Jetstar vs Scoot: Which is Better?
The Asia-Pacific area is bustling with budget airlines, primarily serving short-haul or regional routes. However, a growing segment of these carriers is now venturing into medium and long-haul flights across the region. Among these, Jetstar and Scoot stand out as cost-effective options, leading to the question: which of these offers the superior passenger experience?
Jetstar, an Australian budget airline, functions as a fully integrated member of the Qantas Group. Jetstar Asia, based in Singapore focusing on regional routes in Asia, the primary comparison here is with Jetstar's broader operations. Jetstar's medium and long-haul flights predominantly connect Australia with various Asian destinations, leveraging Qantas' extensive network and operational expertise. This strategic positioning allows Jetstar to offer competitive services on these routes, often serving as a budget-friendly alternative to full-service carriers for passengers traveling between Australia and Asia.
In Contrast, Scoot, a low-cost carrier under the Singapore Airlines Group, operates from the globally acclaimed Singapore Changi Airport (SIN). This strategic location, combined with Singapore Airlines' robust network and resources, has enabled Scoot to establish a significant presence in the low-cost market, especially in the Asia-Pacific region.
International Route Network
Jetstar's international operations, focusing on medium and long-haul flights, link Australia with key destinations across the Asia-Pacific. This network includes cities like Seoul (ICN) in South Korea, Phuket (HKT) in Thailand, Honolulu (HNL) in Hawaii, USA, and the highly favored holiday destination of Denpasar (DPS) in Bali, Indonesia. Bali's immense popularity as a vacation hotspot is reflected in Jetstar's extensive connectivity, with flights to this island paradise originating from seven different Australian cities, catering to the high demand for leisure travel to this tropical destination.
Since COVID-19, all three airlines have been gradually rebuilding their operations. Among them, Scoot stands out with its extensive medium and long-haul network, covering diverse destinations like Amritsar (ATQ), Jeddah (JED), Sydney (SYD), and extending to European cities like Berlin (BER) and Athens (ATH). Additionally, Scoot has a strong foothold in China, currently serving 13 cities. Before the pandemic, it flew to over 20 Chinese cities, and is progressively resuming these routes following China's recent border reopening.
Passengers in the premium sections of these low-cost carriers can anticipate a service similar to a legacy airline's premium economy. This includes a meal, drinks, a blanket and pillow, and headphones. However, most travelers choose low-cost carriers for their affordability, predominantly flying in the main cabin. In this section, amenities are minimal unless a passenger opts for a bundled package, which significantly increases the base fare; otherwise, extras like meals and beverages are chargeable.
The service on these airlines is generally amiable, though it may feel a bit hurried. It's important to note that while Scoot is associated with Singapore Airlines, its service doesn't match the high standards of its parent legacy carrier. Both Scoot and Jetstar have had their share of customer service criticisms, as highlighted in recent reports and videos. But oh well, if you take budget-friendly flights, don't expect too much. :)
The affordability of a flight is influenced by various factors. Primarily, the choice of departure location plays a crucial role. For instance, passengers departing from Singapore often find Scoot to be the most budget-friendly option. Similarly, Jetstar tends to offer competitive pricing from Australian cities, although it's not always the cheapest choice, as other carriers can occasionally undercut its prices.
The initial fare advertised is usually the most basic, excluding essentials like baggage allowance, meals, seat selection, or any in-flight amenities. Adding these services can significantly increase the overall cost. Interestingly, in many instances, choosing a full-service airline, particularly during promotional periods, can be just as cost-effective as a budget carrier, especially when these additional services are factored into the total fare.
When comparing the baggage allowances of Jetstar and Scoot, there are noticeable differences catering to various traveler needs. Jetstar's baggage policy allows passengers to purchase checked baggage allowances in increments, starting from 15 kg and going up to 40 kg, without any limitation on the number of bags. This flexibility can be particularly advantageous for passengers with specific luggage requirements. However, carry-on baggage is restricted to 7 kg across all Jetstar flights. Jetstar Baggage allowance
On the other hand, Scoot's baggage policy is slightly different. While also offering the option to purchase checked baggage, their allowances range from 20 kg to 40 kg. Scoot also permits a higher carry-on baggage limit of up to 10 kg, which can be a significant advantage for travelers preferring to carry more on board. More about Scoot baggage allowance.
Passengers on daytime flights with Scoot and Jetstar should find the economy class seating comfortable, especially if they come equipped with personal essentials like a blanket, pillow, in-flight entertainment, and snacks. However, as mentioned earlier, the overall experience can vary greatly depending on individual preferences and expectations.