Scoot TR753 from London Gatwick South Terminal to Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 1 via Bangkok Suvarnabhumi
Scoot TR753 is a twice-weekly low-cost flight from London Gatwick to Singapore via Bangkok. When checking prices for my flight back to Singapore between redeeming miles on Singapore Airlines or paying cash for other alternatives, the miles option was not worth it as the taxes out of London Heathrow were unbelievably high at £241.06.
I easily decided to save my miles for a future trip and paid cash for ScootPlus instead at £472.94 inclusive of taxes with all frills included except for the comfort kit with blanket and eye mask. The choice of my ScootPlus upgrade was also easy as the price difference was not much from Economy Class after adding the cost of meals and baggage.
Scoot TR753 departs from London Gatwick Airport South Terminal, which is directly connected to Gatwick Airport Railway Station. After exiting from my Great Western Railway 1O74 train from Reading (coming soon in the far future), the Scoot check-in row is on the left of the railway station exit at Row E.
Ah, I see the crowd already.
Scoot TR753 Check-in at Row E
Scoot takes up the end of Row E. The long queue is indeed for Scoot TR753.
Thankfully, as I was a ScootPlus passenger, I could use the priority queue and counter, but not before being questioned by the counter staff with a “Sir, are you in the queue?”.
Check-in was a big confusion for me as it started with the check-in agent not able to find my booking but fixed it after keying in my right surname, and there was still a document check even though Singapore has greatly eased travel restrictions after handing over my passport.
The next question that puzzled me was “Do you know your entry procedures to Singapore?”, to which my confused reply was “Umm, I’m fully vaccinated.”, to which the check-in agent laughed and went through her checklist with me.
As a Singapore Citizen, I was first asked for my COVID-19 test result within 2 days before departure, to which my reply to her was that it was for children 12 years old and below who are not vaccinated.
I was then asked for proof of travel insurance to Singapore to which I was now starting to get annoyed and I simply replied “I’m going home. I’m a Singaporean.”.
I think the ground staff for Scoot needs to be more updated on travel rules as this was a flight to Singapore by a Singaporean airline which Singapore Citizens will definitely be on board as we are going home. It had almost been 2 months as of the date of my trip since travel rules in to Singapore were greatly relaxed.
Also, Singapore Citizens seem to now need to be sure of travel restrictions for all categories of travel as I could have possibly be denied boarding since I could not produce my proof of my COVID-19 test result within 2 days before departure which was not needed, if I had not confidently informed the check-in counter that I definitely do not need one.
Perhaps this might be the reason why the Economy Class queue was long and slow? I’m not sure.
My boarding pass for my Scoot TR753 flight from London Gatwick South Terminal to Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 1.
Once done with the check-in confusion, I headed up the escalators to departures and security.
Security was at another end, and the upper level is basically just a path towards it.
Heading into departures security.
The queue continues inside with most passengers fumbling about because of the liquids, aerosols, and gels restrictions. I’m not sure why this is frequently the case even though the rules have been around since more than 20 years ago.
Do note that airports in the UK require you to remove your 1 resealable, transparent plastic bag from your bag if you have pre-packed it. Bags with liquids, aerosols, and gels in other bags will be brought aside for extra screening.
My queue took 15 minutes from joining to completion of security screening.
Heading down to the transit area after security screening.
Do note that there is no exit immigration from the UK – you just leave.
As usual in UK airports, you will need to make your round around the duty free shop before getting to the main waiting area.
Heading out of the duty free shop into the main waiting area.
Wait for Gate
Another exercise typical of UK airports, everyone has to wait around the departure boards for their gate which is shown only about 70 minutes before departure.
As I was still about an hour away from knowing my gate, I headed up in the hopes of trying out the No1 Lounge at Gatwick South Terminal.
Unfortunately, the No1 Lounge at Gatwick South Terminal was not able to accept Priority Pass or any other cardholders as it was full.
As such, I went for the next best thing possible at Gatwick South Terminal. A traditional UK favourite. The choice destination for a night out.
The drinks here are about twice more expensive than the city and the food does not come with a drink, but it is still possibly the most affordable place that you can grab a meal or drinks at Gatwick South Terminal.
I got myself a pint to end off my long holiday and with fond memories of my many affordable meals and drinks at Spoons.
Looking down at where I’ll be standing at to wait for my gate.
About 70 minutes to departure, the gate for my Scoot TR753 flight was finally shown at Gate 21.
Gate 21 is about a 5 to 9 minute walk from the screens.
If you are flying on Scoot, you should definitely remember to bring a bottle or more to fill up at the water fountains as bottled water is chargeable on board Scoot.
Following the signs towards Gate 21.
The path splits here, which I can feel that my gate is getting close.
Taking the travellators to Gate 21.
