Lost in Jakarta Translation

One day, you have read or heard somewhere that is better to come prepared when you are about to travel to foreign countries. So, you have done your research, learnt the language of the countries you’ll visit, and are ready to drag your luggage to the airport. Once you arrived, you were just about to use the language that you learned, but, alas, what they speak is totally different than what you learned. It is not definite, but the chance is big for to happen as you step into Jakarta City.

Instead of hearing “saya”, “tidak”, “nanti”, and etc as a standard Indonesian formal language, you will hear a tad foreign term like “gue”, “ngga”, “ntar, etc. These words are derived from Betawi language, a dialect that is often used by native Jakartans.  So, don’t be surprised if it is different than formal Indonesian that you learned. Aside from that, there are also many new popular terms that are made from abbreviations. For example, “mantul” that is formed from “mantap betul”, or literally means “really excellent”.

As a country with more than 1.300 ethnicities, Indonesian that live throughout the country speaks in dialect in their hometown, so they are relatively easy to adapt and absorb new languages. Not only they can speak in dialects, but they are also capable of speaking in Indonesian standard language or relatively known as “bahasa baku”. In Central or East Java for example, you will hear most people speak in Javanese. Even other than Java Island, people from different ethnicities most probably speak in their own dialects in their respective hometown.

So, if you hear Indonesian speaks most in dialects but you are going to ask for directions and you have only learned the Indonesian language, don’t be afraid, while they are speaking in dialects for daily conversations, most will understand if you speak in formal Indonesian standard language.

Or, if you are not convinced enough, just use English to be safe. Citizens who work in service industries most probably undergone training for English language and some locals are excited to speak to foreigners to practice their English. So, don’t be afraid to engage in conversation with locals!

Introducing The Jakarta Transportation Mode, Transjakarta Busway

Once you step into Jakarta City, you will see a lot of vehicles on the street. As the capital city, the city has a very dense population. This causes a lot of traffic congestion problems in many parts of Jakarta. With the intention to solve this problem, the government came up with a plan to provide proper Jakarta Transportation to make the citizens choose to opt out using private vehicles. Therefore, the Transjakarta Busway was established. For a glance of this mode of transportation, please check here: https://www.jakartawalkingtour.com/transjakarta-bus/

Since its establishment, the Jakarta Transportation has undergone a lot of changes and improvement. From the number of corridors, tracks, and even bus type, size, and colors. As for now, the Transjakarta Busway has established more than 14 corridors around Jakarta. The integration map of those corridors can be found here: https://transjakarta.co.id/peta-rute/ The bus type has divided to BRT (rapid transit bus) and non-BRT. The BRT bus will stop and depart from normal Busway shelters that spread around Jakarta, meanwhile the non-BRT bus will also stop and depart at bus stops with a sign at the side of the streets.

Aside from only Jakarta Transportation, there are also Transjabodetabek that cater to commuters that live outside Jakarta as in Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi. This reflects on the corridors’ number code, for example, B11, that runs along the route of Bekasi to Jakarta on corridor 11. S for Serpong, T for Tangerang, C for Cibubur, and so on.

The fare is relatively cheap for Indonesian, with IDR3500 per person and no additional charge for transiting between corridors. An electric money card is needed as a payment method to ride the bus. Nowadays, most of the buses use gas as their fuel and buses which use gas have a blue color paint on the bodies. Some of them are electric buses, and the color is soft green.

The operational hours for this Jakarta Transportation vary depending on the corridors. The earliest departure is from 5AM and the latest is 12AM. One thing that a visitor must notice is, there are a special double decker buses with a special route for tourists that want to see around the roads in Jakarta while riding buses with the best view. It is better known as “Jakarta Explorer” with seven options for route theme. You can choose to explore history, culinary and art, modern Jakarta, and so on. Say no more, prepare your card, tap in, and you are ready to go!

Going Around Jakarta with Jakarta Transportation

Along with the continuous development of Jakarta as a capital city, Jakarta Transportation also undergoes a lot of improvements as today. There are already many options to go around Jakarta using public transportation.

Jakarta Transportation is divided into two types, intra-city and inter-city transportation. For intra-city transportation in Jakarta area, we have Transjakarta, Microtrans, and MRT (Mass Rapid Transit/Moda Raya Terpadu). These types of transportation modes are provided to people who want to go around within the Jakarta area. Transjakarta are big buses that you can ride from the Transjakarta Busway shelters, Microtrans is smaller vehicles like car or used to called “angkutan kota”, and MRT is train like transportation that you can ride from subway stations.

