Cruising notes on indonesia and singapore

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Compiled by Susan Mitchell, Yacht ELENOA

February, 1997

Most of this information comes from the 1995 season. CAIT information is current. Please verify all GPS coordinates on the charts before using them! The main sources were: Letters from friends, bulletins of SSCA and Canadian BWC, and the Crusing Notes handed out to participants. Each writer is indicated by a short abbreviation at beginning of section.



Jim & Lou Ray




Jack & Diane Myles


Al Mays & Rita Groot




George Smith Janet Murphy




Piero & Arianne Paolich




Ralph & Connie McNeil




Gary & Karen Runge



Darwin/Ambon Guide


Darwin/Ambon Guide

David Woodhouse



MARA " "

Brian & Lorraine Raison




Ward & Judy Lehard




Al & Katharine Overton




Jimmy & Gwenda Cornell



JOLLY II ROGER Phil & Doris Tworoger




Martin & Gerda Witkamp




Scarlett Duffy& Neil Ericsson




Alayne & Alec Main




John & Ruth Martin




Jim & Diana Jesse




Roger & Linda Townsend



Barry & Val Watts




Tony & Arien Knight




James & Sally Lawrence




Bob Tiews & Thalia Herne




Peter & Sandy Oehmen

1992/ 4



Dave & Amy Sherman




Bob & Jeanie Rowe




Randall & Sharon Douglass




Bob & Sandra Driscoll




Peter & Christine Deicke




Bert Stam




Jim & Sue Chambers




Rae & Mike Sutcliffe




Sally Dodd & Dennis Krebs




Fred & Esther Hizsa



? English yacht




George & Nancy Christy




Jim & Sandy Ford




CAIT Agents [ Not required for Darwin/Ambon racers; they do it for you.] Every yacht that recommended an agent mentioned the same guy! He is:

Kustarjono Prodjolalito at

Pt. Kartasa Jaya, PO Box 6601 JKWK Jakarta 1001

fax 62-21-310-7734
[from a letter dated February, 1997:]

Here are requirements for applying CAIT :

l. Copy passport of all crew

2. 2 pcs. passport photo of all crew

3. Copy of yacht certificate and call sign of your yacht

4. Last port of call before entering Indonesia

5. First port of call after leaving Indonesia

6. Itinerary and date of visit

7. If your visit is more than 2 months, at the max. 3 months, we will issue a sponsor letter addressed to Indonesian Embassy/Consulate to request Social and Cultural visit visa.

Agency fee is US$ 250 for yachts not more than 20m in length and US$ 25 for sponsor letter. [1995 letter said prolongation of CAIT for additional 3 months is US$ 180 more.]

You may transfer agency fee to:

Name: Kustarjono Prodjolalito

Bank: Standard Chartered Jakarta, Atrium Building, Jakarta

Account No. 306 0000 7976

8. Please inform me of where Indonesian Embassy/Consulate you are going to request your visa from

9. I need also to know where I have to send your original CAIT and sponsor letter to.

10. I need 30 days to process your CAIT and about 10 days to send it to your address by registered express mail.

[from Thirty Seven South Ltd, PO Box 1874 Auckland (near Westhaven), NZ

fax 64-9-307-8170

1. Front pages of all crew and passenger passports

2. 3 visa size passport photos of each person

3. Last port before entering Indonesia

4. Next port after Indonesia

5. Itinerary in Indonesia

6. Duration of visit (up to 3 months)

7. Port of entry and exit

8. Fee: US$250 (covers everything)

allow 6 to 8 weeks

Sample Itineraries

[HARMONY - 1988] Important to list all islands you may visit. You are not required to show up at them all, but on the other hand, you are not legally permitted to stop unless the island is included in your itinerary. Be specific - they want dates). It took us 4 months from the date we mailed the application to P.T. Kartasa Jaya to receive the CAIT.
Oct 1-2 Sumba Nov 15-27 Java Kep. Kangean

