Singapore to Batam by sea
Being less than hour from Singapore makes Batam very accessible from just about anywhere in the world. Singapore's Changi Airport is the major regional hub for Southeast Asia and is one of the most convenient and efficient airports in the world.
Singapore to Batam
From Changi, take a taxi to the Harbour Front Ferry Terminal (about 20 minutes, taxis cost about S$20 or about US$13). Please note that a surcharge applies for taxis in Singapore between midnight and 6 a.m. From the Harbour Front taxi drop-off point enter the building, turn right and walk through the shopping center (you will pass McDonald's on your left) until you reach the SECOND escalator to the upper floor (near the Deli France outlet). Turn left at the top of the escalator to the ticketing desks for the Penguin, Wavemaster or Batam Fast Ferry Services (all good). Buy a round-trip ticket (about S$45 including taxes and charges and a fuel price levy). Wavemaster to Harbour Bay and Penguin to Batam Center offer the highest service frequencies.
|Singapore-Batam Ferry Service
Singapore Ferry leaves from Harbourfront; Batam Ferry leaves from Harbour Bay (Batu Ampar).
|Mon to Thur||Fri, Sat, Sun, eve of PH & PH|
|S'pore to Batam||Batam to S'pore||S'pore to Batam||Batam to S'pore|
|S'pore Time||Batam Time||S'pore Time||Batam Time|
If you are planning to stay in a Nagoya hotel, or spend most of your time in and around the main business and entertainment district, it is strongly recommended you take a Wavemaster ferry to HARBOUR BAY. This is a new terminal opened late in 2006. It is much less crowded and is very efficient with excellent facilities, including a Visa on Arrivals desk. More importantly it is located at Batu Ampar right next door to the main commercial center of Nagoya (just down the road from the Pacific Planet Holiday hotels).
The ferry journey is shorter (around 50 minutes compared to an hour plus) and you will save another 15 minutes or so on ground transport time at the Batam end. There are services to HARBOUR BAY from Singapore about every hour from 7:55 a.m. until 9:45 p.m. and from Batam to Singapore from 6:45 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. (all local times).
The regular ferry services from Singapore to Batam from around 7.30am until 9.50pm mean it is possible to make same-day ferry crossings from flights arriving at Changi up to around 8 p.m. Later arrivals generally will require an overnight in Singapore before taking a ferry the next day.
You must be at the Harbour Front ferry terminal in Singapore a minimum of 30 minutes before the departure time to purchase a ticket (this is strictly enforced at the ticketing desks). Likewise for departures - the first ferry out of Batam is at 6:05 a.m. local time from Batam Center f6.45am from Harbour Bay (that's 7:05 a.m. or 7:45 a.m. Singapore time).
With travel time, the time-zone difference, immigration clearances at Harbour Front Ferry Terminal in Singapore and taxi to the airport, this means that if your are planning to take an early flight out of Changi (before about 11 a.m. Singapore time) you will again need to overnight in Singapore. The Singapore ticketing office will give you a computer printed partially completed Indonesian Immigration Entry Card along with your boarding pass and return ticket.
Book luggage through to Batam at the desk opposite the ticketing office.
The Singapore departure hall entry doors are near the luggage check-in desk. Proceed through security and immigration and take the escalator down to the departure hall where there is plenty of seating and a duty-free shop. While waiting for your ferry boarding call complete your Indonesian Immigration Entry Card. The ferry crossing takes a little over an hour to Batam Center and, as noted above, about 50 minutes to Harbour Bay. Take a Port Taxi to your hotel (it's about 20 minutes from Batam Center to Nagoya, the main hotel, business and entertainment district and five minutes from Harbour Bay).
Note: Unless you have a specific reason for going there, do NOT take a ferry to Sekupang or Waterfront City - these are locations well away from the main town centers.
Taxi desks are located just outside the exit doors as you walk out of the arrivals hall. The Port Taxis have air-conditioning, are clean and the drivers are usually courteous and helpful. Standard fares are charged to city locations - inquire at the taxi desk.
You can readily change money or access ATMs at Changi airport to obtain Singapore dollars. Money changers also are available at the Batam Center and Harbour Bay ferry terminals to obtain Indonesian rupiah.
Indonesia visa situation
To enter Indonesia, you need a passport valid for at LEAST 18 MONTHS from your date of entry. Travelers from MOST Western countries can obtain a single-entry visa on arrival for 30 days (US$25) or seven days (US$10). There are exceptions where a visa must be obtained through an Indonesian Embassy or Consulate prior to travel - check with your travel agent or nearest Indonesian Embassy.
NOTE: The seven-day visa actually entitles you to a stay of only SIX nights and the 30-day visa to 29 nights!
If purchasing a visa on arrival try to ensure you have U.S. or Singapore Dollars. Rupiah are not accepted.
Visitors from ASEAN countries, which have reciprocal arrangements with Indonesia, are issued a FREE 30-day tourist visa on arrival. You may be asked to show you have a return ticket to your country of embarkation (Singapore), though this is very unlikely.
Contributor: Douglas Cole