Scoot CEO, Mr Campbell Wilson, responds to uproar over 11-hour delay
Hello Scoot Community,
As many of you would have known by now, one of our flights was disrupted
over the weekend which caused consequential delays to a number of others. We
appreciate all that has been shared and discussed on our Facebook pages over
the past few days, and know that many of you were anxious and frustrated. I’ve
been reviewing your comments and I thought that, in addition to extending my
own apology, it might be useful to share a little more information about how
we’ll improve communication, the compensation for delays and what actually
transpired over the weekend. It’s a long post, but bear with me.
We realise that one of the main causes of frustration was the timeliness and
frequency of information. We have, in fact, been working for a few months on a
SMS alert system designed specifically to provide timely information when
flights are disrupted due to weather or other events. This system is due for
implementation in just a few weeks…or, as Murphy’s law would describe it, just
a few weeks too late. Too late is, of course, too late, and we’re sorry.
We’re also aware that many of you had questions regarding compensation. In
keeping with our Guest Promise, we’ll be issuing a $50 voucher to every
passenger on the flights which were delayed beyond 4 hours. All passengers who
were denied boarding were given tickets on the next available Scoot flight and
offered a $200 Scoot travel voucher each, and those who chose to buy a new
ticket on another airline can obtain a refund from us on the sector that was
not flown, and claim against their travel insurance for the new ticket.
We'd also like to be transparent about the issues that lead to the delays,
lest it clarifies your queries. The whole saga arose just before our
Singapore-Bangkok flight on Saturday (Jan 19), when engineers discovered a
technical fault with one of the doors at the back of the aircraft during the
pre-flight check. Whilst the aircraft was completely safe to operate, Civil
Aviation Authority of Singapore rules required the seats in rows 57–65 to be
As the flight was fully booked, emptying these seats necessitated the
unfortunate step of seeking volunteers to take a later flight, in return for
compensation. The need to ask passengers to travel on a later flight was
entirely due to the need to vacate rows 57-65 for safety reasons, and was not
due to overbooking of the flight.
Regrettably, we were unable to find the necessary number of volunteers, so
advised the last passengers to check in that they would be transferred to the
next flight and compensated. Despite the terms of carriage requiring compliance
with safety related requests such as this, a few refused and physically
prevented the flight from boarding. Various efforts of Scoot representatives
and the Airport Police failed to resolve the matter and eventually, after a six
hour delay, some other passengers agreed to travel at a later date and the
aircraft departed for Bangkok.
Upon the aircraft’s return to Singapore the door fault was fixed within a
few hours, but by then every flight to be operated by that aircraft was behind
schedule - including the flight to Tianjin on Sunday (Jan 20), and passengers
connecting from Tianjin, to the Gold Coast later that day. After much effort,
the schedule was restored on Monday evening, though some guests whose
connections had been broken remained en route home.
To cut a long story short, a small technical glitch and the actions of a
small number of people had substantial consequences on the travel of many
others. The irony is that had we proactively delayed the Bangkok flight by a
few hours to fix the fault – guaranteeing disruption to nearly 800 people’s
plans - the rest of our schedule would have been virtually unaffected.
Read the rest of the letter OR click
through to find out what happened.
Scoot delay: China travellers call embassy
AROUND a hundred Chinese Scoot passengers rang their embassy to complain
after a flight delay left them stranded at Changi Airport for almost 11
They erupted in fury after they were told the Singapore to Tianjin service
would not take off at 1.30am due to a knock-on effect from a fault with an
emergency slide which was discovered the previous day.
An official from the Chinese Embassy responded to the call by going to the
airport to ensure that tensions did not escalate further.
The flight eventually took off around midday.
A source from the Chinese Embassy told The Straits Times: "We appealed to
the travellers to stay calm and to abide by the laws in Singapore."
Many were unhappy with the delay and asked for cash compensation to purchase
food, drinks and other necessities, he said.
"We spoke to the airline and also to Changi Airport Group to resolve the
situation peacefully. We have good bilateral relations with Singapore, and the
airport was very helpful in this matter."
In the end, each passenger was given an envelope which contained cash, he
said. "I don't know what the amount was or who gave the money."
The Straits Times understands that each passenger received between $80 and
$100 following Sunday's delay. However, a spokesman for Scoot - Singapore
Airlines' long-haul budget arm - denied that cash was given and said that
travellers affected by the delay will each receive a $50 travel voucher as
The Chinese travellers were not the only ones affected by Scoot's flight
The problem started last Saturday when a flight to Bangkok from Singapore
was delayed by more than six hours because of the faulty slide.
The bald man and the man wear in a red cap got into a heated argument at
departure longue of Changi Airport Terminal 2.
Apparently, some 20 over passengers were offered to change flights as flight
TZ302 had a technical fault. According to The Straits Times, one of Scoot
aircraft emergency slides was faulty so the budget carrier had to reduce the
passenger load on the plane in order to fly safely.
TZ302 was bound for Bangkok and scheduled to depart at 5.45pm on Saturday but
was delayed for at least 7 hours, reported ST.
According to the report, the flight 302 was still at the gate at 12.30 am on
Sunday morning. Over 300 passengers were stranded.
Scoot chief executive Campbell Wilson told ST that the airline had asked
passengers who had not checked in if they were willing to be put on a flight
the following day. They were offered accommodation, which was not in the
standard terms and conditions of their tickets.
Witnesses told ST that a group of passengers - believed to be mostly
holidaymakers from China - were asked to change flights as they had not yet
checked in. But they refused as some of their friends had already boarded the
Apparently, the group turned rowdy and the police had to be called in.