FAQ about Travel to Indonesia
On October 12, 2002, the most commercialized, southern area of Bali came under attack by terrorists. The Kuta Beach tourist area is often referred to as "Little Australia" by the local people because it is known to primarily caters to Australian tourists and surfers. This shocking tragedy sent the message around the world that no tourist destination is completely safe in our dangerous times. What a disappointment to all who have come to deeply appreciate the hospitable Balinese people and their culture. But the intent of the perpetrators was to strike at Western revelers and their commercialism. Since Bali as a whole is primarily unscathed by such ugly decay, the Balinese culture remains untouched. However, the impact on the tourist economy has not been minimal. In recent years, tourism has contributed significantly to the financial well-being of the island and even to Indonesia as a whole. Swift efforts by the government to ensure a speedy recover are underway. Strict security measures have been implemented. Some countries have already lifted travel warnings implemented, and tourism to Bali is again on the rise.
There are no non-stop flights from the United States to Indonesia. You must make at least one connecting flight, and depending on the airline, a stopover may be required, usually in Asia. Both transpacific and transatlantic flights are available, with the major US gateways being New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. It takes about a day and a half, including connections, to arrive in Indonesia, and you will lose half a day by crossing the date line. Therefore, the date of your arrival will usually be two days after leaving the states.
Transpacific and transatlantic flying times to Bali (Denpasar) or Jakarta from New York are about the same at approximately 25 hours or 27 hours, respectively. Indonesia is truly on the other side of the world!
The most expensive part of travel to Indonesia is the airfare, since the US dollar has a very favorable exchange rate against the Indonesian rupiah. Lately fares can be found from the USA to either Jakarta (Java) or Denpasar (Bali) roundtrip for well under $1,000.
The cost of lodging across Indonesia varies considerably, but it is one of the most economical destinations on the world map. Bali has the best standards and widest range of prices. Accommodations range from homestays, Inns, a wide range of hotels from budget to ultra luxury resorts, as well as villas and apartments. By way of example, it is not difficult to find a pleasant and clean hotel room that includes a full breakfast for $20-50 per night within walking distance of the beach in Kuta. Food is also very economical, especially if you eat in the small, local restaurants. You could eat very well under $10 per day.
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