How to survive long haul flight with kids
Budget,  Flights,  Travel Tips

How to Survive a long-haul budget flight with kids

As budget travelers’ flights are usually our biggest expense. I work really hard to find the best deals I can using a few different tools such as

The trick to finding a good deal when flying with kids is finding a flight that doesn’t have 3 connections and a stopover in Morecambe.

We are British and don’t have the amazing credit card points/miles systems that our friends across the pond have so our flights are paid for all in cold hard cash!

This post will focus on possibly one of the best flights deals I have found, I’m pretty proud of myself for this

But with reviews of Scoot Long haul like this…

  • “Scoot is the worst long-haul flight I have ever had to take. The seats are cramped and uncomfortable, the food is terrible, and the entertainment system is outdated. I would not recommend Scoot to anyone, especially for a long-haul flight.” (Trustpilot 2023)
  • “I recently flew with Scoot from Singapore to Sydney and it was a disaster. The flight was delayed by 6 hours and when we finally boarded, the plane was filthy. The seats were stained and the toilets were overflowing. I would never fly with Scoot again.” (TripAdvisor 2023)
  • “My Scoot flight from London to Singapore was a complete nightmare. The plane was delayed by 12 hours and when we finally arrived, my luggage was lost. I had to spend the next 3 days without my clothes and toiletries. I would avoid Scoot at all costs.” (Google Reviews 2023)

Maybe we had made a terrible decision.

How to Survive a long-haul budget flight with kids
Was long haul travel with Scoot this bad?

Scoot: Your Affordable Travel Companion

Scoot, the Singaporean low-cost airline, is your passport to a world of budget-friendly travel opportunities across Asia, Australia, and Europe. As Singapore Air’s more budget friendly sibling, we thought it would be a good option to get us back to Europe, for an amazing price.

While the airline embraces a no-frills philosophy, it says it doesn’t compromise on your comfort.

Here’s why Scoot is the go-to choose for budget-savvy travelers:

  1. Budget-Friendly Fares: Scoot is one of the world’s most economical airlines, consistently offering fares significantly lower than those of full-service carriers.
  2. Extensive Destination Network: With more than 66 destinations scattered across Asia, Australia, and Europe, Scoot becomes an excellent choice for explorers with diverse travel interests.
  3. No-Frills Philosophy: As a budget airline, Scoot doesn’t pamper passengers with extravagant extras (I can vouch for that). Don’t expect in-flight entertainment and meals to be included in your base fare, but rest assured, you can opt for these add-ons separately.
  4. Essential Amenities: Scoot might be budget-conscious, but it ensures that travelers experience the essentials. Expect complimentary checked luggage, comfy seating, and the warmth of the cabin crew.

Our top tips for travelling long haul on a budget airline like scoot

  1. Take a neck pillow, blanket, foot cushion…anything else you can take to make yourself more comfortable. We had none and were very jealous of other people with them
  2. Charge up all your devices, then charge them in the airport and then ration on board. This is especially the case if you are on a day flight.
  3. Take snacks. The food on board looked pretty terrible, cost a fortune and seemed to run out quite quickly. We were armed with snacks so managed to avoid buying much but with such a long time, sometimes its more boredom that hunger.
  4. The extra leg room seats cost a huge amount to upgrade on the flight $138 SGD for one seat. This was the front row, nothing special but there were 3 empty seats together so it was tempting to move…but not for that price!
  1. Plan Ahead: Scoot’s fares are often at their most wallet-friendly when you book well in advance.
  2. Choose Add-Ons Wisely: Tailor your flight by selecting add-ons like in-flight entertainment, meals, and extra baggage according to your needs.
  3. Online Check-In: Save time and skip airport queues with free online check-in.
  4. Punctuality Matters: Scoot recommends arriving at the airport a minimum of two hours before your flight’s departure for a smooth journey.
Travel gear for families

Top tips to survive a budget flight with kids

Choose Your Seats Carefully:

Make sure to select your seats in advance, taking into account factors like proximity to the restroom, galley, or seat configuration. We usually book individual seats for our kids, ensuring everyone’s comfort. I learned the importance of this during a memorable flight from Singapore to Athens on a random Thursday in October. The flight was unexpectedly crowded, and we were fortunate to be seated together. If I were to plan a budget-friendly long-haul trip again, I’d opt for guaranteed seats.

Plan Your Meals:

On most long-haul flights, you’ll typically receive a meal, but remember, nothing comes free on budget long-haul flights. To ensure your child’s meal is among the first served, consider pre-booking a kids’ meal or a vegetarian option. However, our top tip for budget travel is to bring as much of your food on board as you can. This not only saves you a significant amount but also helps keep boredom at bay with snacks.

Preload the Electronics:

Preload your gadgets with games, movies, or educational apps before your flight. Airline Wi-Fi can be unreliable, and having these pre-downloaded entertainment options can be a real lifesaver. Again, on Scoot, we went full on budget. There are no places to charge electronics unless you want to pay extra so ration the electronic use or take a fully charged power back.

Sleep Strategies:

If anyone has cracked this then they need promoting to something that has no title but probably should be something like the Sleep King. Ensuring your children get enough sleep is vital. If you’re lucky, they’ll doze off during the flight, making things easier. Having an eye mask or scarf, or something to cover their eyes can help. Bonus points if you get any sleep!

Child-Friendly Headphones:

One thing we have travelled the world with is kids’ headphones.  This, plus access to podcasts, audio books or music is an essential piece of kit for making your flight easier.

Embrace the Journey:

Finally, as you embark on your adventure, remember to embrace the journey. I often advise those seeking flying tips with kids to simply relax. The flight itself is just a tiny part of your entire adventure. You, your children, and even the less-than-enthusiastic passenger from aisle 14 will make it through just fine. So, take it easy, enjoy the ride, and treasure the memories along the way.