Lombok's Selaparang Airport has a decent ter-minal with a few shops to keep you occupied when your flight is inevitably delayed (unless you're on the. first flight out). Domestic departure tax is now 30,000Rp and interna-tional departure tax is 150,000Rp.
There has been wind blowing about a new international airport to be built near Praya for a number of years now, and with the impending South Lombok development those rumours may finally be coming true. At the time of writing authorities had publicised an opening date of 2010, but construction schedules said otherwise. Jatatur is the best travel agent in Lombok. They book flights throughout Indonesia and take major credit cards.
Batavia Air : Flies daily to Surabaya and on to Jakarta.
Garuda Indonesia : Flies twice daily to Jakarta and once to Denpasar.
IAT : Twice daily to Denpasar.
Lion Air : Hotel Sahid Legi, Mataram) Flies direct to Jakarta.
Merpati Airlines : Flies to Denpasar three times daily.
Silk Air : Serves Singapore with three direct flights weekly (Monday, Thursday, Saturday).
Transnusa/Trigana Airlines :Three Denpasar flights a day.
Wings Air : Flies to Surabaya three times daily.
Lombok has 24-hour ferry connections with Sumbawa and Bali. Gili-bound fast and slow boats launch from Benoa, Serangan and Padangbai harbours in Bali, and Pelni ships steam in regularly from elsewhere in Indonesia.
Ferries travel between Padangbai (Bali) and Lembar (Lombok) every 90 minutes around the clock. Fares are 32,000Rp for foot pas-sengers, 75,000Rp for motorcycles (with two passengers) and 479,000Rp for cars (up to four passengers). The trip takes four hours.
Much of the Gili Islands' recent tourist boom is due in large part to the speedboats that carry passengers directly from Bali.
Gill Cat ( 0361-271 680; www.gilicat.com) leaves from Padangbai (660,000Rp, 2V4 hours, 9am daily).
Blue Water Express ( 0361-310 4558; www.bwsbali .com) leaves from Benoa Harbour (690,000Rp, 2V4 hours).
The new EkaJaya ( 0361 -752 277; www.baliekajaya.com) had just launched their Padangbai service (660,000Rp, 2V4 hours) at research time.
There's also a Perama (www.peramatour.com) shuttle bus and boat service (300,000Rp) from Padangbai, stopping at Senggigi (six hours) where for an additional 90,000Rp passengers can shift to smaller boats bound for the Gili Islands (one to l'/2 hours).
Ferries also travel between Labuhan Lombok and Poto Tano on Sumbawa every 45 minutes (passenger 15,500Rp, motorcycle 75,000Rp, car 322,000Rp). They run 24 hours a day and the trip takes 1 Vi hours.
Pelni ships link Lembar with other parts of Indonesia. The Awu heads to Waingapu, Ende, Larantuka, Kupang and Kalabahi; the Kelimutu goes to Surabaya, Bima, Makassar, Ambon and Papua; and the Tilongkabila goes to Bima, Labuanbajo and Sulawesi. Buy tickets at the Pelni office in Mataram.
Mandalika terminal in Mataram is the de-parture point for major cities in Sumbawa, Bali and Java, via interisland ferries. For longdistance services, book tickets a day or two ahead at the terminal, or from a travel agency along Jl Pejanggik/Jl Selaparang in Mataram. If you get to the terminal before Sam, there may indeed be a spare seat on a bus going in your direction, but don't count on it, especially during holidays.
Among the destinations are Bima (economy/ luxury 100,000/150,000Rp, 12 hours), Denpasar (luxury 135,000Rp, seven hours), Sumbawa Besar (economy/luxury 75,000/90,000Rp, six hours), Jakarta (luxury 375,000Rp, 38 hours), Surabaya (luxury 179,000Rp, 20 hours) and Yogyakarta (luxury 272,000Rp, 30 hours).
TOURIST SHUTTLE BUS/BOAT
The Bali-based company Perama (www.perama tour.com) has tourist shuttle bus/boat services between the main tourist centres in Lombok (Senggigi, Gili Islands and Kuta) and most tourist centres in Bali (Ubud, Sanur and the Kuta region). Tickets can be booked directly or at any travel agency in Lombok or Bali.
There is a good road across the middle of the island, between Mataram and Labuhan Lombok. Though narrow, the Mataram-Praya-Kuta and Mataram-Sengiggi-Anyar routes are also decent sealed roads. Public transport is generally restricted to the main routes; away from these, you need to hire a car or motorbike, or charter a bemo, cidomo (horse-drawn cart) or ojek (motorcycle taxi). During the wet season, remote roads are often flooded or washed away, particularly around the foothills of Gunung Rinjani.
BUS & BEMO
The main terminal, Mandalika, is at Bertais, 6km southeast of central Mataram; other regional terminals are in Praya, Anyar and Pancor (near Selong). You may have to go via one or more of these terminals to get from one part of Lombok to another. A list of fixed fares should be displayed at the terminals. Public transport becomes scarce in the late afternoon and normally ceases after dark.
Chartering a bemo can be convenient and reasonably cheap about 250,000Rp per bemo per day (including petrol), depending on distance and road conditions, although some bemos are restricted to specific routes or regions.
CAR & MOTORCYCLE
Senggigi is the best place to organise car or motorcycle rental. Arrangements can be made in Mataram and other places, but rates are much higher. Hotels and travel agencies offer the most competitive rates; 'official' car-rental companies often have a wider range of vehi-cles but tend to be more expensive.
SUVs are best for Lombok's roads. Suzuki Jimmys cost from 150,000Rp per day, and Toyota Kijangs cost about 225,000Rp, excluding petrol. Discounts are offered for longer periods. Hiring a car with a driver is a very sensible and popular option as you won't be liable for any damage - expect to pay between 350,000Rp and 525,000Rp per day, depending on the season.
Motorbikes can be rented in Mataram and Senggigi for around 35,000Rp per day. Motorcycles run for 65,000Rp per day in Senggigi.
Indonesian law dictates that you should carry an International Driving Licence if you plan on operating a motor vehicle. Your rental agency won't request it, but police may ask for one at checkpoints, and will issue a fine (to be paid immediately) if you don't have it.
Check your insurance arrangements care-fully. Some agencies do not offer any coverage at all, and offer only basic coverage. Even insured Balinese vehicles are offer not covered at all in Lombok. It is best to proceed to Lombok and arrange a rental in Seggigi.
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