National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia has strengthened its regional network by introducing a new direct route from Singapore to Tanjung Pandan on Belitung Island, according to a release received by The Jakarta Post.
Set to begin on Oct. 29, the flight will be available four days a week, using the Bombardier CRJ-1000 with 96 economy class seats.
Garuda Indonesia commercial director Pikri Ilham Kurniansyah said the new service is aligned with the airline's commitment to help develop tourism in Indonesia. Moreover, the new route is to support Indonesia's 10 priority destinations aside from Bali, which includes Tanjung Kelayang on Belitung Island.
"The direct flight is part of the company's strategy to expand its international network, as well as an effort to strengthen connectivity in Southeast Asia," Pikri was quoted as saying.
He went on to say that Singapore is one of the busiest international hubs and also close to Indonesia.
"With a less-than-an-hour direct flight from Singapore, Belitung is a perfect short getaway destination," said Pikri.
Read also: Facts about Garuda Indonesia's eco basic tickets
He is also confident that the new route would improve the growth of trade and business in Tanjung Pandan and its surroundings, especially since it is a special economic zone and one of the 10 priority destinations.
Tanjung Pandan is said to have beautiful beaches and being developed to be the "next Bali".
Garuda's Singapore-Tanjung Pandan route will depart from Singapore's Changi Airport at 5:20 p.m. local time every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. A Sunday flight from Changi is also available, which departs at 5:30 a.m. Arrival time at Hanandjoeddin International Airport in Tanjung Pandan is 5:50 p.m. for Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and 6 p.m. for Sunday.
Meanwhile, all flights from Tanjung Pandan to Singapore depart at 2:50 p.m. and arrive at 4:20 p.m. local time.
Garuda Indonesia now serves 84 flights every week to and from Singapore to Indonesian cities. Singapore-Jakarta flights are available nine times every day, the Singapore-Surabaya route has one flight daily and Singapore-Denpasar has two flights daily.