Air travel is the quickest and most convenient way of getting around Indonesia, and sometimes the only way to reach certain parts of the archipelago. There is an ever-changing number of domestic airlines, and flights are generally inexpensive. Bear in mind that flights to remote destinations are prone to cancellation, as well as delays, especially in periods of bad weather.
Getting reliable information on Indonesian domestic flights can be a challenge – a few airlines on minor routes don't show up on travel websites, although www.traveloka.com and www.skyscanner.com are fairly complete. You can also check with local airline offices and travel agents; local hotel and tour operators are often the best sources of info.
Almost a dozen major airlines fly domestically.
Batik Air (www.batikair.com) Full-service subsidiary of Lion Air.
Citilink (www.citilink.co.id) Budget subsidiary to Garuda Indonesia that links major cities.
Dimonim Air (www.dimonimair.com) Flights in Papua.
Garuda Indonesia (www.garuda-indonesia.com) Serves major destinations across the archipelago. Tickets are easily bought online.
Indonesia AirAsia (www.airasia.com) Fast-growing budget carrier that is a subsidiary of its Malaysian-based parent.
Lion Air/Wings Air (www.lionair.co.id) Fast-growing Indonesian budget carrier (Wings Air operates prop planes to small destinations) with myriad flights.
Sriwijaya Air/NAM Air (www.sriwijayaair.co.id) Services across Indonesia.
Susi Air (www.susiair.com) Routes across Indonesia.
Transnusa (www.transnusa.co.id) Good for flights within Nusa Tenggara and for flights from Denpasar to places like Labuan Bajo.
The larger Indonesian-based carriers have websites listing fares; however, it can be difficult to purchase tickets over the internet using non-Indonesian credit cards. Consider the following methods.
Travel Agencies A good way to buy domestic tickets once you're in Indonesia. This is often the best way to get the lowest fares.
Travel websites Many general sites accept international cards.
Friends Get an Indonesian friend or guesthouse owner to buy you a ticket using their credit card, then pay them back.
Airport Some airlines will sell you a ticket at the airport, although travel agents and airline city offices are more reliable.
Large international booking websites may only show Garuda Indonesia flights and then only offer very expensive airfares. Try the following to purchase tickets online.
Airline Websites Some carriers, notably Garuda Indonesia and Indonesia AirAsia, have websites that accept foreign credit cards. Lion Air is a notable exception.
www.nusatrip.com Most foreign cards work; OK for booking domestic flights.
www.skyscanner.com Accepts foreign cards but doesn't show all airlines.
www.tiket.com Not all foreign cards work but shows most domestic airlines.
www.traveloka.com Lists many domestic airlines, although foreign cards don't always work. A good source for schedule info.
Domestic departure-tax fees are now included in ticket prices.