Bisnis.com reports that Indonesia's Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik, has called on Garuda Indonesia to increase flight frequencies between Denpasar and Melbourne from four times a week to five in order to meet strong market demand.
"The route Denpasar-Melbourne is always packed with passengers, we need to add flight frequencies," explained Minister Wacik in remarks made at the opening of the Indonesian Tourism and Travel Fair 2008 in Jakarta.
The Minister explained to the press that through July 2008, the total number of foreign visitors to Indonesian hit 3.5 million, meaning that Indonesia needs to add more flight frequencies to garner the 3.5 million more tourist in the five remaining months of the year in order to achieve the targeted 7 million tourists for 2008.
In addition to adding flights to Australia, Minister Wacik also highlighted other lucrative routes requiring more flights including Tokyo, Beijing and Seoul. He also cited possible flight routes from Kuala Lumpur to Manado, Lombok and Makassar as having potential to increase tourism flows to Indonesia. In this regard, he called on Garuda to start international flights to Makassar, following the example set by Air Asia which now flies Kuala Lumpur to Makassar.
In response to the Minister's call for more flights, Indonesia's Vice-President Jusuf Kalla endorsed the Minister's sentiments while emphasizing the need for more tourism promotion.
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