The national flag carrier Garuda Indonesia is preparing to create it’s own subsidiary airline Explore to service short-haul domestic routes using turboprop aircraft.
Quoted in the Jakarta Globe, Emirsyah Satar, CEO of Garuda describe the mission of the new airline was to serve “fast-growing economic regions and tourist destinations in remote areas of Indonesia.”
Explore will focus on the eastern regions of Indonesia and use the short take off and landing (STOL) ATR72-600 aircraft suitable for runways of less than 1,600 meters.
Explore’s inaugural flight will take off on Tuesday, December 3, 2013, leaving Bali for Labuan Bajo (Flores and Komodo), Ende (Kelimutu and Flores) and Bima (Sumbawa). Other flight will be based in Makassar to serve Ambon and the Maluku region.
The ATR 72-600 aircraft operated by Explore have been configured to carry 70 economy-class passengers.
Emirsyah praised the ATR aircraft acquired by Garuda to serve Explore routes, saying: “Being equipped with modern technology and capable of efficient operations, the ATR 72-600 offers the same high level of comfort to passengers as the other aircraft operated by Garuda Indonesia. This type of aircraft is the best in its class to serve short-distance routes between the islands and cities in Indonesia that have a limited runway capacity.”
Garuda is preparing to accept delivery of 35 ATR 72-600 before 2017.
Explore will also be flying Bombardier CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft, which has been used by Garuda Indonesia since October 2012.
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