Indonesia’s national carrier, Garuda Indonesia, has announced new direct flights to Jakarta from Australia’s two major cities - Sydney and Melbourne. The new flights mark an expansion its business between Australia and Indonesia.
Poerwoko Soeparyono, Garuda Indonesia Pacific head, said the non-stop services to the Indonesian capital will operate three days a week from both cities using new Airbus A330-200 wide-bodied aircraft.
"These new direct services to Jakarta now offer our customers an alternative gateway into Asia - and eventually into key destinations in Europe, following the decision last month by the EU to clear the way for Garuda and other Indonesian airlines to resume operations to the Continent," he said. "In addition, the new Sydney-Jakarta and Melbourne-Jakarta flights reflect a more fundamental and wide-ranging directional change for the airline. Garuda has long been known in this market - and others - predominantly as a leisure carrier, servicing destinations such as Bali.
"While our leisure business will remain a critical segment of our operations into the future, the airline is now also looking to place increased emphasis on the corporate sector. Increasingly, we will be looking to target the business traveller, as well as looking to promote and market many of the wonderful destinations beyond Bali. We will also be seeking to promote our connections beyond Indonesia to other key Asian cities such as Singapore, Bangkok and Hong Kong."
Garuda Indonesia has been undergoing a significant transformation over the past few years, with the launch of the new direct Jakarta services from Australia coming on the heels of other key developments for the airline.
Last week the airline officially opened its new management headquarters at Jakarta’s Soekano Hatta Airport at a gala ceremony attended by the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono who officially opened the purpose-built facility.
The airline also rolled out the first of a new fleet of aircraft, the new A330-220 and Boeing 737-800NG (Next Generation) aircraft with upgraded cabin configuration, a corporate identity refresh and a new service concept, the ‘Garuda Indonesia Experience’.
The airline has an aggressive five year growth strategy that will see a doubling of the fleet to 116 aircraft.
The new A330-200 aircraft servicing the Sydney-Jakarta and Melbourne-Jakarta routes feature a new interior configuration which includes totally flatbed seats in Business Class and personal entertainment systems in all seats.
The aircraft feature Garuda Indonesia’s new signature interior, with individual touch-screen LCD TVs throughout Executive and Economy Classes with Video on Demand (VOD) entertainment systems offering 25 feature films and 250 audio tracks. The full lie-flat beds in Executive Class feature a 74-inch seat pitch.