Gate 21 is just beside a toilet so I headed there before entering the gate hold room point of no return.
There is a Costa ahead with the remaining gates, but it was closed.
Scoot 9V-OFI “Mous-Scoot-ka” would be flying me back from London Gatwick to Singapore.
Well, at least I’ve found my gate already.
Heading back to the gate, a long line had already formed.
There’s only a simple boarding pass screening here as security had already been conducted before entering the transit area.
Here, a ground staff announced that there was no food and drinks available for sale on board the plane and that if you have not pre-ordered your meals, you should go out of the queue and buy some.
Following which, while I was taking the above photo, he announced over the PA that videoing him during his announcement was not appreciated.
A closer look at 9V-OFI “Mous-Scoot-ka” after scanning and tearing off my boarding pass.
Following snapping this photo, when I turned around from the window, the said staff was behind me and raised his voice at me to “stop taking photos of people”, even though the above photo of 9V-OFI was not of a person. He then referred back to his announcement and I told him that I was most definitely not videoing him.
I thought that was quite rude to raise his voice at me in the crowded gate hold room and accusing me of something I didn’t do. If I were videoing, I would also not be clicking my shutter away like how I was taking the above photos.
Scoot’s ground handler at Gatwick, Menzies Aviation, should seriously improve their customer service attitudes as after my check-in confusion, I had now have to deal with this.
Another look at 9V-OFI “Mous-Scoot-ka” at the gate.
Instead of the usual boarding announcement, the abovementioned staff called for passengers sarcastically by saying “If you’re not in Premium Class, I would take a seat.”.
When the queue in front failed to disperse, he announced again in a raised voice, “If you’re not in Premium Class, I would take a seat.”.
Following which, he started to question random passengers in the queue with “Are you in Premium Class?” and proceeded to check our boarding passes. Unsurprisingly, no one got turned away as we were all in ScootinSilence or ScootPlus.
By far, this was the strangest and possibly rudest way I’ve ever seen Scoot’s BoardMeFirst in operation. I’m pretty sure all of us understood his first announcement well even though it was in a sarcastic tone.
When the aircraft was ready for boarding, BoardMeFirst passengers were told by the staff to follow him down. No proper boarding announcement over the PA was made for ScootPlus, ScootinSilence, or BoardMeFirst passengers.
My first look at the familiar ScootPlus cabin.
I’m just happy to be finally on board the plane away from Gatwick Airport terminal.
Notice that there is a middle row missing due to the crew bunk area to serve this long-haul flight.
My booked Seat 2A.
The legroom available on board ScootPlus.
A cup of water was prepared as a welcome drink during boarding.
Meals were also re-confirmed by the cabin crew at this point, and drinks orders were taken to be served together with the meal. An alcoholic drink is included in the complimentary selection for ScootPlus passengers.
And thankfully, by this time, with the friendly verbiage and attitude of the on-board crew, I knew that the flight was back in Scoot’s control and my Menzies Aviation goodbye-from-the-UK experience is now over.
Complimentary WiFi (30MB)
A complimentary WiFi voucher worth 30MB was also provided once all ScootPlus passengers had boarded.
The WiFi access code needs to be scratched off to be keyed in to the portal once WiFi was available in the air.
Seat functions are mechanically controlled by the levers at the tip of the armrest. One is for recline, while the other is for propping up the calf rest.
The reading light and call buttons are located on the other side.
The reading light above my seat.
There are no individual air-conditioning vents on board the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
A universal power socket is located in front of the middle armrest which is activated after take-off. There is no additional charge for the use of these power sockets for ScootPlus passengers.
A QR code is pasted on the middle armrest to access ScootHub.
The aerobridge was retracted on time, but the aircraft was still going to sit at the gate for quite a while due to congestion at London Gatwick Airport.
The pilot kept passengers updated on the delay with estimates provided by London Gatwick Airport.
Finally pushing back 45 minutes after the scheduled departure time.
London Gatwick Airport has 2 parallel runways beside each other on 1 side of the terminals.
Looking back at Gatwick’s terminals.
Finally on Runway 26L.
Taking off from London Gatwick.
My Scoot TR753 flight finally took off from London Gatwick at 8.32pm – 62 minutes delayed from schedule.
With the westerly departure, the aircraft needed to do a u turn back towards the east.
A last grand sunset over London.
Leaving the UK with a sight of the mouth of the River Thames.
The cabin windows were then dimmed by the crew once the seat belt signs were switched off.
Nasi Lemak Dinner
I had pre-ordered the Nasi Lemak during booking. The ScootPlus meal comes with a side snack and a drink, of which I opted for a white wine.
For flights departing from London Gatwick, Scoot only provides meals in retort packaging.
Thankfully, with a standardised longer-life meal, the meal experience was also more consistent.
