Major Asian airlines have slashed Indonesia services because of plummeting demand after the 12 October nightclub bombings in Bali. There are new fears that South-East Asia could be in for a tough period, with many foreign travellers staying away on the advice of their governments.

Cathay Pacific Airways, EVA Air, Garuda Indonesia and Qantas Airways and others have cut services to Bali, while Bali-based start-up carrier Air Paradise International, which was to have begun flying at the end of October, deferred its launch to an unspecified date.

No-one is predicting when market conditions are likely to recover. Some reports from Bali say many passenger aircraft are flying-in near empty, while hotel occupancy rates have dipped to single-digit percentage figures. Many governments advised their nationals to stay away from Indonesia and other parts of South-East Asia after the terrorist bombing that killed nearly 200 people.

Garuda Indonesia has unveiled drastic cuts to its international network and is seeing a sharp drop in business which threatens its turnaround plans. For Europe, all services to Frankfurt ceased on 15 November. Also from 15 November, a Wednesday flight between Denpasar (Bali) and London, operated via Bangkok, Thailand, was suspended. From 5 January, Monday and Saturday flights between Denpasar and London via Bangkok will be suspended. Thrice-weekly Jakarta-Singapore-Amsterdam services will be retained.

For Japan, Fukuoka services have been discontinued, while Osaka, Nagoya and Tokyo frequencies have been cut, as have services to Seoul, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.

Source: Airline Business