The tourism industry fully supports the provincial government’s plan to establish direct flights between Seoul and Lombok, according to Dewantoro Umbu Joka, Chairman of the Association of Tourism Travel Companies (ASITA NTB). On February 1st, Dewantoro stated, “South Korean tourists are a potential market for NTB, and it would be fantastic if the direct flights come to fruition.”
Prior to 2018, South Korean tourists frequently visited Lombok and Sumbawa as a primary vacation destination, arriving via direct charter flights. However, the absence of direct flights to Lombok has limited the potential of tour packages offered by ASITA NTB members.
The establishment of direct flights will not only shorten travel time for South Korean tourists, but also make it more accessible for them to visit Lombok. The expected influx of tourists is expected to have a positive impact on NTB’s tourism industry, with an average length of stay of 4 days. Dewantoro noted that the Mandalika Circuit in Lombok is a significant attraction.
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The NTB Provincial Government is working with AirAsia to establish direct flights, with AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes having met with NTB Governor Zulkieflimansyah in Jakarta to discuss the possibility.
In 2022, BIZAM operated two international direct flight routes, including the Lombok-Kuala Lumpur route with AirAsia and the Lombok-Singapore route with Scoot TigerAir. More international flight routes are planned for this year, including from cities in Australia such as Perth, Melbourne, and Sydney. AirAsia has secured flight slots four times a week for the Lombok-Perth route, and plans are underway to open a route from Seoul to Lombok as well. Zul stated, “AirAsia has been very supportive of NTB.”