Scoot’s Nasi Lemak was served with a generous amount of sambal and the dishes consisted of chicken, long beans, a piece of otah, and a quail egg. The rice was also coconutty which complimented the sambal well.
Here’s my opinion of Scoot’s Nasi Lemak. Good stuff. Almost nearing AirAsia’s standard.
The snack was a box of Nibbles Double Chocolate Lava Cookies with 3 individually wrapped pieces of cookies. This was quite nice as the lava probably helped to preserve the taste in the dry air on board the pressurised cabin.
To my pleasant surprise, complimentary drinking water was served in cups around the cabin throughout the flight. I checked with the cabin crew on this and they mentioned that this kind of drinking water (not bottled) is complimentary for ScootPlus passengers, and for this flight, additionally for all passengers in Economy Class as they had ran out of bottled water for purchase.
I then checked on additional meal availability and there were meals, snacks, and drinks available for purchase, although not at normal stock levels. What was that earlier exaggeration by Menzies Aviation at the gate about then?
The toilet in ScootPlus was nice and clean. The limited number of users probably helped with the cleanliness and wait time as queues were almost non-existent with just 18 passengers in ScootPlus.
When heading to sleep, I realised that the electronically dimmable windows (EDW) weren’t opaque enough to block out the strong daytime sun when adjusting to night time on board was needed.
I slept for about 4 hours straight and decided to switch my mind over to Singapore time and not sleep any longer to prevent jetlag later at night.
No second meal was provided on this long leg of the journey, although meals, snacks, and drinks can still be purchased.
On the descend into Thailand, I finally caught a glimpse of it after more than 2 years of not visiting. However, this would just be a transit this time and I can’t buy any Mango Sticky Rice either.
Flying past King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, Pra Chom Klao Railway Halt, and Hua Takhe Railway Station.
Flying past Suvarnabhumi Airport Bus Terminal.
Flying past the Suvarnabhumi Airport Taxi Park.
Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport
My Scoot TR753 flight from London Gatwick South Terminal landed at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi at 2.24pm – 51 minutes delayed from schedule due to the late departure from London Gatwick.
Looks like Thai Airways isn’t doing too well with 3 taxiways still functioning as a car park for planes at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi.
Suvarnabhumi Airport’s Satellite Terminal 1 (SAT 1) looks ready but with the lack of flights, it doesn’t look opened yet.
Taxiing on to the main terminal.
Satellite Terminal 1 (SAT 1) looks like a giant hangar from here.
Seems like Thailand’s travel recovery is still going slow with no planes behind me. Feels weird to land in Bangkok but with a Senai feel.
Bangkok Airways also has their planes parked at Satellite Terminal 1 (SAT 1).
Despite having most gates empty around Suvarnabhumi, my Scoot TR753 flight still parked at the second-last gate of the E Pier.
Parked beside a Thai Smile Airbus A320.
The aerobridge was attached to the front door.
Announcements were made repeatedly for passengers to Singapore to remain on board the aircraft.
Passengers for Bangkok disembark the aircraft here. Sitting near the open door, I had my first taste of the heat back in this part of the world.
Transiting passengers remain on board
After passengers for Bangkok had disembarked, the cleaning team came on board to clean up the aircraft for the next leg of the journey.
It was a surprisingly pleasant transit experience here as there was no need to navigate the transit procedures in Suvarnabhumi Airport only to return to the same plane and seat. All I had to do was to remain seated on board.
Boarding then commenced for the next batch of passengers from Bangkok to Singapore, who are now delayed also due to the late arrival of this flight due to the delay in London Gatwick.
Even as it was just a transit, services for ScootPlus restarted as if it was a new flight with new cups of water presented to all passengers.
Detaching the aerobridge in preparation for pushback.
No delays in pushback here with the empty apron.
No traffic at all on the way to the runway.
Just 1 AirAsia following behind.
Turning on to Runway 19 with no jams.
Taking off from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport.
My Scoot TR753 flight from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi took off at 3.53pm – 78 minutes delayed from schedule.
Goodbye Bangkok, hopefully I will be back soon for a proper visit.
With the southerly take-off, it was a rather straight flight onwards to Singapore.
Flying past the Bang Na Expressway, a 55km long viaduct and the 7th longest bridge in the world.
Leaving mainland Thailand.
Flying past Chonburi.
The windows were once again dimmed automatically but I could reset it back to shine brightly in the day.
Flying over Pattaya.
Keying in my WiFi code for this leg. With this short flight, I could use my allowance more liberally instead of having to ration the data to use across half a day.
Mum’s Fried Rice Lunch
For this leg of the journey, I ordered Mum’s Fried Rice.