For intercity of Jakarta Transportation, there are options like KRL Commuter Line, LRT (Light Rail Transit/Lintas Rel Terpadu), and also Transjabodetabek. These modes are intended to provide transportation for people outside Jakarta area, including Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi, hence the name of “Jabodetabek” area, as many people commute from other cities while working in Jakarta or vice versa. The routes and fares for each mode are usually provided on their respective websites.

These modes of Jakarta Transportation are meant to provide people with decent public transportation so people will opt out using private vehicles to solve traffic congestion problems in Jakarta. The fares are relatively affordable for Indonesians, starting from IDR3500 or less than 1USD. You can even ride for free on Microtrans as long as you carry an electronic money card.

Stay tuned for more information about how to ride, routes, and fares for Jakarta Transportation. See you in the next articles!

First Time in Jakarta

First time in Jakarta? Relax, you are with other million person in the Soekarno Hatta Airport. Either you have business meeting or short vacation in Jakarta we have some tips for you as the first- time visitor in Jakarta.

First time in Jakarta: Oh my gosh, it’s humid!

first time in jakarta with sunglasses

Sunglasses ON.

Bring lotion with SPF, sunglasses, and/or hydrating mist. We have summer every day in Jakarta. Not only hot but also humid. When you are landing Soekarno Hatta airport, you might feel relieve with the warm weather after long hours sit on the airplane. But after hours you will sweating and feel sorry for your own make up (if you are a woman!). So, I suggest you not only to bring sunblock and sunglasses but also to prepare hydrating mist. It helps your skin with the changing weather.

First time in Jakarta: Taxi or Bus?

There is an airport bus in Soekarno Hatta Airport. It called Damri Bus. Ask security about this bus service. It is cheap (around USD 4 each trip/person) but you should wait longer than taxi service. After long trip, I don’t think Damri Bus is a good idea. Why? One: you need to follow Damri’s schedule. It could be one hour or longer depends on the Jakarta traffic. Two: Damri can not drop you in front of your hotel. Damri Bus will drop you in shelter somewhere in the city, can not take special request.

first time in jakarta with taxi service

Blue Bird Taxi in Jakarta

If you are first-time visitor in Jakarta, then which taxi service you should have to avoid scam? My answer always two taxi service: Blue Bird or Express (white) taxi. Express with experienced driver and cheaper fare as a bright side. The darker side: when you are new in town you will be mistaken with different white taxi service. Same white different brand. I’ve been pay for 2 USD for two minutes driving with scam-white taxi. Hahaa.. *crazy*

So, blue bird is the answer. Yes there is also blue colour taxi, but blue bird have brightest color among blue colour taxi service. Newest car with fair-fare, argometer is ON.  Please also save your hotel address in your phone. Just in case.

First time in Jakarta: Where to stay?

My suggestion is staying in hotel near with your travel/business destination. Since Jakarta’s traffic quite unpredictable, I think less commute is better. What if I couldn’t find cheaper hotel in Jakarta?

Hmm..good question. Yes, you can stay in less favorable hotel but after all you will need taxi/bus service to reach your destination in Jakarta. More time, more money. So, I should leave it to your own choice. Just email tahu@jakartawalkingtour.com for hotel suggestion in Jakarta. No, I don’t take any commission from the hotel. Just ask me then I’ll give you some overview about hotel surrounding area.

First time in Jakarta: Where to hangout?

Where to hangout in Jakarta? Ask receptionist nicely. He or she is local person. Ask locals.
Actually, it all depends on your interest and preferences. However, as first time Jakarta’s visitor you might want to know Jakarta in a summary. An overview before you go further.

first time in jakarta on car free day

Car Free Day in Jakarta

Go National Museum for museum lovers, visit Sunday’s Car Free Day to see people, explore Central Jakarta for modern part of the city, and stroll around Old Town if you like Jakarta’s history. That’s IMHO. If you need further assistance about Jakarta as a first-time visitor, send us your question through tahu@jakartawalkingtour.com I will love to read your message there. Welcome to Jakarta!

Jakarta Great Sale Festival 2015

If you are traveling for shopping purpose in Jakarta, June or July would be your best time to visit Jakarta. There are so many festivals that held around that in time in Jakarta to celebrate the birth of capital city of Indonesia, Jakarta. Jakarta Great Sale Festival is a festival whereas malls and shopping centers offer a great discount for their products, up to 70%. For this year, this festival is held from 6th of June until 12th of July 2015 and will involving around 78 malls around Jakarta. Being a city that has hundreds of malls, Jakarta will be a perfect shopping destination.

