Direct Perth to Bali flights resume on Friday.
By Heather McNeill
April 8, 2022 — 6.18am
Direct flights between Perth and Bali resumed on Friday morning, with Jetstar carrying the first plane-load of West Australians to the popular holiday island for the first time in two years.
Before the pandemic, Bali was Western Australia’s most popular international destination, and third most popular destination overall, with 63 flights a week landing at Denpasar Airport in 2018.
During that time nine flights were leaving Perth for Bali each day, transporting 1200 travellers.
From Friday, Jetstar will resume one return flight a day.
AirAsia, which also used to service the route, plans to resume the three-hour flight by mid-May after the island lifted its 3-day quarantine requirement for international arrivals on March 14.
Indonesia Institute Inc president Ross Taylor said Australians had already begun to return to Bali in recent weeks from other Australian states, with the tourist precinct slowly coming back to life.
“It’s like the Bali of old, less the intensity, so there are some shops that are still closed down and still comparatively a lot less people,” he said.
“When you think in WA alone we normally have at any one time 7500 people in Bali, it’s nothing like that, but people will find that it’s held out generally pretty well.
“A lot of the resorts have done a lot of renovation work, so it’s not run down, its looking good.”
Travellers wanting to fly to Bali must test negative to COVID-19 within 48 hours of catching their flight, and masks are still required in some situations, such as when inside large shopping malls.
However, Mr Taylor said demand for the tourist destination was returning strongly.
“What a lot of Balinese people did during the height of the pandemic, they just returned home to their village and started work on the rice paddy field with grandma and granddad. It was very hard for them, but they survived,” he said.
“So what’s happening now is you’re starting to see this gradual drift back to the tourist precinct and they’ll pick up from where they left off.
“It’s very early days yet, but all the feedback I am getting is that forward bookings are looking really strong.”
In the months before the pandemic stopped Australians from travelling freely, the nation was crowned Bali’s number one tourist source for the first time since China took over the top spot in 2017.
Around 1.23 million Australians visited the island in 2019, a record according to the Indonesia Institute Inc.
Qantas was contacted for comment.