You have to think about many things before you travel to Indonesia. The following tips and advice can be useful in travel preparation. And not only while preparing for your trip but can also be important during your trip. Look at our tips and advice at your leisure and do not be faced with unpleasant surprises. If you still have questions after these tips and advice, we are happy to be at your disposal to provide you with all the necessary information.
Make sure your travel insurance matches what you are going to do during your holiday. Keep in mind that you are insured ‘while traveling outside Europe’. We recommend taking supplementary health insurance with world coverage. Take your health card and proof of insurance with you when you travel and also give a copy to a person back home.
Don’t forget to activate your bank card for world withdrawal, you can change this at your bank, via online banking or in your mobile bank app. Also ask your bank about the cost of debit card transactions in Indonesia, this varies by bank and payment package. The ATM’s withdrawal limit is Rp 3.000.000 at Maybank and OCBC. For BCA, Mandiri, BNI and others, the limit is Rp 2.500.000. Also keep in mind that debit cards with a credit card incur additional costs.
Especially in Bali you have to be careful with withdrawals, first check that there are no loose parts before you insert your bank card into the ATM, this is because of spam. We therefore advise you to only withdraw money at ATM’s where a security guard is located or to choose machines in an enclosed room with camera surveillance. If you suspect that an ATM is not safe or that your bank card has been spammed, report this immediately to the nearby police station.
Some islands do not have ATM’s, including the Komodo Islands, the Secret Gili’s and Sumba. You must bring enough cash with you when you travel to these islands. Please contact us when you need more information about the payment options on the islands of Indonesia.
Make sure that your passport has not expired and is valid for at least six months after the end of the trip. Make a copy of the main page with your passport photo and keep it separate from your passport. Leave another copy at someone’s home.
VOA (VISA ON ARRIVAL)
Upon arrival in Indonesia, you need to buy a VOA that authorizes you to stay for up to 30 days. The price is Rp 500.000, about € 30,-. Please note that the day of arrival is counted as the first day. This type of visa requires you to present an exit ticket and it can be extended once at an immigration office for another 30 days.
The extension procedure differs per city and can take 5 to 7 days, make sure you submit your application well in advance. We advise you to be at the immigration office as early as possible in the morning and keep a copy of your passport. With this type of visa, a local sponsor is not required. The price to extend your Visa is Rp 375.000, around € 20,-.
VISA ONLINE (VISIT VISA)
Since 26 January 2023, a VISA can be applied for online at the following link: https://molina.imigrasi.go.id. The Visa will be sent to you by email and can also be extended online. The price for a Visa online with a maximum stay of 30 days is Rp 500.000 plus a charge fee of Rp 15.000. Please note that a different email address must be used for each account.
OTHER TYPE OF VISA
Of course, there are various types of visas, such as a work visa or a multiple entry visa, but we focus on the tourist visa. This type of visa can only be issued online by an Indonesian guarantor. If you want to use this service, we will send you a checklist with the necessary documents to apply for the Visa. Please note that we must submit the application at least 30 days before arrival in Indonesia. This type of visa can be extended 2 times at an immigration office with a sponsor who wants to guarantee you. With this type of visa, you can stay in Indonesia up to 180 days. It is not allowed to perform work or volunteer work with this visa. Please contact us for the price of this Visa.
VACCINES AND MALARIA
Make sure you are vaccinated against Typhoid fever, Hepatitis and DTP, you must have these injected at least 2 weeks before arrival in Indonesia. It is also wise to take malaria tablets with you and/or a well-functioning mosquito spray. Although we advise to purchase mosquito repellents in Indonesia, such as Soffel and Autan. These are available everywhere in Indonesia at supermarkets, drugstores and pharmacies.
You can also think of diarrhea inhibitors and painkillers. If you are taking medication and want to take it with you, keep it in its original package. Bring a medicine passport for your prescription medicines, which you can pick up at your own pharmacy. If you use hypodermic needles, also carry a medical certificate. Also leave a copy at home.
OTHER HEALTH MATTERS
Do you have skin type 1 or 2 and does your skin burn easily? Then we advise you to bring sunscreen with a high protection factor from the house and to apply it regularly. In Indonesia, sunscreen is available up to a factor of 30. You can also consider going out with a cap or hat during the day.
We also recommend setting the air conditioning to a pleasant temperature in the car and in the hotel room, not too cold. This can prevent you from getting throat complaints and catching a cold due to the large temperature differences when you leave the car or your room. Also, don’t aim the AC directly at your body or chest when you feel clammy and damp from the heat.
Make sure you drink enough water to prevent dehydration. Pay extra attention with ice cubes in drinks, we advise to order cold drinks without ice. Our guides know the local restaurants and eateries, here you don’t have to worry. When choosing a location to grab a bite to eat, choose a restaurant or eatery where it’s busy with local people.
Indonesia has a beautiful landscape with countless mountains and volcanoes. A pleasure for the eye, but this also means that you make considerable slopes and descents by car. In addition, cracks and holes in the asphalt are created by the heavy rainfall during the monsoon, which makes it not possible to drive at high speed everywhere. It is therefore impossible to determine the travel time by the number of kilometers to be covered. So we cannot assume 100 km per hour here. On Java, the enormous traffic also plays a major role, so a good option is to travel by train. This possibility is unfortunately only on Java, because there are no trains on the other islands. Keep in mind that the maximum weight allowance is 20 kg of luggage per traveler. In addition, we recommend keeping a jacket or vest at hand, it can be uncomfortably cold on the train.
