So, what is the Jakarta to Christmas Island flight really like, and is it an easy transfer if you are just transiting through Jakarta? We asked local Christmas Island resident, Karenn Singer, to tell us after she recently returned to the island from annual leave "through the north" as the locals like to say.
Karenn says, "Terminal 3 Jakarta is one of the best airport terminals in the world, providing Christmas Island locals and visitors with easy connections and great facilities. Arriving in the morning on my way to Christmas Island it was an easy shuttle bus ride from Terminal 1 to the brand new Terminal 3, which is shiny, spacious and comfortable."
"The Christmas Island transfer staff at the designated check-in area are friendly and easily recognisable in their Christmas Island T-shirts. Immigration and security procedures are efficient and during my transit I didn't experience any lengthy queues."
Indonesia's new, more relaxed visa requirements means many nations no longer need an entry visa, even for transit, and that includes Australian, making the transit event easier. The departure lounge is as comfortable as many exclusive international airport lounges with a range of places to relax, maybe catch up on some sleep, or meet fellow travellers.
Karenn goes on to say, "The Christmas Island friendliness starts here at the Terminal in Jakarta. There is a decent variety of tempting eateries in the departure lounge precinct, however if you are really hungry, the range of eateries is greater before clearing immigration, where you can watch the busy terminal apron and runway through large windows.
Throughout the terminal, even the signs for free WiFi have a friendly face and there are charging points everywhere to keep your devices going."
From Jakarta, there are 100s of flights connecting Christmas Island to the rest of the world.
For a step up, the Garuda Business lounge provides another level of comfort and a quiet space to wait for the flight, have a bite to eat or freshen up. Karenn visited the lounge as a guest of the airline charter operator.
The short (less than 1 hour) flight from Jakarta to Christmas Island was comfortable and the service as friendly and efficient. Karenn goes on to say "Arriving at Christmas Island is always a treat, with the first glimpse of the cliffs fringed by blue ocean and backed by green jungle. Once the formalities are done, the warm Island embrace awaits".
Why not try it for yourself - flights to Christmas Island from Jakarta operate every Saturday via a Garuda Charter departing from the brand new Terminal 3. The operating aircraft is a Bombardier 96 seat business jet. And if your connecting flight is with Garuda, you do not even have to change terminals, and your luggage with automatically be transferred to your Christmas Island flight. View the flight schedule here - just click the CGK-XCH tab ...
Virgin Australia also operates flights to Christmas Island, ex Perth, on a twice weekly service.