Here are some malls that participate in the festival:

Central Jakarta Malls :
– Grand Indonesia: 26-27 June 2015
– Plaza Indonesia: 12-13 June 2015
– Senayan City: 3-5 July 2015

South Jakarta Malls :

– Ciputra World Lotte Shopping Avenue: 20-21 June 2015
– Gandaria City: 27 June 2015
– Kalibata City Square: 27 June 2015
– Kota Kasablanka: 4 July 2015
– Lippo Mall Kemang: 27 June dan 4 July 2015
– Pejaten Village: 27 June 2015
– Plaza Blok M: 27 June 2015
– The Plaza Semanggi: 10-11 July 2015

West Jakarta Malls :
– Central Park: 3-5 July 2015

East Jakarta Malls :
– Mal Taman Palem: 26-27 June 2015
– Arion Mall: 19-20 June dan 26-27 June 2015
– Cibubur Junction: 20-21 June 2015

North Jakarta Malls :
– Emporium Pluit Mall: 27-28 June 2015
– Mal Kelapa Gading: 20 dan 27 June 2015
– Baywalk Mall: 20-21 June 2015

There are many other malls that participate in the festival and maybe you will find one near where you stay while in Jakarta, so don’t miss the opportunity to visit the place.

There are also some Jakarta malls which open a midnight sale event, and offer a lot of special discounts and gifts for certain products. Shopping at midnight doesn’t mean that you have to bring a flashlight and choose items you want to buy in the dark, so don’t worry.

Just bring sufficient money, and a list of products that you want to buy. You can also use your credit card off course, but remember, choose carefully and don’t go overboard or you may end up being a shopaholic with and empty wallet and a huge amount of debts. Happy shopping!


Should I Buy Indonesia SIM Card?

Yes, you should buy an Indonesia SIM Card if you need to contact someone or make an internet connection through your phone when travel to Jakarta. Why is it important to buy a SIM card? Sometimes people need to contact you or otherwise, you need to contact your family, but you can not use your original SIM card in Jakarta, Indonesia, then the best option is to buy a new one to use temporarily. Find out more reason here.

1. SIM Cards In Jakarta Are Cheap

Since the competition between providers is really strong, they try to offer services with reasonable price to win over new consumers. So, you don’t have to worry about the prices. It is quite affordable even for a local citizen, except if you want to buy a SIM card with specially arranged numbers or known as “nomor cantik”. For a normal number, you can get it for IDR 20k or IDR 30k for one SIM card.

city tour jakarta

2. An Easy Way To Contact Someone

Maybe you could contact your original SIM card provider to change the setting to make it available to use when you go to Jakarta. But just in case the service is unavailable, it will be more convenient for you buy a new SIM card instead in Jakarta for a temporary use.

3. Always Connect To The Internet

You should buy a new SIM Card if you always want to be able to contact someone, or you need to connect to the internet all the time. Of course there are some places that provide WiFi in Jakarta, but you cannot always find them. Maybe you can find them in restaurants, hotels, and malls. But if you are eating at a “warteg”, just don’t expect to find it. Besides, sometimes connecting to a WiFi will only get you a slow connection because many people connect to it as well.

There are many providers in Jakarta, but the recommended ones are Telkomsel, Indosat, or XL because they are big players and already covered many areas beside other providers. You can buy SIM cards in public places like malls, stations or cellphone stores near residential areas. It is quite easy to find actually.

So, have you decided what to buy? Then go straight to the store. Buy that SIM Card, use it in your phone,  and don’t forget to add Jakarta Walking Tour number in your contact list 😉

Places To Buy Daily Products in Jakarta

If you are traveling to some places around the world for a few days, it can be quite bothersome if you have too many stuff to bring. Actually, there is a way to make your luggage lighter. How? Just bring your clothes and documents, and buy daily products such as toothbrush, soap, shampoo and etc. at your destination. Hotels or Inns usually already provide these, but sometimes they don’t match your preferences. So, where are the places you can buy those products in Jakarta?

1. Place to Buy Daily Products in Jakarta : Department Stores or Malls

There are so many malls in Jakarta and you could easily find at least one supermarket inside it. You can usually find Carrefour, Hypermart, or Giant.

2. Places To Buy Daily Products in Jakarta : Minimarkets

Minimarkets are located at office complex, apartment complex or near residential area and they are located at roadside, so it will be quite easy to locate and find them. Minimarkets that you will probably find are Indomaret and Alfamart. Look! They are quite similiar, eh?

