Review: Batik Air Boeing 737 Business Class (CGK-YIA)

Jyaga likes (3.5/5)

Batik Air flight detail

Airline : Batik Air
Flight No : ID 6368
Departure City : Jakarta – Soekarno-Hatta (CGK)
Arrival City : Yogyakarta – Kulon Progo (YIA)
Equipment : Boeing 737-800 (PK-BGR)
Blocked Time : 1h10m
Seat No: 2A

Batik Air is an Indonesian full-service carrier belonging to Lion Air, Indonesia’s largest low-cost carrier. Likewise, the airline maintains very close relations with its parent; nearly everything is plastered with Lion Air’s emblem, perhaps in an effort to alleviate its own reputation.

Since its launch, Batik Air has grown very quickly, now operating a mixed fleet of Boeing 737-800s and Airbus A320s, along with a couple of elusive Airbus A330-300 aircraft. However, whilst the airline seemed to have high aspirations during its launch, it seems to have come to share a lot more similar traits with its parent. 

Booking Batik Air

Having had to take an earlier departure, there was a choice of just two airlines — Batik Air and Super Air Jet. By the time I booked, Super Air Jet had already zeroed its inventory for that flight, which ended up getting cancelled. I booked Batik Air on their website, for IDR1,600,000, which is a reasonable price for Business Class, if you ask me. Unfortunately, seat selection wasn’t available for me during the booking process, which echoed the experience I had on my flight to Singapore.


Domestic Batik Air flights depart Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Terminal 2D. Since Terminal 2D used to be the primary international terminal at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, going back here brought back many fond memories. Whilst old, I felt that this Paul Andreu-designed is a lot more convenient compared to the behemoth that is Terminal 3.

Terminal 2D at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport

I arrived at the airport at 04.00 for this 06.00 departure, finding a deserted check-in hall littered with Batik Air check-in counters. Curiously, Terminal 2D also offers self-check-in kiosks outside the check-in hall for Lion Air Group passengers, which could be convenient if you’re flying hand-baggage only.

Self-check-in kiosks at Terminal 2D

Since there wasn’t a line for the dedicated Business Class check-in (or general, check-in for that matter), the process was effortless and took less than 2 minutes. With my boarding pass in hand, it was time for me to use the lounge.

Batik Air Business Class check-in counters
Batik Air Business Class check-in counters


Batik Air operates just two lounges, both in Jakarta. In this case, the Batik Air Lounge at Soekarno-Hatta is the airline’s flagship. The lounge is located on the shopping arcade at Terminal 2E, across from the A&W restaurant. I have shared my thoughts about this lounge in a separate review.

Sign pointing to the Batik Air Lounge
Batik Air Lounge


After spending roughly an hour in the Batik Air Lounge, I headed to our departure gate in Concourse D. There, I found the waiting room to be virtually unchanged from the time Terminal 2D was the international terminal. My, my, how times have changed!

Concourse D at Terminal 2
Gate D5
Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, a proud SkyTrax ‘3-Star’ Airport (hah!)
Gate D5 waiting room

Boarding started at 05.22, against the printed time of 05.30. As was the case with my Economy Class flight to Singapore, boarding just sort of started without any advance calls. Likewise, there are no boarding groups or priority boarding, since everybody just boarded at the same time. Still, I was impressed that they managed to board us early for this flight. Since there weren’t any wheelchair passengers, there wasn’t a pre-boarding sequence either.

Gate seating area
Gate seating area

Since our plane isn’t connected to the jetway (or parked at our gate, for that matter), we had to take the escalators down and walk. Thankfully, our plane is parked nearby, and it is a treat (at least for me as an AvGeek) to walk on the apron! After making my way up the stairs, I was greeted by the two flight attendants by the door, who pointed me to my seat. 

