Singapore Airlines’ low-cost subsidiary Scoot has announced plans to add the Brazilian-made Embraer E190-E2 to its fleet, signing a letter of intent with aircraft lessor Azorra for nine new planes. The first is scheduled for delivery in 2024, with the remaining eight to be introduced by the end of 2025.
“The new aircraft ensures that Scoot is ready for growth by enhancing our connectivity in the region and supports the further development of our Singapore hub.”
Scoot will become the first Singapore carrier to operate the E190-E2, which will fly alongside the 60 Airbus A320s and Boeing 787s that make up the rest of the fleet.
What’s particularly exciting about this addition is it enables Scoot to serve thinner routes to non-metro destinations, including a possible return to type-restricted airports like Koh Samui.
What is the Embraer E190-E2?
|✈️ Factsheet: Embraer E190-E2|
|Engine Type||Pratt & Whitney GTF PW1900|
|Number of Seats||112|
|Length (Nose to Tail)||36.3m|
|Maximum Cruising Speed||0.82 Mach|
|Range||2,850 nm/ 5,278 km|
The Embraer E-Jet E2 programme was first launched at the Paris Air Show in 2013, with the E190-E2 variant entering service with Norwegian carrier Widerøes in April 2018.
It seats 112 passengers in a single-cabin configuration, and while Embraer provided some tasty-looking mockups of a two-cabin configured E2 jet, those will unfortunately be pipe dreams unless Singapore Airlines one day deigns to take these aircraft under its wing (those orange pillows look a natural match for SIA’s current colour scheme!).
A more realistic rendition of what we can expect on Scoot might be KLM Cityhopper’s E195-E2. Even though Scoot is bound to try and squeeze out every last inch of the fuselage, a 2-2 layout is all but assured (no middle seats!). This makes it a very couple-friendly plane, and well-suited to the holiday markets it will no doubt serve.
Overhead bin space is understandably snug, though standard-sized carry-ons will still fit.
Embraer says the E190-E2 has the lowest level of external noise in the single-aisle jet category, which should mean a quieter ride for passengers as well.
A return to Koh Samui?
The E190-E2 jet has a range of 2,850 nm, which theoretically would put destinations as far afield as Seoul within range. Of course, Scoot will not be deploying this aircraft on such a high traffic route, reserving it instead for thinner routes where the deployment of a larger Airbus A320 or Boeing 787 cannot be economically justified.
The name on everyone’s lips is Koh Samui. The SIA Group was forced to abandon Koh Samui ever since SilkAir retired its A319 aircraft during the pandemic- these were the largest aircraft allowed to operate to the island. Bangkok Airways is now the sole operator of flights to and from Koh Samui (it also owns the airport, incidentally), and a monopoly never bodes well for prices.
Restoring service to Koh Samui would also be a boon to holidaymakers from Australia and Europe, who could book a single itinerary on Singapore Airlines and Scoot with minimal hassle.
I suppose the unfortunate thing is that even if Scoot does start flying to Koh Samui, redeeming KrisFlyer miles won’t be a good option since Scoot redemptions are revenue-based (1,050 miles = S$10). This means you’ll still be at the mercy of cash prices, a far cry from pre-pandemic days when you could reliably redeem awards from 12,500 miles each way (or 8,750 miles during Spontaneous Escapes!).
Scoot will add Embraer E190-E2 aircraft to its fleet from 2024, adding a third aircraft type to its fleet of Airbus A320s and Boeing 787s.
While I doubt we’ll see much innovation in terms of PaxEx (it is Scoot, after all), it’ll at least open up additional flight options from Singapore, including a potential return to Koh Samui for the SIA Group.