Before you hop on over to Indonesia, make sure that you have your travel insurance firmly in place, as the Smartraveller website advises a “High level of caution” for this Asian country.
1. What should I know about travel insurance for Indonesia?
Due to the high threat of terrorist attacks in areas like Bali, Surabaya, and Jakarta, travelling to Indonesia should be done with caution. Likewise, there have been numerous earthquakes around the Northern Lombok islands, which causes concern for travel to these islands. It is advisable to stay clear of any high-risk areas in Indonesia, and to have sufficient travel insurance for your trip to Indonesia. You should be aware that your insurance may not cover you for any emergency evacuations required, due to natural disasters or terrorist attacks, should you have received advance warning about these events.
Common items that are covered by travel insurance for Indonesia:
Medical expenses: Should you fall ill while in Indonesia, your insurance will cover you for any medical expenses incurred or hospital admissions. Most Indonesian hospitals require you to either pay medical bills upfront, or to provide a proof of insurance, before they perform any medical procedures. Check with your insurer on whether or not they pay directly to the hospital or medical practitioner, or if you are required to pay upfront, and claim back later.
You should also take note, that any viruses or diseases contracted while in Indonesia, will not be covered, if you have not taken the relevant vaccines or precautionary measures against that virus. Some vaccines that you may want to consider before heading to Indonesia, ensuring that these are done at least eight weeks prior, are:
- Japanese Encephalitis
- Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR)
- Flu Shot
Theft or loss of belongings: Any theft or loss of your belongings while travelling in Indonesia, should be covered by your insurer, as long as there are no signs of negligence.
Cancelled flight/accommodation: The reality of a cancelled flight or accommodation is present at any time, when travelling. Your insurer should cover you for any loss or expenses incurred due to a cancelled flight or accommodation – check if there is a limited amount for this.
Petty theft: Petty crimes are common in Indonesia, and can happen at any time. Your insurance should cover you for any loss of money or belongings, resulting from theft.
Political unrest or terrorism threats: If there is cause for concern in Indonesia, due to political unrest or the threat of a terrorist attack, you may need to be evacuated out of the country. Your insurer will cover these costs, only if these are sudden threats with no advance warning.
Car rental excess: If you wish to drive in Indonesia, you will need to hold an International Driving Permit (IDP), along with your Australian drivers license. Should you choose to rent a vehicle, your insurer should cover any excess incurred, if an accident was to take place.
Common items that are not covered by travel insurance:
Unlawful acts: Should you require medical assistance due to negligent behaviour caused by drugs or alcohol, you will not be covered. Likewise, if you are involved in an accident due to drunken driving, your rental car excess will not be covered. If you are involved in any kind of unlawful activities, such as drugs, gambling, or taking photographs in certain areas, you run the risk of serious penalties, and your travel insurance will not cover you for any expenses incurred.
High-risk activities: Certain activities, such as scuba diving, bungee jumping, hiking, white-water rafting, or quad biking, are considered high-risk, and may not be covered by your insurer. Check which activities are excluded in your travel cover, before you travel to Indonesia.
Motorbike/Scooter usage: Motorbikes and scooters are a common form of transport in Indonesia, but you may not be covered for riding one, should you not carry a relevant motorbike license for Australia. Likewise, if you or your passenger are found without an approved helmet, you will not be covered for any accidents.
Pre-existing medical conditions: Your insurer may not cover you for any pre-existing medical conditions that you are currently receiving treatment for. You should disclose all medical conditions to your insurer, beforehand, and check which conditions are covered, if at all. You may need to take out additional insurance to be covered.
2. Getting the best value from travel insurance
Compare quotes: You should always do your research when it comes to travel insurance, and ask for a few quotes from different providers, before going with the first option. You can easily compare quotes using our four insurers.
Look at different options: You may want to choose an insurer that includes cover for riding a motorbike, scuba diving in the crystal-clear Indonesian waters, or sends 24/7 emergency assistance to your aid, if need be. Some insurers do include these as part of your insurance cover, while others offer these as added extras. Do some research and find the best insurer to suit your requirements.
Read the fine print: Every insurance provider will send you a Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) with your travel insurance documents. Ensure you read this thoroughly, to know exactly what you are covered for and where you can claim, should you need to do so.
3. Tips for travelling while in Indonesia
Keep your wits about you: Petty crimes, such as pickpocketing and scams, are common around Indonesia. Always be aware of your surroundings – keep your personal belongings close you at all times – and don’t trust strangers that come up to you on the street, asking for help or trying to sell you something. You should call the local police immediately, at any sign of danger or theft. Dial 110/112 from your phone.
Be aware of terrorist attacks and natural disasters: You can sign up for travel alerts and updates for Indonesia, through the Smartraveller website, to keep you abreast of what is happening in the news. At any sign of danger, contact your insurance provider, or the local Embassy or Consulate in Indonesia for guidance.
Damaged rentals: If you choose to hire a scooter, car, or jet ski while in Indonesia, ensure that you photograph the vehicle beforehand, and point out any damages to the rental agent. These rental agents have been found to be dishonest, laying blame on innocent tourists for previous damages to a vehicle, and then insisting they pay more to cover those damages. Don’t be scammed!
Know the laws: The laws in Indonesia are extremely harsh, with the death penalty still exercised in this country. Make sure you are aware of abiding by Indonesian laws, particularly where drugs are concerned.
Drink spiking: Drinks are often spiked in tourist areas around Indonesia, especially when tourists are vulnerable, such as women travelling alone. Don’t leave your drink unattended at any time, or take drinks from a ‘friendly’ local.
Respect the local cultures and religions: Indonesians expect you to remove your shoes when entering a building, as a sign of respect. You should also dress modestly when out in public, and when visiting a temple in particular – modesty is a key virtue in Indonesia. Do some research on local cultures and religions before you travel, so that you can respect the locals where possible.
We have listed some further travel tips for Indonesia.
|Emergency phone numbers
Police: 110/112 (SMS 1717)
Ambulance and rescue services: 118
Medical emergencies: 119
Tourist Police (Bali): (0361) 759 687
Tourist Police (Jakarta): (201) 526 4073
|Australian Embassy Jakarta (by appointment only)
Jalan Patra Kuningan Ray Kav. 1-4
Jakarta Selatan 12950 INDONESIA
Phone: (+62 21) 2550 5555
Fax: (+62 21) 2550 5467
|Australian Consulate-General Bali
Jalan Tantular 32
Denpasar Bali 80234 INDONESIA
Phone: (+62 361) 2000 100
Fax: (+ 62 361) 2000 195 (general enquiries)
|Australian Consulate-General Makassar
Wisma Kalla Lt. 7
Jalan Dr Sam Ratulangi No. 8
Makassar South Sulawesi 90125
Phone: (+62 411) 366 4100
Fax: (+62 411) 366 4130
|Australian Consulate-General Surabaya
Level 3 ESA Sampoerna Center
Jl. Dokter.Ir. H. Soekarno No. 198
Klampis Ngasem, Sukolilo, Surabaya
Phone: (+62 31) 9920 3200
|24-hour Australian Consular Emergency Helpline
1300 555 135
+61 2 6261 3305
+61 421 269 080
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