Indonesia's Lion Air grounds flights again

Aviation Updates Philippines – Within days of resuming operations, Indonesia's largest airline group Lion Air has grounded its flights again. 


Image: Lion Air Boeing 737-800. Source: Wikimedia Commons.
The budget airline along with its own Indonesian-based subsidiaries Wings Air and Batik Air will temporarily suspend domestic and international flights starting June 5 until further notice. According to the airline, it found most of its passengers have not been able to comply with Indonesia's COVID-19 protocol for boarding flights.

Per Indonesia's guidelines for travel, travelers are required to show documents to travel for business or family emergencies along with certification they are free of the virus.

It is the second time within a the last few weeks the airline suspended operations due to passengers lacking the necessary documents for travel. The airline also suspended flights between May 27 to 31.

“Based on evaluations of previous flight operations, many potential passengers cannot continue their trip or cannot fly and must return with all costs incurred (losses), only because of ignorance or lack of understanding of the conditions that must be met in order to be able to carry out a trip with aircraft,” read the company’s statement on May 27.

Passengers who purchased tickets with the airline will be able to get a refund or reschedule their travel plans without any additional fees. 

Regarding the latest move, Lion Air stated: “Lion Air Group supports government related to the prevention efforts of COVID-19 spread, through active participation in implementing the health protocols that have been established by the Ministry of Transportation, Ministry of Health and Task Force acceleration handling COVID-19 in each environment and activities of the company and socialize in the environment around the company.”