Guide to Driving in Indonesia

If you are from Europe and have come to visit or stay in Indonesia, your experience on the road of this country won’t be so much entertaining. The roads and rules are quite problematic for the foreigner when they choose to drive a car to move from one place to another. It’s true that hiring a car is fun while visiting a new unexplored country but in Indonesia, it would be a good decision to hire a driver too with the car to hit the road and visit places.

The traffic rules, routes and surroundings of Indonesia are different from the Europe’s. So, if you are going to drive here you need to be very careful about everything regarding driving. It is a huge problem that in this country the traffic regulations are not strictly maintained and you might be disgusted to experience the reckless driving of the locals here. High-speed driving and aggressive behavior of the local drivers are frequent in Indonesia. You will also find many cars with no indicators and lights which would also be annoying for you if you are from UK. You must be aware of the other drivers, especially the motorcyclists as you may mind them very irresponsible sometimes; be also careful about the pedestrians as they are all over the city and it’s gathering beside the main roads is a common scenario in Indonesia. You will find another regular picture of parking the cars on the street. Narrow streets of this country are too much challenging for the Europeans for being accustomed with the native spacious roads. Drive through the middle of the highway and changing directions abruptly are typical here. So, you must keep your eyes on the other vehicles. Sometimes the red lights are not followed by the local drivers, especially at night, and there are some complex roads which are used for one-way driving at day and two-way driving at night. Don’t get horrified to see the broken down cars as it is a very usual view in this country. The poor conditions of the roads and surrounds of the remote places of Indonesia will be very excruciating for you to drive. It will be next to impossible for you to drive in some places of Indonesia through the rainy season as flood is a common issue here and roads are submerged by water most of the time.

When you are driving in any remote place, drive very carefully, because if you fall in any danger you might not get the help of the traffic police and ambulance for they are not so available there. Wherever you drive, as a foreigner you must carry your passport and international driving license and do not forget to carry the car rental papers. A SIM license will be obligatory if you want to live and drive in Indonesia.

Essential Driving Information

  • Driving is on the left-hand side of the road
  • Drivers should signal prior to turn left
  • Use the extra lanes for passing
  • Using mobile phone is not allowed while driving
  • Safety belts are required for the driver and the passenger of front seat
Speed Limits
Town/City: 50 Km/h
Main Road: 100 km/h
Emergency Phone Numbers
Police: 110
Ambulance: 118 or119
Firefighters: 113
General Information (as of 2014)
Min Driving Age: 17
Alcohol Limit: 0.00%
Petrol Price: €0.7/litre
Diesel Price: €0.81/litre
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