Complete Information on Indonesia

Posts tagged ‘Traffic congestion’

Public transportation in Indonesia has its level increased

Public transportation anywhere in the world has always been praised for being advanced, practical, and clean. Those three features, after all, are the ones that make people choose to ride public transportation rather than driving with their own vehicle.

But when you come to Indonesia, specifically to Padang, West Sumatra, you will be awed by a new level of public transportation which does not boast about its cleanliness and practicality.

Padang, West Sumatra

Padang, West Sumatra

What you will see is art. The public transportation there, the ‘angkot‘ (‘angkutan kota’ / town transportation), has a paint job and vinyls here and there, making it look like a racing car. They also have TV, sound system, and speakers or subwoofers, colorful lights, to make the vehicle become a moving place for disco. All of them are designed for customers to enjoy the ride.

The downside of this is that they have to fill or change their accumulator because it surely wastes a big amount of it by turning on the TV, subwoofers, and the lights. However, considering the amount of customers they could get by this modification, a little extra money spent for the accumulator is not really a big deal.

(See this video below about the ‘angkot‘ in Padang)

It is so hilarious that you can’t help but being curious, right? Well, that’s another uniqueness of Indonesia.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

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Modified transporter in Indonesia

We all know now that in Indonesia, the best transportation would be ‘ojek’ or motor taxi, because it can slip past the traffic jam quickly. You can read this post to know more about it. At most, they can bring 2 to 3 people at once or some things.

But do you know that somewhere in Tasikmalaya, there is a modified transporter? It is an ordinary transporter but they can bring many people at once like 7 – 10 people, and they can even bring  many woodblocks.

Cipatujah, Tasikmalaya, Indonesia

Say hello to these brave people who risk their lives and their motors to transport these people and heavy woodblocks.

Usually, they are paid for IDR 150.000 – 250.000 ( US $ 15 – 25 ) per trip, but is it really worth the danger? How would they turn their motor? How would they brake and have the woodblocks unmoved when they brake in a downhill slope?

They reflect the needs of efficiency for Indonesian people. They realize that to transport many people or things, they need to go back and forth several times, and that is a waste of gasoline. Then, they take the market opportunity to transport all at once or in one trip. Pretty uniquely clever, right?

(See this video about them, they can even go through bumpy roads and still keep their balance)

Well, Indonesia is really a place with countless uniqueness, right?

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Cross the street anywhere you want

In most countries, you cannot cross the road anywhere you want because it is dangerous and you can get fined by a traffic police. Besides, surely there is a crossing bridges or zebra cross around for pedestrians to cross the street. Even though sometimes it’s not convenient when you are in a hurry, using the zebra cross or crossing bridges is far safer. So why take the risk?

BUT in Indonesia, no matter if you are in a hurry or not, you can cross the road anywhere you want. You don’t need to look for zebra cross or crossing bridges.
For car or motorcycle drivers, you need to be extra careful because who knows if there is any people crossing the street or not.
Furthermore, traffic jam in Jakarta is often caused by many people crossing the street in any way they want. Hence, the cars and motorcycles must stop to let the people cross.
But then again, looking at how pedestrians’ rights are taken by the other irresponsible street users, maybe it’s not that weird.

(See this tutorial video to see the danger of crossing the street in Jakarta, Indonesia)
To cross the street, you need to be very brave. You need to look for the delay between the traffic. The cars and motors will hopefully notice you and slow down their vehicles.
Well, this is Indonesia. A unique country where you need a tutorial just to cross a normal street.
(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Riding a bus in Indonesia endangers your life more than a roller coaster

As we know, bus only stops at bus stops and the bus arrives in specific time according to the schedule. Japanese people are known for their integrity and punctuality. If the famous bullet train or the bus is late for even 1 minute, the authority must apologize to all the commuters.

However, here in Indonesia, buses are violating every rule that has been made for them.
For example, the stopping-everywhere system enabling you to get into the bus easily at anywhere you want. That will disturb other vehicles because sudden stopping everywhere can cause a traffic jam or even accident. Another consequence of this system is the buses’ arrival is not certain. Sometimes the arrival time between buses is short, but sometimes you have to wait for the longest time for them to arrive.

The other downside of the buses in Indonesia is the driver of the bus. The driver often speeding, smoking, eating, and drinking while driving, and even stopping just to have some chats with another bus driver in the middle of the street that makes the traffic stuck instantly. Another risk of rule violations is, of course, accidents with pedestrians, cars, or motorcycles.

Most buses operating now are old buses. They are used every day from day to night with minimum maintenance. Therefore, broken chairs and doors are not a rare sight anymore for Indonesian busses. The doors are opened to make the passengers get in and out quickly, and for the co-driver to see if there is any person who wants to get on the bus or not. These opened doors allow the bus to have more passengers too, so it is a normal sight when you see an overcrowded bus with people hanging on the edge of the doors in Indonesia.
Furthermore, the buses’ engine often breakdowns in the middle of transporting the passengers, they need to be moved to other buses then.

