How can an airline legally say a flight is 'nonstop' when it makes a stop?

Malindo Air (operated by Batik Air) consistently shows a flight operating ‘nonstop’ when, in fact, it stops in Denpasar (DPS) on its way to Kuala Lumpur. When searching flight OD 158 on google travel it lists as ‘nonstop’ and clearly it is not.

Isn’t this false advertising? Is this error from Malindo Air or Google Flights?

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Welcome to the Community @kakoe

It appears Malindo Air has transformed their name into Batik Air in some way.

The Batik Air web site correctly shows the flight as you state, ie 1 stop at KUL


Accepting google or any search engine result as always being accurate is a dangerous personal policy even though many believe and experience ‘google is always right’ - except when it is wrong.

When booking anything it is always best to check the providers own web site, and it is often cheaper to purchase direct, especially from accommodation providers although not so often transportation.

It is ‘Google Flights’. Discovered by checking the Malindo (Batik Air) web site directly.

Perhaps at one time it was non-stop and Google Flights never picked up the change when it happened, perhaps changed during the evolution from Malindo to Batik? It is equally possible (although unlikely with Google’s track record) it has always been incorrect and the error was never communicated to them.


Malindo was renamed to Batik Air at the end of April last year. It is owned by the Lion Air Group.

It’s most definitely a Google error. I’ve just used Google’s own feedback feature to let them know of the error

The flight would be considered a Direct flight. The term direct flight is a hangover from early days of aviation. With direct flights the flight number doesnt change. The stop could be for something like a technical fuel stop or related to legal issues within the Freedom of Aviation Regulations.

This short video by an Australian aviation YouTuber explains non-stop vs direct ( This Simply Flying article goes into more detail, and they have their own short explainer video too What Are The Freedoms Of Aviation? (


No. See below.

Google flights harvests data from airline/travel companies and then generates information which it displays when searching using Google Flights.

Airlines which result are displayed have little control over the generated search results as it is Google’s algorithms which present the information, including the interpretation of the data which was harvested. But, Google’s interpretation might be right or wrong. As it states nonstop, then Google’s algorithm is in err if the airlines website shows a stop onroute.

There is also the term direct flight which may give the impression of nonstop. Direct is different to nonstop.

If the airline website said it was a direct flight (which it does rather than nonstop), when it wasn’t, then this would be a different issue and could be seen as being misleading. I say could rather than would as

A direct flight in the aviation industry is any flight between two points by an airline with no change in flight numbers , which may include one or more stops at an intermediate point(s). A stop may either be to get new passengers (or allow some to disembark) or a technical stop over (i.e., for refuelling).

As the flight met the above definition of a direct flight, then it wouldn’t be misleading.

A non-stop flight is supposed to be exactly that. No stops between departure and arrival ports.

What is all this talk about direct flights? That is something different.

Because the airlines website shows it as a direct flight (meeting above industry definition) , not a nonstop flight.

It appears the Google algorithm has taken a direct flight as being a nonstop flight.

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So can we take it that the original poster’s question has been answered?. The airline doesn’t claim the flight is non-stop. I’ll have to take that on advice since I haven’t actually looked. Other posters have apparently.

The end.

Its website says it (is a direct) flight with short stop in Indonesia.

As indicated above, it is Google that is wrong.

Not to be pedantic, but where is that? Perhaps a different viewpoint of ‘says’ vs ‘shows’?

When I looked the flight number schedule shows that it is a direct flight but it is
‘advertised’ as a 1 Stop on the shown in my snippet above.

BUT at least up to this century there were flights in the US (not sure about anywhere else) advertised as direct but with an undocumented (in the schedules) change of plane at an intermediate stop that carried the same onward flight number. In one instance (I was a pax) the original leg of ‘F1’ was delayed but the second leg of ‘F1’ ('still ‘F1’) departed the intermediate stop on time (!!) leaving pax incoming on ‘F1’ to be rebooked from the intermediate stop onwards. Not sure if they still do that or are even allowed to these days. I hope not either way.

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Agree says one stop. The flight is direct as outlined by the industry definition. It doesn’t state ‘direct’, but meets the direct definition. I suspect they don’t state ‘direct’ as many consumers would think direct = nonstop, which it isn’t.

I learnt the difference in the 1990s. I asked one of the office staff to book my boss and I on a direct flight from Brisbane to Rocky and back - for a relatively short meeting.

Flight times were set based on meeting start and finish. Not looking at the old carbon copy tickets before departure, we flew nonstop from Brisbane to Rockhampton, the direct flight on the way back was the milk run, dropping from the sky at any significant centre down the coast (from memory we stopped for about 15 minutes at Gladstone, Bundy and Marlborough).

A 90 minute flight took many hours - a later nonstop flight beat us to Brisbane by about 30 minutes. All I can say is my boss was ropeable and I received an earbashing. On returning to the office I asked the staff member whether it was some sort of joke we were booked on a flight with as many bounces as a kangaroo (airline). The response was were booked on a direct flight…if we wanted a nonstop flight I should have asked for one. I didn’t make the same mistake again.


Look at it this way, one gets to add

I suspect actually Maryborough to the airports one has been to.

As a longtime Queenslander and part time New South Wales resident - I’d be disappointed if any flight not between the capitals did not chose to stop along the way. One only needs to look at the departure time and arrival time at destination to work out whether the flight is making a detour or stop along the way. The same basic check can be used for any flight. The more stops the longer the flight. How long is the shortest flight on offer from all carriers on that route?

For us more frequent fliers this may go without saying. Check every detail twice and question every difference. The airline’s own site and schedule are the best resource. I prefer my flight’s to always be non-stop except when on the terminal apron. :wink:

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A new definition of the word “nonstop”. Makes no sense.

Please clarify why you think that has been introduced. There has been no change to non-stop being point to point without landing, versus direct that can include one or more stops with the same flight number, usually but not always in the same airplane. The latter has been a standard terminology for many decades.