Kiwi tourists in Bali to come home

  • 10/11/2015

Kiwi holidaymakers stranded in Bali by a volcanic ash cloud may finally be able to come home.

But travel agents warn it may take several days to clear the backlog of tourists wanting the leave the resort island.

Ash from the Barujari Crater on Mt Rinjani, on the island of Lombok east of Bali, has been blowing toward the Denpasar airport for about a fortnight since the volcano started emitting debris on October 25 after an eruption.

Weather forecasters have offered hope that the cloud could clear on Tuesday, allowing some daylight flights for holiday makers.

On Monday, Jetstar and Virgin have earmarked a limited number of flights for departure from Denpasar Airport if conditions improved overnight.

Virgin issued a statement saying its priority was returning passengers to Australia.

"As Mt Rinjani continues to erupt and flying conditions remain unpredictable in the days to come, our priority is to bring guests home from Bali, rather than fly more guests in who could potentially be delayed in returning home due to ongoing eruptions," the airline said in a statement.

House of Travel commercial director Brent Thomas said the forecast would be welcome news for many of the company's 100 Kiwi customers who were in Bali.

"We're not sure exactly how many are trying to get back but no doubt there will be some that will be relieved to hear they're coming home," Mr Thomas said.

But he warned it could take a few days to clear the backlog.

"They might not be getting on the next flight or the one after though," he said.

"How quickly it's cleared will depend on how full the scheduled flights are."

Both Virgin and Jetstar have offered passengers scheduled to fly to Bali the option of travelling to alternative holiday spots.