Revitalizing Garuda Indonesia

Posted on July 23rd, 2009 at 6:09 am by Akhyari


Garuda Indonesia, the Indonesia’s flagship carrier, unveils today at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport concrete evidence of a meticulous major revitalisation programme.

Even the country’s president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who has been dealing with the unexpected terrorist attack to two of Jakarta’s major hotels, is coming to see the new-look Garuda at ceremonies that kick off at 10am.

The 60-year-old carrier showed off its new, glass-oriented headquarters and two aircraft, an Airbus A330-200 and Boeing B737-800NG, representing several more that will be arriving by year end until 2014, effectively doubling its present fleet.

Garuda Indonesia’s medium-term strategic plan put in place in 2006 – designed to ensure taking the state-owned airline through various stages such as survival, consolidation, improving operations, products and services and growth through IPO and debt restructuring – was generally on track. The global financial recession, however, has rescheduled the IPO to 2010, barring any fresh assault on the world economy.

The airline is planning to restart services to Amsterdam next year, using the A330-200, with a stopover in Dubai. In 2011, the service will convert to non-stop, using a B777 extended range aircraft. Other European cities being considered include Frankfurt, Rome and London and in the US, Los Angeles in the West Coast.

With the promise of new aircraft, Garuda management is keen on building up Jakarta as a business hub, “while keeping Denpasar (Bali) as our leisure hub”.Their Jakarta services to Sydney, Melbourne and Seoul will start up in quick succession on August 1, 2 and 3 respectively. A Jakarta-Shanghai service started on July 2.

Garuda’s cabin service has been refreshed as the “Garuda Indonesia Experience”, which encapsulates all that conjures Indonesia from the design and colours on the livery (palm trees, bamboo, rivers) to the music and cuisine associated with the country’s various regions. “Coming into Garuda Indonesia’s cabin will be like being welcomed into an Indonesian home. Indonesia’s hospitality is unique.” New uniforms will be introduced at a later date.

Service on the ground will complement the service in the air. A new executive lounge in Terminal 2 at Soekarno-Hatta Airport will open in October. But starting today, online check in will be available for all flights as well as the ability to print boarding passes at home or office. A self check-in kiosk has also been made available at the airport. Check in by mobile phone will also be in use in the coming months.

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