Mt. Agung: Malaysians Stranded In Bali As Airport Remains Closed For The Third Day

More than 440 flights have been affected.

Cover image via The Daily Mail

Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport that was closed on 27 November after Mount Agung’s magmatic eruptions, will remain closed until at least Thursday

According to Airport spokesman Arie Ahsanurrohim, the decision was taken as ash from the rumbling Mount Agung continues to pose a threat to planes.

"Bali's Ngurah Rai airport will remain closed until at least Thursday morning," Arie was quoted as saying by Agence France-Presse (AFP).

As the rumbling Mount Agung volcano continues to paralyse flights on the holiday island, more than 440 flights, both domestic and international, have been affected by the closure of the airport

Image via The Daily Mail

The situation has left around 120,000 tourists stranded in Bali, one of the world's top holiday spots which attract about 5 million visitors a year.

According to Richard Arculus, a volcano expert, a larger, explosive eruption is possible or Agung could stay at its current level of activity for weeks.

"If it got much worse, it would be really hard to think of. You've got a huge population centre, nearly a million people in Denpasar and surroundings, and it's very difficult to envision moving those people further away," The Telegraph quoted him as saying.

Meanwhile, AirAsia, which had cancelled 32 flights to and from Bali on Monday, has now issued a fresh statement saying that all AirAsia and AirAsia X flights are cancelled until further notice

Malaysia Airlines, which has been cancelling its flights into Denpasar since Sunday, has said that flights will remain cancelled for 29 November

The airline said that it has opened a dedicated counter at KLIA at A19 to assist affected passengers and will continue to monitor the situation.

Malaysia Airlines also posted this on their website:

Image via MAS

On the other hand, Malaysians stranded in Bali are hoping that the situation on the ground will return to normal soon

"I was also notified that my flight was rescheduled to 30 November but due to the circumstances, I think it will be cancelled as well. The airport has been closed since yesterday and no flights are available.

"Apart from the delayed flights, everything here is under control and the staff are well trained to handle this kind of situation," Eric Tang, a Malaysian tourist who was in Bali for a family vacation, was quoted as saying by NST Online.

However, there are options through which stranded Malaysians in Bali can leave the area and fly back to Kuala Lumpur

One of them is to leave by taking a boat or ferry to Surabaya.

The other option is to take the free shuttle bus service provided by the airport to the Mengwi Bus Terminal, the journey to which will take about an hour.

From the Mengwi Bus Terminal, there are bus services to the Juanda International Airport in Surabaya (12-hour ride), to Adisutjipto International Airport in Yogyakarta (18-hour ride), Blimbingsari Airport in Banyuwangi (6-hour ride) or Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Jakarta (25-hour ride), Wisma Putra said in a statement.

Image via The Daily Mail

Other stories on SAYS:

You may be interested in: