Flight Review – Scoot TR291: Bangkok Don Mueang to Singapore by ScootBiz

Coming from my 5 Baht train ride from Bangkok city, I went to check in for my Scoot flight to Singapore, this time on board ScootBiz.

Scoot has a portal to Bid 4 Biz for a price that you’re comfortable with, between $70 to $300 for the flight from Bangkok to Singapore. Being cheap, I went to bid for the lowest price for the upgrade, and surprisingly got it considering the only add-on which I paid for last minute was for a seat assignment in Economy Class.

Well, till I saw the load factor once on board.

Scoot’s check in desks are at Row 6.

Das right.

Hope this won’t be a trend for me now or else my wallet will cry.

My receipt boarding pass for my Business Class flight back.

Since my initial purchase was just for the flight and seat, this $70 bid adds a 30kg check-in allowance, 2 pieces of hand-carry baggage, BoardMeFirst, in-flight meal, power socket and ScooTV*.

*More on this later.

Still made it in good time for my flight despite the short train delay earlier.

Immigration at Don Mueang at this timing was a little slower than my arrival, with the ASEAN lane closed. It took around 20 minutes to clear immigration and customs.

My plane to Singapore has already arrived from Tokyo. TR291 makes a 2-hour layover at Bangkok Don Mueang. Do consider this long layover timing if you are planning to take this from Tokyo to Singapore.

As compared with the newer Suvarnabhumi Airport, Don Mueang has only one main duty free store, which did not sell Mango Sticky Rice. *sob*

But I did find Mango Sticky Rice at Cafe Ritazza near Gate 23 for 180 Baht.

And since a certain country has the highest tourist numbers for Thailand, look out for rolling children and adults on the floor, or sprawled out oversized hand carry luggage when trying to repack after customs for who-knows-what reason.

Even one of the shops are catered for such dried goods to be brought back.

Luckily, since the airport was smaller than Suvarnabhumi, it was a short walk to the gates, at least for my flight.

My flight would be departing from Gate 26, the last gate at the end of this pier. Still barely a 5-minute walk from customs though.

Scoot and NokScoot.

The former Singapore Airlines and Scoot Boeing 777-200ER, now with NokScoot.

Nok Air + Scoot = NokScoot

Once boarding calls commenced, I decided to board first to get my $70 worth. To which the lady at the boarding gate told me to keep my Mango Sticky Rice in my bag for who-knows-what reason.

Unless the no outside food policy applies to Business Class passengers too? Hmm.

Surprisingly, only one aerobridge was in use for the Boeing 787.

My seat for this trip. Yes, the first row of the cabin would have offered an immense amount of legroom but I still prefer underseat storage.

Here’s the amount of space you get on the front row.

The ScootBiz cabin on the 787-8 seats 21 passengers in 3 rows, with a 2-3-2 configuration.

Before departure, the stewardess came along to serve me with my welcome drink – a 135ml cup of mineral water.

My meal order was also taken at this time, as Bid 4 Biz passengers do not have the option to choose meals online. That also means all the premium options are not available, since they have to be pre-booked more than 24 hours before departure, whereas my upgrade confirmation was done 24 hours before departure.

The windows were slightly tinted during boarding to give a slightly cozy atmosphere together with the Boeing Sky Interior. Honestly, I thought it was about to rain till I realised it was the window tint.

The view from my seat. This was the total load for ScootBiz on my flight.

Damn, shouldn’t have pre-purchased that seat assignment as backup.

Upon pushback, the Boeing Sky Interior changes to blue, together with a slightly brighter white lighting to match the external sunlight.

Passing by the Kantarat Golf Course to Runway 21L, the outer runway.

Bye Bangkok!

Please don’t hit your golf balls into my engine.

Looking back at Don Mueang Airport and the future Airport Link and Red Line.

Flying out of mainland Thailand.

Shortly after take-off, the crew comes around to hand out ScooTV access codes for entertainment during the flight.

Key in your details and the provided access code.

Unfortunately, ScooTV didn’t work for me no matter which show I choose. Even after disconnecting and connecting to the WiFi, uninstalling and reinstalling the app, and having the stewardess check on the connection for me, apparently I was the only one who couldn’t watch it.

Oh well, didn’t really need it anyway.

At least the much needed power socket was switched on.

Shortly after, the crew came around with my meal. Alcoholic drink choices are included as well.

Kind of regretted ordering the Beef and Mushroom Lasagna now. Should have asked the stewardess what she would have instead.

Yup, I thought it was tomato soup at first. Can’t see any trace of cheese anywhere.

We were clear for landing quite early, before scheduled time. It was a quick and almost straight line descend into Changi Airport.

Passing by the Senai-Desaru Bridge.

Crossing back into Singapore.

A former Tigerair A320 now in a hybrid Tigerair and Scoot livery.

Unlike full service airline’s Business Class, the curtains separating Economy Class and ScootBiz were not closed to allow ScootBiz passengers to disembark first, but rather having a free-for-all disembarking flow.

Now for the breakdown on whether this S$70 is worth it or not.

  • 30kg check-in allowance: S$44
  • 2 pieces of cabin baggage: S$24
  • BoardMeFirst: S$6
  • In-Flight Meal: S$21 (assuming paired with wine)
  • Power Socket: S$5
  • ScooTV: US$11 (approximately S$15)

Total cost of add-ons if purchased separately in Economy Class: $115

On first look, it looks pretty value for money considering you get to sit in a ScootBiz seat as well.

Now let’s look what I actually used, ignoring the price I paid for my initial seat assignment.

  • 20kg check-in allowance: S$24 (Champion me came back from Bangkok with a 5.4kg bag.)
  • BoardMeFirst: S$6
  • In-Flight Meal: S$21 (paired with wine)
  • Power Socket: S$5

Total cost of add-ons I used: $56

Remember that ScooTV was not working for me, if not the cost would have been $71 – a dollar more than the price I paid for the upgrade. This means I paid $14 to change from sitting in an Economy Class seat versus a slightly bigger ScootBiz seat. As compared with Malindo, the ScootBiz seat was slimmer and legroom slightly lesser.

As many online reviews compare it to, it’s like a Premium Economy product. Unfortunately, I’ve never flown on Premium Economy before so I’m unable to provide such a comparison.

Would I use ScootBiz again?

Perhaps for a slightly longer flight eg. from Taiwan, if the bidding price is the same. For a short flight from Bangkok to Singapore, I’m comfortable enough with Economy Class, carrying my small bag by myself throughout the journey and to have a meal which definitely does not cost $21 before or after the flight. The passengers who didn’t Bid 4 Biz, leaving a half-empty ScootBiz cabin, probably made a wiser choice.