It’s hard to miss the cheery yellow livery of Scoot cruising down the runway or cheeky slogan telling passengers to “Get Outta Here!“. The medium- to long-haul carrier based out of Singapore is one of the newest airlines making flights more affordable between Australia and Asia.
As one of the first airlines in the world to fly Boeing’s Dreamliner, and one of only three low-cost airlines in the world to be flying these beautiful planes, I was looking forward to experiencing the Scootatidue offered onboard – that is the fun, contemporary attitude the airline embodies.
Most of all, I wanted to find out how low-cost Scoot compared to full-service carriers on similar routes, such as Qantas’ newly refurbished Airbus 320 to Singapore, Malaysia’s low-cost AirAsia to Kuala Lumpur or onboard Royal Brunei Airlines‘ Dreamliner to Bandar Seri Begawan.
Flying the Dreamliner with Scoot in ScootBiz (Business Class)
Okay, let’s get down to business (see what I did there? Okay, I’ll stop with the Dad jokes).
At the airport…
I checked in at Scoot’s home base: Terminal 2 at Singapore’s Changi Airport for my flight from Singapore to Melbourne.
Dedicated ScootBiz check-in lines were available and with quite an empty forward cabin on the evening’s flight, I was checked in and through passport control in less than 15 minutes. ScootBiz tickets include 30kg of checked luggage allowance and two onboard pieces of cabin baggage.
Singapore’s Changi Airport is a great airport to spend some time in, whether on a stopover between flights or getting there a few hours early. Best of all, Terminal 2 has lots to do: extensive shopping experiences for every price point, a well-equipped entertainment zone that includes an Xbox Kinect room and a movie theatre. There’s also an orchid garden for those who want to get outdoors, instead of spending all their time in the terminal.
ScootBiz passengers don’t have lounge access, but all Scoot passengers can purchase the Scoot-in-Style package which includes 3-hours of access to the SATS Premier Lounge (open 24-hours on Level 3 in Terminal 2). The lounge includes WiFi, showers, snacks and beverages (including some alcoholic).
The SGD$39 Scoot-in-Style package also includes priority check-in and priority boarding (both of which are included in ScootBiz tickets).
If you hold a Priority Pass card or Diners card, you can get complimentary access to the SATS Premier Lounge.
One quick tip at Changi: leave plenty of time to get to your gate. It’s a big airport and you need to pass through a secondary security screening and passport check at the gate.
Having retired all of it’s Boeing 777-200’s in 2016, Scoot is now ‘all-Boeing 787’ comprised of a fleet of 787-800 and 787-900 aircraft’s operating medium- and long-haul flights. For those who aren’t aviation geeks, that means that Scoot’s whole fleet is made up of two models of brand new Boeing Dreamliners.
I utilised the BoardMeFirst privileges that ScootBiz passengers have, and raced to be the first onboard to snap some photos. When reaching the aircraft, the cabin crew seemed genuinely happy to welcome people; a great first impression for me to the airline.
When you get to your seat in ScootBiz, a sealed cup of water will be waiting for you. While it’s not champagne, it is a nice touch that I didn’t expect and perfect to quench my thirst after a fun few hours exploring Changi Airport.
Before we talk about ScootBiz‘s seats, let me point out three key features that I love about all Boeing’s Dreamliners:
- They have huge overhead compartments
Boeing has done the seemingly impossible on the new Dreamliners: they’ve made the overhead compartments bigger while not leaving you feeling boxed in. They’re hoping to make the days where people race on board to get luggage space history, and boast that every single passenger could bring a roll-aboard bag and they’d all fit comfortably in the overhead compartments. They’ve done this by allowing the compartments to have a swooping curve, which also means the compartments, once closed, sit higher up and give the whole plane a more ‘open’ feel.
- They won’t leave you getting off the plane feeling like a piece of beef jerky
I’m sure everyone has had this feeling. They’ve been on a long-haul flight (some short-haul flights leave me like this!) and even though you’ve drunk water, not eaten the salt-laden foods and skipped the alcohol, you still feel like your skin is flaky and dehydrated (aka: you feel like a big stick of beef jerky).
One of the best features of the Dreamliner is that the cabin environment allows for higher humidity levels to combat that dry feeling. They also have an advanced air filtration system to eliminate smells and airborne bacteria more effectively. Moral of this story, don’t feel guilty if you want that delicious but smelly curry from Scoot Cafe, but – uh – leave the durian at home!
- Those windows
You are either going to love or hate the windows on the Dreamliner. They are bigger (60% bigger in fact) and they don’t have window shades; say what?! No longer are you going to have to deal with broken or grubby window shades as the Dreamliner’s windows are controlled with a small button. Using electrochromic technology, the windows will simply ‘haze over’ and enter sunglasses mode. Think of the windows as a giant pair of transition sunglasses, except you control when they transition.
Scoot operates in a two-class configuration, ScootBiz and Economy. It’s important to note that in Economy there are further sections: Scoot-in-Silence, S-T-R-E-T-C-H, and regular economy seating (click here for more information on Scoot’s economy options).
ScootBiz is fitted with 21 comfortable black leather seats in a 2-3-2 configuration. All seats are fitted with a 38″ seat pitch and come at a width of 22″.
