It’s not that far to get from let’s find the cheapest fare to Singapore to business class, baby!. All it takes is a cheap economy fare and a bit of luck at bidding for an upgrade.
Here at a matter of taste, we love to test flights. Checking out different airlines and airplanes, comparing the food and service or experiencing the pointy end is always fun. This time on our way to Singapore we decided to see what Scoot has to offer.
They fly their Dreamliners between Melbourne and Singapore couple times a week and I see attractive-looking flight deals very often. What I didn’t know buying my $167 economy class ticket, is that pretty much everything I may want or need on top of that comes as an extra I have to pay for. That $167 quickly became $211 when I added a 20kg check-in bag for $44.
Food? That’s an extra. Choice of seat – extra. I don’t mind when airlines want me to pay for the exit row, extra legroom or quiet zone but charging for choosing a regular seat? I don’t like it. What surprised me the most was that Scoot charges $5 SGD for power. What the…?! Anyway, we already had our tickets (obviously I couldn’t cancel that, I wouldn’t get my money back) so the plan was to bring our own power bank, our own snack supplies and our own entertainment on our own iPad. After all the flight to Singapore is under 7 hours.
Bid 4 Biz
Then, 3 days before the flight we received an email from Scoot: “Bid for an upgrade to enjoy the full ScootBiz experience”.
Click the Bid 4 Biz button below
Enter a bidding price you’re comfortable paying
Submit your request
If successful, you will be upgraded approximately 24 hours before departure. If not, you don’t pay a single cent!
Obviously, the price I’m comfortable paying is the lowest possible. In this case, it’s set at $150 per person and that’s what we went for.
What happens if you paid for any extras already? Scoot says “If you have already purchased extras like meals, bags or seat reservations, please note that these extras will not be refunded, but will increase your chance of a successful bid.”
Our $44 bag must have nicely increased our chances because 23.5 hours before the flight we received the email we were waiting for – our bid for the upgrade was successful. Scoot has worded that email so nicely, I forgot for a moment I’m paying for this upgrade and felt like I won something.
As I was checking what’s included, Scoot sent me a handy list in one of the emails:
- Luxurious leather seat with double legroom – wouldn’t call it luxurious, but it’s a comfortable seat. The lack of pockets and nooks to put my things is obvious from the moment I’m standing there with a phone, cable and a small pouch in hand. Legroom is decent but not big enough for the window-seated passenger to get out of the seat comfortably without me (aisle seat) moving out of the way.
- 30kg check-in baggage plus 15kg cabin baggage – didn’t need that but it’s always good to have this peace of mind that my bag is not going to be too heavy.
- Meal, a welcome drink and one alcoholic beverage of your choice – now, that’s a lot of room for improvement for Scoot. The meal was edible but that’s all I can say about it. I had better food in JetStar economy. This didn’t look better or different than what Scoot has for passengers at the back of the plane. Not even a real cutlery here. The alcoholic beverage was capped at one so I was hoping the welcome drink would be at least in form of wine or maybe a mini Singapore Sling. No. The welcome drink in ScootBiz is water.
- Priority check-in & boarding – check-in was a breeze but boarding took ages. There were a lot of people in front of us even though they weren’t turning left to the business section. Maybe priority boarding is one of the extras you can purchase too.
We also had access to in-seat power and the entertainment. But (there always seems to be a but with Scoot) ScootBiz doesn’t give you any amenity kits (a Snooze Kit is available for purchase), any complimentary Wi-Fi or lounge access.
Flight TR19 Melbourne – Singapore
As uneventful as flights go. 15 minutes delayed at departure, landed 15 minutes ahead of time. In our case (TR19 flights seems to have a weird schedule and depart at various times on various days) it was a daytime flight so the views were decent but also we didn’t get to test the seat during sleep.
In Singapore, two of the airplane exits were opened – at the very front and right behind the business class. The bridge crew at the 2nd door was more efficient which meant that economy passengers started disembarking first before the “biz”. And it looks like priority status doesn’t apply to the luggage like in other airlines – our bag wasn’t one of the first on the belt.
If you’re interested in seeing a bit more, check out our video flight report:
Is ScootBiz worth bidding for?
From the experience alone – yes. I feel like $361 was a fair price for what (and where) I got. There’s room for improvement, small things that would make the journey better but overall it’s not bad (unless we’re talking about the food).
Going into more detail (doing the maths!) if I’d add to my economy fare ($167) the so-called stretch seat (front of the cabin) for $79, a bag for $44, a meal $12 SGD, wine $9 SGD and Scoot TV $11 US* it would be a total of around $325. Which almost equals the $361 I paid for ScootBiz but it wouldn’t give me the priority boarding, the seat wouldn’t be as comfortable and we wouldn’t get the food & drinks served first. The bid 4 biz still seems to be a good choice.
*no idea why the prices I found are all in different currencies
What about buying ScootBiz ticket and avoiding all the hassle? A quick check for random dates gives me prices ranging between $489 and $669. Still winning with the bid 4 biz deal.
All prices in Australian Dollars, unless otherwise stated.