I had wanted to have 2 Nasi Lemaks instead after reading less-than-satisfactory reviews on Mum’s Fried Rice from the internet, but I decided on having variety and the other meals didn’t really appeal to me. So Mum’s Fried Rice it is.
On first look, Mum’s Fried Rice actually looks presentable.
On first taste, the rice of Mum’s Fried Rice was actually flavourful, although obviously there’s no wok hei because this is actually Mum’s Microwaved Rice as I’m on a plane. The chicken and lap cheong also were nicely saltish for an inflight meal.
I spoke candidly to the cabin crew on the London-Bangkok leg and he mentioned that most passengers found that Mum’s Fried Rice was strange because of the lap cheong, which makes sense.
In the COVID era, Scoot’s passengers were mainly on the Athens-Berlin route and the passengers wouldn’t really be from South East Asia. I think lap cheong might have been too exotic and the European passengers couldn’t understand the flavour of it. Which is a shame as I quite liked Mum’s Fried Rice.
Here’s my review of Mum’s Fried Rice. Not disgusting at all.
Unfortunately, Mum’s Fried Rice is now gone from Scoot’s menu as of July 2022. Too many complaints over nothing perhaps.
The snack was the same box of Nibbles Double Chocolate Lava Cookies with 3 individually wrapped pieces of cookies.
It was an uneventful and non-dramatic landing in to Singapore, and my first glimpse of land was Pulau Tekong.
Looks like reclamation is well under way since I last saw it more than 2 years ago.
Seems like the resort is much further inland now.
Crossing the final stretch to mainland Singapore.
Singapore Changi Airport
My Scoot TR753 flight from London Gatwick and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi landed at Singapore Changi Airport at 6.48pm – 58 minutes delayed from schedule due to the late departure from London Gatwick and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi.
My first glimpse of Changi Airport after 3.5 months away.
Taxiing back to Terminal 1.
The sun was setting by now, which means I’ll probably get out by dark.
Taxiing fast past Terminal 1 towards the D gates.
A longer than usual taxi and the final turn felt a bit strange.
Ah, I’m in Terminal 2.
The aerobridge was attached on the second door.
ScootinSilence and ScootPlus passengers disembarked first, with the cabin crew holding Economy Class passengers while we disembarked.
Heading up the thankfully-air-conditioned aerobridge.
Thank you 9V-OFI “Mous-Scoot-ka” for getting me back to Singapore affordably and safely.
While my arrival was in Terminal 2, new electronic signs at the gate pointed towards Terminal 1 for immigration and baggage reclaim.
Heading down for Singapore immigration.
Singapore Arrival Immigration
Oh wow. Travel is back huh.
Once down, I realised most of the queues are caused by people who have NOT filled up the SG Arrival Card (SGAC) with Electronic Health Declaration, and were u-turned by the Enhanced Immigration Automated Clearance System (eIACS) gates or having extended questioning by manual counters.
Some (I can’t believe it’s more than 1 instance) ugly Singaporeans were even arguing with immigration officers that they’re Singaporean so why do they have to fill it up.
Is it that hard to follow rules, seriously? The form takes less than 1 minute to fill up for Singaporeans anyway with just 3 yes or no questions.
As I had filled up my 3 days before departure, I went through the eIACS gates without hassle and I was done in less than a minute.
Duty free concessions were well and truly open, a far cry from when I left Singapore.
A much expanded baggage reclaim area which now I see is essential for the returning crowds.
My baggage reclaim was at Belt 16. As my bags were checked in in London, it was probably placed right at the back of the hold and they were the last to come out.
When stepping out after customs, it was a refreshing sight for me as almost all signs of COVID-19 restrictions have been removed in Changi Airport with free access between Terminal 1 and Jewel Changi Airport and passengers can freely use the normal wayfinding signs to continue on their onward journeys publicly instead of separate paths for travellers. Normalcy is coming back.
Scoot was a really affordable way for me to fly back from London to Singapore.
Excluding the confusing and poor service by Menzies Aviation at London Gatwick Airport, the value that I got from this Scoot flight with almost all frills included is exceeding the amount I paid for my ticket.
Scoot’s on-board service by the cabin crew is friendly as ever especially in ScootPlus, I got 2 meals – 1 on each leg of the journey, I have a generous 30kg of complimentary checked baggage which I paid £21 more for an additional 10kg since I was carrying stuff back, and most importantly, I got a big seat for the long-haul flight which really helps as I could stretch out throughout.
The only thing I didn’t purchase was the comfort kit as I purchased mine from Asda and Poundland for much cheaper, and I didn’t even use it as the ScootPlus seat was comfortable enough to sleep in with the headrest and the cabin temperature was just right. Also, I didn’t need ScooTV for entertainment as it was a night flight out of London.
If I were to go to London again, and if low fares are still available, Scoot is a great way to fly for a night flight.