While it’s called ‘Biz’, the seats are more akin to a full-service airlines premium economy seating and don’t come with any additional features apart from the recline.That being said, for medium long-haul international flights like Australia to Singapore, it’s a comfortable option and, surprisingly, I fell asleep almost straight away on the overnight flight.
That being said, for medium long-haul international flights like Australia to Singapore, it’s a comfortable option and, surprisingly, I fell asleep almost straight away on the overnight flight.
I was very happy with the legroom in ScootBiz. As a 5ft 7″ woman who has pretty long legs, there was lots of room to stretch out even when the seat in front was reclined. One thing that is important to note: if you want to sleep with a blanket, you’ll need to bring your own or purchase a comfort pack from the Scootalogue. The packs are really cute and the girl sitting opposite from me said the amenities (pillow, blanket, and eye mask) were really comfortable.
My favourite feature had to be that every ScootBiz seat has in-seat power. (For economy passengers, power outlets are available for a small fee) As Scoot doesn’t have in-seat entertainment consoles, it’s important to make sure your devices are charged. It’s also great for those choosing to work (especially important for those who are flying from Australia on the day flights).
A quick note on Scoot’s economy: not all seats are the same.
In Economy on the 787-800, there are S-T-R-E-T-C-H seats, which are often bulkhead and exit row seats with a 34-36″ pitch.
There is also the Scoot in Silence cabin (pictured above). This is a small cabin directly behind ScootBiz where tickets will only be sold to travellers aged 13-and-above, designed to offer a more peaceful experience onboard and for passengers to be among the first to disembark.
Both of these seating types come at an additional cost payable when booking, at check-in or on board.
If you’re feeling hungry, check out Scoot Cafe for a range of Hot Meals, Light Meals and Snacks. Regardless of what class you are flying, I highly recommend pre-ordering your food because you have access to more meals, can save money, but you get served first!
For ScootBiz passengers, a complimentary meal is included in the ticket price.
Their Premium Selection menu offers meals you must pre-order, and come served with two sides and a drink. I went with the Singapore Signature Chicken Rice served with a tub of fiery chilli sauce. The only thing I was missing was a dollop of thick dark soy sauce, otherwise, it tasted like I picked up the meal from one of Singapore’s food courts! As part of my ‘sides’ served with the Premium Selection meal, I was served a salad, and Hagen-Daz ice cream – yum!
While Scoot does not have seatback entertainment, that doesn’t mean you’ll be bored onboard! Bring your own device and connect to ScooTV.
ScooTV is included in the cost of ScootBiz passengers tickets (for economy passengers, it costs USD$9) and includes a range of movies and TV shows, both Hollywood Favourites and International. Best of all, it can be accessed on your laptop, tablet or mobile device.
I connected my phone while I was eating dinner and watched an episode of Billions (currently streaming on Stan in Australia) but drifted off to sleep quickly after.
If you are missing being connected, Scoot offers in-flight WiFi. This is perfect for business travellers who need to work onboard, especially on the flights from Australia which are mostly day flights. I may have spent quite a bit of time scrolling through Instagram and sharing some Instagram Stories while we were in the air!
Scoot have a number of WiFi Plans. For the curious ‘Social-Lite’ 20MB plan (US$5) to their 24hr plan (US$21.95). I found the connection speed to be decent but not super speedy – we are cruising at 32,000 feet after all! – but good enough to answer emails, check social media and schedule a blog post.
If you buy a multiple-hour package, WiFi can be used across multiple devices, but only one device can be connected to the WiFi at a time.
I really liked Scoot. Sure, it’s not a full-service airline but I will go as far as saying it is my preferred low-cost airline from Australia to Asia. It was everything I had hoped other low-cost airlines on similar routes would be – fun, value for money, and comfortable for short long-haul flights.
What really won me over was the in-flight WiFi. Flights are great for switching off completely, there are times when you need the option to be able to work for a few hours and then enjoy the in-flight entertainment (or, in my case, snooze!)
I was also impressed with the Scootee’s (that’s the cabin crews nickname!) attitude towards passengers. The Scootee’s were warm and attentive when needed, but not excessively so.
As I slept for most of the flight, I didn’t find too many things I’d like to change. The only aspect I’d like to see changed was well-worn, and threadbare in places, carpets onboard BoBao. After speaking with some of the staff, I was informed that a few of the aircraft were soon getting refitted with new carpets as the original ones were faulty.
I stand by my statement that ScootBiz is more akin to a Premium Economy product on full-service airlines. That said, for those wanting to make the most of their dollars and still travel in comfort ScootBiz is a great choice for travellers.
At the end of the day, who can resist AUD$500 Business Class fares from Australia to Singapore? That’s just plane awesome.
Scoot flies to Singapore direct from the Gold Coast, Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney, and a number of other destinations in Asia.
They’ll be launching flights from Asia to Europe (Athens, Greece) in June 2017.
What’s included in ScootBiz:
- 30kg of check-in baggage
- 15kg of onboard baggage/two pieces
- Comfortable leather seats with 38″ of leg room
- Priority boarding (BoardMeFirst)
- In seat power
- Onboard wifi (extra cost)
- Free access to ScooTV
Read more about Singapore!
I flew ScootBiz as a guest of Scoot.
All thoughts, opinions, and inflight Instagram Story shenanigans were, as always, my own.