Soekarno-Hatta International Airport's Terminal 3 Ultimate was officially opened to the public on Tuesday morning (09/08), with several domestic flights operated by flag carrier Garuda Indonesia departing and arriving at the airport's largest and newest terminal.
Garuda Indonesia's flight from Jakarta to Jayapura, Papua, was the first to depart from Terminal 3 Ultimate at 1.20 a.m. The new terminal, said to be capable of handling 25 million passengers a year, provides much-needed additional capacity to Indonesia's busiest airport.
Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi, along with the board of directors of state-owned airport operator Angkasa Pura II, inspected the new terminal for two and a half hours on Tuesday morning.
"I have told Angkasa Pura II to evaluate the terminal and independently implement corrective measures [if needed]. There's no need to wait for other people's opinions to improve the terminal," Minister Budi during the visit.
He also called on Garuda Indonesia to use the new terminal to promote tourism in order to boost the number of foreign tourist arrivals, by providing competitive and attractive offers, as the terminal is claimed to be "the new gate for tourism."
"There are currently 15 million visitors from Australia, China, India and other countries. Among those, we expect 5 million visitors to transit in Jakarta. One million of those are expected to be tourists in Indonesia," Budi said.
The new terminal is currently serving Garuda Indonesia's 128 domestic flights. It will gradually start to host international flights from March next year.
The terminal was due to open before the Idul Fitri holidays in June and July, but electrical and navigational problems caused several delays. (Jakarta Globe)