OAG, an air travel intelligence company based in the UK, has named Indonesia’s national airline, Garuda Indonesia, the world’s most punctual airline. It was recognized in the category of global airlines with more than 10,000 flights during April 2019.
According to Garuda Indonesia’s statement, it had achieved 95.5 percent on its on-time performance (OTP) record. The airline had also maintained its top performance since December 2018 as well as securing the position of the only Asian airline to hold the title for five consecutive months.
Garuda Indonesia was founded in 1947 and is currently headquartered at Soekarno–Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, near Jakarta.
At its peak in the late 1980s up to the mid-1990s, the airline operated an extensive network of flights all over the world, with regularly scheduled services to Los Angeles, Paris, Rome, Fukuoka, Adelaide, Johannesburg, Cairo and other cities in Europe, Australia, and Asia.
However, in the late 1990s and early 2000s, a series of financial and operational difficulties forced Garuda Indonesia to cut back services.
In 2009, the airline undertook a five-year modernization plan known as the Quantum Leap which overhauled the airline’s brand, livery, logo, and uniforms, as well as newer aircraft and facilities. This move earned Garuda Indonesia a number of accolades including “Most Improved Airline”, “5-Star Airline”, and “World’s Best Cabin Crew”.
Today, it is the second largest airline of Indonesia after Lion Air and it operates scheduled flights to a number of destinations in Southeast Asia, East Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, Australia, and Europe from its main hub in Soekarno–Hatta International Airport.
The airline also services flights to Australia and Asia from Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali and a large number of domestic flights from both Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport in Makassar and Kualanamu International Airport in Medan.
To add on, the airline took on the operations of budget subsidiary Citilink, which provided low-cost flights to multiple Indonesian destinations, and Sriwijaya Air. Garuda Indonesia is now a major airline and the 20th member of the global airline alliance SkyTeam.
In 2016, it was voted the world’s most loved airline.
Operational director of Garuda, Bambang Adisurya Angkasa said that maintaining the airline’s punctuality would be challenging as the Idul Fitri peak season was coming.
“We will continue to perform on time through the inspection of flight operation, particularly in safety measures […], therefore we are confident we can go through the peak season safely, punctually and comfortably,” Bambang was quoted as saying.