I and my family are now in Jakarta, Indonesia for a (short?) two-week holiday. We left Singapore yesterday afternoon, taking Lion Air flight to Jakarta. It took more than 40 minutes for us to queue for checking-in at Singapore's Changi airport. The flight was full, there were so many passengers queuing for checking-in and yet, there were only 4 check-in counters available. It also caused around 20 minutes of delay of the flight since it took some time for all passengers to eventually checked in to the flight, despite an additional one (yes, only one, sigh) counter being set up.
We arrived at Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport at around 4pm. It turned out that we were on the same flight as Yudi (one of my friends from the Indo-Sing community, and I initially had mistaken him as Pieter, another friend from the same community, gosh!) and Audi (one of my band-mates) with his wife Erina and son Rifa. My parents picked us up at the airport and we went straight to Plasa Semanggi for late lunch/early dinner. Lion Air is a budget airline and they don't serve any snacks or meal on board. We also didn't have the chance to have our lunch at Changi airport prior to boarding the plane due to the check-in's long queue taking up much of our "precious" time at the airport. Had a Bakmi Gang Kelinci's chicken noodle at the food court in Plasa Semanggi, which is located on the 3A floor of the shopping mall.
I also went to Indosat's IM2 Broadband Centre located on the first floor of Plasa Semanggi, for me to buy the starter pack of IM2 Broom, for our Internet connection during our stay in Indonesia. The starter pack costs IDR 150,000, and it provides unlimited HSDPA/3.5G-based Internet connection for a month. Subsequent months will even cost less, only IDR 100,000/month. Quite worth value for money, especially since now we have mobile phones which have HSDPA capabilities so we don't need to invest for additional HSDPA modem, which can be quite costly.
I am currently using my daughter's Nokia 6120 classic phone as a HSDPA modem using the PC Suite for me to enjoy the Internet connection using my laptop. Since I'm taking the unlimited package, the maximum bandwidth speed I should get is only up to 256 KBps for the first 2 GB of data transfer, after which the bandwidth will be capped at 64 Kbps, unlimited until it expires in one month. However, seems that I could get up to 460.8 Kbps of connection last night when I tried to connect. :) Connection is good for browsing purposes, accessing international sites sometimes can be a bit slow, but I believe this is more to infrastructure issue on the ISP's connection to the global Internet rather than issue on the HSDPA connection itself. Accessing local Indonesian sites is very fast.
Unfortunately, IM2 Broom only provides data connection without any voice capability, while I also need a local Indonesian number for normal voice calls, to save the roaming charges. I might be getting a Telkomsel's Simpati line today, so that I can also use its Telkomsel Flash feature for ad-hoc Internet connections for my phone. I won't be using my SingTel line for HSDPA connection here in Indonesia, the data roaming charges are very expensive.
Other than Jakarta, I'll also be visiting my hometown Bandung (of course) and Garut (Cipanas, to be exact) for a short holiday, before going to Tasikmalaya to celebrate Hari Raya Idul Adha (Hari Raya Haji) with my family and relatives there.