Singapore Airlines, (SIA) currently preparing for the first flight of the Airbus A380 from Singapore to Sydney and return, in October 2007, is auctioning the seats on global online marketplace, eBay.

Bids will be invited for seats and the proceeds will go to worthwhile charities, the carrier said in a statement.

Singapore Airlines CEO, Chew Choon Seng, said the airline wants to acknowledge the widespread interest in the entry into commercial service of this new aircraft, and to use the opportunity to benefit worthwhile charities.

“The first commercial A380 flight will be a moment in aviation history. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, on an aircraft that will mark a new chapter in air travel.

“And while we will celebrate the event, we also wish to remember the people who are less fortunate and can be assisted by the charities to which all the proceeds will go,” Mr Chew said.

All customers will receive a personalised ceremonial certificate confirming they were part of the first-ever commercial A380 flight.

One of SIA's fuel suppliers, ExxonMobil Aviation, will donate the fuel for the flights.

“This charity event is in line with our long-standing effort to make a positive impact on the communities in which we operate,” said Mr Kwa Chong Seng, chairman and managing director of ExxonMobil Asia Pacific.

The charities SIA is supporting through this auction include Singapore's Chest, Sydney, Australia-based charities Children’s Hospital, Randwick, and the Children’s Hospital at Westmead, and international humanitarian medical aid agency Médecins Sans Frontières. Each charity will receive a third of the proceeds.

The date of the first flight is likely to be confirmed after final notification from Airbus about the delivery date in October.