Pelni Cabin Class
Replies: 18 - Last Post: May 1, 2013 4:39 AM Last Post By: Heridotus
Apr 4, 2013 12:43 PM
Pelni Cabin ClassDoes anyone know where I can find pictures of what the Pelni ships' 1st class cabins look like and the difference between 1st and 2nd class? I tried searching on line and here on TTT. But, I only seem to get pictures of the outside of the ships and occasional deck (economy) class areas. If I understand correctly the cabins can differ greatly from ship to ship. It appears we are interested in Ambon to Banda and/or return with the KM Tidar (supposedly better than the KM Kelimutu) and Ambon to Ternate on the KM Lambelu. We are both in our 60s and my partner (68) can be somewhat fussy about conditions. We have both traveled in overnight cabin class on trains in India, Thailand and Vietnam and we have both been to Indonesia more than once. However, the Pelni ferry experience will be new to us and I need to get an idea of what the cabin is like to convince him we can handle it.
Apr 4, 2013 6:17 PM
1I do not have any pictures.
I travelled first class from Jakarta to Makassaar via Surabaya on a Pelni ship.
I had a two berth cabin with two bunk beds and a bathroom. The cabin was small and clean. There was a daily laundry service - cheap and quick. I ate in the First Class Dining Room. The food was good and Indonesian.
There were no deck chairs, swimming pools or entertainment. There were benches on the decks.
The only thing that I did not like about the cabin was the loudspeaker in the cabin, that relayed instructions to the passengers in Indonesian. I could not turn it off.
Apr 4, 2013 11:04 PM
2Hi Thrive...we travelled on the Tidar last July in first class cabins. From what I understood, the 2nd class have 4 beds in each and you cannot have mixed gender in them. We are a family of 4 and wanted one 2nd class cabin but that was against the rules. We would have had to split 2x2 and share, with potentially 4 others in our two cabins. Not so good for young children.
The first class cabins were okay, a little worn, the ship is very old. But they had everything you'd want...2 beds, a table in between, window, big cupboard, desk and chair, tv above the desk and a bathroom. Be careful not to let the water flood out of the shower or else you'll end up with sodden carpet in your cabin, and it stinks. This seems to be a problem as all along the hall in first and second class the carpet floor was wet and they put down large cardboard pieces to soak it up. Not the best but then again it's not a cruise ship!
The meals were so so... As I remember...white rice as much as you want, a watery cabbage carrot concoction, a scrap of chicken with a thick yellow curry paste around it and a piece of fresh fruit. All stone cold. Bring your own fresh food..we did and were glad to have done so. There is a canteen up the top and at least one other window where you can buy snacks.
We travelled from Balikpapan to Surabaya via Makassar. Around two days. We enjoyed it overall. I don't know how the Tidar compares to the other ships as it's the only one we've taken. I have a feeling it may be older and the others are better.
Try it, it's an interesting way to travel and all the other passengers friendly of course.
Apr 5, 2013 10:17 AM
3Thanks for the information, descriptions and tips GaryD and JenniferJ. Do the 1st Class cabins have toilets as well as shower or are the toilets down the hall?
When we looked at our potential itinerary, there were so many flights involved that it would have cost us $750 USD each. So the ferry seems to be the only way to lessen the blow to our budget.
Unfortunately we are also finding that in many cases the ferry cost for 1st Class is only a few dollars less than a flight.
I noticed on the KM Lambelu (Ambon to Ternate) in First class there are 2 types (1A and1B). Does anyone know the difference?
Now for the difficult task of trying to make our itinerary fit the ship schedule. Already it looks like we have some problems and the result will be cutting out some of the hoped for destinations. But, such is the way of travel plans.
Apr 5, 2013 4:26 PM
Apr 6, 2013 10:17 AM
Apr 6, 2013 4:40 PM
Apr 7, 2013 9:28 AM
Apr 10, 2013 12:35 AM
Apr 10, 2013 2:44 AM
9Pelni ships are for Indonesian people to travel. It does not cater for foreigners. Indonesians are not troubled by cockroaches and mosque calls. They are all a part of our daily life. if you want to travel as an Indonesian or you like to feel like a lokal, yes travel by Pelni. If not, you should try something else, more clean and comfortable and pay more for them. Why travel on Air Asia if you want Singapore Airlines standard Mr.johnney555?
Apr 11, 2013 11:35 PM
10SG, I assume you are referring to me. I was only trying to fill the specks of OP and I personally take Pelni deck every second week or so. Pelni first class is way overpriced compared to flying and Pelni had better do something about it or go broke.
On topic, the trip to Banda usually works out afternoon to evening only and is about 8 hours. Last minute flights to Ternate can be had for as little as 50 bucks.
Apr 12, 2013 12:09 AM
11Mr.johnney, I am also warning Ms.Thrive about the condition of Pelni. It is a very cheap way of travel for a reason. The reason is it is specifically for locals, cockroaches and mosque calls and warts and all. It is not catered for foreigners looking for no cockroaches, no mosque calls and hygienic condition. If Ms.Thrive is looking for something of a western type of ship travel, she is better off looking for something else or somewhere else. It is not Singapore Airlines type of ship travel. The price is more like Air Asia type and the conditions and services reflect this. Dont you agree Mr.johnney? Indonesians are used to cockroaches and mosque calls everyday of our lives. It is nothing new that we travel with these types of condition on the Pelni ships.
Apr 12, 2013 10:28 AM
12Just as a note: I am a Mr. Thrive. We have been to Indonesia several times already and understand that Pelni does nor offer western cruise style and the reasons why. Travel in Central America and Asia has gotten us used to cock roaches and early morning mosque calls. Yes my partner, also a Mr. BTW, is a little fussy. We are both in our mid-to-late 60s and after years of super-budget travel in the 1970s-90s, we can afford and want to travel in middle level style now, well, lower middle-level to be more exact. But, in terms of Pelni travel, we are only hoping for private toilet/shower and two-bed cabin. Lying/sitting on a mat or stuffed into a slung-cloth or plastic deck chair in economy class for 9-24 hours is devastating to our spines.
That aside and as Johnney points out, we are finding that Pelni 1st Class is often so close to the cost of a flight that it is hardly worth it. Of all the segments in our original itinerary only one had a Pelni price that was significantly lower than a flight. So now we are looking at a serious itinerary change to keep costs down.
Thanks GaryD, JenniferJ, Johnney, Laszlo and SambalGoreng for all the information.
Apr 12, 2013 9:29 PM
Apr 12, 2013 11:03 PM
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