Xiamen Air to launch China-Bali direct commercial route — the first since the pandemic

Ngurah Rai International Airport in Denpasar, Bali. Photo: Bali Airport
Ngurah Rai International Airport in Denpasar, Bali. Photo: Bali Airport

Bali is set to welcome its first direct full commercial flight from China since the COVID-19 pandemic, with Xiamen Air scheduled to touch down on the Island of Gods on March 3, according to a Bali official.

The airline is reportedly launching daily direct flights to Bali from its base of Xiamen city. Its first flight, which is scheduled to arrive at Ngurah Rai International Airport at 10:30pm this Friday, will reportedly carry 170 passengers.

According to Bali Tourism Agency Head Tjokorda Bagus Pemayun, Xiamen Air is just one of up to four airlines from China that are resuming direct flights to Bali in the near future. Nine other international airlines have also requested for the establishment of direct flights to Ngurah Rai International Airport from December 2022.

On Jan. 22, Bali welcomed its first direct flight from China in the form of a chartered flight from Shenzen. Bali officials expressed great hope that it would be the first of many flights from China as COVID-19 restrictions eased.

In the past three years, Chinese travelers mostly arrived in Bali via Jakarta and Singapore.

Numbers wise, Chinese travelers were amongst the highest by volume on the island prior to the pandemic. In 2019, out of 6,275,210 recorded international arrivals, 1,186,057 or almost 20 percent came from China. 

This year, the Bali Provincial Government is targeting 4.5 million international visitor arrivals.

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