Several transportation businesses at the Padangbai Port in Bali have resorted to selling their fast boats because use of the port has drastically dropped since the Covid-19 pandemic struck last year.
The Head of Padangbai Port Official, Luh Putu Eka Suyasmin confirmed that the businesses that have been relying on tourism to transport passengers from Padangbai to Gili Trawangan are struggling to survive the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. “Some of the businesses have already sold their boats, and many others will do the same as they become unable to pay their bills since the travel restrictions were implemented last year due to the global pandemic.” Suyasmin said Thursday (5/8).
Suyasmin explained that from dozens of transportation businesses in Padangbai, only 1 of them is still operating. “In June 2021, 2 of the final 3 open businesses at the port decided to close their operations as well. So there’s only 1 company still remaining that is able to provide transportation services to approximately 15 to 20 passengers per day.” Suyasmin added.
Suyasmin proposes the central government revokes the travel restrictions, especially for international visitors in order to help the tourism sector recover from this major crisis. “I hope that the government will start considering reopening the border, but before it happens all the remaining fast boats that haven’t been operational since the Covid-19 pandemic started are still abandoned at Padangbai Port.” Suyasmin concluded.