How to use frequent flyer points to fly from New Zealand to Singapore

Changi Airport
GUIDE: Using Points
DIFFICULTY: Intermediate
TIME TO READ: 3 minutes
POSTED: November 22, 2019
UPDATED: November 22, 2019
LOYALTY PROGRAMS: Relevant to Multiple Programs

In this guide, I present the First and Business Class products flying to Singapore from three New Zealand cities.

You’ll also learn how to maximise the value of your frequent flyer points.


Point Hacks Singapore Series

Part I: The Why: Our top five recommendations when visiting Singapore
Part II: The How: The best ways to use your points to get to Singapore


The test

I looked at flights between Singapore and Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Route Map NZ to Singapore

And I’ve only analysed First and Business Class redemptions, as they generally offer the most per-point value.

Whilst Premium Economy redemptions could offer good value to some travellers, I generally believe that these redemptions are best saved up for longer flights to Europe and North America.

Economy flights are usually best bought with cash. However, there are exceptions to that rule.

Finally, I’ve focussed on redemptions through these three frequent flyer programmes—Velocity, and KrisFlyer. As you’ll soon see, the only airlines offering flights on this routes are part of Star Alliance. You may also be able to find good value in buying Alaska Mileage Plan miles for travel on Singapore Airlines, but only when booked in advance, as they now charge more points for redemptions made up to 30 days before departure.

I have not included redemption pricing for Airpoints—while they offer great value partner redemptions, they rarely seem to release awards on Singapore Airlines. Airpoints redemptions on Air New Zealand are poor value, as the cost simply equals the price to otherwise buy the seat with cash.

All redemption pricing in this guide is for one-way travel.

Here are the First Class options, which is a product only available from Auckland.

Best First Class: Singapore Airlines A380

Singapore Airlines Suites Class A380 Old

Singapore’s flag carrier has a luxurious product in its Suites Class flying on the A380, flying from Auckland over the summer months—but it is unfortunately not their newest Suites Class product, which is still only available on select routes including Sydney.

Enjoy the First Class side of the SilverKris Lounge departing Auckland, and then step onboard with excellent customer service and a high degree of privacy.

You can stretch out with a proper bed once you’re on board.

Points needed: 85,000 KrisFlyer miles, 90,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles, or 114,000 Velocity Points
Singapore Airlines A380 (old) Suites Class overview

Runner-up First Class: Singapore Airlines 777-300ER

Singapore Airlines 777-300ER First Class

This is the most common Singapore Airlines First Class product available for award redemptions from Auckland and a great use of KrisFlyer miles or Velocity points.

Available on Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-300ER which is scheduled year-round, award availability is usually good, especially for last-minute redemptions.

It is also a newer product than the Suites Class found on the A380, having been rolled out in 2013.

Points needed: 85,000 KrisFlyer miles, 90,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles, or 114,000 Velocity Points
Singapore Airlines 777-300ER First Class overview

Best Business Class: Singapore Airlines

Singapore’s flag carrier invests a lot of time and energy into New Zealand, thanks for their alliance partnership with Air New Zealand. As such, New Zealand-based travellers have access to three different Business Class products. It can actually be quite confusing, so make sure to check out the guide below.

I’ll call out the top two products flying to/from New Zealand.

From Wellington and Christchurch, you can try the Airbus A350, with a new product offering a lie-flat seat and direct aisle access. However, note that this Singapore Airlines’ most narrow Business Class seat.

Singapore Airlines 350 and 777 Business Class

Next up, you can find Singapore’s most common Business Class product on all 777-300ER aircraft flying year round from Auckland. I was really impressed by the comfort and width of the seat, responsiveness of the inflight entertainment system, and professionalism of the crew.

Singapore Airlines A350 Business Class

Points needed: 62,000 KrisFlyer miles, 65,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles, or 78,000 Velocity Points

Runner-up Business Class: Air New Zealand 787-9

Air New Zealand Business Premier 787 Seat

I really like Air New Zealand’s Business Premier product, which has a modern feel, a lie-flat bed, direct aisle access for all passengers, and seats so you can share a meal with a fellow passenger.

If you are flying solo, try to nab one of the seats off the aisle on the left side of the aircraft. If you are travelling with a companion, you’ll probably want to pair off from the right side aisle.

You can find the 787 flying year-round from Auckland, and from Christchurch from 1 December 2019 to 22 February 2020.

Air New Zealand Business Premier 787 Seat

Points needed: 74,000 KrisFlyer miles
Air New Zealand 787 Business Premier overview

Summing up

It is no surprise that Singapore Airlines has the best First and Business Class products flying to and from New Zealand.

Air New Zealand also has a high frequency of flights to the Garden City, with its 787-9 Business Premier product still a favourite of mine, particularly for their spectacular bedding.

For all the faults of their seating, Air New Zealand is still a fantastic airline.

Which is your favourite First or Business Class product? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Supplementary images courtesy respective airlines.

How to use frequent flyer points to fly from New Zealand to Singapore was last modified: November 22nd, 2019 by Daniel Kinnoch