Indonesia General Travel Information

Local Time

Indonesia is 5 hours ahead of South Africa

Immigration

All visitors travelling to Indonesia must be in possession of a passport valid for at least six months from the date of arrival and have proof of onward passage. If on a South African passport you need a visa to enter Indonesia.

All passport must have blank pages and be valid for 6 months from date of travel. 

Visas may be issued on arrival if not acquired beforehand.

Health

International health certificates for smallpox and cholera are not required, except from travellers arriving from infected areas. Malaria precautions are recommended.

Customs

Indonesian Customs allows on entry a maximum of two litres of alcoholic beverages, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 grams of tobacco and a reasonable amount of perfume per adult. Cars, photographic equipment, typewriters and tape recorders must be declared to Customs upon entry and must be re-exported. 'prohibited from entry are TV sets, radios, narcotics, arms and ammunition, printed matter in Chinese characters and Chinese medicines.

Advance approval has to be acquired for carrying transceivers and all movie films and video cassettes must be censored by the Film Censor Board. Fresh fruit, plants and animals must have quarantine permits.

There is no restriction on import or export of foreign currencies. However, the export or import of Indonesian currency exceeding Rp.50,000 is prohibited.

Departure Taxes

Departure taxes payable directly at the airports in Indonesia are Rp 200.000 (aprox USD21) for international flights and Rp 60,000 (aprox USD7) for domestic flights. It is recommended you make allowance for Indonesian Rupiah local currency to pay the departure taxes as it is easier in terms of conversion and any change you need to receive.

Extra Baggage Fees

The smaller internal Indonesian Airlines allow limited checked in luggage per person between 10 and 20 kg depending on the destination. They do allow extra baggage at an extra cost of aprox Rp.40,000 - Rp.50,000/kilo (aprox USD5) for every kg over.

It is recommended you make allowance for Indonesian Rupiah local currency to pay these extra baggage fees as it is easier in terms of conversion and any change you need to receive

Electricity

Voltage is 22volts, 50 cycles per second

Water

Do not drink the tap water or use ice. Only bottled water

Clothes and Customs

Dress casually and take light clothes as the weather is warm to hot throughout the year. Bali is a country where religion and prayers take centre stage. When visiting a temple, please respect local tradition and custom. Visitors are welcome to any ceremony held at a family compound or a temple provided that they are appropriately dressed, and have a sash around the waits to show respect to the host or Deities of the place visited

Currency

You may use a credit card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express etc) for paying your bill in the hotel. Due to a recent change in local banking policy in Indonesia it is no longer possible to use traveller’s cheques in local shops, dive centres and resorts.

Traveller’s cheques can only be cashed in the bank by the owner of the cheque (USD only). Mastercard, Visa and American Express are accepted at the resorts as well as local and international currency such as US & Singapore Dollar, Euro and Pound .

The Indonesian currency is the Rupiah. It is recommend that you change some foreign currency into Rupiah on arrival at your first Indonesian Airport, which may then be used during your trip for departure taxes, extra baggage fees, gratuities, souvenirs, markets, local restaurants etc.

Tipping

Major hotels usually add a 10% service charge to bills. Where it is not included a tip of between 5% to 10% of the bill would be appropriate if the service is satisfactory.

Airport porters expect Rp.2,000,-for a small bag and Rp.3,000, for bags weighing more than 20 kg.

Tipping taxi and hire-car drivers is not mandatory, but if service has been satisfactory a basic Rp.1,000,- tip is sufficient for a taxi driver, Hire-car drivers would normally expect a larger tip

For the dive centres, the staff and dive guides they do appreciate a tip at your discretion according to the level of service you receive .. which in most cases is exceptional. You can place your tip in an envelope and hand it to the dive centre manager who will divide it between the staff. Allow the same for liveaboard staff.

Shopping

Major cities in Indonesia have shopping complexes, supermarkets and department stores where prices are fixed. Shops are usually open all week including Sundays. Shopping hours are usually between 9.00 am and 9.00 pm for department stores and supermarkets in the large cities with shorter hours on Sundays. In smaller cities, shops may be closed between 1.00 pm and 5.00 pm.

Bargaining is customary in small shops and markets, the art of which is to start at half the asking price and slowly increase your offer until a compromise is reached. Remember it helps to smile while bargaining.

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