In response to the sizeable number of yachts that have been left stranded in Asia-Pacific waters due to cyclones and restrictions on sailing in various locations in the region due to Covid-19, the Indonesian government has opened up the country to all foreign-flagged yachts with the entry point being at Marina Del Ray in Lombok.
To offer a solution for some of these yachts, Bapak Jihoni Ginting, the Director General Immigration, in cooperation with the Ministry of Law Department has introduced a new decree (No IMI-1555.GR.01.01) dated October 19, 2020, making known that his department will process online visas for nautical tourism visitors such as foreign-flagged yachts and other vessels arriving in the country.
In a statement the Indonesian government indicted that it wanted to be known as a safe and friendly world marine destination for all international yachts. While this action has been taken late in the season, there is still time for yachts to make use of this option.
“This is great news for yachts stranded in the Pacific Ocean with the onset of the cyclone season fast approaching and no option for yachts caught in Thailand, Malaysia and other parts of Australasia,” said Captain Raymond La Fontaine. “Every year millions of dollars of damage is done due to cyclones in Northern Australia and with New Zealand thousands of miles south and closed to yachts.”
“Indonesia is the most logical, safe and economical alternative, as the world’s largest archipelago is outside the cyclone and typhoon zones of the world. Marina Del Ray was built for this purpose and yachts should sail direct to Port Gili Gede Lombok. Provisioning can be done along the way in Port Moresby, breaking up the route into two 1,200Nm legs approximately. There is plenty of safe overnight anchorage once you enter Indonesia.”
The visa process is simple and done online so there is no need to go to an Indonesian Embassy because the government understands that it can be difficult for yachts on ocean voyages to do so. Marina del Ray Lombok explained that the 30-day visa is available on arrival. However, it suggested, information should be sent in advance to email@example.com. This will allow for the arranging of a 60-day tourism visa for visiting yachts. The marina staff point out that visiting yachts will be required to sign a quarantine declaration acknowledging that in the unlikely event of diseases the captain will be responsible for all costs.
Marina del Ray recommends that a PCR test be obtained at the previous port of call, if possible. However, this is not mandatory as Marina Del Ray will arrange the test at Port Gili Gede paid for by the yacht. It is advised to keep a good log of your route proving 14 days at sea. Test results will take up to five days.
First published online on International Boat Industry.