Oct 4-6 Komoda Surabaja

8-10 Sumbawa Kep. Karimundjawa

15-Nov14 Bali Semarang

Kep. Seriba

Dec 1-30 Sumatra P. Pangka

Kep. Kingga

Kep. Riau

MALUKU GROUP - 20-7-95 - Ambon, Ternate

SULAWESI - 1-8-95 - Bitung, Kwandang, Toli Toli, Pantoloan, Ujung Pandang,


KALIMANTAN - 14-8-95 - Tarakan, Samarinda, Balikpadan, Banjarmasin, Pontianak

NUSA TENGGARA GROUP - 28-8-95 Timor (Dili, Kupang) Flores (Ende), Sumba (Waingapu), Sumbawa (Bima), Komodo (Kampung), Lombok (Lembar), Bali (Benoa)

JAVA - 28-9-95 - Surabaya, Semarang, Tanjung Priok

SUMATRA - 10-10-95 - Belawan, Muntok, Dumar, Lingga Islands, Singkep Islands

20-10-95 - Riau Islands, Kijang

(you always wonder how detailed to be when filling out a new country's form! This worked.)
THIRTY SEVEN SOUTH (Agent in Auckland)
Kupang/ Timor -- Alor Island -- Pantor Island -- Waingapu/ Samba Island -- Rinca Island -- Komodo Island -- Bimu/Sumbawa -- Besar/ Sumbawa Island -- Gilair/ Gilitrawangan/ Ampenan/ Lembar / Lombok Island -- Benoa/Bali -- Kalianget/ Madura Island -- Kangean Island -- Semarang -- Cirobon/ Java Island -- Tanjungpandan/ Belitung Island -- Pangkalpinang -- Sungailiat/ Bangka Island -- Lingga -- Tanjungpinang/ Bintan Island -- Batu Ampar/ Batam Island.
Comments on CAIT and Visas
[SUL] Indonesia visas and permits are free in Singapore!
[ADA] Your Clearance to Cruise starts when you first enter Indonesia. Your visa starts when you first enter a port that has Immigration, even if you have already been in Indonesian waters several weeks.

[MAR] We obtained our permit from Mr. Kustarjono Prodjolalito. Be very careful about the time frame (start and end of the 3 months), as it's very firm. Once in Indonesia, it did not seem very important that you visited a particular port on the exact day on your SC, or that the port was even !isted on your SC. What matters is that you had a SC and that it had not expired. Our SC could have been extended before it expired by returning the original to the agent two weeks before its expiration date and paying an additional US$150. But once your SC expires, there is NO official way to extend or renew it. A completely new one must be obtained.

[AP] If you plan to be in Indonesia 3 months - do get a 3 month CAIT. No problem if it runs out in Nongsa Point Marina on Batam, bcut visa must be extended by going to Singapore on the ferry.

[REN] When we went for our visas those in the Bali-Jakarta Race received a 3 month visa that was good for the entire 3 months without any periodic renewals, because it was the 50th anniversary of their independence. To make things easier that is what they gave to everyone who applied for a 3 month visa that year, whether with the race or not. I think this was unusual, but don't know. The 2 month visa does not require extensions. Americans get an automatic non-renewable 2 month visa upon checking into the country. I think the non-renewable part is lifted if the bribe is right. I don't see why you should worry, though, as you will only be checked when entering a large port and usually only if you make the effort. In one or 2 places the officials actively request that yachts check in with the harbor master upon arrival, but most don't really seem to care. What I would suggest is that when you apply for a cruising permit and visa you work backward. Figure out when you want to leave, making sure your two items of paperwork carry you through that date. You can spend a lot of time moseying about the islands, especially the smaller ones, without being checked into the country. Some boats sailed for 2 months before checking in with no hassles. The only catch is that you must make sure your cruising permit is in order, as that requires an agent and they do get sticky about that. If you were to check in at Maumere, Flores, where the officials are reported to be pleasant, that would give you plenty of time to reach Bali in the 2 month visa span. Once you reach Bali you can clear out for Singapore then island hop north. The only thing to be cautious of there is that if you choose to go along the Sumatra or Java coast, that is the only area where the officials sought out the boats. In short, yes, you could easily fudge your visa at both ends with no problems. Immigration & Customs exist only at the larger ports: Kupang, Timor (don't go there, very corrupt); Maumere, Flores; Ambon; and Bali. Elsewhere only the larger towns have Harbor Masters. Most of the HM's we encountered didn't seem to care whether we cleared in with them or not and several people never bothered. The fewer times you have to deal with Immigration & Customs the better.

