INDONESIA’S Director General of Civil Aviation of the Ministry of Transportation, Maria Kristi Endah Murni said that direct flights from Gaoqi Airport in Xiamen, China to Ngurah Rai Airport, Denpasar, have a positive impact on tourism and the economy in Bali.

According to Maria Kristi Endah Murni, China is one of the potential markets for tourism on the Island of the Gods. Currently, there are 1,143 foreign tourists from China coming to Bali since the beginning of 2023.

“With regular direct flights, it will certainly be very supportive (of Bali tourism). The Xiamen-Denpasar direct flight is opened with a frequency of every day. The first Xiamen-Denpasar flight became the first regular flight after the COVID-19 pandemic which was carried out last Friday (03/03),” she said.

The inaugural flight, she continued, used a Xiamen Airlines Boeing 738-800 aircraft with a capacity of 169 seats. The plane is scheduled to arrive from Xiamen at 23.15 WITA and return to Xiamen at 00.15 WITA.

Previously, I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport had served charter flights from Shenzen-Denpasar once a week by Lion Air using Boeing 737-900 aircraft. Now there are two cities in China, Xiamen and Shenzhen that are directly connected to Bali through regular flights and charter flights.

“We hope that flight accessibility from China to Indonesia will further encourage the recovery of the aviation sector, especially international flight routes not only in Bali, but also other cities,” said Maria Kristi Endah Murni.

In early March 2023, direct flights operated once a week from Tokyo’s Narita Airport to Manado’s Sam Ratulangi Airport. The Tokyo-Manado flight is served by Garuda Indonesia with an Airbus A333 aircraft with a capacity of 250 seats. [sources/photo special]