3. Places To Buy Daily Products in Jakarta : Traditional Market

There are also stalls in traditional market that sell daily products. Sometimes it could be quite cheaper than any other places, but you should extremely careful because in traditional market there are also sellers who sell fake or expired products.

From three option above, you could choose which one you think would fit your preferences most. If you are familiar using a famous brand or more expensive products, you can go to malls. If you prefer to buy quite affordable and decent products, then just go to minimarket.

Off course if you still want to bring your own favorite products, you can prepare them before you go abroad and be sure you don’t miss anything necessary, especially if you are going to Jakarta. If you are going to join a tour in Jakarta, don’t forget to pack things you should bring for city tour Jakarta. Be prepared and see you in Jakarta!

Things You Should Bring to City Tour Jakarta – Part 2

If you peek inside your bag and you can find sunglasses, mineral water, umbrella, face mask, and sunscreen, then you are almost ready to go to do a City Tour Jakarta.  Maybe some of you will response “Almost?? It is still not everything?”. Yes, that’s right. Although all of those stuff is nearly everything that you’ll need, but it is still not enough.  Don’t worry, you only lack some additional items to smoothen your tour in Jakarta and make it more pleasant to stroll in Jakarta.

These are simple items you might need.

1. Tissue paper

Indonesians use water a lot to clean themselves, so sometimes the public toilets don’t provide tissue because they think there are no need to provide it since the water is running. Toilets in modern malls usually provide tissue, but sometimes they ran out of it. So to be safe, you can bring your own tissue paper.  You can also it for another use later.

2. Small change

If you are planning to shop in a more traditional form of market, trade center or “pasar” for example, you have to bring small change because they don’t usually provide EDC machine to swipe your card and they might don’t have change for the amount you pay. It will also quite useful if you want to ride public transportations such as “angkot”, “metromini” or “ojek”.

3. Hand sanitizer

If you like to try various kinds of food in Jakarta, especially street food and you want to eat it right away, you can use hand sanitizer first before you eat because it can quite difficult to find a place where you can wash your hands.

city tour jakarta

4. Hat or cap

This item actually an optional one if you already brought your umbrella. But somehow there are males who don’t like to be seen using an umbrella because they thought it is not manly enough, at least in Indonesia. So, if you are a guy, maybe it will feel more comfortable to you to wear a cap.

5. Your feet

All set! Now you only need a happy feet and open heart to begin strolling around Jakarta. Put on some comfortable shoes and leave it to the guide to lead your way! 😀

Things You Should Bring For City Tour Jakarta – Part 1

As you know, Indonesia is a tropical country, with a sizzling hot weather in dry season and heavy rains in wet season. But, the climate is changing slowly. So, just in case, you must bring certain things that you might need when you are traveling in Jakarta. So, what are those things you need to prepare? Here are 5 things you should bring for city tour Jakarta :

1. Mineral Water

You will need to drink a lot because the weather will make you thirsty and sweat a lot. Aside from preventing dehydration, drinking a lot of mineral water could also provide a healthier body. You can bring your own bottle of mineral water or buy it in a minimarket or street vendors. But before you drink it, you need to look carefully for the expired date.

bring water for city tour jakarta

You can ‘steal’ it from your hotel!

2. Sunscreen

Ultraviolet radiation can be harmful for everyone, especially if you suddenly came to a different type of country with a different intensity of UV light. To avoid sunburn, maybe you can apply sunscreen first before you go out in Jakarta, but you need to make sure you use the one that match with your skin type. You can get one in a drugstore or minimarket.

3. Sunglasses

Sometime the sunlight in Jakarta can be really strong and hurting your vision. So, to protect your eyes from ultraviolet light, you might need a sunglasses.

city tour jakarta

Sun Glasses is a MUST!

4. Umbrella

This item is a must if you are doing a tour in Jakarta. Even it is on a dry season, rain can suddenly fall without a warning! In addition, you can still use it if the sunlight is too intense and dazzling.

5. Face Mask

Jakarta has a huge population, so there are so many vehicles running along the streets. Cars, motorbikes, bus, etc make the city full of pollutions. So, if you are allergic to dirty air or prone to asthma, you should wear a face mask when you are going to walk around in open air in Jakarta a lot.

things you should bring in jakarta

Face Mask

Maybe you can avoid the fuss of bringing these item if you look at the weather forecast before you go out. Or you are already know when is the best time to visit Jakarta after doing little research about Jakarta Weather?

Well, it is up to you, but weather forecast or prediction cannot be right all the time. We are just humans after all. Better be prepared than be sorry, right? 😉