You need only to worry about time on your CAIT and visas if you plan on spending a lot of time on Java or Sumatra. If you are island hopping I think you will be OK. As I understand it 90% of the cruisers who followed this route checked out at Bali, but this is also the route along which the Harbor Masters come out to the boats once in a while. I think it was only one port that was known for this but as we did not follow this route I am not sure. There are some discrepancies between reality and the charts in that area; I know of 3 boats that touched reefs there. We went via the islands of Kalimantan where there are small villages if there are any at all, so there were no Harbor Masters to deal with. It took us about a week and no one seemed to care in Singapore.
The marina on Batam has gained a lot of favor as a nice place to stay while visiting Singapore, though there were a few horror stories and the ferry fares can be a bit onerous if you have a lot to do in Singapore. The officials in the northernmost port where lies the marina have some special dispensation to create in port cruising permits for those wishing to stay in the marina who arrive without permits. I gather that the permits are not expensive and are limited to the harbor.

[WR] We had good results obtaining our Indonesian cruising permit from Mr. Kustarjono Prodjolalito in Jakarta The cruising permit takes about 60 days to receive. Also, be sure not to leave for Indonesia without a visa! If you get it in Darwin (allow one to two weeks since only one person processes them), but it isn't activated until clearing into Indonesia. If you acquire a visa for Indonesia from Sydney or elsewhere, it starts upon the return of your passport. The other essential thing is to make sure your passport is valid for at least six months. Mine expired in late December 1995, even though our three-month visa would expire in mid-October. Being short the six months required, our visas were held up while I frantically acquired a new passport.

[SHL] I had obtained my boat permit, CAIT [Clearance Approval for Indonesian Territory) from the usual agent in Jakarta: Kartasa Jaya, mentioned in several SSCA bulletins, who gave me excellent service each time, and a permit within 2 months of receiving the application. He seems to be going up in price, although mid-1994 I still paid US $200, as both times before. We may have to rustle up some competition to keep his fee down. I heard from a Danish yacht that they had applied for the permit through their embassy directly to the Indonesian embassy while they were in New Zealand, at a total cost of US $50, but at the time I talked to them, had not yet received it. It may be a worthwhile approach to follow up only if Your embassy is willing.
[SAR] February 1994. Indonesia could just as easily be called "the land of smiles" as that of sails, both are lovely! We followed the Darwin-Ambon regatta by three weeks obtaining our Indonesian Cruising Permit (CAIT) at a cost of US$250 through Mr. Kustarjono Prodjolalito. Fax him first and he will itemize everything he needs. If you want three months, ask him to send a sponsor's letter to coincide with the duration of your CAIT. Allow three or more months for processing.
[COM] April 1994. We left Darwin late in the season (7 October) and motor-sailed on glassy seas the five days to Kupang, Indonesia. We got our Indonesian Cruising Permit through Kustarjono Prodjolalito. Cost was about $230. Allow at least two months to get this permit before leaving for Indonesia. Kustarjono Prodjolalito, Jimmy "the weasel" Rahman in Kupang and Made Gerip in Bali (Benoa Harbor) are partners in helping cruisers and are linked by phone and Fax.