A Batik Air Airbus A320 parked nearby
PK-BGR, the Boeing 737-800 taking us to Yogyakarta
Boarding our plane

Batik Air Boeing 737-800 cabin

As soon as I boarded, I was delighted to see that our flight is operated by one of the Boeing 737-800s that used to fly for Garuda Indonesia. Batik Air elected to keep Garuda Indonesia’s 174-seat configuration, which is ironically denser than Batik Air’s own 162-seat configuration. In Business Class, there is a total of 12 recliner seats in a 2-2 configuration. This is followed by 162 seats in Economy Class in a standard 3-3 configuration. 

Business Class cabin
Economy Class cabin

Virtually nothing has changed from the aircraft’s tenure with Garuda Indonesia. Likewise, it is no surprise that the cabin features Garuda’s signature red and brown seat covers. The only thing that has been changed is the pillows and the cloth on the headrests.

Business Class cabin

Business Class has 12 recliner seats configured in a standard 2-2 configuration in the aft section of the aircraft. If the seats look familiar, it is indeed identical to those on Batik Air’s conventional Boeing 737s and Vietnam Airlines’ A321 Business Class, which I flew back in April.

Batik Air Boeing 737-800 Business Class cabin
Batik Air Boeing 737-800 Business Class cabin
Bulkhead seats on Batik Air’s Boeing 737-800
Batik Air Boeing 737-800 Business Class cabin
Seat details

Waiting on each seat upon boarding is a small Batik Air-branded pillow, in the same shade of brown as the headrest covers. As I settled in my seat, I noticed that the legroom is reasonably good, with a distance of around 50 cm (~20 inches) from my knee to the bulkhead. In the second row, the distance is about 40 cm (~16 inches).

Batik Air Business Class seat
Batik Air Business Class pillow
Legroom in the bulkhead row
Legroom in the second row

As is standard with recliner Business Class seats, there is a footrest and an adjustable headrest in each seat. The recline and footrests are manually operated with the levers on the armrest. 

Seat in recline
Seat in recline
The recline and leg rest controls

Located between the seats is a large centre console, that also doubles as a drink holder. In addition, the centre console also houses the personal inflight entertainment monitors inherited from Garuda Indonesia. However, whilst every seat has an entertainment screen (as with most newly delivered Batik Air aircraft), the televisions were not switched on or operational.

Centre console between the seats
Inactive personal television
Entertainment remote control (inactive)

The tray table pulls out of the armrest and latches onto the centre console. However, I ended up moving to the seat in the row behind me since my original seat has a broken table and leg rest. Theoretically, the seats also feature personal reading lights and in-seat power outlets, though neither were working. In fact, I noticed that the leg rests in more than one seat are also broken and inoperational. That’s to say, nothing about the seat worked! Oh, dear.

Broken reading lights
Broken tray table
Tray table in my new seat
Inactive power outlets
Cabin observations

Whilst the seats looked nice, I noticed how shabby the cabin looked. It looked like the airline has done little to maintain the look of the seats. For one, many seats did not have working reclining functions, and many leg rests were also broken. Hilariously, as I checked out the seat, I noticed that they still feature tags from Garuda Indonesia.

Batik Air Boeing 737-800 Business Class cabin
Batik Air Boeing 737-800 Business Class cabin
Garuda Indonesia tags

Departure from Jakarta

The doors closed at 05.52, with only four seats occupied in Business Class. During this time, the purser welcomed us on board in Indonesian and English, stating a flight time of 1 hour. For one, I was impressed with how clear the announcements were, and how proficient the purser is in English.

A Batik Air A320 in the distance

After the announcement, a manual safety demonstration was conducted. As we prepared for departure, the Business Class flight attendant approached me to ask if I’d like to eat a snack after takeoff. Afterwards, we started pushback at 05.59, just as the sun started rising in the East. We took off 10 minutes later at 06.09 from runway 25R.

A non-standard liveried Batik Air A320
Batik Air A320s at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport

Refreshment Service

Five minutes after takeoff, the seatbelt signs were extinguished and the crew started preparation for the inflight service. It wasn’t several minutes until the flight attendant came to my seat to set up my table. The refreshments were served a few minutes later, consisting of a warm piece of bread filled with cheese and garlic. This was accompanied by a slice of layered Kaya and Pandan cake, along with a bottle of water. 

