our state’s visitor economy, and I thank Singapore Airlines for its commitment to Adelaide and the ongoing role this important airline plays in boosting tourism expenditure and promoting travel to our state in key global markets.”

Managing Director Adelaide Airport Brenton Cox said Singapore Airlines has been an incredible supporter of the Adelaide market over four decades.
“The airline has been with us through the highs of the extraordinary growth of international travel and the lows of the COVID pandemic when Singapore Airlines was one of the first international airline to re-introduce flights in mid-2020 to help repatriate South Australians desperate to return home at the height of the pandemic and to transport SA exports to global markets,” Mr Cox said.
“Singapore Airlines was a ground breaker in providing South Australians with one-stop connections to Europe and the UK, rather than having to backtrack via Sydney or Melbourne. In 2018, Singapore Airlines chose Adelaide as their global launch port for its brand new A350MH aircraft.”
Singapore Airlines Regional Vice President South West Pacific Louis Arul said they are delighted to join with the South Australian Tourism Commission and Adelaide Airport in celebration of their 40-year partnership with the city of Adelaide.  

“Our partnership has helped cement our legacy as the longest serving international airline to the South Australian capital,” Mr Arul said. 

“Travel demand into, and out of, Adelaide continues to remain robust and we’re happy to add 3 frequencies a week, bringing a total of 10 services per week from October 2024.”