[TI] There are a number of agents who couId obtain the cruising permit. We used the agent recommended by a number of other boats and were satisfied with his service. For the latest requirements for a Clearance Approval for Indonesian Territory (C.A.I.T.), send a fax requesting information to: Kustarjono Prodjolalito The permit and a sponsor letter cost us US $250. A sponsor letter is only required if you decide to go for a three-month visa. More on that later. We sent in our application from Vanuatu by registered mail and we received the permit two months later in Darwin. We had the permit sent to the Darwin Sailing Club where it was held behind the office counter for our arrival. The address is: Darwin Sailing Club, G.P.0. Box 789 Darwin, Northern Territory Australia. Some people had problems receiving mail by way of General Delivery in Darwin as all mail is returned to the sender after 30 days. However, the Darwin Sailing CIub holds mail until you arrive. For those whose permit was lost in the mail, what they did was request a fax of the cruising permit from the agent.
[LEB] October, 1993. Getting our Indonesian paperwork in order before arival made our cruise through Indonesia more relaxing. You will need: Cruising Permit or C.A.I.T., a visa-for 45 days (a "tourist visa" will do), or for a longer stay, you must obtain a "social visa", multiple copies of everything. C.A.I.T.: We obtained our C.A.I.T. by contacting an Indonesian embassy. We wrote to the Indo Embassy in Washington, D.C. and also visited the Indo Consulate in Sydney, Australia. We received the same forms and instructions from both places. Complete the forms, choose an agent from the three listed, include your passport photos and bank check for US$200, and send it off to Jakarta, per instructions. The difficult part was trying to determine which places to list as ports of call on our cruising permit. We used a traveler's guide book to determine all the major seaports on our route and listed them. When checking in, we were asked for our port clearance from previous ports, copies of boat documentation, passport with Indo Visa, C.A.I.T. and crew list, in all cases. In most places this was an hour, at most, except Bali, which can be quite time consuming. We were asked for money on occasion, but explained that we had already paid for our permit and visa. This worked well for us throughout Indonesia. With all our papers in order, they could not insist. The cruising permit itself is about US$40, the remainder goes to the agent. Some cruisers, who contacted the agents direct, were charged from US$210 to US$225. One Danish boat contacted his consulate in Jakarta, and they obtained his C.A.I.T. for him and charged him US$50. One other option is to join the Darwin/Ambon race in mid-July and have all this done for you for about US$350. The cruising permit is good for three months, for the times designated only. Extensions can be obtained through your agent before the expiration date, at an additional cost.

Visa: After obtaining the C.A.I.T. and the Visa approval letter, which can take two to three months, we applied for our Visas through the Indo consulate in Sydney, Australia, via registered mail. Obtain the forms, complete and enclose passport with US$35each, plus additional pictures etc., and send it to Sydney, Australia. Our visas were returned within two weeks, to the address provided. You must enter Indonesia within three months of the date of issue. We were given five weeks upon entry in Tanimbar and then we had to extend it for two months in Bali. There should be no additional charge, but they will try! The Social Visa can be extended for a total of six months. The Tourist Visa is less money, I believe $25, and you are given four weeks on arrival and this can be extended for an additional 15 days, at additional costs . You can obtain a Tourist Visa on arrival, if your first port of call is Bali or Ambon. A Social Visa can also be obtained in person in Darwin, Australia.

[ARJ] Entry into Indonesia requires two things-a permit tor the boat (CAIT) and a visa for you. A two month visa which is not extendable under any circumstances is given free of charge upon entry into the country. But be warned! Friends entered in Kupang, Timor expecting to get a two month visa: They were told that if they had flown into Kupang they could have had a 2 month visa given at the airport. But the harbour vas only able to give a 1 month visa which they could of course have extended in Lombok. But in Lombok the immigration agent wasn't able to extend the visa because he couldn't get permission from Jakarta! So, despite his feelings of chagrin and sympathy with their case, he was forced to ask them to leave the country! If you want a longer stay than 2 months you must get a 3 month visa from the consulate (Darwin takes 3 days). It is issued for Aus$100 for 5 weeks with extensions available once you're in Indonesia for an additional fee of about Aus$25. The boat permit and required sponsorship letter costs US$250. (the CAIT and 3 month visa were included as part of the '95 Darwin/Ambon regatta service for Aus$600. The free visa may not be included next year as it's not the 50th anniversary of independence. If you do not chose to do the Darwin/Ambon regatta you can arrange your CAIT through an agent used by Friends (allow 2-3 months): Kustarjono Prodjolalito. Friends had a disappointing preliminary experience with Greta Baer, another agent. Another source could be Arif Hamid (see Ujung Pandang below). Cruising permits and visas have been known to be extended to 6 months.

