Complete Guide: Singapore Airlines seat selection fees

Want a better seat on your Singapore Airlines flight? If you're in Economy or Premium Economy, it may cost you. Here's all you need to know.

Back in December 2017, Singapore Airlines unveiled its new fare types, which saw the introduction of seat selection fees for certain Economy Class tickets.

Prior to this, passengers were only required to pay seat selection fees if they wanted an Extra Legroom Seat. Now, even a middle seat at the back of the plane could be chargeable, depending on your fare type!

Economy Class passengers may need to pay a fee for advance seat selection

Fortunately, these fees haven’t spread to the premium cabins just yet (British Airways charges its Business Class passengers for seat selection), and they can be waived for elite members, or those travelling with children.

In this post, we’ll explore how Singapore Airlines’ seat selection fees work, who qualifies for complimentary or discounted seat selection, and how you can avoid these fees altogether.

Which cabins have seat selection fees?

Below is a summary of which Singapore Airlines cabins feature seat selection fees.

CabinSeat Selection
EconomyChargeable for certain fare types
Premium EconomyChargeable for Extra Legroom and Solo seats 
BusinessComplimentary
First/SuitesComplimentary

If you’re flying in First/Suites or Business, then this article holds no relevance for you. All seats can be selected free of charge, although certain seats are blocked for pre-selection by Solitaire PPS/PPS Club, such as Row 11 on the A350-900s.

If you’re flying in Premium Economy, you can select any seat for free, except the Extra Legroom Seats, or Solo Seats (only found on the A350-900ULRs).

If you’re flying in Economy, whether or not you enjoy complimentary seat selection depends on your fare type.

Economy Class

Seat types

Extra legroom seats on B737-8

Singapore Airlines divides its Economy Class seats into three types:

  • Extra Legroom: Located in the emergency exit rows, where extra space is a mandatory safety requirement
  • Forward Zone: Located at the front of the Economy Class section, which means earlier disembarkation and (hopefully) shorter lines at immigration
  • Standard: All other seats
Example seat map from B777-300ER showing Extra Legroom (Orange), Forward Zone (Green with Shading) and Standard (Green) seats

Here’s the breakdown of Economy Class seat types by aircraft.

💺 Economy Class Seat Types by Aircraft
 StandardForwardExtra Legroom
A350-900 Long Haul130516
A350-900 Regional194636
A380-800 (New)2596618
A380-800 (Retrofit)2507419
B737-8108306
B737-800114306
B777-300ER1245010
B787-10232636

Whether or not you need to pay a seat selection fee boils down to your fare type.

Commercial bookings

All Economy Lite fares will pay seat selection fees. Economy Value (for flights departing from 1 April 2024) and Standard enjoy complimentary Standard seats, while Economy Flexi enjoys complimentary Standard & Forward Zone seats.

Fare TypeFare CodeSeat Selection
Economy LiteV, KChargeable
Economy ValueQ, NComplimentary
(Standard)*
Economy StandardM, H, WComplimentary
(Standard)
Economy FlexiY, B, EComplimentary
(Forward Zone & Standard)
*For flights departing from 1 April 2024. If your flight departs up till 31 March 2024, all seat selection is chargeable
❓ What fare type did I book?

If you’ve forgotten what fare type you booked, you can check it by retrieving your e-ticket and scrolling down to the line that says “Booking Class”.

Award bookings

Economy Promo and Saver awards enjoy complimentary Standard seat selection, while Economy Advantage awards enjoy complimentary Standard & Forward Zone seat selection.

Award TypeSeat Selection
Economy PromoComplimentary
(Standard)
Economy SaverComplimentary
(Standard)
Economy AdvantageComplimentary
(Standard & Forward Zone)

Seat selection fees

The cost of seat selection ranges from US$8 to US$120, depending on the type of seat and route. Discounts or complimentary seat selection may apply for elite members and their companions, which I’ll touch on later in this article.

💺 Seat Selection Fees (Economy)
 StandardForward ZoneExtra Legroom
Band 1US$8US$15US$25
Band 2US$10US$20US$60
Band 3US$15US$25US$80
Band 4US$20US$40US$100
Band 5US$25US$50US$120
Band 1: Singapore to/from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam; between Denmark and Italy, between Spain and Italy
Band 2: Singapore to/from Bangladesh, Hong Kong, China, India. Japan, Korea, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and UAE
Band 3: Singapore to/from Australia and New Zealand
Band 4: Singapore to/from Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and United Kingdom; between United States and Germany
Band 5: Singapore to/from USA

Singapore Airlines sometimes operates aircraft with Premium Economy cabins on regional routes like Bangkok, Colombo, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Jakarta. 

Premium Economy is not sold on these flights, but Economy passengers can select a Premium Economy seat for extra comfort (while still receiving Economy service, i.e. no Book the Cook or champagne). The cost ranges from US$35 to US$90.

💺 Seat Selection Fees (Economy)
 Premium Economy
(Standard)
Premium Economy
(Extra Legroom)
Band 1US$35US$50
Band 2US$70US$90
Band 1: Jakarta, Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi ,Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Surabaya
Band 2: Colombo, Dhaka, Maldives and Guangzhou

Premium Economy Class

Seat types

Premium Economy cabin on A350-900

Premium Economy passengers enjoy complimentary seat selection regardless of ticket type, but they’ll need to pay extra if they want either of these seats:

  • Extra Legroom Seat
  • Solo Seat (only found on the A350-900ULR)

Extra Legroom is rather self-explanatory. These seats are located in the exit rows, which need to be kept clear throughout the flight. Consequently, they have all the legroom you could possibly need.

Premium Economy Extra Legroom Seats

Solo Seats refer to the single seats found on A350-900ULR aircraft that ply the non-stop routes between Singapore and the USA. A total of six such seats are available, each with their own storage locker. 

