Sunday, October 12, 2014

Jakarta City Tour bus

I just want to share my recent experience with the newly launched Jakarta City Tour bus. I took the bus last Saturday from Museum Nasional bus stop around noon. The city tour bus is free for the first 3 months. There is no information yet whether it will remain free or will there be any fare afterwards.
The operational hour for city tour bus is 9am - 7pm from Monday to Saturday, while for Sunday it's 12pm - 7pm due to the car free day on Sunday. There are 9 bus stops: Bundaran Hotel Indonesia (in front of Hotel Indonesia) - Museum Nasional - Pecenongan - Gedung Kesenian Jakarta - Istiqlal Mosque - Medan Merdeka Utara (near Istana Negara) - Monumen Nasional - City Hall - Sarinah - back to Bundaran Hotel Indonesia. The bus stop sign is marked "city tour".
For weekdays, the bus will stop at all of the bus stops, while for weekends each bus will stop at several bus stops only. The route for weekends:
- Bus #1 & #5: Hotel Indonesia bus stop only
- Bus #2: Museum Nasional, Gedung Kesenian Jakarta and Sarinah
- Bus #3: Istiqlal & Medan Merdeka Utara
- Bus #4: Monumen Nasional & City Hall
To check the latest weekend route, we can check the twitter account @CityTourJakarta. Bus stops in Hotel Indonesia and Monumen Nasional was packed with people, I think it's better to take bus #2 or #3 on weekends. Don't expect a nice queue - most people will try to force their way to enter the bus.
The bus itself is AC double decker bus and the capacity is limited so that nobody is standing inside the bus. Since it's still new, the bus condition is clean, good & the AC is working very well.
The drivers are mostly women and each bus has tour guide and a police officer. On my bus, the guide wasn't informative. He's mostly busy explaining about the dos & don'ts of the city tour bus and didn't explain much about the route. The explanation was supposed to be bilingual (Indonesian & English), but he only spoke in Indonesian language - probably because there's no foreigner on the bus at the time. Overall it's a nice experience although in my opinion the route is too short.
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Jakarta, Indonesia
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