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Some Mundane Questions

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 23
reviews: 4
Some Mundane Questions

Good morning, Destination Experts and fellow travellers!

This weekend, my wife and I will be taking a Batamfast ferry to Harbour Bay Terminal, arriving around noon. After lunch, take a cab to Nagoya Hills Mall, jalan for a while (catch a movie...) before walking to Secret Spa for a booked 150mins spa package treatment. After dinner, take a cab to Harris Batam Center Hotel, stay the night, next day jalan BC Megamall (catch another movie...:-) ) before taking the Batamfast ferry at BC Terminal back to Singapore.

We've been travelling DIY for the longest time but this is the first to Batam, so pardon me for some queries which may seem mundane.......

(1) Batam immigration and customs clearance - generally, how long does it take on weekends? 10 mins or half an hour?

(2) we arrive HB Terminal with an open return Batamfast ferry ticket. Is it possible to book our return seats at HB Terminal for next day departure BC Terminal?

(3) Wey Wey Restaurant - is it open for lunch ?

(4) Cabs - through the threads here, I'm roughly aware of the fares payable and journeys are non-metered. But for safety reasons, what about the type of cabs to avoid or to go for? Example, in Jakarta, we'd only flag the Blue Bird or Silver Bird cabs.

Thanks in advance for any advice/comments!

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 473
1. Re: Some Mundane Questions

depending on how packed the immigration is . first come first serve , thus a quick clearance . if you are caught at the end of the line , it would take you about 30 minutes less to clear , the longest time .

possible , since Batam Fast operates at Batam Center Terminal as well .

i believe only Golden Prawn and Sri Rezeki are open for lunch , never had lunch at Wey Wey before , still upon arriving at Harbour Bay Terminal , since Wey Wey is located there as well (3 minutes walk from your exit of the custom) you can ask .

flag any cab what has a yellow plate colour on it . also flag any cab that's vehicle model is new .

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 23
reviews: 4
2. Re: Some Mundane Questions

Some more queries:

(1) With due respect to the many honest, hardworking and diligent Batam immigration & customs officers, just in case we have the bad luck to encounter the rare unscrupulous one, if any, what is the going rate to resolve any problems? SGD 20?

(2) Now a most important question - is Iron Man 3 screening this weekend? :-)

Thanks, RichardBurnz for taking time to answer my queries.

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 473
3. Re: Some Mundane Questions

$20 wouldn't be enough , $50 is normally the basic amount of money you settle problems with them .

i just checked , it seems that ironman 3 is already screening in theaters here ?

21cineplex.com/playnow/…BTM.htm

still i'm not quite sure if it will be screening , just like the avengers a day after its international release , it immediately released in Batam as well .

Batam, Indonesia
Destination Expert
for Batam
posts: 1,663
reviews: 18
4. Re: Some Mundane Questions

RichardLin,

1. Harbour Bay - 15-30 mins. I usually queue up before the ferry reaches so only 5 mins or so in immigration area. Stand first in the ferry or stand longer later in immigration area, your pick.

Batam Center - at least 30 or so mins on peak hours because it's so packed!!!

2. Yes

3. Yes

4. Any cab with yellow car plate is ok. Keep watch for Blue bird, silver cab, or green taxi. They are newest ones now and seem profesional.

5. Iron Man 3 is on... but good luck getting the tickets...

6. Rp 200,000 is more than enough enough but you shouldn't have to pay anything if you don't bring anything suspicious.

Cheeerrsss

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 23
reviews: 4
5. Re: Some Mundane Questions

Evening, Chandrana, thanks for the heads up!!

Regarding :

(1) queuing in the ferry before it docks - yep, we'll do just that, in true Singaporean style....can't be the first in the queue though, for I know not where to go..... :-)

(5) Iron Man 3 - just made it top priority to cheong to cinema at NH Mall after lunch at Wey Wey!

(6) coughing up the Rp 200,000, well that seems to be in the realm of reasonableness; if it's SGD50, this will be my first and last trip. Just covering the unexpected, not expecting any problems since the usual suspicious things I'd be bringing are toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, change of clothes, undie and of course, for the return journey, the wife with her boxes of kueh lapis...sighhhh......

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 473
6. Re: Some Mundane Questions

well just to be sure , prepare with yourself about $50 because almost every tourist who encounter problem with the immigration mostly always have to give out $50 to them . very little are let off with $30 but still you can try your luck with Rp200.000 / person .

i just came back from one of the malls here and ironman3 is out .

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 23
reviews: 4
7. Re: Some Mundane Questions

Bro, noted about the kind advice to standby SGD50.

Btw, there are Catholic Churches, no? We intend to either attend Saturday sunset Mass (Nagoya Hills area) or Sunday morning Mass (Batam Center area). Any you could recommend? Is St Peter's Church convenient?

Batam, Indonesia
Destination Expert
for Batam
posts: 1,663
reviews: 18
8. Re: Some Mundane Questions

RichardLin,

1. It's ok to be first. You won't get lost in Harbour Bay. IT's a one-way route :)

5. The Iron Man 3 tickets have been pre-purchased since last week so good luck. If you do walk-in, most likely you gonna get 2 rows from the front at best. In case if you don't get the tickets in NH, I would suggest you go to Megamal after you check-in the hotel and try to purchase the first show in the afternoon on Sunday :)

6. Nothing bad will happy to you. Don't worry. God will keep you safe.

7. St Peter's church is located about the same distance from Nagoya or Batam Center. There is nothing inconvenient about going to church :) And yes, I would suggest going to St. Peter. Saturday sunset mass starts at 6 pm local time and Sunday morning mass would be either 8 or 10 am. I believe only the Sunday 10 am one is in English service.

Cheeerrsss

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 473
9. Re: Some Mundane Questions

yup , just just fetched a couple this morning whos passport was expiring had to pay $50 each inorder to enter . which is ridiculous . a month ago , a couple whos girlfriends passport was also expiring entered with no problems but a stern warning from the immigration officer .

St Peter is not too far away from Harris , only about 10 minutes taxi ride so it is convenient . be sure to have the driver to fetch you again in a few hours as the area is remote from taxis .

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 23
reviews: 4
10. Re: Some Mundane Questions

Field report at Starbucks, while wife shops: Arrived HB Terminal yesterday afternoon, smooth ferry journey, efficient & courteous immigration & good makan at Wey2.

Cab to NHM Rp45k. Traffic jam, road in front of ESKRA Spa cordoned off, most shops closed, security shouting into loudhailers....dunno what's going on....walk to the other side of NHM......wow, drama man, fire engines, 2 upper floor units charred in smoke, massive traffic jams. Decide to cool off at Secret Spa...managed to bring forward spa appointments.

SS masseurs - professional, polite & u get your full money's worth of massage/spa treatment. Wife happy. A lot of Singaporean customers, hear all the lahs, lors, hors, mehs.....

Cab to Harris Hotel BC Rp50k. Cheerful staff, big clean rooms, right next to BC Terminal. Quickly went Megamall & managed to get Iron Man 3 tickets for evening show, fantastic audio & leg space (no, we weren't at the front row :-) ), Rp40k. Dinner Rp85k for BBQ fish, satay, sambal kangkong, avocado juice, iced tea, at one of the restaurants. Fiery chilli, whew!

That's it, a fuss-free simple relaxing weekend! Thanks to Chandrana & RichardBrunz for their advice!