Due to runway problems at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta Airport, Garuda Indonesia has been forced to postpone its new service to London, which had initially been planned for 2 November 2013. Garuda said the pavement classification number (PCN) of the runways and apron at Soekarno-Hatta Airport do not meet the required level of strength which is typically needed for the operation of a full capacity, heavy duty commercial aircraft, such as the B777-300ER.
Garuda Indonesia president & CEO Emirsyah Satar said that to operate at “full capacity” serving direct flights between Jakarta – London (non-stop) and carrying 314 passengers and a cargo of 30 tonnes (maximum take-off weight), the B777-300ER requires a PCN of 132 tonnes.
Soekarno-Hatta’s aging runway is already 28 years old and nearing “fatigue” with a pavement classification number/PCN of only 120 tonnes. To enable Garuda Indonesia to still make the flight to London, there would have to be a “restricted take-off weight” of 329,365 kg, which would mean a reduction in the number of passengers by 39 people and a loss of the ability to carry cargo.
Garuda Indonesia would also be unable to fly directly to London. Consequently, the implementation of this flight with these conditions in this competitive world of air travel would have a serious effect on the operational and business requirements of this route, Satar said. Due to this unexpected delay, Garuda Indonesia will begin the direct service from Jakarta to London in May 2014.
Meanwhile, Garuda welcomed the arrival of its second B777-300ER aircraft to its fleet on 31 July. The airline will operate the second B777-300ER on the Jakarta to Jeddah route.