Scoot passengers will not be allowed to choose seats

With Covid-19 wreaking havoc on global air travel, Singapore Airlines chief Goh Choon Phong talks to The Sunday Times in an exclusive interview about how the airline will weather these unprecedented times.

Scoot is suspending seat choices to facilitate contact tracing and safe distancing. Other precautionary measures include suspending services like priority boarding, food purchases and in-flight seat upgrades.
Scoot is suspending seat choices to facilitate contact tracing and safe distancing. Other precautionary measures include suspending services like priority boarding, food purchases and in-flight seat upgrades.ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

Scoot passengers are no longer allowed to pay to choose their seats.

This is to facilitate contact tracing and safe distancing, the budget carrier told The Sunday Times.

Meanwhile, cabin crew in face masks, face shields and gloves have to sit 2m away from passengers, and will use a separate toilet.

These are some of the precautionary measures the airline has introduced as flights slowly start to resume.

Scoot chief executive Campbell Wilson said the carrier's priority is to ensure the health and safety of its crew and passengers.

He said: "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."

On the decision to suspend choosing of seats, the airline said it will facilitate contact tracing and safe distancing. "Where possible, Scoot will endeavour to seat customers travelling with family, or customers in the same booking, together," it said. "Customers should not change seats in-flight."

Scoot has also suspended other services including priority boarding, food purchases and in-flight seat upgrades.

It will continue with previously announced measures such as pre-placing food packs on seats where applicable and limiting carry-on baggage to no more than 3kg. This is to facilitate safe distancing for passengers during security clearance, boarding and disembarkation.

 
 
 

The remaining cabin baggage allowance of up to 7kg can be checked in at no cost.

On board, each passenger will receive a care kit with anti-bacterial wipes, sanitiser and a surgical mask. Only passengers wearing masks will be allowed to board and they have to keep them on during the flight.

Planes will be cleaned more frequently and the toilets disinfected at least three times hourly.

"Scoot will continue to monitor the situation, as well as evolving regulatory guidance, and will review procedures as required to ensure our customers can fly with us safely, with peace of mind," it said.

The airline is flying to six cities this month, up from just two cities - Hong Kong and Perth - in April and May.

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was operating flights to more than 60 destinations, including Singapore.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on June 07, 2020, with the headline 'Scoot passengers will not be allowed to choose seats'. Subscribe