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Advices for your Personal Safety and Belongings

Posted by on Apr 15th, 2009
Filed Under: General

• Beware of con artists who offer services for excessive commissions. Stay alert when using public transportation. Organized gangs may occupy the seats behind you and relieve you of your belongings.

• Keep in mind that there are gangs of small children notorious for pick pocketing.

• Thieves frequent the crowded buses and stations. The major bus terminals Kalideres, Kampung Rambutan, Pulo Gadung, and Lebak Bulus are infamous meeting spots of pickpockets and thieves. Keep your valuables in a money belt beneath your clothes.

• Lock your hotel door and window, especially at night. If possible, leave valuables in safe storage facilities at your hotel.

• It is not unlikely that a street moneychanger short-changes you. It is best to use banks.

• If someone invites you home for a card game, be sure that you`ll be ripped off.

• Police imposter scams have also been reported.

• Make sure that you have an eye witness in case of theft. The police generally expects that you could prove your loss.

• It is an offence to: carry, purchase, and sell drugs, gamble, possess and disseminate pornographic materials, engage in paid work, and remain inside the country for more than 30 days while on tourist visa.

• Travel insurance is essential in the event of loss or theft. It is unwise to travel without health insurance, accidents sometimes occur. Jakarta has a fairly developed healthcare system. Rural areas are ill equipped and you will expose yourself to a variety of risks. Ask your agent if your health insurance is payable to providers or you will be reimbursed afterwards.

• The following vaccinations are recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO): adult diphtheria and tetanus, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, measles, mumps, and rubella, polio, typhoid, and varicella. If you plan to stay over a month, it is a good idea to consider some additional vaccinations: Japanese B encephalitis, meningitis, rabies, and tuberculosis. Japanese B encephalitis rarely affects travellers. However, keep in mind that it is a non-treatable condition and one third of the infected people die. Tuberculosis is also rare in travellers. However if you travel to remote areas, it is best to take precautions. Rabies is a viral disease spread by animals. It lethal if left untreated. Typhoid, or enteric fever, is transmitted by contaminated food and water. While vaccination is highly recommended, it is not 100% effective.

• WHO estimates that there are between 50 and 200,000 HIV positive in Indonesia. If you are sexually active during travels, it is wise to take precautions. Remember that condoms do not prevent some sexually transmitted diseases such as herpes and warts. Seek medical attention if you have rashes, lumps, or painful urination.

• Some forms of marine life can be particularly dangerous. The venom of sea snakes is highly toxic and leads to paralysis. Stingrays usually cause wounds, but their poisonous spines can be lethal. The dorsal fins of the stone fish are extremely dangerous. Their stings can lead to coma. Stone fish antivenin should be taken immediately. There is a small chance of being stung by a scorpion fish. However, no antivenin is available at present.
Fish venom is effectively treated by bathing the wound in hot water. Remove any spines; then, wash for hour and a half and rest. Seek medical attention if necessary.

• Remember to take a medical kit with you. The following items are recommended: aspirin or paracetamol, cold and flu tablets, bandages, contraceptives, multivitamins, thermometer, sunscreen, antiseptics and antispasmodics. Make sure you pack all prescribed medicines. You will be able to find most medicines around, except for some new medications.

• You are not advised to travel off the main roads after dusk. There is a low visibility.

• Hitching always involves a degree of risk, and it is therefore not recommended. Solo travellers, in particular, are advised to travel by other means.

• The Ujung Colon National Park is infamous for motorcycle theft. Keep a close eye on your vehicle if motorcycling.

• Women solo travellers attract attention. It is a good idea to carry a wedding ring or a photo of your real or imagined husband/ partner. Modest clothing will reduce the amount of honking and lewd comments. Make-up is appropriate unless it is in excessive amounts.

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