SIA’s budget subsidiary Scoot has effectively cancelled its entire flying network from Sunday 22nd March, for an initial period of two weeks, with GDS timetables showing the airline has now cancelled 99 out of every 100 flights usually offered for sale until 5th April 2020.
Scoot Passenger Flights
Just a few days ago it was Jetstar Asia who became the first Singapore airline to announce a suspension of flights due to the impact of coronavirus on demand, with the Qantas subsidiary commencing a longer three-week stoppage from Monday 23rd March.
These cuts obviously come as a result of the fall in demand from the global spread of coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 illness, a pandemic now affecting over 180,000 people worldwide.
Despite GDS schedules and flight searches on the Scoot website confirming cessation of services, the airline has yet to formally announce this stoppage, or update its list of temporary flight suspensions at the time of writing, though we understand that staff members have been informed.
A handful of flights will still operate
During the first week of the grounding, one of the airline’s Airbus A320s will fly to Jakarta and back – TR278/279 on Tuesday and Sunday evenings.
- TR278 SIN-CGK 18:25-19:10 A320 (Tue, Sun)
- TR279 CGK-SIN 19:55-23:00 A320 (Tue, Sun)
These flights will repeat the following week, for a total of eight services (four return flights).
Additionally, 18 Malaysia flights are set to operate from 1st April 2020 to 5th April 2020, the latter half of the second week of general service suspension, before the airline proposes to return to a fuller schedule on 6th April 2020 including most other destinations.
Kuala Lumpur (5 return flights)
- TR452 SIN-KUL 09:45-10:55 A320 (1 Apr – 5 Apr)
- TR453 KUL-SIN 11:35-12:50 A320 (1 Apr – 5 Apr)
Ipoh (2 return flights)
- TR486 SIN-IPH 15:35-16:45 A320 (2 Apr)
- TR487 IPH-SIN 17:25-18:50 A320 (2 Apr)
- TR484 SIN-IPH 07:45-08:50 A320 (4 Apr)
- TR485 IPH-SIN 09:30-10:30 A320 (4 Apr)
Penang (2 return flights)
- TR428 SIN-PEN 20:30-21:50 A320 (3 Apr)
- TR429 PEN-SIN 22:35-00:05 A320 (3 Apr)
- TR424 SIN-PEN 14:35-15:55 A320 (5 Apr)
- TR425 PEN-SIN 16:35-18:10 A320 (5 Apr)
Scoot’s cargo-only flights using Boeing 787 aircraft to and from China for belly-hold freight, which we wrote about last week, will continue to operate during the general suspension of passenger services.
49 aircraft will be grounded
This is a much bigger announcement than Jetstar made earlier this week, effectively grounding all 49 of Scoot’s aircraft for a two-week period.
The Scoot fleet currently comprises:
- 26 Airbus A320
- 3 Airbus A320 NEO
- 10 Boeing 787-8
- 10 Boeing 787-9
Some of the 787s will fly the China cargo charters, while the A320s will make those (very) occasional Indonesia / Malaysia trips, but rarely more than one or two aircraft at once will ever be flying – an almost total shutdown of the airline.
Scoot also has firm orders for 30 Airbus A320 NEOs, 16 Airbus A321 NEOs and five further Boeing 787s.
If you booked a Scoot flight on or before 15th March 2020 for travel through 31st May 2020, you may be eligible for a refund in the form of a travel voucher valid for 12 months.
Scoot’s call centre, located in the Philippines, suspended operations from 17th March 2020 due to precautionary measures taken by the government there in view of the growing scale of the COVID-19 outbreak.
A temporary English hotline on +65 66815410 has been up and running with effect from 19 March 2020, available from 9.00am to 6.00pm, Monday to Friday.
Scoot is encouraging customers to use the self-service refund option launched on its website through the Manage My Booking portal, and has also provided the following flowchart to assist customers with the process.
Additionally, for all bookings made on the Scoot website, mobile app or WeChat mini booking site between 15th March and 31st May 2020, Scoot will also extend a one-time free date change (fare difference may apply).
For these bookings, the one-time free date change can be utilised up to four hours before scheduled flight departure time, for travel up till 31 March 2021. This can also be completed through the Manage My Booking portal in most cases.
An even bigger announcement than Jetstar’s temporary flight suspension, this effective stoppage from Scoot means a total of over 2,000 flight cancellations over the next two weeks (Jetstar Asia’s three-week grounding affects around 1,800 flights).
It also comes as Singapore Airlines withdraws over 50% of its global capacity over the coming weeks, with many other airlines cutting services around the region.
This is an unavoidable situation with so many travel restrictions imposed since the spread of coronavirus, leading to an almost complete lack of demand for flights to and from Singapore.
We expect that for both the Jetstar Asia and Scoot groundings, service resumption dates on 16th April 2020 and 6th April 2020 respectively will be subject to review based on the coronavirus situation at the time, so service resumption may be postponed if required.
(Cover Photo: Simon_sees via Flickr)