There are more than 700 local dialects spoken in Indonesia, but the official language is Indonesian.
10,000 IDR is approx 89c
Indonesia has three time zones:
Indonesia Western Time Zone (UTC+07:00)
Indonesia Eastern Time Zone (UTC+09:00)
Indonesia Central Time Zone (UTC+08:00)
The local beer is Bintang (you’ll see backpackers walking around wearing the singlets) and a bottle costs around 22,000IDR (approx $1.96) – in a restaurant it can cost a little more.
A plate of nasi goreng from a local food cart or cafe can cost as little as $1.75. It can be every bit as delicious, if not better, than in some restaurants. For a sit-down meal somewhere midrange, expect to pay between 54,000 IDR ($5) to 127,000 IDR (around $12).
A dorm bed or simple hut outside of Bali will set you back $5-10. Expect to pay more in Bali and on the beautiful beaches of the Gili Islands, where the most popular hostels can cost around $20 per person per night.
For a mid-range room for two people in a hotel in Bali, you'll pay upwards of 270,000 IDR ($25) per room. Fancier hotels can cost around $40-70 on the island, but if you're off the beaten track (eg. Sulawesi), you'll be able to find a bargain hotel room for next to nothing. Book in advance with STA Travel to bag the cheapest rates.
A taxi in Jakarta costs around 8,000 IDR (less than $1) per kilometre. A taxi ride from Jakarta's airport to the city centre should cost less than $20 - make sure you ask for the meter to be turned on at the start of your journey. Expect similar taxi or rickshaw fares in Bali, but haggle for much cheaper ones in other parts of the country, away from the tourist rates!
Public transport in Indonesia comes in all forms, depending on the island you're on. Squeeze into a tiny bemo or angkot (minivan) for longer distances, or take a three-wheeler, similar to the tuktuks you'd find in other parts of Asia, for around 3000 IDR (35 cent) per kilometre. Boats and ferries between islands are super affordable - visit our Bali page to find out more about the cost of island hopping.
Highlights: Sunrise over Mount Bromo, Borobudur temples, Red Island surfing, blissing out in Bali
Highlights: Orangutan spotting in Sumatra, Mount Bromo, Yogyakarta, Borobudur, Ubud
Highlights: Tegalalang Rice Terraces, snorkelling with turtles in the Gili Islands, Komodo, Flores
Backpackers with no set plan, trust us - you'll end up wanting to stay much longer than a month! There's so much to see in Indonesia, we recommend up to two months). In order to qualify to stay in the country longer than a month, you'll need to apply for a visa from the Embassy or Consulate of Indonesia, which can be done online before you go, or pay for one on arrival in Indonesia, for $35. These visas are still only valid for one month but can be extended for another month, meaning you can spend a total of up to two months in Indonesia.
If you enter the country on the 30-day visa-free scheme, you'll not be able to extend your stay, so plan ahead!
It's easy to get carried away with your packing list when you're taking a trip to such a jam-packed country, which offers volcano and jungle trekking, beaches and crazy nightlife you'll want to dress up for. Alongside the usual essentials, we'd recommend taking deet to keep mosquitoes at bay, comfortable walking shoes - you'll need them for all of Indonesia's best sights, and clothes to cover your legs, chest and shoulders for all of the temples you'll be visiting.
Also, don't forget to ask one of our Travel Experts about travel vaccinations and insurance, which is essential for any activities you'll be partaking in.