Saturday, June 13, 2020

Scoot Resumes Flights to Kuching, Ipoh and Penang

Scoot, the low-cost arm of Singapore Airlines (SIA), is resuming flights to three destinations in Malaysia, namely Kuching, Ipoh and Penang. The first flight to Kuching since 20 March 2020 took to the skies on 5 June 2020, with flights to Ipoh and Penang scheduled on 12 and 14 June 2020 respectively.

In line with the announcement, Scoot has also implemented several measures to safeguard the health of its customers and crew. As Scoot resumes more flights in June 2020 and Singapore Changi Airport prepares to resume passenger transit operations in the same month[1], Scoot will be further enhancing its operational procedures and introducing additional precautionary measures to allow customers to travel with even greater confidence.

Scoot CEO Campbell Wilson said: “In response to customer feedback, we have decided to resume some flights to Malaysia this month. As travel starts to resume, we are working closely with regulators and health experts to implement a comprehensive suite of enhanced measures to ensure the highest possible standards of hygiene, and to give our customers peace of mind that they can fly with Scoot safely. Scoot has been at the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19 from the start, with our highest priority always being the health and safety of our customers and crew.”

These enhanced precautions include:
1. When Booking Flights
a) Temporary suspension of products and services​
Scoot will be suspending certain products and services to minimize contact between crew and customers, and to facilitate effective contact tracing. These are:
· FlyBagEat and ScootPlus
· Board Me First (priority boarding)
· Extra Cabin Bag
· Online Seat Selection
· Inflight seat upgrade
· Meals and beverages will not be available for purchase online and onboard, food packs will be pre-placed on seats where applicable
· Inflight duty-free shopping will also not be available
· Snooze Kit

2. Pre-Flight
a) Submission of health declaration forms
Customers are required to complete a health declaration form prior to check-in. Forms may be completed at Scoot check-in kiosks or via an online form accessible through an SMS notification 24 hours prior to flight departure.

b) Bring a mask
All customers are required to bring and wear a mask to board their flight, which must be worn throughout the flight.

c) Temperature screening
Temperature screening will be conducted prior to boarding[2] and any customers with a temperature of 37.5 degrees and above (or as otherwise stipulated by local regulation) will not be allowed to board. These customers can re-book to travel at a later date when they are well, or they can call Scoot’s call centre to obtain a refund.

d) Limit on cabin baggage
Previously, Scoot permitted up to 10kg cabin baggage in Economy Class. With effect from 1 June 2020, Scoot will allow each customer one small piece of carry-on baggage of up to 3kg that must fit under the seat in front of them, so as to facilitate safe distancing for passengers during security clearance, boarding and disembarkation. The remaining cabin baggage (up to 7kg) will be checked in at no cost.

e) Self-service check-in

To minimize physical interactions, Scoot strongly encourages customers to check in online on or via our mobile app. Alternatively, they can use the self-service check-in kiosks and automated bag-drop facilities at Changi Airport.

f) Implementation of safe distancing measures
Safe distancing measures will be put in place at gate-hold rooms and queuing areas including check-in kiosks, gate-hold rooms and before boarding.

Scoot strongly encourages all customers to arrive at the airport early to ensure there is sufficient time for the additional pre-flight procedures.

3. In-Flight
a) Seat assignment for contact tracing and safe distancing

To facilitate contact tracing and safe distancing, customers will be assigned seats when they check in. Where possible, Scoot will endeavour to seat customers travelling with family, or customers in the same booking, together. Customers should not change seats in-flight.

b) Inflight service changes
All Scoot flights will operate with limited in-flight service with no sale of food and beverage items or duty-free shopping products. Instead, refreshments that have been packaged following strict food safety standards will be pre-placed on seats to limit physical interactions between customers and crew.

c) Always wear a mask
Customers are required to keep their masks on throughout the flight, except in specified circumstances (e.g. eating, drinking or taking oral medication).

d) Observe safe distancing measures
Customers are required to observe safe distancing measures when not seated, including during boarding and disembarkation, and when queueing to use a lavatory.

e) Cabin hygiene
Scoot will be making hand sanitisers available on board our flights for use by customers and crew. Lavatories will also be regularly cleaned and disinfected, at least three times in an hour.

f) Provision of passenger care kit for hygiene
Care kits consisting of items like anti-bacterial wipes, sanitizer and a surgical mask will be pre-placed on each seat for our customers’ personal use.

g) Removal of seatback literature
Seatback literature such as the Scoot Café Menu, the Scoot in-flight magazine and Scootalogue duty-free shopping catalogue have been removed from seat pockets to reduce surface contact. The safety card and airsick bag will remain.

h) HEPA air filtration systems
Scoot’s aircraft are equipped with cabin air filtration systems that have High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, which are up to 99.98% effective at trapping microscopic particles such as small as bacteria and viruses. These air filters have a similar performance to those used in hospital operating rooms and are replaced at regular intervals in accordance with manufacturer’s guidance. Air flows into and out of the cabin on a continuous basis, from top to bottom, with cabin air refreshed every two to three minutes (or 20-30 times hourly).

i) Infectious disease handling protocol
Scoot has in place a set of standard operating procedures for crew to handle inflight medical emergencies, including managing and segregating customers who may develop symptoms of potentially infectious diseases during flights. This includes a designated seating area for passengers who become unwell.

j) Precautionary measures for cabin crew and pilots
All Scoot crew undergo pre-flight temperature taking, are required to monitor and report their health, and must wear the appropriate Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) while on duty. For Scoot crew, these comprise a mask, gloves and face shield. The crew are also aware that if they are unwell, they should see a doctor immediately and not report for work. Crew members reporting for duty must not have any symptoms or physical contact with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases. The crew will also be seated at a designated section of the aircraft, at least 2m away from customers and will be using a separate lavatory.

4. Post-Flight
a) Enhanced aircraft cleaning procedures
Scoot has enhanced operating procedures for cleaning our aircraft, which include thorough cleaning of the aircraft’s interiors including surface wipe-downs, deep cleaning of the aircraft’s lavatory systems with the appropriate disinfectants, and fogging of the aircraft to ensure disinfectant mist is evenly spread across all surfaces in the interior of the aircraft. Aerosol spray disinfectants are also uplifted as a backup should the standard disinfection procedures be unavailable.

To give customers added confidence, in case they need to amend their travel plans after booking, Scoot has extended its offer of a one-time free date change to all bookings made from now till the end of June 2020. Additionally, all customers with bookings made on or before 15 March 2020 for flights departing between 23 January and 31 July 2020 which were cancelled are eligible for two refund options – a 100% refund via the original method of payment or a 120% refund in Scoot vouchers with a validity period of 12 months.

Customers are also advised to check with the relevant authorities to ensure that they have the necessary documentation and are eligible to travel to and enter their destination country. Travellers entering Malaysia (including Malaysian citizens, non-Malaysian citizens and Permanent Residents) are also reminded to take note of the updated policy regarding quarantine being imposed by the Malaysian Government starting 10 June 2020.

Scoot will continue to monitor the situation, as well as evolving regulatory guidance, and will review the procedures required to ensure the safety of its customers so they can fly with Scoot with a peace of mind.

[1] Refer to for June’s flight schedule.
[2] Temperature screening will be conducted at check-in counters in Singapore, this may differ for other destinations, depending on the airport layout.

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