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A Guide to Fifth-Freedom Flights

A Guide to Fifth-Freedom Flights


What exactly are fifth-freedom flights? Fifth-freedom flights are flights between two cities that are not the airline's home base. For example, an airline is based in city A, and it flies to city Y with a stop at city X. In a fifth freedom flight, passengers can fly the airline based in city A from city X straight to city Y without a stop in city Y. 

Fifth-freedom flights are flown by an airline that is not from any of the countries or cities they are based in. But, why should we even try these flights? Because of this, we have more options to choose from when flying. Instead of flying the airlines from the origin or the destination, we can experience a new airline. 

But you may wonder, what are some fifth freedom flights? Can we try them out? Here are some of many fifth-freedom flights that are out there. 

Singapore Airlines 

Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-300ER landing at Los Angeles International Airport. Credit: Peter Lam

Singapore Airlines is a leader with fifth-freedom flights, operating many fifth-freedom flights, mostly to destinations in the United States. Some flights are:

Frankfurt (FRA) - New York (JFK) Airbus A380-800

Hong Kong (HKG) - San Francisco (SFO) Boeing 777-300ER

Tokyo (NRT) - Los Angeles (LAX) Boeing 777-300ER

Tokyo - New York (JFK) (This flight may be starting soon. Details will be given closer to the launch date.) 

Manchester (MAN) - Houston (IAH) Airbus A350-900

Moscow (DME) - Stockholm (ARN) Airbus A350-900 


Emirates A380-800 landing into Los Angeles. Credit: Peter Lam

Emirates is another airline with a lot of fifth-freedom flights. These routes include flights between Europe and America or flights between Asia and Australia. Some of the routes Emirates operate are: 

Milan (MXP) - New York (JFK) Airbus A380-800

Athens (ATH) - Newark (EWR) Boeing 777-300ER
Singapore (SIN) - Melbourne (MEL) Boeing 777-300ER

Singapore (SIN) - Brisbane (BNE) Boeing 777-300ER

Sao Paulo (GRU) - Santiago (SCL) Boeing 777-200LR

Barcelona (BCN) - Mexico City (MEX) Boeing 777-200LR

Bali (DPS) - Auckland (AKL) Boeing 777-300ER

Hong Kong (HKG) - Bangkok (BKK) Airbus A380-800

Larnaca (LCA) - Malta (MLA) Boeing 777-300ER

Other Airlines

Emirates A380-800 landing into Los Angeles. Credit: Peter Lam

Air New Zealand 777-200 landing into Los Angeles. Credit: Peter Lam Although Emirates and Singapore Airlines have a lot of fifth-freedom routes within their network, other airlines also operate these types of flights. Some of them are:

Ethiopian Airlines
Oslo (OSL) - Stockholm (ARN) Boeing 787-8

South African Airways

Washington (IAD) - Accra (ACC) Airbus A330-300

Air France 

Los Angeles (LAX) - Papeete (PPT) Boeing 777-200


Bangkok (BKK) - London (LHR) Boeing 777-300ER

Bangkok (BKK) - Amsterdam (AMS) Boeing 777-300ER

Bangkok (BKK) - Vienna (VIE) Boeing 787-10

Qatar Airways Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) - Phnom Penh (PNH) Airbus A350-900

Air New Zealand

Los Angeles (LAX) - London (LHR) Boeing 777-300ER; route ending October 2020 

Rarotonga (RAR) - Los Angeles (LAX) Boeing 777-200


London (LHR) - Singapore (SIN) Airbus A380-800

British Airways 

Singapore (SIN) - Sydney (SYD) Boeing 777-300ER


Seoul (ICN) - Manila (MNL) Airbus A330-900neo; route starts March 2020


In conclusion, fifth-freedom flights operated by airlines take people from one place to another that is not their base of operations. This would then give people more options to fly with different airlines. From Singapore's Frankfurt to New York to Qantas's London to Singapore service, fifth-freedom flights can be found anywhere across the world. 

What are your thoughts on fifth freedom flights? Do you think fifth-freedom flights are a good idea? Are you planning on trying these flights out? Let us know in the comments below! 

Peter Lam
15 year old Plane Spotter; Based in Los Angeles International Airport and John Wayne Airport; Avgeek since July 23rd, 2017

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