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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 17 December 2018

Emirates resumes limited service to Bali amid volcano disruption

Denpasar airport reopened on Wednesday afternoon after three days of flight cancellations

Emirates has resumed some flights to Bali after the Indonesian island’s airport reopened on Wednesday despite ongoing ash eruptions from Mount Agung.

Earlier in the week activity from the volcano in the northeast of the island intensified, forcing closure of the airport and grounding tens of thousands of passengers as flights from around the world were cancelled.

Emirates said in a statement to The National on Thursday that it had instigated a “limited resumption of flights to and from Bali/Denpasar [airport]” after having cancelled all its services to and from Bali indefinitely from Monday.

The temporary schedule on Thursday comprises flight EK360 departing from Dubai at 01.30 Dubai time, and flight EK361 departing from Bali at 16.30 Bali time.

"These dates and times are provisional and subject to the operational status of Bali/Denpasar International Airport,” the statement said. Flight EK399 remains cancelled.

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“Emirates passengers bound for Bali/Denpasar via Dubai, including those currently in Dubai International Airport, will be given the option to travel to a destination near to Bali/Denpasar, [such as] an Indian Ocean or other Far East destination in the Emirates network. Alternatively, they can return to their original point of departure if they so choose,” the Dubai carrier said.

It applies to Emirates passengers who have booked tickets to Bali/Denpasar (DPS) with departure dates up to December 4. The airline urged passengers to check their website for their latest flight timings.

Thick ash started spouting from Bali’s Mount Agung on Saturday, spreading east and forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents living in the island’s northeast area, as well as holidaymakers.

Indonesia’s Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation raised its aviation alert notice to ‘red’ on Monday, the highest level, warning that a larger eruption is possible.

However, Ngurah Rai Airport – also known as Denpasar and Indonesia’s third-busiest international airport – reopened from 3pm on Wednesday after three days of disruption.

Indonesian officials have said that although the airport has reopened, it remains necessary to constantly monitor the situation.