Garuda Indonesia is preparing to launch flights to the US next year, following the FAA’s decision to upgrade Indonesia’s aviation safety status to Category 1 last month.

Speaking to The Jakarta Post, Garuda spokesperson Benny Butarbutar commented: “The plan to fly a US route is a business expansion [decision] to strengthen Garuda Indonesia’s position as a global aviation player. We immediately are taking all actions needed to realise the plan.”

Butarbutar revealed that Garuda would operate its US flights via Tokyo Narita using the wide-body B777-300ER. Not only will this benefit the airline in terms of aircraft utilisation, but Garuda will be able to leverage off feeder traffic from the Japanese market as well.

“Japan provides fifth freedom traffic rights for Indonesian airlines, which allows Garuda to add a load factor before flying to the US”, Butarbutar said.

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