Malaysia Trip I: Crowd of SOETTA

Crowd of SOETTA

I've been absence of March posting, well it sounds unfair even against my pledge to post -at least- 2 every month. Now I have to redeem after arrival by late February from neighboring country, Malaysia.

I and fellows from university (IPB) just applied for an agricultural symposium for student organized by Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). Some 15 Students including me are ready to have this trip for 10-day long. It took about 3 months to prepare our attendance, from paper presentation rehearsal till cultural performance. We used to put some hours of day break for rehearsal, just to perform our best since we burden our university representation. Nothing means to exaggerate, but this kind of our responsibility and definitely we don't expect bad things go around.

In very early morning all of us get ready to reach airport by DAMRI bus sheltering in Baranangsiang station. It's just 4 am we depart passing this such long highway and taking around an hour for reason without distressing traffic. Just makes sense because it's too early for some rumbling activities. But no longer as we arrive in the airport.

Soekarno-Hatta International Airport (SOETTA) stands misty this morning but not vehicles. Cars are flourishing over parking terrain to make up ground view. Almost extinct to find extensive slot, almost covered by rapid growing automobile. It can be understood since the only two public transportations checking in/out the airport are taxi and bus. Railways planned to connect city and gate of Jakarta still shuffles on progress. In consequence the growth of passenger every single year increases, the most busy and even chaotic system prevails. Though now SOETTA Mega Project echoed to finish by 2014 and 2020 respectively as project fragmented into phases. Today parking area will be replaced with huge building of Terminal Center as well as interconnection with spreading of commercial places such as shop, hotel, restaurant, airport train shuttle, and kids playing arena. I prove this ambitious project displayed on banner over highway and big commercial screen videos inside terminal bulding.

It's just 05.30 am, but Terminal 2 (International terminal) looked so hustle. Since our flight will be departing right 9 am, so we decide to have a look and looking for Lion Air information. Our flight today is JT-282 CGK-KLIA sector. But guess nothing we find on Airport Departure Schedule on a medium TV screen, we become little worried about. Fortunately the officer suggests us soon to pass security gate into check-in room, he reveals that might be inappropriate system for Lion Air has just opened it additional flight to KL few months ago. We wonder could be reasonable, but kinda weird when you have a flight and can't find anything of your departure. Not merely us, but some other passengers exactly written over their face how confusing to recognize incomplete timetable. We just wonder they soon update their system for inconvenient information to passenger.

Well, we make check-in soon then fill immigration form and definitely have to pay as much IDR 150,000 (approx $15) for airport tax/person. Then approaching immigration passage. But this is not sort of ordinary queue, but a random snake. They open merely 3 gates for Indonesian Passport Holder and 2 gates for Foreign Passport Holder. Length of Yellow Line to most-behind wall interprating maximum length of queue is just merely 20-25 meters. But this hour only which we guess not part of rush hour -or probably every hour is rush- people are queueing so so long excessing the line length. Meanwhile the time of flight departure schedule stick by very close minute every single taking-off. SOETTA itself has been put 12th most busy airport in the world heading Dubai Airport (UAE), Changi (Spore), Suvarnabhumi (Thailand), and far leaving KLIA (Malaysia) by number of passenger traffic in 2011 (Source). This very rapid growing unfortunately has not been yet followed by increment of airport service and terminal. I guess we have to learn much more from our neighboring countries (Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand) how they manage their airport as one of most important gateway into their coutry by service and facilities. Nothing against SOETTA airport, but improvement is appropriately not be bergained.

After finishing immigration, we soon reach waiting room and announcement of departure just confirmed so we have no excess time to sit but ready borading to the aircraft. Luckily today flight with Lion Air is on time. As predicted before, the airlines carries passenger with its new B737-900 ER looked fresh and clean. Lion Air has broken histroy of aviation the biggest ordered of Boeing 737 series by number and value transaction. Indeed, aviation in Indonesia is really growing, not slowly but so fast. Just return to few years ago and come back to present, making comparison is such obvious revealing it seriously grows and might be seriously necessary to wake up how this evolving flight really handled.

Inside the aircraft, nothing much to do but talking with my friends. The 2-hour flight is not that bad without any adjacent facility for our group consists of these happy members and easily to laugh. Whole the sky through we just talk and talk as usual teenager behave. And fortunately we sit at almost behind seats so easily going to toilet or just relaxation for awhile :D

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2 Response to Malaysia Trip I: Crowd of SOETTA

April 8, 2012 at 2:08 PM

The group of fellow students was a success obviously :). And so was the trip. And how about the symposium?

April 8, 2012 at 5:20 PM

I'm gonna tell the symposium on the next post :D

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