Garuda Indonesia will begin direct flights between Jakarta and London Heathrow from March 31, making this the first direct link between Indonesia and the UK.
It should be noted that while flights departing the UK will be a nonstop service to Indonesia, the direct flights from Jakarta to London will necessitate a brief refuelling stop in Singapore. This is due to runway limitations at Jakarta’s Soekarno–Hatta International Airport – the runway being unable to support the weight of the operational aircraft with a full fuel tank. However, the route is still classed as a direct service, as passengers destined for London are not allowed to disembark.
The new service will replace Garuda's current offering, which sees it stop over in Amsterdam, and also marks the carrier's transition from London Gatwick to Heathrow.
The move is part of Garuda’s strategy to strengthen its European presence, and according to Jubi Prasetyo, the airline’s general manager of UK and Ireland, has been on the cards since 2014.
“Making the move to Heathrow Airport has been an ambition of ours since joining SkyTeam in March 2014,” said Prasetyo.
“Heathrow’s pivotal role in servicing the alliance’s 1,052 destinations makes it an ideal departure airport for our passengers.”
First class on the B777-300ER
Flight frequency will be increased from three to five times weekly, with departures scheduled every day except Mondays and Fridays.
Like the existing Jakarta–Amsterdam–London Gatwick service, the Jakarta–London Heathrow flights will be operated by a B777-300ER, which features a three-class configuration. This includes eight seats in first, 42 in business and 268 in economy.
Flight times will be announced at a later date, while bookings for the new service are expected to begin from the third week of February.
For more information, visit garuda-indonesia.com