The Jakarta Post
Garuda Indonesia flies from Kendari to Wakatobi on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. (Shutterstock/Nieuwland Photography)
National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia has opened a route from Kendari to Wakatobi in Southeast Sulawesi using ATR 72-600 aircraft with a capacity of 70 passengers.
Flights depart from Haluoleo Airport in Kendari on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 12:05 p.m. and arrive at Matahora Airport on Wangi-wangi Island, Wakatobi, at 12:55 p.m. Return flights leave Matahora Airport on the same days at 1:25 p.m. and land at Haluoleo Airport at 2:25 p.m.
Passengers can connect to the flight through national hubs, such as Jakarta, Surabaya in East Java and Makassar in South Sulawesi.
The airline’s director of marketing and information technology, Nina Sulistyowati, said in a press release that the new service was aimed at increasing connectivity, especially since Wakatobi was one of 10 prioritized tourist destinations.
Wakatobi Regent H. Arhawi expressed hope that flights would operate daily in the future.
Wakatobi is being increasingly popular. In 2013, more than 11,000 passengers arrived at Matahora Airport. The number reached more than 19,000 in 2015.
This year, 18,000 foreign tourists have visited the area, mostly from Sweden and Australia.
The government has set a target of attracting 500,000 foreign tourists to Wakatobi in 2019. (wir/kes)