DOMESTIC FLIGHT AND AIRLINE
Indonesia has a lot of international and national airports, partly because the distances are large and of course because the country is an island kingdom. For domestic flights you must be present at the airport for check-in at the very least 1 hour before departure. The check on your luggage is very nil. For example, one does not pay so much attention to foods and the liquids in the hand luggage.
We would like to draw your attention to the fact that the Lion Air and Wings Air airlines are regularly delayed, especially during the day. If you have a tight travel schedule and not much leeway interims of time, we advise you to choose another airline.
FAST BOAT BALI – LOMBOK
When you choose to use the fast boat, keep in mind that this is not recommended for pregnant women and children up to 2 years. If you want to stay a few days at Nusa Lembongan, you are cheaper with an Island-Hopping ticket. This only applies to a stopover at Nusa Lembongan. The maximum weight allowance for baggage is 20 kg per person. For more information about routes, boarding points, departure and arrival times, travel duration and prices, please contact us.
Please note that when you travel from Jakarta to Bandung by car via the Puncak Pass in Bogor, this is not scheduled during the weekend. The Puncak Pass will be closed on Friday afternoon from Bandung to Jakarta and will be a one-way street. This also takes place on Sunday afternoon, but then the road to Bandung is closed. The reason for this is to be able to continue the enormous traffic. On Friday, many people leave Jakarta for Bandung. People who work in Jakarta and live in Bandung and people who live in Jakarta and busy Jakarta flee to the Puncak. On Sunday, the crowd will drive back to Jakarta. If you can avoid this, we definitely recommend it.
As described in article ‘extra tips and advice’ under mentality, the maintenance of interior and buildings falls rather short. We advise that when you choose to book a room online, pay close attention to recent reviews. A review that was posted a year ago most likely no longer relates to its current state. Photos of the accommodation and the rooms in new condition are also shown. So pay attention to this!
Be aware that a 3-star hotel does not always match a 3-star hotel in Europe, although this will be less common in Java and Bali. However, there are certain places on Java and Bali where the standard is lower, for example in the vicinity of Wonosobo, Lumajang and Bromo on Java and Kintamani on Bali. On the other islands there is sometimes no luxury hotel at all and there is a chance that if you choose a low-budget guesthouse, there are no hot water supplies. Hot water is also generally considered a luxury.
The mentality of the Indonesian people is incomparable to the European mentality. Especially when we talk about hygiene and maintaining interiors, facility spaces, infrastructure, etc. This is partly because the local people live largely outdoors. Most of it is cleaned and washed with cold water and this means that grease residues do not always dissolve completely. Also, the tables in restaurants are often wiped clean with a dry cloth, so dirt is often spread instead of removed.
People’s pace is also significantly slower and being on time or arriving is also not a priority. In addition, they find it rude to say ‘no’ and they rarely do this. As a result, there is a chance that when you ask for directions, for example, you will receive a neat answer, but that you will be sent in the wrong direction. Or when you make an appointment in advance that it is not always fulfilled, because he or she agreed at the time the appointment was made, but actually did not want this. And no ‘no’ dared to say at that moment! You can prevent this somewhat by asking multiple questions and when you get the answer to each question: Yes, okay. Then you can assume that he or she actually means ‘no’.
CULTURE AND RELIGION
Indonesia has many different cultures, religions and traditions. Each island has its own living habits with different norms and values. It is therefore highly appreciated when the tourists show respect for these and honor the faith and traditions. For example, you can think of the island of Java where more than 80% of the population is Muslim, here it is very much appreciated that you do not go out in hot pants and low cleavage. Especially in the non-tourist villages and less-touristy cities it is very much appreciated if you adjust your clothing style a little.
There are also several holy sites, including temples, mosques and other places of worship. But also places near tribes where rituals are performed, where you most likely do not know about it. We ask you to follow the instructions of the local guide to avoid any problems. We also request and we do not ask you to enter a place of worship without permission.
We are proud to announce that Indonesia is not known as a dangerous country where tourists have to be constantly on their guard. Nevertheless, we have some tips, as the saying goes: better to prevent than to cure!
- Don’t leave your bag/belongings unattended.
- Carry a shoulder bag diagonally or use a belly bag.
- Never pay in advance for certain services
- Avoids dark and deserted alleys.
- Do not make eye contact with naked people on the street, they suffer from a mental disorder and may react unpredictably.
- Do not drink from a bottle that has been opened earlier or self-inserted drink, such as Arak.
- Buy and use absolutely no drugs!
- Follow orders from police and military without engaging in discussion.
- And very important! DO NOT make treks to volcanoes or through the jungle where it is not recommended to do this on your own.
There are some religious and official holidays that you should take into account during your trip. Including the periods around Idul Fitri (Eid al-Fitr), the pilgrimage to Mecca and Day of Silence in Bali. We have listed all the dates for 2023 and 2024.