Petaling Jaya, 8 June 2018 – Malindo Air flight OD177 from Kuala Lumpur to Melbourne via Bali has landed in Melbourne at 4:40a.m. (GMT+10) today. Chandran Rama Muthy, CEO of Malindo Air, Judi Rifajantoro, professional advisor to the Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Zulkafli Yahya, Senior Director, International Promotion Division (Americas/Europe/Oceania) for Tourism Malaysia, were among the 162 passengers onboard. The inaugural flight received a warm welcome by Melbourne Airport with a water canon salute, followed by a cake cutting session in the terminal.
Chandran Rama Muthy, CEO of Malindo Air said, “We are thrilled to add Melbourne to our route map, as the third city that we fly to in Australia. Bali is one of the regular destinations for travelers from Melbourne. We have extended the connection to Kuala Lumpur from Bali to provide more flight options from our hub in Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) with our growing network. Meanwhile, this supports our continuous effort in making KLIA a transit hub in the region.”
“On the other hand, Melbourne is no stranger to most Malaysians as the city features substantial Malaysian–born communities, as well as a destination for education, business and leisure. Therefore, this route will attract VFR (visiting family and relatives), the business community and the tourism industry. Our flights to Melbourne have received positive feedback since we launched the ticket sales in April, and we will continue to explore and strengthen the connection to Australia,” he added.
Melbourne Airport Chief of Aviation, Simon Gandy, said he was delighted to welcome Malindo Air and to see increased capacity on the ever popular Melbourne-Bali route.
“We are extremely excited by this prospect, considering passenger traffic between Victoria and Indonesia has been growing at 8.6 per cent, per annum, in the past five years. This highlights we are rapidly filling current capacity, the strong travel demand in the route and reinforces Victoria’s fascination with the leisure hotspot”, said Mr Gandy.
On a separate account, Mr. Judi Rifajantoro, the professional advisor to the Indonesian Minister of Tourism had sounded his optimism on the success of this newly created route.
“We appreciate Malindo Air’s initiative to open this route, as Malaysia and Australia are our main source markets for foreign tourist arrivals and Bali is a very popular destination for these markets. It is also an interesting offering for those travelers who want to travel between Kuala Lumpur and Melbourne or those who want to visit Bali before they continue their journey so overall we are very optimistic about the prospect of this new route,” said Mr. Judi
According to Malaysia Airports Managing Director Datuk Badlisham Ghazali, “Connectivity is a major factor in establishing an airport's position as a global aviation hub. Last year, nearly 3 million inbound and outbound passengers travelled on Australia-Kuala Lumpur route. It was an 8.2% increase from 2016. This in itself is a testament that Malaysia is fast becoming one of the world’s preferred hubs. We are indeed very happy to celebrate Malindo Air’s new route to Melbourne as this will provide more options and flexibility to our passengers who wish to fly this route. Our heartiest congratulations to Malindo Air and we look forward to provide continuous support to all our partner airlines.”
Chandran has also joined Melbourne Airport representatives to send off flight OD178 at 7:00a.m. departing from Tullamarine the same morning. The flight is estimated to arrive at Ngurah Rai Airport at 11:25a.m. (GMT+8). The flight will continue its journey from Bali at 12:25p.m. and is estimated to arrive in KLIA at 3:25p.m. (GMT+8).
The new services from Kuala Lumpur to Melbourne, via Denpasar (Bali) was announced with an introductory all-in one way fares from RM899 for Economy Class and RM1,999 for Business Class. The fares include 25kg baggage allowance, meal onboard and spacious legroom for the journey. The narrow-body Boeing 737NG aircraft, which includes 12 Business Class and 150 Economy Class seats, is deployed on this new route.