SIA’s low-cost subsidiary Scoot has made a couple of recent additions to its otherwise relatively stable flying programme this month, with a return to both Perth and Melbourne, plus a restart of the Singapore – Macau route for the first time since March 2020.
Elsewhere on the network Kuching services look set to cease this month. Provisionally the route is re-bookable in May after a two-week break, though that month’s schedule is yet to be firmed up.
Ipoh, on the other hand, sees a frequency increase from mid-April.
Scoot’s Melbourne services had been temporarily suspended for a month between 25th February and 27th March 2021, while Victoria state was under lockdown and international passenger arrivals were temporarily suspended.
Overall Scoot will operate a total of 61 departures per week from Singapore by the end of the month.
Here’s how Scoot’s weekly passenger flights look by route, including frequencies and aircraft types planned.
|Ho Chi Minh*||7/wk||32N|
|Ipoh||1/wk (till 11/4)
2/wk (fm 16/4)
|Kuching||1/wk (ends 18/4)||320|
|Macau||2/wk (fm 20/4)||320
|Taipei / Seoul||1/wk||788|
|Taipei / Tokyo||2/wk||789|
* Singapore to Ho Chi Minh flights are not currently able to carry passengers due to government restrictions, but will do so on their return flights to Singapore.
** Singapore to Melbourne flights will not carry passengers between 1-9 April 2021
Other recent changes compared to our last update is that only two flights per week to Taipei now continue to Tokyo, compared to four per week previously, while Zhengzhou has recently downgauged from Boeing 787 to Airbus A320 operation.
Scoot passengers can also connect at Changi Airport onto other SIA Group services, with those originating in Australia, Taiwan and China no longer restricted to the transit holding area and instead free to roam the shops, restaurants and lounges as usual between flights. Further details are available here.
The full Scoot passenger flight schedule for April 2021, which is subject to occasional updates, is available here.
SIA and SilkAir
These services will complement Singapore Airlines’ own 44 passenger destinations and SilkAir’s four routes from Changi during April 2021.
As we recently reported, that list grows to 45 destinations in May 2021, with twice-weekly Singapore Airlines flights to Bali joining the network, hopefully ahead of a travel bubble arrangement with the island later in the year.
The Scoot fleet
A total of 21 aircraft in Scoot’s 50-strong fleet are operating revenue flights, based on activity noted over the last 14 days.
Six aircraft are stored in Alice Springs (three Boeing 787-8s and three Airbus A320s), while the remaining 23 aircraft are stored at Changi.
Here’s a breakdown of which Scoot aircraft are in recent service.
No love for the A320 cargo conversions
In August 2020, Scoot removed the passenger seats from one of its Airbus A320s (9V-TAZ) in order to carry more cargo in the cabin, to help address the global shortage of air cargo capacity caused by COVID-19 and generate additional revenue.
Shortly after that a second aircraft (9V-TRN) had the same modification work completed.
Unfortunately the airline’s modification work doesn’t appear to be yielding much success.
The first aircraft (9V-TAZ) has only flown five cargo-only trips, two to Fuzhou and three to Kunming, while the second (9V-TRN) only flew only one cargo flight to and from Kunming, and hasn’t operated a revenue service since.
Both aircraft have been parked at Changi for over six months, since early September 2020.
On-board F&B is back
In late November last year Scoot launched ScootHub, its new system allowing at-seat ordering of food, drinks and duty free items through your own personal mobile device.
The system also supports games, an in-flight map and some other features, but crucially has allowed the airline to gain approval to serve F&B items again with reduced crew interaction in view of COVID-19.
The enhancement comes after the airline also reintroduced its ScootPlus (formerly ScootBiz) cabin on Boeing 787 flights earlier in 2021.
Date change flexibility
Scoot’s travel waiver, for flights booked on or before 15th March 2020 covering travel dates through 31st March 2021, has now expired, though you can still apply for a voucher or refund if your booking was eligible and affected.
For new Scoot bookings made between 10th March 2020 and 30th June 2021 (both dates inclusive), Scoot is offering a free one-time date change for your flights.
Do be aware, however, that if the fare for the new flight is higher than the fare already paid, the fare difference will be chargeable. If the fare for the new flight is lower, there will be no refund.
Full details of the latest ‘Fly with Confidence’ policy are available here.
It’s good to see some increases in store for the Scoot network this month, especially with Macau flights making a comeback, but with travel restrictions still firmly in place it’s not too surprising that for the most part it’s still ‘status quo’ for the low-cost carrier.
Overall Scoot will operate around 128 weekly flights by the end of April 2021, most of which are carrying passengers, around 12% of the 1,080+ weekly flights it was operating in April 2019.
Hopefully with expanded vaccine rollouts and potential travel bubbles emerging there will be increases to come, especially in the second half of 2021.
Scoot will no doubt be keen to tap in to demand for potential unlocked destinations like Hong Kong and Australia, or even places with quarantine relaxation on the cards like Phuket.
(Cover Photo: Shutterstock)