Solo Seat on A350-900ULR | Photo: OMAAT

The cost of seat selection ranges from US$60 to US$140, depending on the route. Again, discounts or complimentary seat selection may apply for elite members and their companions. 

💺 Seat Selection Fees (Premium Economy)
 Extra LegroomSolo
Band 1
Band 2US$60
Band 3US$80
Band 4US$100
Band 5US$120US$140
Band 1: Singapore to/from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam; between Denmark and Italy, between Spain and Italy
Band 2: Singapore to/from Bangladesh, Hong Kong, China, India. Japan, Korea, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and UAE
Band 3: Singapore to/from Australia and New Zealand
Band 4: Singapore to/from Brussels, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and United Kingdom; between United States and Germany
Band 5: Singapore to/from USA 

Complimentary/discounted seat selection for KrisFlyer & PPS Club members

PPS Club and KrisFlyer members, as well as their travel companions on the same booking, may be eligible for complimentary or discounted seat selection. 

Solitaire PPS & PPS Club
 MemberCompanions
Standard
Forward Zone
“Premium Economy”*15% off
Extra Legroom15% off
Solo 15% off
*On flights equipped with a Premium Economy cabin, where the cabin is not sold
KrisFlyer Elite Gold
 MemberCompanions
Standard10% off
Forward Zone10% off
“Premium Economy”*15% off10% off
Extra Legroom15% off10% off
Solo 15% off10% off
*On flights equipped with a Premium Economy cabin, where the cabin is not sold
KrisFlyer Elite Silver
 MemberCompanions
Standard
Forward Zone10% off
“Premium Economy”*10% off
Extra Legroom10% off
Solo 10% off
*On flights equipped with a Premium Economy cabin, where the cabin is not sold
KrisFlyer
 MemberCompanions
Standard5% off
Forward Zone5% off
“Premium Economy”*5% off
Extra Legroom5% off
Solo 5% off
*On flights equipped with a Premium Economy cabin, where the cabin is not sold

For the full benefits of Solitaire PPS Club, PPS Club, KrisFlyer Elite Gold and KrisFlyer Elite Silver membership, refer to my detailed guides below:

Travelling with infants

When travelling with infants, there are two possible scenarios.

Number of infants = number of adults

You may select a Forward Zone seat at the bassinet position for free for each of the adults, regardless of fare class. 

Number of infants < number of adults

The adult passenger with the infant attached to his/her booking will be able to select a Forward Zone seat at the bassinet position for free, regardless of fare class.

The adult passenger without the infant can select any Forward Zone or Standard Zone seat for free, regardless of fare class. 

Travelling with children

Passengers with children (aged 2-11 years) in the same booking may select Standard Seats in advance for free.

It’s not mandatory for you to be seated next to your children, nor for your children to sit with each other. 

All seats become available at check-in

If you don’t qualify for complimentary advance seat selection, there’s still hope.

All seats in your designated cabin become available for selection during online check-in, which opens 48 hours before departure. This includes Extra Legroom Seats and even Solo Seats, assuming there are any left.

At this point, you can pick any leftover seat you wish at no additional cost, regardless of status.

However, this does not apply to Premium Economy seats on short-haul flights, which are reserved for selection by Solitaire PPS and PPS Club members.

Conclusion

Singapore Airlines passengers flying in Premium Economy or Economy Class may be required to pay seat selection fees, which vary depending on route. These fees can be avoided or discounted if you have PPS Club or KrisFlyer Elite status, or if you’re travelling with an infant or child in the same booking. 

Don’t forget that it’s a free-for-all once online check-in opens at the T-48 mark, so if you don’t fancy paying, be sure to check-in as soon as possible and pick your free seat!

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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Chris

Passengers travelling with infants (under two years) in the same booking may select Forward Zone Seats or Standard Seats in advance for free.

I think this applies only to the bassinet seats. One has to pay for the other forward zone seats (at least that’s my experience anyway).

Mike

I echo Chris’ experience, I am a KFEG member with infant and I can select Forward Zone seats for myself/infant-in-lap for free, but my partner in the same booking has to cough up a seat fee. This is in contradiction to the SQ website. Could be a system logic issue.

One workaround is to tag the infant to the non-KFEG pax.

Last edited 1 year ago by Mike
Candy

On the other hand, I had no issues booking forward seats for free for all passengers travelling with the infant. Normal revenue tickets, plain vanilla Krisflyer member here. Happened for my 2 recent trips. My 2nd trip had 4 adults and 1 infant, and all could book forward seats for free.

Bruno

Encountered the same issue. Only the bassinet seats (often middle) can be selected with an infant. Other seats are greyed out.

Guess it’s on purpose to avoid that people outsmart the system too easily. 10% of the basefare for an INF ticket is usually lower than the seat selection fee.
It’s not likely they’ll kick someone out of the seat when the “infant” no-shows at the gate after all.

Chris

Question: does *G pax (non-SQ metal) get the same seat selection privileges as KFEGs?

In the case you brought up involving BA, the answer is yes. Does that apply to SQ?

Brian

I had an interesting contradiction that came up last week on SQ207. At T-48, there were 3 extra legroom seats still available (expertflyer showed as unassigned), but they were not available for me to select. First time I’ve seen that. Flying a Q fare as Silver SQ member.

generally

Say it with me Greedy Greedy SIA pigs

Generally is dumb

I say ‘stupid commenter’

Hans

Do you have to check in with Singapore Airlines to pick your seat? For example, if the first leg of your trip is with a star alliance partner and you have to check in with them, can you still use manage my booking within 48 hours of takeoff of the Singapore Airlines flight to pick a seat?

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