Jakarta Now Offers Double-Decker Bus Tours

Jakarta Tourism Gets New Look 

Five new double-decker buses arrived at Tanjung Priok port in North Jakarta this week. The city will offer city bus tours with the double-deckers at the end of January or in early February.

The Jakarta Tourism Agency welcomed the arrival of five double-decker tour buses Monday night as the capital, long listed as a sight best left unseen on a visit to Indonesia, began an aggressive push to double the number of foreign tourists visiting the city.

Jakarta, Indonesia tourism

“We thank God that Jakarta will finally have city tour buses,” tourism head Arie Budhiman said as the buses arrived at Tanjung Priok port in North Jakarta. “We hope with the double-decker tour buses that Jakarta will have a different thing to offer than other towns [in Indonesia]. Hopefully Jakarta will become more attractive and draw more visitors.”

Jakarta logged 2.3 million foreign tourists last year, an 8 percent increase over 2012′s figures, but still short of Governor Joko Widodo’s five-million tourist goal. The capital’s administration spent Rp 17 billion ($1.4 million) to purchase the fleet of buses from China. It plans to expand the fleet to include as many as 20 buses in the near future.

“With the support of the governor, who is very tourism conscious, I’m optimistic that the target [of five million visitors] can be reached in three to five years,” Arie said.

The tour buses will offer visitors a free ride through the capital, stopping at sights like the Hotel Indonesia roundabout, Kota Tua, in North Jakarta, and the Blok M shopping hub, in South Jakarta. Each air-conditioned bus can hold 60 passengers and includes television screens that will be used to show a tourism video.

Jakarta tourism culture heritage

Bus service will begin a trial run on Thursday, with full service going into effect by the end early February at the latest, Arie said.

Jakarta may feature a rich colonial history, but the capital’s congestion and pollution, combined with poor maintenance of its museums and historical sites has done little to help its appeal to foreign tourists. The popular guidebook company “Lonely Planet” describes the capital as “a hard city to love. One of the world’s greatest megalopolises, its grey, relentlessly urban sprawl spreads for tens of kilometers across a flood-prone plain with barely a park to break the concrete monotony.”

The guidebook later lists several sites, including Kota Tua and Taman Ismail Marzuki, as popular locations, calling the city an “essential” stop for travelers looking to experience what Indonesia offers.

Source: http://www.eturbonews.com/41698/double-decker-tourist-busses-now-jakarta-available-free-tours

Indonesia tourism marketing and public relations firm

Crossbow Communications specializes in international marketing, issue management and public affairs. Indonesia is one of our regions of expertise. Our President and founder is the author of the Language and Travel Guide to Indonesia. Please contact Gary Chandler at gary@crossbow1.com. Visit Indonesia.

Language and Travel Guide To Indonesia

Tourists From Middle East Stay Longer In Indonesia

Muslim Tourists Discover Indonesia

The amount of Muslim tourists, especially from the Middle East, may lag behind those from China or other major Asian countries but their numbers are growing year to year, and more importantly they stay for longer and spend big.

According to data from the Tourism and Creative Economy Ministry, 89,996 tourists from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt entered the country during the January-August period, an increase of 28.3 percent from 64,479 in the same period last year.

Indonesia travel information

“The figure is relatively small compared to larger markets such as China, but their expenditure is bigger than regular tourists because many Muslims travel with their family,” the ministry’s meeting, incentives, convention, exhibition (MICE) and special interest tourism promotional director, Rizki Handayani, told The Jakarta Post.

The ministry data shows that tourists from non-Muslim backgrounds spend US$1,113 during their vacations in Indonesia while a Muslim traveler spends double to triple that figure.

“They usually spend more than a week in Indonesia and we believe that sharia tourism packages have the potential to attract more Muslim travelers in the future,” she said, adding that Middle East tourists favored Jakarta, West Java and Bali.

Besides the Middle East, other important Muslim markets are Malaysia and Singapore: The number of visitors from both neighboring nations also saw double-digit growth.

The ministry data reveals that there were 1.59 million tourists from Malaysia and Singapore in the first eight months of the year, a 11.5 percent increase from 1.41 million during the same period in 2012.

Indonesia Travel Guide

“Malaysia and Singapore remain among our 16 traditional markets because of their proximity and because we share almost the same culture. Sharia tourism products will help us to better tap into the rapidly expanding number of Muslim travelers from these two countries,” she added.

Apart from the Middle East, Malaysia and Singapore, she said the government would focus its sharia promotion next year on Turkey, India, the UK and Morocco.

Contacted separately, chairman of the Association of Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA) Asnawi Bahar said that its members were ready to cater to the Muslim holidaymakers market. He said that some of its members had been able to integrate Islamic values within the leisure activities they offered.

Indonesian art and culture

“ASITA members will always be ready to support any government program including this new form of tourism. But, the government needs to help us by overcoming challenges in developing this sector,” he told the Post.

He said the development of sharia tourism was challenged by the current state of the country’s infrastructure and the government’s commitment to development in the sector.

National Monument Jakarta

He explained that, in light of the administration’s end in 2014, the government needed a clear long-term, at least five years, grand-strategy to develop sharia tourism.

Source: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/11/11/middle-east-tourists-stay-longer-spend-more.html

Indonesia tourism marketing and public relations firm

Crossbow Communications specializes in international marketing, issue management and public affairs. Indonesia is one of our regions of expertise. Our President and founder is the author of the Language and Travel Guide to Indonesia. Please contact Gary Chandler at gary@crossbow1.com. Visit Indonesia.

Language and Travel Guide To Indonesia