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Flying to Kaimana


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Folks

 

I'd welcome views and experiences, please, on flying into Kaimana to join a liveaboard trip which sails from there - and ends up in Sorong. I'm running a trip using Emperor Divers there next year.

 

I'm guessing Garuda via Jakarta but any Tips, Tricks, Does and Don'ts would be most welcome.

 

Thanks!

 

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Hi Tim, I don't have direct experience on Utarom Airport (Kaimana), from what I know, is that it is only connected to Sorong with Wings Air Company. So you have to get to Sorong first and then to Kaimana.

Sorong is not worth much as a city to visit, but if you have a long time to wait, arm yourself well with mosquito repellent. Malaria is present in Sorong.

Flight cancellations are quite frequent, if you have to book flights directly always try to have a good safety margin between flights.

Most flights leave Jakarta for Sorong after midnight, there are very few flights in the afternoon (it's a 4-hour flight).

To get to Sorong I recommend Garuda, which is the most reliable, and always gives a bonus underwater baggage, but you have to check your flight schedules and departures from Jakarta to fit everything in well.

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Back in 2018, our trip to Triton Bay (nearest airport is Kaimana) was: Jakarta - <Batik air> - Manokwari - <Wings air> - Kaimana; the return was Kaimana - <Wings air> - Sorong - <Batik Air> - Jakarta.

 

I don't know if these airlines and routes are still operating, I know Covid changed a lot of these things. I do recall that finding info about local airlines in Indonesia used to be a bit of challenge - Triton Bay divers had helped us make the bookings (they had experience with what flights tend to get delayed, and planned a schedule that was more tolerant to delays).

 

Kind regards

Ajay

 

p.s. If you do get to dive in the neighborhood, Triton Bay is really amazing - I'm sure you know.

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18 hours ago, TimG said:

Folks

 

I'd welcome views and experiences, please, on flying into Kaimana to join a liveaboard trip which sails from there - and ends up in Sorong. I'm running a trip using Emperor Divers there next year.

 

I'm guessing Garuda via Jakarta but any Tips, Tricks, Does and Don'ts would be most welcome.

 

Thanks!

 

Use one of the aggregator sites like Kayak to find options and connections, pick one that looks good and then book directly with the airline.  

 

CGK-SOG flight is 00:10 arriving 06:10

You would need to travel on wings air to Kaimana.  10:30am - 11:50

SOQ-CGK flight is 08:15 - 10:10

 

You  won't get bags checked through to Kaimana so you will need to check in in Sorong.

 

If I was doing it I would get a return flight on Garuda and one- way SOQ - Kaimana.  You get the diving gear allowance and they are quite reasonable to fly on.  One issue might be your arrival time in Sorong to make the 8:15 flight.

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I was at Triton Bay bit over one year ago.

 

CGK-SOQ-KNG from Lion group. CGK-SOQ on Batik and SOQ-KNG on Wings. 

Bags checked at Jakarta and no need to re-check at Sorong.

 

Sorong-Kaimana is on ATR and carryon might get gate checked.

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Just returned a few weeks ago from my second trip to Triton Bay. Love Triton. Only option from SOQ to KNG (Kaimana) was (and I assume still is) the Lion Air Group (Wings, Batik, and Lion airlines). Lion Air can be very frustrating RE cancellations and changes. We had 5 total schedule changes (some time changes, and some cancellations) between the time we booked (directly on Lion site) and our actual arrival and departure from KNG. In fact, we had to leave the resort a day earlier than originally planned just to make it back to SOQ and on to Manado (MDC) at a reasonable time. Our trip 5 years ago was marginally better in terms of flights, but still had changes and cancellations. Long ago, Garuda serviced Kaimana and was less erratic, but I wouldn't expect them to restart that flight anytime soon. So, it's really important-- IMO-- to build in at least one overnight to and from. And after you book flights, check the status of them regularly. Communication from Lion Group to customers can be very poor. Sometimes they send texts and emails, sometimes they don't. You need to be proactive and monitor things. Good luck!

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I think the main thing is getting good travel insurance.  You are stuck with the arrival and departure dates for your liveaboard.  I assume this is the one where you have booked the whole boat?  If so the boat will wait for you I would imagine.  If you build in an overnight at Sorong on both legs it might leave you some flexibility.   But by all accounts not much to do in Sorong. 

 

With Garuda you are perhaps more likely to get on the flights you book and the important one is getting on the flight to meet your international connection.  Looks like you can fly Garuda from Amsterdam so if you went the whole way with them you'd get your dive gear allowance and they should re-book you if you miss connections because of them

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Thanks, Chris. Yep, can see the need to build in some Flextime in Sorong. Not a problem. We don’t yet have the whole boat (but we do for this year’s Red Sea trip!) 

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