Travels by Air

These are short stories of our experiences with air transport.

Garuda ends direct Brisbane-Bali flights

Garuda Indonesia

Garuda Indonesia

Garuda Indonesia has announced that it will end its direct flight service connecting Denpasar (Bali) and Brisbane, Australia, effective February 1, 2015.

JetStar and Virgin Australia still serve this highly competitive air corridor.

Garuda describes the flight termination as part of a global rationalization of its route network, caused in part by the weakening Indonesian Rupiah.

Air Asia’s Melbourne-Bali flights

Air Asia

Air Asia

The New Straits Times and Australia’s Herald-Sun report that Indonesian AirAsia X is facing an official Australian government probe for practices and procedures surrounding the last-minute cancellation of a flight service scheduled to commence on December 26, 2014 between Melbourne and Bali.

Australian travellers eagerly scooped up attractively priced tickets offered on Indonesia AirAsia X over the Christmas and New Year period with the first flight scheduled to leave on Boxing Day of last year.

[Read more…]

Bali’s new Ngurah Rai Airport

Bali International Airport

Bali International Airport

No this is not the runway; it’s the vehicle entry/exit. The runway is where it always was, and can be seen in the background of the photo.

The main terminal is big and flash and modern – and unfortunately just as inefficient as the old one.

Our first surprise upon landing on our Virgin flight from Brisbane was being herded onto buses on the tarmac to be taken to the terminal. Why couldn’t we dock to the terminal? [Read more…]

What is the point of Qantas Frequent Flyer Points?

A330 Business Class

A330 Business Class

When Ansett Airlines went belly up I lost hundreds of thousands of their frequent flyer points. I then joined the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.

We hardly ever fly Qantas but we have two credit cards that we use for most of our business and personal purchases that give me Qantas points. We usually fly Virgin or Singapore Airlines.

Recently we holidayed in the Philippines. Qantas was the only airline that flew directly between Australia and Manila, albeit in and out of Sydney, and we live in Brisbane. About six weeks before we wished to depart our Travel Agent booked our tickets as Cattle Class, and I decided to try to upgrade on-line to Business Class using my points. [Read more…]

Air New Zealand to resume Bali Services

Boeing 737-300

Boeing 737-300

After ending flights to Bali in the 1990s, Air New Zealand is ready to recommence flights between Auckland and Denpasar on a seasonal basis.

Scheduled to operate during the peak season of June to October, the twice-weekly flights will commence on June 20, 2012, using Boeing 767-300 aircraft capable of carrying up to 228 passengers. [Read more…]

Discrimination Suit against Lion Air successful

Lion Air

Lion Air

The National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) has expressed it highest appreciation to the Central Jakarta Court’s decision to rule against the Indonesian air carrier Lion Air, PT Angkasa Pura -the government-owned airport management company, and the Ministry of Transportation in a case brought against the three for discrimination against disabled travellers .

As reported by detiknews.com, the commissioner of Komnas Ham, Saharuddin Daming, said on Thursday, December 8, 2011: “ The decision is spectacular. We give our highest appreciation to the panel of judges who ruled in this case.”

[Read more…]

Skylights for Garuda planes

Boeing 737-800NG

Boeing 737-800NG

Indonesia’s national carrier Garuda, has taken delivery of more B737-800 NGs (Next Generation) from the Boeing delivery facility in Seattle, Washington. Garuda Indonesia now has 123 Boeing 737s, including 48 NGs, in its fleet.

The Boeing 737-800 New Generation aircraft received by Garuda Indonesia are equipped with unique ceiling colour and lighting arrangements dubbed by the aircraft maker as “Boeing Sky Interior.” [Read more…]

The Virgin (Mis)Adventure!

Virgin 737-800

Virgin 737-800

It’s official! I hate just about everything to do with flying.

I’m not scared of flying, and I don’t get air sick. I’ve done thousands of air miles. I don’t mind take-offs and landings and short haul flights. But I hate long haul flights and I especially hate airport terminals and the nonsense that goes on there.

I can afford air fares. But what is getting out of control is the cost of getting to the terminal, parking at the terminal, eating and drinking at the terminal, arrival visas, departure taxes, general airport taxes, superfluous security checks, ridiculous privacy laws, and general discourtesy and inefficiency. [Read more…]

Brisbane Airport by night!

We were flying from Brisbane to South America. The flight itinerary had us leaving Brisbane’s domestic terminal at 5am to fly to Sydney, then international to Auckland, and on to Santiago in Chile.

Our first problem was getting to Brisbane Airport. A taxi would charge us about $100.

We didn’t want to drive our car and park it for 5 weeks. The long term parking expense, even with the amazing cost savings using Airport Parking, would have been prohibitive.

We didn’t want to ask friends or family to take us to the airport at 3am.

We wanted to take a train, but there were none leaving our suburb until the 5am departure time of the flight. The last one leaving the day before was at midnight. [Read more…]

Low Cost Carriers Vs Traditional Airlines

Low Cost Carriers

Low Cost Carriers

LCCs have allowed more people to be able to afford to fly than ever before. But there is a cost. Most of those little extras you used to expect from the traditional carriers are still available from the LCCs, but on a user pays basis. In fact with most LCCs, all your up front money gets you is the right to occupy a seat, and even then you have to fulfill certain requirements, and you often don’t get a choice of seat.

[Read more…]