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Getting around Semarang City


It is easy to get to and around Semarang City. Most public transportations in Semarang are available from 5:30 am to 10 pm. Buses and orange passenger vans will take you to almost all places in Semarang. In addition to buses and passenger vans, taxis are available for 24 hours. When you ride a taxi, make sure the taxi is official and uses a meter. In addition to taxis, you can use tricycles (becak) and rental motorcycles (ojeg), but you need to bargain the price with the drivers. If you plan to travel out of town, you can use buses, coaches, long distance passenger vans, trains (Tawang Train Station), and planes (Ahmad Yani Airport). For traveling interstate, it is more convenient to take the trains or planes because you can avoid the traffic jams. For passenger vans, trains, and planes, you need to buy tickets in advance.

The prices vary depending on the distance, the seats (economy, executive, or first class), and the time. During public holidays such as Ied and Christmas/New Year, the prices will go up. After those holidays, prices will sometimes return to the usual price.


Obtaining a driver’s license or SIM (Surat Ijin Mengemudi)


If you have a KITAS or KITAP, although restricted in number, you can apply for a driver’s license in Indonesia. A driver’s licence to drive a car has a symbol A on the top right, whereas a C driver’s licence is used to drive a motorcycle. The law requires that you are 17 years old or older in order to be able to apply. The steps usually involve a written test and a driving test.

To obtain the licence, you need to go to the Department of Motor Vehicles in Semarang and perofrm a written test and actual driving test with a car or motorcycle that may be borrowed from a friend. Some departments may have vehicles ready for you to borrow.

To obtain a licence, you need to bring your:

  1. Original passport
  2. Original valid KITAS (Temporary StayPermit) card
  3. Valid driver’s license, foreign or international driver’s license (as applicable)
  4. Photocopies of your identity, entry stamp, and valid visa pages in your passport
  5. Photocopy of your KITAS card
  6. Photocopy of your current driver’s license (from your home country)
  7. Doctor’s note of good health
  8. An eye examination and finger prints sample will be performed before you are given your licence.