Jakarta, with its traffic-plagued streets, high-rise buildings and persistent blanket of smog, may at first seem like a not-so interesting destination that can easily confuse and confound Pinoy travelers. But beneath its unappealing façade and rough surface, you will find a diverse and multicultural megalopolis filled with unexpectedly delightful corners, colorful attractions as well as remarkably positive and good-natured citizens.
And, with a little travel planning and help from Skyscanner, you can surely have a blast and a hassle-free memorable trip in Indonesia’s thriving capital.
Why visit Jakarta?
Jakarta isn’t normally the first place that pops into mind, when Pinoys imagine of travel destinations in Indonesia. Hardly a relaxing and scenic vacation spot, the economic dynamo of Indonesia boasts no palm-lined avenues and gorgeous beaches, in spite of its coastal and sub-equatorial profile. Not to mention, it is a humid, populous and immense urban sprawl known for its maddening traffic.
But, the “Big Durian” has a plethora of rewarding experiences and spellbinding diversions that compensate for its flaws, should the more adventurous Pinoy travelers accept its challenges, sensations and sights. While it’s no oil painting, the city has tons of hipster markets and a fascinating colonial history that’s totally worth exploring. What’s more, it has a flourishing culinary scene, and an electric world-class nightlife circuit, making Jakarta one of the most dynamic cities in Southeast Asia.
A colorful mixture of customs, dialects and cultures, Jakarta is also praised for its ultra accommodating and hospitable locals. As a matter of fact, the citizens here are so friendly that you are bound to create lasting friendships.
Documents needed to travel to Jakarta
You don’t need to go through the hassles of securing a visa, to set foot on this buzzing and colorful Indonesian hub. After all, any Juan with a Philippine passport that’s valid for 6 months following the departure date will be granted visa on arrival in Indonesia.
Keep in mind, though, this kind of visa is valid only for 30 days and is applicable to social visits, leisure, government visits as well as for people who are attending conferences, seminars and convention. Furthermore, it’s nonconvertible, non-extendable and can’t be used for employment purposes.
Though you can enter Jakarta without a visa, you still need to present a few supporting travel documents, and go through an interview at the immigration counter. For those who are traveling overseas for the first time, it may take a while for you to get through the immigration officer, meaning you should prepare your documents beforehand and check-in early. For the most part, these are the documents that the immigration officer from a Philippine airport will ask from you.
How to get to Jakarta
Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific offer daily flights from Manila to Soekarno Hatta International Airport – Jakarta’s main international gateway. Travel duration from Manila to Jakarta is about 4 hours. Likewise, Singapore Airlines has connecting flights to Jakarta with a layover in Singapore. Travel time for this route is around 6 hours and 40 minutes.
Upon your arrival at the airport, you may get to the city center via DAMRI shuttle buses, which connect international passengers to numerous destinations in Jakarta. Depending on the type of seat and location of your drop off, a ticket person for this bus ride will cost you 25,000 to 35,000 IDR (91 to 250 PHP). The bus service is air-conditioned, comfortable, reliable, and operates until midnight.
To get tickets for this bus ride, head to the left after going out of the Terminal 2 building, until you see DAMRI bus stops and ticket booths.
When to go and visit Jakarta
Jakarta, with its tropical climate, is a good year-round destination, though floods can affect the city during the wet season. The dry season, which starts from May and ends in September, is arguably the best time to visit Jakarta. With a friendly low average temperature of 30°C (86°F), you can easily tour the city without having to worry about getting wet on the dry months. But, make no mistake about it – visiting Jakarta during the wet season can be quite a pleasant experience as well, once you get used to the frequent rains.
Important Bahasa words and phrases
Since English is not widely spoken in the archipelago, it’s essential for you to learn a bit of Bahasa Indonesia, when visiting Jakarta. Here are a few words and phrases in Bahasa that may come in handy in your trip!
Other things to keep in mind
Things to do in Jakarta