Indonesians head for Singapore, local tourist spots

Indonesians head for Singapore, local tourist spots
Hats off: Two female tourists peek out from a string of colourful hats displayed by a vendor on Ngobaran Beach, Gunung Kidul, Yogyakarta, on Saturday.

Indonesia's weak currency does not seem to be stopping people from having a good time and going on vacation, particularly to neighbouring countries like Singapore and Malaysia, for the year-end holidays.

The immigration office in Batam, Riau Islands, has been witnessing a sharp increase in the number of Indonesians crossing to Singapore for holidays ahead of the New Year's Eve celebration.

Batam Immigration Office head Yudi Kurniadi told The Jakarta Post that the number of people crossing to Singapore and Malaysia from Batam had since Dec. 22 increased by up to 300 per cent from the usual number of 2,000 to 3,000 per day.

"Most of them are going for Christmas, school and New Year holidays," said Yudi, adding that Indonesians leaving for Singapore mostly came from outside Batam. They, he went on, are interested in a ferry tour package worth Rp 300,000 (S$30) per person for a return trip to Singapore.

In Yogyakarta, hundreds of hotels and motels are fully booked ahead of New Year's Eve, while transportation operators are increasing their seating capacities.

The hotel occupancy rate in Yogyakarta reached 95 per cent on Sunday. There are 41 starred hotels with 4,115 rooms and 425 motels offering 7,300 rooms in the region.

All hotels along Jl. Malioboro, however, have reached an occupancy rate of 100 per cent.

"I'm sure that on Tuesday all the hotels will have an occupancy rate of 100 per cent," secretary of Yogyakarta chapter of the Indonesian Hotels and Restaurants Association (PHRI) Deddy Pranowo Eryono said on Sunday.

Low-cost carrier Citilink Indonesia has increased the number of flights serving Adisucipto International Airport in Sleman regency, just outside Yogyakarta city.

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