[ARJ second letter December 1996] First to answer your questions: Indonesian visa (for self)--non-extendable 2 month visa comes good for a full 2 months. We haven't known anyone who had to extend a 3 month visa because we were traveling with people who had either 2 months, or 3 month visas associated with the regatta, and as you mentioned, the 3 month visa obtained that way started as a full 3 months. Consequently I can't help you with where it would have to be extended either! Sorry!! We didn't hear any radio talk of peopIe rushing anywhere to get a visa extended though. What Shalimar says in '94 seems to hold true--you can delay the start of your visa until you reach a major port. Teraki entered in Kupang and encountered a "ball of snakes". The port officials were only able to issue a 1 month visa (whereas the Kupang airport could issue a 2 month visa). They were told they could get it extended later on. At Lombok they spent nearly a week trying without success and had to leave the country (bypassing Bali and any other interesting larger place they may have wanted to visit). This year another boat made a landfall at Kupang but told the agent who approached the boat that he didn't need to check in there and never had any repercussions. Might not work for everyone!

Indonesia is about 3,000 miles long which is a lot of ground to cover in 3 months so you tend to keep on trucking without staying more than a few days in any one place (although we stayed nearly a month in Bali and dearly loved it with our rental car away from the main town). We know that a person can not stay at Nongsa Point Marina (near Singapore) with an expired CAIT. Whether that holds true for the rest of Indonesia we can not say. We also hear of some who do not check in until Baii, some check out at Bali, and others check both in and out at Bali. It seems you could certainly fudge a bit on both ends with a 2 month visa without a problem . We wanted to have all our options open for whatever came along so we went the 3 month visa route. Number of stops after clearing out don't seem to matter. (The scenery at the Australian end of the chain is extremely arid and becomes only slightly less so as you approach Lombok which is the first island with any amount of greenery on the west side. Bali is lush, as it is from there on toward the west. Ambon & north has a wet season in July-August while the rest of the Indonesian islands are enjoying their dry season.)

We checked in at Ambon and checked with the proper officials in Bau Bau, Ujung Pandang, Lombok, Bali and checked out at Nongsa Point as our papers expired. (Between Bali & Nongsa point we only stopped at the island of Bawean due to incredibly good weather--light winds instead of calms-- which kept us moving as our CAIT was running out, too.) As I recall we spent the first 2 1/2 months getting to (and including) Bali. Others have spent an entire 3 months cruising from Bali on !
[REN] Yes, we went cheap and didn't pay the extra $200AUD/couple to get the 3 month visa. We had paid $600AUD to be in the race primarily because they handled the 3 month cruising permit ($250 US if do alone, less if do in a group depending upon group size. Easy to get but takes 3 months) and they had promised unofficially that we would get the 3 month visa free. They had told us it was all arranged when we appeared in Darwin but when we went to the Indonesian consulate to get our visas we learned they were free only to those in the Bali-Djarkata race celebrating Indonesia's 50th year of Independence, which we couldn't make. We would have had to sail direct from Ambon to Bali. Later I learned if you lied about being in the race there was no check once you entered the country, but at the time it seemed a bad idea. We could make it unscathed but what about those who followed? Now, knowing Indonesian officialdom as I do I wouldn't hesitate. No one knows what anyone else is doing. But I didn't so we went with the free 2 month non-renewable visa issued to Americans (amongst others) when we entered the country. Anyway, 2 months made for a rapid rate of movement.

[SHL] In addition I obtained in Darwin a 3 month visa at a cost of A$100, which took 3 days. With these two requirements fulfilled, there is no problem entering Indonesia any where you like, or visiting islands and small ports, stated on your CAIT of course, as long as clearing in at a big port (Ambon in my case, is done later in order to clear immigration.

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