This is a series of two back-to-back flights on Scoot, a low-cost carrier owned by Singapore Airlines Group. It was an exciting and crazy day. I clocked a total of three "1st" on this trip:
(1) My 1st time flying SIN-KHH and KHH-SIN
(2) My 1st time onboard Scoot's B787 Dreamliner
(3) My 1st time doing a turnaround trip to Taiwan within one day! (Crazy yeah?)
I'd love to do (1) and (2) over and over again, trying many different new routes and flying all the new airplanes out there. But as for (3)… Not so much; it was way too tiring.
After half a day in Kaohsiung, I returned to Kaohsiung International Airport for my flight back to Singapore. If you are new to this short series, you may want to rewind a little and read the previous report for some background on this crazy trip of mine back in 2015.
In this report, I will be doing a brief and short report on the flight back to Singapore from Kaohsiung. The previous report covered Scoot's B787-9 cabin introduction in great details, so I won't be repeating them again.
Scoot's flight from Kaohsiung to Singapore originates from Osaka. While en-route to KHH, I was tracking the aircraft on FlightRadar24.
6.15pm, I arrived at KHH about 2 hours prior to scheduled departure by taxi and immediately got ready for check-in.
There were many counters opened, and it was obvious business was good on this flight.
While the queue was long, I received the boarding pass very soon and confirmed that I managed to secure a seat in the Scoot-in-Silence zone. The quick check-in process was a testament of Taiwan's very efficient airports.
KHH was left with just a few more international flights to clear that evening. Flights were scheduled for Shanghai, Hong Kong, Macau, and Singapore. There was also a "shuttle flight" from Kaohsiung to Taipei, which I have reviewed before on Flight-Report here (my review was on a flight in the opposite direction from Taipei to Kaohsiung).
In particular, flight CI581 bound for Shanghai was showing as "delayed till next day". Hopefully the airline managed to inform all its passengers on this flight before they appeared at the airport.
7.10pm, passed departure immigration.
There weren't many flights left at this hour, therefore the airside area was pretty empty, with some shops already closed.
7.15pm, crowds gathered only around the gate areas. TZ287 was using Gate 32 that evening.
7.35pm, boarding commenced half an hour prior to departure.
In all my years of flying, this was probably the only time I stepped foot onto an exact same aircraft twice a day on a "different" flight. Indeed an interesting experience. Many fellow passengers were already onboard when I boarded the aircraft.
Here's a look at the emergency exit row seats with unlimited legroom. You can see from this photo that the seat width on Scoot's B787s is really narrow.
On this flight, my seat was allocated in the front section of the aircraft.
This section of the Economy Class seats are specifically dedicated as the "Scoot in Silence" zone, and here's the description of this zone duplicated directly from Scoot's website:
Scoot in peace and quiet when you reserve seats in our ScootinSilence zone located at the front of all our 787 Dreamliners. Besides the exclusive and silent cabin (no kids under 12 allowed here), you can also enjoy additional comfort – every seat comes with an adjustable headrest and you can reserve Super and Stretch seats (where available)! What's more, you'll also be able to get off the aircraft ahead of others upon landing!
Sounds good yeah?
We were soon ready for departure.
2014h Cabin Doors Closed
2015h Push Back
2023h Taxi to Runway
2027h Take Off
2031h Seatbelt Signs Off
As opposed to on the flight that morning from SIN to KHH, I decided to pre-order a meal for this return flight. Meal service commenced with cabin crews serving passengers with pre-ordered meals first at around 9.15pm, 50 minutes after departure.
After the meal service, I dozed off and was quite sound asleep for the rest of this uneventful flight. It was indeed very quiet in the Scoot-in-Silence zone, with only background sounds of the engine and no other noise.
When I opened my eyes again at 11.25pm, the cabin lights were switched on again with the cabin crews preparing for landing.
2346h Cockpit Announcement: "Cabin Crew Prepare for Landing"
0000h Touched Down
0008h Arrived at Parking Bay
0017h Board Shuttle Bus
0024h Passed Immigration
0027h Passed Customs
Took a few more cabin photos, including the ScootBiz seats, prior to disembarking the aircraft. The ScootBiz product is more akin to Premium Economy on a full service airline.
It was a rather unusual arrival at Changi Airport that night, with the aircraft parked at a remote bay instead of a gate. The whole B787 load of passengers disembarked onto shuttle buses that ferried all of us to the terminal; and this took quite a while.
This was not common at Changi Airport, and it was quite an interesting experience. The only thing that bothered me was that I was already dead tired at that point in time, and I just wanted to leave the airport quickly and drive home.
Our flight arrived around 20 minutes ahead of schedule, and this meant that at the scheduled arrival time of 12.25am, I was already at the baggage claim area. As I was doing a turnaround trip, I had no luggage to claim and was able to leave the airside area immediately after clearing immigration. How nice would it be if every trip is like this… Perhaps I should really start to learn how to travel light.
Scoot-in-Silence was a nice product and I was able to catch some really good rest on this flight. The meal service was pretty good too! Even though the food did not look that palatable.
On departure from KHH, the airport scored lower for "services" because more than half of the shops in the airside area were closed even though there were still a handful of international flights departing.
In a blink of an eye, Scoot's "new" Kaohsiung/Osaka route has already been launched for over 5 years now. Before the introduction of this route, the only way to fly from Singapore direct to Southern Taiwan has always been the twice weekly China Airlines SIN=KHH flight. My mom did tell me that long ago, SilkAir used to fly this route too, but I have totally no impressions of that. China Airline's Kaohsiung flights from Singapore are operated using B737-800 aircrafts, and are usually quite pricey. For Singaporeans who are heading to Taiwan for leisure travelling, the flight timings are not quite ideal too. These reasons were probably why I have never heard of friends travelling to Taiwan on this flight of China Airlines before. However, ever since Scoot started flying to Kaohsiung, more and more people are now flying to Taiwan on Scoot, and many are even doing multi-city trips flying SIN-KHH/TPE-SIN, so that they can travel on the whole Eastern stretch of Taiwan. It was also very coincidental that my mom shifted to Kaohsiung in the year this flight was launched, and hence this got me really excited about this flight for quite a while back then.
Last year in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic, Scoot re-launched this flight momentarily, only to pause it again a short while later.
I am posting this on the third day of Chinese New Year in 2021. To those who celebrates this festive season, a very Happy New Year to all of you. And to everyone else reading this, stay safe and healthy!