Other than being neglected, passengers have no time to sit first. The bus will always go after the passenger’s foot is on the step, even though their body is not fully inside the bus. Moreover, there is no way for handicapped people to get on the bus, as there are no facility for them at all. You may see a space for handicapped people inside Transjakarta buses or busway, but there is no access for them to reach the bus stop.

There are also many other threats inside the bus besides the bus and the drivers’ factors. There are criminals inside the bus. Don’t ever trust people you just met easily. They can hypnotize you and take your valuables without you being conscious of it. There are pickpockets too, they usually work in a group or alone and using distraction tactics to steal your wallet or phone. For women, it is a must not to wear anything that shows too much of your body as the sexual harassers are everywhere. The most extreme criminal is the gangsters. They bring sharp weapon and threat every passenger on the bus to give their valuables to them.

Nevertheless how bad it is, many Indonesian people still use this public transportation, either they like it or they have to because they don’t have motorcycles or cars.
Or is it because the new ‘kopaja’ is around? It has a new look, installed with wifi services.

(See this video below to see the new ‘kopaja’)

But still, for international tourists, you really have to think several times before you decide to ride a bus in Indonesia.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Why drive when you can hire a driver?

Driving your own car, especially luxurious car, feels very good. But what happens if you are stuck in a traffic jam? Your luxury car is just a car which suffers the same tragic fate in a traffic jam.

In Indonesia, especially big cities like Jakarta, a traffic jam is just waiting at the corner to happen. The traffic jam could get you stuck for more than 2-3 hours or even more.
This makes you vulnerable to many diseases because you are sitting and driving too long. Some of the diseases are stress, stiff body, headache, stomachache, kidney disease, lung disease, skin cancer, and many other diseases. Think also about the time lost on the street from your home to your office and vice versa. All the lost time can be equal to the money lost because as the saying goes “Time is Money”. Even if you do have so much money to spare, would you really spend it for the expensive hospital bill and medication price?

The far cheaper method to solve this is to hire a driver. They can be hired for 1 to 24 hours or any time period. The price range varies from IDR 500.000 ($ US 50) to around IDR 2.000.000 ($ US 200) per 24 hours. The other reason is because the road system in Indonesia is different compared to other countries. The steer is on the right side and you should drive on the left side. This can be pretty confusing for tourists or expatriates. So, hire a driver, sit back like a boss, relax and do your business activities.
For the car price, you can always see this website. It is a very wise decision to not choose a sedan type, though.
Why? There are many reasons. See these pictures below first.

Do you know that in other country, they use hole stickers to slow down speeding cars? Well, in Indonesia, we don’t use stickers, but we use the 3D effects. Yes, there are so many holes on the streets in Indonesia.
Then, there are many bumps spread out throughout Indonesia. These bumps are also for slowing down the speeding cars, which is usually placed near an intersection. The holes and the bumps will cause the front and the back bumper, which are too low, hitting the street or the ground, causing scratches here and there.
After that, we have flood issue. Sedan is too low so you can get stuck easily in the flood, while Avanza can pass through the flood because it is higher than the sedan type.

These three unique and troublesome features of Indonesia are the reasons you should not buy a sedan type car.
Buy a taller car like Avanza instead. It is big enough to fit for a family, it is not too expensive, and most importantly, it will not hit the ground or the street.
The price for Avanza varies from IDR 155.000.000 ($ US 15.500) to IDR 193.000.000 ($ US 19.300).

(See this interesting video below about a car getting stuck over a bump)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

‘Ojek’, the best transportation in traffic jam

I am sure even in your swiftest and smoothest day, there’s got to be a traffic jam somewhere, right?
Who doesn’t hate traffic jam? It can change your 30-minute trip into a tedious 1 hour or more. Think about how much time and mental state you waste.
Those of you whose working time starts from 9am should wake up and go earlier just because you have to anticipate the time wasted for traffic jam. You could have more of your beauty sleep if there is no traffic jam.

So, what should you do when you are on a really tight schedule but got stuck in a traffic jam?
Here in Indonesia, I introduce you to the best transportation to go through the traffic jam.
It’s called ‘Ojek’, a normal motorcycle with a somewhat ‘abnormal’ driver. You can see them everywhere.

They are basically like ‘Bajaj’ or taxi or bus but in the form of motorcycle. You tell them where you want to go, you agree on a price, and the next thing you know is that you are slipping through the traffic jam, abnormally. Why abnormally? Because they drive fast and unafraid of danger, but they can get you anywhere real quick.

One thing you should remember though is that the passenger helm is not always clean. They simply don’t clean it after it is used by someone else. So you can imagine the sweat, smell, and germs all over the helm.

(Even the Governor of Jakarta, Joko Widodo (Jokowi) agrees that ‘Ojek’ is the best transportation to use)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

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