Travellers can now book tickets on Singaporean budget airline Scoot’s upcoming flights to Berlin, which has been given a launch date of June 20 this year.
The non-stop, four-times-weekly service, which the airline announced last month, takes just over 13 hours and is operated by the airline’s Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. Scoot outfits these with two classes – economy and the more spacious “ScootBiz” – with return fares currently starting at S$747 (US$561) for economy and S$2,067 (US$1,553) for ScootBiz.
The ScootBiz cabin on these aircraft is laid out in a 2-3-2 configuration, though the bulkhead row has only four seats, skipping the three central seats. This makes the three centre seats of the second row (2D, 2E and 2F) among the best for pitch (leg room).
ScootBiz seats typically offer 22 inches of width and 38 inches of pitch, and also comes with 30kg of check-in baggage allowance, 15kg cabin baggage, priority check-in and boarding, inflight entertainment streaming, in-seat power supply and a wider selection of meals (plus an alcoholic drink).
Berlin is the latest long-haul destination the Singapore Airlines subsidiary has set its sights on, its flights to Athens and Honolulu both having launched last year.
While this service fills the gap in Singapore Airlines’ non-stop Germany network – the parent airline flies to Dusseldorf, Frankfurt and with its Airbus A350 to Munich, but not to the German capital – business travellers heading to Berlin will likely favour flying the mainline airline and connecting onto domestic flights with fellow Star Alliance member Lufthansa.
The two airlines also notably launched their joint venture agreement in October last year, covering flights operated by both airlines between Singapore, Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Belgium, significantly opening up flight options to travellers. Lufthansa also flies to Singapore from Frankfurt and on March 27 this year will be resurrecting its Munich-Singapore service, also using its A350.
A number of new low-cost long-haul routes have been cropping up between Singapore and Europe in particular. Alongside Scoot’s service to Athens, Norwegian recently began non-stop flights between Singapore and London Gatwick.
That said, low-cost long-haul still appears to suffer from a popularity problem among business travellers. In a recent Business Traveller poll, only 26 per cent of respondents said they would fly low-cost on flights of more than eight hours for business purposes.