Traveling in Lombok: Vehicle Rentals
If you choose to rent a car or motorcycles and drive yourself, you must have an International Driving License or international translation of native driver's licence.
Renting a car is a good alternative to get around Lombok, either self driving or with driver so you can relax and enjoy the view. (Tip driver pocket money for meals if you stop for lunch or dinner). If you are pleased with service, tip ( Rp. 20,000 minimum). If you collide with anything, or it collides with you, you are responsible for all cost.
Motorcycles are a convenient and inexpensive way to get around the Island, but Tourists are frequently injured in motorbike accident. If you rent a bike, drive slowly and very defensively. Helmets are required by law but those provided by rental agencies offer little protection.
Traveling in Lombok is much more relaxed than Bali but the roads tend to be narrower (2 lane with passing in both directions) and once you get out of the main tourist section, not as well maintained. Whilst we wouldn't recommend anyone rent a self drive car in Bali - In Lombok you can, if you're a bit adventurous, get around on your own quite nicely.
Car hire is easy on Lombok. Large international rental companies may offer good deals but local companies are very competitive also. The most popular rental vehicle is the Jimny - a small, Suzuki Katana jeep with ample ground clearance. The Jimny has a tiny 800 cc engine, two seats in the front, and two or four bench seats in the back. The larger Toyota Kijang seats six, and is very economical and lightweight. The majority of hire-cars have manual 'stick-shift' gears as opposed to automatic transmissions. A Toyota Kijang costs from Rp 300,000 to Rp. 400,000 per day with unlimited kilometers, but excluding insurance and petrol.
TIP - Shop around for a good rental deal. Check out the internet, Lombok's local papers or magazines for the best prices.
TIP - Carefully check the condition of the car before accepting terms (especially the horn, as this is used to warn other road users of your presence).
TIP - All rental cars should have registration documents and registration plates prefixed with the letters: RC (for 'Rental Car'). These are legal requirements for renting and without them the police could stop you and impose fines. Registration plates should also include both Bali and Lombok licensing for use on both islands. Inform the rental company if you intend to use the vehicle on both islands and request the appropriate documentation.
TIP - During the major holiday periods, hire vehicles are in great demand from Lombok people locals going home for the festivities, so it is advisable to book your vehicle in advance of these periods. Car Hire with Driver (known in Lombok as 'chartered transport'): Although prices vary, depending on the places you wish to visit (and the distance covered), a car with a driver will run about Rp 250,000 - 350,000 per day (8 hours). Negotiate with the driver before agreeing to a deal and check what extra costs will have to be paid such as petrol, meals, etc. Insurance Requirements: Some rental companies offer insurance for an added fee. Check the small print as the conditions of policies vary considerably.
TIP - Maximum write-off damage will require an approximate payment of US $25 variable according to the individual policy, but minor damage such as a smashed wing or headlight could result in the hirer paying the full cost of repairs, which can be very expensive. License Requirements: An International Driving Permit is required in addition to your own national Driving License. These are obtainable from motoring organizations in your country.
WARNING - Driving in Lombok without a license can result in a fine of Rp 2,000,000. Seat Belts: Seat belts are fitted to some vehicles but there are no legal requirements to use them. Helmets: If you intend to rent a motorcycle helmets will be supplied by the hire company for the rider and passenger. It is a legal requirement to wear one and it has to be in good condition. Which Side of the Road: Traffic drives on the left. Priority: It is your responsibility as driver to avoid all other road users. Any vehicle has the right of way to pull out in front of you at any time. Drivers in Lombok rely on audible warnings, so use the horn regularly to let them know of your presence and in particular when overtaking. Likewise, other drivers will use their horns to let you know of their presence.
WARNING - Be extra vigilant when driving at dusk or at night in rural areas. Many bicycles and carts do not have lights, and street lighting is to be found only in the larger towns. Routes: Indonesia's main roads are generally excellent surfaced highways, though overland travel may be hampered by the IMF's insistence that the government remove price subsidies on petrol. In Badung regency especially, there are certain roads that change priority from two-way to one-way during the course of the day. Be extremely careful as road priorities can change without warning and the police will fine anybody driving in contravention of altered road priorities. Speed Limits: There is a maximum speed limit of 70 kph. Petrol: Expect to pay over Rp 6.000 per liter.