First things first: This dirt-cheap fare of $268 is one way, and the launch promo will end June 30. After that, the fare will jump to about $354 for one way (still cheap!). But you still have one-and-a-half weeks to book that $268 fare (the idea is to fly into Athens and fly out from another city, on a separate flight). Before you hotfoot it to FlyScoot.com to book your tickets, here’s what you need to know.
#1 The direct-to-Athens flight from Singapore is Scoot’s first foray into the long-haul market, and the first to a European destination.
This morning’s flight (June 20) carrying Singapore and regional media and other random unsuspecting passengers was Scoot’s inaugural flight to Athens, and landed at 8.45am. The flights are four times a week, at the ungodly hour of 2.45am.
#2 Speaking of Gods, the Scoot staff got up to all kinds of shenanigans on the inaugural flight.
Passengers who dressed up in a Greek theme won prizes such as free flights, and flight attendants (called Scootees) also dressed up as Greek gods and goddesses, and offered prizes to passengers who could guess which deity they were ‘portraying’. (Think Aphrodite and Apollo). There was also a male flight attendant dressed up as Hera. Yes, that’s a goddess, complete with fiery red dress and peacock feathers in her hair.
#3 BYOB. Actually, BYO everything.
If you want to pay just the bare minimum for your flight, without springing for add-ons, be prepared. Bring an empty bottle so you can fill up at the water cooler at the holding gate before you board, or you’d have to pay $4 for a bottle of Evian. Technically, you’re not supposed to bring your own food onto a flight, so if you can last 11 hours (that’s the length of the flight) on an empty stomach, great. If not, pay $50 for a premium set — that’s two meals (one is a bag filled with a not-bad wrap, a packet of cashew nuts, a biscuit and a drink, and the other is a hot breakfast — we had beef stew noodles). This needs to be pre-ordered when you book your flight. On the plane, you can order $12 meals of nasi lemak or lasagna.
#4 Don’t expect the usual comforts of a long-haul flight.
On a short-haul, not having a pillow and a blanket is no problem, but on a long-haul, when you’re trying to get some sleep and take advantage of a 8.45am arrival time to arrive fresh and ready to rock, it’s no fun to freeze your toes off. Bring your own socks, neck pillow and blanket or a big sweater. Actually, it makes sense not to give these out on every flight—I don’t need more packs of socks and eye masks; I already have at least five sets in my drawer at home.
#5 Go with a different mindset. A budget mindset.
One of the pleasures of flying long-haul is the free-flow alcohol and inflight entertainment (for us, anyway). But if you want to zone out on wine and silly films you wouldn’t otherwise watch, you’d have to pay. We sprung for a mini bottle of red for $9. And you can pay USD$11 for ScooTV, where you can pick from a selection of ‘indie’ shows (read: things you never heard of. We watched a half hour of House of Lies, a comedy starring Kristen Bell and Don Cheadle — not bad.) What you should do is download your fave Netflix shows onto your phone or tablet and watch those instead. If you wanna charge your device, though, it’s moolah again — pay USD$5-8 to charge your device via a socket at your armrest. If you don’t feel like taking out your wallet again and again, just sit back and relax and do nothing. Like we said, different mindset.
#6 Want Wifi? Get Wifi.
But again, pay. USD$16.95 gets you three consecutive hours of Wifi with no data limit on the flight. But connection is a little sketchy — we watched our Instagram Stories vid trying desperately to upload for like 10 minutes, while our battery drained. But when you’re getting frustrated with the lack of frills and having to pay for extra stuff, just remember — $268. There, everything seems better already, right?
Scoot flies direct to Athens four times a week. For more info and to book, go to FlyScoot.com.