The basics

Indonesia and GMT

The Indonesian archipelago is spread over three time zones.
1. Western Indonesia Standard Time is 7 hours ahead of GMT: Sumatra, Java and Madura, West and Central Kalimantan.
2. Central Indonesia Standard Time is 8 hours ahead of GMT: East and South Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Bali and Nusa Tenggara.
3. Eastern Indonesia Standard Time is 9 hours ahead of GMT: Maluku and Papua.

Business hours

Business offices:
Monday-Friday: either from 8.00 am to 4.00 pm or from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm. Lunch between 12.00 noon and 1.00 pm.
Saturday: mostly closed
Sunday: closed 

Government offices:
Monday-Thursday: from 8.00 am to 3.00 pm
Friday: from 8.00 am to 11.00 am
Saturday: closed
Sunday: closed
    
Big city shopping complexes, supermarkets and departement stores:
Monday-Sunday: from 9.00 am to 9.00 pm or from 10.00 am to 22.00 pm.

Customs

Indonesian customs allows on entry a maximum of one liter of alcoholic beverages, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 grams of tobacco and a reasonable amount of perfume per adult.
Cameras, video cameras, photographic equipment, and tape recorders must be declared to customs upon entry and must be re-exported. Advance approval has to be required for carrying transceivers and all movie films and video cassettes must be censored by the Film Censor Board.
Prohibited from entry are TV sets, radios, narcotics, arms and ammunition.
Fresh fruit, plants and animals must have quarantine permits.
There is no restriction on import or export of foreign currencies and travelers cheques, however, the import and export of Indonesian currency exceeding Rp. 100.000.000 is prohibited.

Euros and dollars, travelers cheques and the Indonesian Rupiah

Euros, US Dollar and other major currencies in banknotes or travelers cheque are easily exchangeable in banks or at authorised money changers in main tourist destinations. Daily exchange rates are posted in banks and in leading daily news papers.
Most hotels in tourist or commercial centers will accept major credit cards.
it is advisable to carry rupiahs in sufficient amount before traveling to outer provinces or minor towns. The Rupiah comes in 100, 200, 500, 1000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 and 100,000 notes.

Airport Tax

An airport tax is levied on all departing passengers on international flights: Rp 150,000. For those flights within Indonesia, airport taxes vary depending on airport of departure, but obvious less than on an international flight. An additional sum is levied for insurance on domestic routes if tickets are purchased in Indonesia.

Clothing

Dressing normally and casual is fine. Light clothing is advisable due to the hot and humid climate. Trousers or slacks and shirts are generally considered appropriate but a jacket and tie are required for formal occasions. For certain formal occasion’s long-sleeved batik shirts are acceptable.
If you travel to mountain areas, a light sweater or jacket is recommended.
Women wearing halter tops and shorts are frowned upon in most places except bigger cities and around sport facilities or on the beach.
Proper decorum should especially be observed when visiting places of worship.

Tipping

At a lot of hotels, a service charge of 10% is added to the bill. In restaurants where service is not additional, a tip of 5-10% would be appropriate depending on the service and type of establisment. An airport or hotel porter expects to be tipped. Tipping taxi drivers or leaving the changes is appreciated but not mandatory. It is advisable to carry small changes as taxi drivers are often short of charge.

Local etiquettes

Cultural or local etiquette conveys politeness. To understand Indonesian and local etiquettes you might need a while, but it is worth it. Some easy stuff:
* Never hand anything to an Indonesian with your left hand. As in most Islamic countries the left hand is considered “unclean” and thus insulting (also because Indonesians don't use toilet paper). If this makes the action somewhat cumbersome by having to change hands, take the time to do it anyway.
* Handshaking is customary for both men and women on introduction and greeting, but not all Indonesian men will shake a women's hand. Indonesians will frequently touch one or both hands to their chest after shaking hands as a sign of sincerity.
* The proper way to summon someone is to use one of the Indonesian words Pak, Mas, (for men) and Bu, Mbak (for women)
* Making a scooping motion with their hand, fingers facing down, is common to call you. Using the index finger as is common in the West is not polite here.
* Shoes should be removed when entering mosques or, usually, when entering someone’s home. If you are unsure, ask.
* Emotional displays of any emotion are considered rude.
* 'Status' in the Indonesian society is still vivid. In Indonesia everyone has status, but that status is situational. A street vendor or cab driver may have very high status in his home community either through leadership ability or religious training.

Sports

Silat, a martial art, can be performed as a dance or an exercise. It is comparable to Karate or Kung Fu. However, the most popular sports in Indonesia are soccer, badminton, and table tennis. Golf is becoming more and more popular and a number of excellent golf courses can be found across the archipelago.
Most major hotels have their own tennis and squash court, swimming pools, and health clubs. Major hotels and resorts at the seaside provide equipment for sailing, surfing, scuba diving and windsurfing. There are also a growing number of dive shops which provide necessary equipment and professional services.
Traditional sports in Indonesia also include bull races, bull fights, and ram fights. All of them are held as part of special festiveties.

Electricity

Power supply is usually 220 Volts/250 cycles in large cities, but 110 Volts is still used in some remote areas. Normal outlets are plugs with two rounded pins. It is advisable to check electricity supplies before using any appliances.

Emergency services

Police: 112
Ambulance: 118
Fire department: 113

Airport Tax

An airport tax is levied on all departing passengers on international flights: Rp 150,000. For those flights within Indonesia, airport taxes vary depending on airport of departure, but obvious less than on an international flight. An additional sum is levied for insurance on domestic routes if tickets are purchased in Indonesia.

Euros and dollars, travelers cheques and the Indonesian Rupiah

Euros, US Dollar and other major currencies in banknotes or travelers cheque are easily exchangeable in banks or at authorised money changers in main tourist destinations. Daily exchange rates are posted in banks and in leading daily news papers.
Most hotels in tourist or commercial centers will accept major credit cards.
it is advisable to carry rupiahs in sufficient amount before traveling to outer provinces or minor towns. The Rupiah comes in 100, 200, 500, 1000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 and 100,000 notes.