An airport staff walks near quiet check-in counters at I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport on Nov. 27. (JP/Ni Komang Erviani)
Indonesian Tourism Industry Association (GIPI) Bali is offering free accommodation for stranded tourists at the Ngurah Rai International Airport Bali that has been closed since Nov. 27 due to volcanic ash from Mount Agung.
“Not a single tourist should stay overnight at the airport, GIPI Bali together with Badung regional administration is providing free accommodation for tonight and tomorrow, if the airport remains closed,” said GIPI Bali head, Gus Agung.
“We’ve set aside two billion rupiahs for two nights, one room is allocated for two guests,” Gus added.
The accommodation also includes breakfast.
In the era of social media, Gus Agung mentioned, unsatisfied tourists are free to express their frustrations. "But if they are served well with respect, they will also post their happiness amid the panicky situation," he added.
Tourism minister Arief Yahya praised GIPI Bali for its initiative, "What is being done by the Badung regency and GIPI Bali is very good. This is what we call a long-term investment," he said.
The two billion rupiahs is relatively small compared to Badung’s average Locally-generated Income (PAD) in a year that is at seven trillion rupiahs. (asw)