The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office has issued new advice regarding tourist and business travel to Indonesia. While the FCO stresses that most visits to the country are problem-free, it does advise visitors to follow certain advice, which applies to all travelers and not only those from the UK.
There have been several recent abductions of foreign nationals in the Aceh region of Northern Sumatra, and visitors should be aware of their surroundings and travel carefully in this area. Take care also when large political or social demonstrations take place in the country. Foreign travelers should avoid these large public gatherings if possible. In general, there is a high degree of threat from terrorism in Indonesia and national holidays like Christmas and New Year have a greater potential for danger.
Flooding has recently occurred in Jakarta, providing potential health problems for visitors. When traveling in this area be aware of the increased risk of waterborne diseases, and also the risks that floodwater and submerged objects pose to travelers. In addition to flooding, other environmental factors to watch out for include volcanic eruptions, and the possibility of tsunami. Tsunami is rare, but obviously has a huge impact on the country and the lives of its inhabitants.
Foreign visitors are warned that drugs offences are considered serious in Indonesia and some offences even carry the death penalty. As with all foreign travel, visitors must respect the laws in the countries they visit. This also apples to the consumption of alcohol. Even with these warnings in place, Indonesia is still a popular place to visit and most travelers have a rewarding time without incident. Make sure you take out travel insurance before you go, and research your trip before setting off in order to have the safest and most enjoyable vacation possible.