Morning refreshment service
Cheesy garlic bread

Given our flight time of just 1 hour, I thought this was a fair meal for a full-service airline. For one, I found the bread to be satisfying, although the cake did seem to taste rather artificial. After I was finished with my snack, the flight attendant served coffee and tea, to which I partook.

Tea service


After the meal, I went to the lavatory in front to freshen up. The lavatory was kept clean and dry when I entered, although it was otherwise unremarkable. 


Inflight Entertainment 

As is now standard on Batik Air, the inflight entertainment offered on board is now outsourced to an application called Tripper. This is the same inflight entertainment streaming application used by Lion Air, Super Air Jet, and Pelita Air. The system requires the app to be downloaded in advance via the App Store or Play Store. After connecting to the system’s network, the app will prompt a sign-up screen.

Seatback pocket contents

As I’ve mentioned in my Economy Class review, the application contains a decent amount of movies and television shows, as well as several games. As always, I’m thrilled that the world’s most difficult mobile game was included — Flappy Bird.

Regardless, to Batik Air’s credit, inflight entertainment magazines are provided on board. Hilariously, the magazine featured Super Air Jet as part of the Lion Air Group. So much for refusing any connections between the Lion Air Group and Super Air Jet.

Seatback pocket contents
So Super Air Jet is part of the Lion Air Group?!
Prayer card

Arrival in Yogyakarta

Decent commenced 28 minutes after takeoff, and the cabin was prepared for landing 10 minutes later. As we approached Yogyakarta International Airport, I was enthralled by the sea of mist we were descending into. The views were spectacular and undeniably confirmed that we were in Java.

Approaching Yogyakarta International Airport
Approaching Yogyakarta International Airport
View on approach

We had a semi-smooth landing at 07.01 local time, nine minutes before our scheduled time of arrival. To my surprise, there appeared to be a wrecked aircraft fuselage near the edge of the runway, which nearly gave me a heart attack. It so turns out that the fuselage is used as an airport emergency services training object…

The airport’s emergency training aircraft fuselage
Super Air Jet everywhere

It took several minutes for us to taxi to our gate, where we ended up parking next to a Super Air Jet A320. As we approached our gate even, another Super Air Jet A320 was preparing to depart. As I later saw when I disembarked, another Super Air Jet A320 landed. Is it me, or is Super Air Jet quickly taking over the aviation market here in Indonesia?!

New Yogyakarta International Airport
A Super Air Jet A320 in Yogyakarta
Another Super Air Jet A320 in Yogyakarta

Arrival experience in Yogyakarta

I thanked the crew as I disembarked the aircraft to find a gorgeous airport terminal. Egads, Yogyakarta must have one of the nicest airports in Indonesia! Whilst the walk to the baggage claim area was long, I was happy to see how beautiful and modern the new Yogyakarta International Airport is! It is definitely a proper replacement for the shabby and aging Adisucipto Airport it replaced.

Our Batik Air Boeing 737-800 in Yogyakarta
A shabby-looking Lion Air Boeing 737-900ER
Arrivals Level at Yogyakarta International Airport

As I patiently waited for my bags at the baggage claim, I was approached by a ground handling agent who informed me that Business Class and Priority-tagged bags have been delivered separately and are waiting by the Batik Air Lost and Found office. Very Impressive! For one, I did not expect this, since this is something akin to Garuda’s Business Class offering.

Baggage Claim
Baggage Claim


Overall, I had a pleasant and relatively comfortable flight on Batik Air. Despite my less-than-favourable sentiments about them on my last flight in Economy Class, I felt that this flight was rather effortless. Surely, some aspects of their operation do feel amateurish, but I left this flight feeling relatively pleased with the experience. For one, I wished that they had taken better care of the cabins and introduced a proper boarding sequence. Should they introduce such improvements, Batik Air Business Class would be really quite great.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *