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Road Rules and Traffic Regulations in Indonesia - Driving Nuances

1. Indonesia is no different from most Asian countries, which are known for their hard-to-understand roads and chaotic traffic. The island of Bali has the most difficult situation on the road. The number of vehicles on local roads is simply amazing. In addition to numerous cars, there are many motorcycles and mopeds, “tuk-tuks” and other exotic vehicles.
2. Left driving is adopted in the country. It is really difficult to estimate condition of roads in Indonesia. If in busy resort areas their quality remains quite satisfactory, in remote areas dirty roads are often virtually impassable, especially after a rainstorm.

Nuances of Car Rental in Indonesia

To save on your rental, we advise to book your car in advance. You will save the most if you do this several weeks or even several months prior to your trip. Rental offices in Indonesia usually raise rental prices over time, based on the number of cars left available for the accounting period.

When looking for an exotic car (cabriolet, minivan or limousine), we advise to check in the rental offices located at airports, as they usually provide much wider choice comparing to offices in urban areas.

Upon receipt of invoices, bills and documents for your car at the rental location, please compare the obtained data with your voucher. Quite often, employees of rental offices in Indonesia try to add optional charges or services without informing customers.

It is very important to pick up your car at the rental office in Indonesia in a correct way. Prior to leaving the office, carefully inspect the car for various defects, and ensure that all the discovered defects are mentioned in your rental documents. In case of a non-compliance found, place a demand for correction to the rental officer.
3. In the city, the maximum permitted speed is 30 - 40 km/h, and on country roads the maximum permitted speed is 70 km/h. On some highways, it is allowed to increase speed of up to 100 km/h.
4. It's worth noting that traffic is very heavy on main roads of major cities, so don’t even expect to drive fast there. On suburban roads, you have to be also very careful, as there are many massive trucks and tourist buses.
5. Fines provided for violation of traffic regulations are rather impressive, but this fact does not bother local motorists, who are used to driving in accordance with their own rules. For example, the fine for driving without a driving license is 500,000 rupees. For foreign drivers, who have no international driver’s permit, the fine will be a million rupees.
6. Motorists should drive with lower beams turned on regardless of the time of day and weather conditions. The penalty for violation of this rule is 100 thousand rupees.
7. While driving, nothing should distract the driver from the road. The fine for talking on a cell phone while driving is 750,000 rupees.
8. Large fines are provided for lack of side mirrors and broken lower beams. While making a turn, drivers are required to accompany the maneuver with corresponding light signals. If you fail to follow this rule, you can be fined 250,000 rupees.
9. Despite impressive amount of fines, locals continue violating even basic traffic regulations. Talking on a cell phone while driving and driving with unfastened seat belt have become common traffic violations, not to mention dangerous and unacceptable maneuvers.
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