Dive Lombok, Travel Tips Gilis Islands
Travel Tips Gili Islands & Lombok – Health…
Malaria does exist on Lombok but it is generally not a problem. You can obtain additional information on health matters from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Phone the CDC international travelers’ hotline at (404) 332-4559 or visit the CDC malaria info.
A few other points: Drink plenty of fluid (water and fruit juices) to avoid dehydration. Drink bottled water ONLY. Even in hotels it is best not to drink straight from the tap. Ice in drinks, however, is not a problem. Use common sense when choosing a place to eat. Eat in established restaurants that are clean and well patronized. If you are trying the hawkers in the street stick to those not serving meat unless your system is already well adjusted.
If you are using prescription drugs bring a sufficient supply. Pharmacies (apotiks) often can fulfill a prescription but the dosage may not be quite the same as your doctor has prescribed. Promptly take care of any cuts or burns – do not risk infection in this heat and humidity. If you are sleeping in the open air, use mosquito repellent and a mosquito net.
Travel Tips Gili Islands & Lombok – Exchange…
You can exchange most major world currencies easily into the local currency, the Indonesian Rupiah. All hotels offer currency exchange but at less favorable exchange rates. Or – and this our choice – go to a branch office of one of the local banks.It is also better to change your money in advance, if you plan visiting south, central or east Lombok as there are neither money changers nor credit card payments available!
You can find several “authorized” money changers in the tourist areas (Senggigi or Gili Air) and in the capital Mataram. If you choose to deal with a money changer – here are a couple of points worth remembering. First, the rate posted on the door usually is for amounts in notes of USD 100 – lesser denominated notes (i.e. USD 50) will be given a less favorable rate. You should also be aware that Money changers do not accept cash notes that have been defaced – or are in less than near mint condition. The official exchange rate is posted daily in all major newspapers. Also, rates that are too good to be true – generally watch out for.
Credit cards are accepted at better restaurants and retailers (tourist areas). But be aware, most retailers add an extra 3 – 5 % on your bill for the privilege of using plastic. You do not have to accept this: You’re not going to get anywhere arguing with the shopkeeper but if you want to get this surcharge back make sure the retailer or restaurant writes it down as an extra charge for using the card and then claim it from your monthly billing.
Travel Tips Gili Islands & Lombok – Tipping and Bargaining …
Tipping is relatively new on Lombok. Most large hotels and restaurants will automatically add a service charge of between 5 – 10 percent to your bill which is quite sufficient. Smaller restaurants generally don’t add anything extra, but considering that the waiter’s wage may well be less than $1.00 a day – a tip of 5 – 10 percent is very much appreciated.
Difficult for many first timers but once you get the hang of it you’ll never pay off again! Bargaining is the norm in Lombok’s art markets, trinket and T-shirt shops. But don’t get cheesy. Negotiate a good price and take home a good story.
Getting to Lombok …
If you’re on the way to go Gili Island diving, there are hourly flights from Bali’s domestic airport as well as a public ferry from Padang Bay available. Also there are speedboats that leave from Sanur, Benoa Harbor and Padang Bay that will bring you to Lombok within a good 2 hours.