This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Say what you will about the impending demise of the Boeing 747, but there’s one thing the Queen of the Skies still does better than any other airplane: make history. For the historic summit between the US president and the leader of North Korea, both leaders chose to fly the Queen.
After leaving the G-7 meeting in Canada early, President Trump’s Air Force One landed at 8:21pm Singapore time (8:21am Eastern). While not technically a Boeing 747, the president’s Boeing VC-25 is a militarized version of the passenger jet.
While it was no surprise how Trump would arrive at the summit, there was quite a bit of speculation about how Kim Jong Un would make the journey. On Sunday, three aircraft were spotted leaving North Korea: an Ilyushin Il-76 cargo plane (carrying Kim’s armored limo and personal toilet) an Air China 747-400 (registration B-2447) and Kim’s private Air Koryo Ilyushin Il-62M (registration P-885).
Since it’s Kim’s private plane, spotters widely expected the IL-62M to be carrying the leader. But, beating Trump to Singapore by a few hours, it was the Air China 747-400 that Kim stepped off of in Singapore. The 23-year-old Air China 747-400 is often seen flying commercial routes intra-China, but it’s typically only flown internationally with Chinese government VIPs aboard, which some deem China’s Air Force One.
The usage of the Air China VIP aircraft may indicate that the North Korean government doesn’t feel its fleet of Soviet-built aircraft are safe enough to transport their leader. Or perhaps the Air China 747 was chosen as another form of safety since the IL-62M needed to stop in China along the way to refuel. Rather than having to worry about another landing and takeoff — and securing the airfield for the re-fueling visit — Kim chose the nonstop option.
While there’s no commercial air service between Pyongyang and Singapore, if Kim were able to redeem miles for the flight, he’d want to use Asiana Club miles or Avianca LifeMiles. Both programs charge just 100,000 miles round-trip in first class between Korea and Singapore on Star Alliance partners. Considering the large entourage Kim travels with, hopefully North Korea was able to stock up on LifeMiles during the recent 135% promotional buy miles bonus for this theoretical redemption.
H/T: The Drive
Featured image by Terence Tan for Ministry of Communications and Information Singaporet/Via Getty Images.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 points! With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 60,000 point sign up bonus worth up to $1,200 in value, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards