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January 2016 Indonesia Check-In at Belitung (Tanjung Pandan)

By SV Migration — last modified Feb 22, 2016 12:50 PM

Published: 2016-02-17 00:00:00
Countries: Indonesia

Our early 2016 plans centered around being in Indonesia for the total solar eclipse on 9th March. As we were in Sarawak (Malaysian Borneo), Belitung made a good destination because it wasn’t too far and was directly in the path of totality.

Advance Preparations

We’d heard about the CAIT rule changes and that they also may not have been implemented yet. In November 2015, we contacted agent Dr. Aji Sularso and he confirmed that we would need a CAIT, so we contracted him to complete it for us. He did tell us he was unable to handle our Customs Temporary Import Documentation (PIB) and Letter of Guarantee if we were clearing in to Indonesia in Belitung. He said we should be able to do it ourselves.

Before checking out of Kuching, we went to the Indonesia Consulate to get our 60-day tourist visa using a sponsor letter from Dr. Sularso and a preliminary (not fully stamped) copy of our CAIT.

We did not send advance notice of our arrival to Belitung.

Arrival in Indonesia

We arrived on January17th – 10 days after departing Kuching.

We did not want to bring the boat into the river at Tanjung Pandan, so we anchored at Tanjung Kelayang on the NW corner (a very beautiful spot). We did not fly a Q flag and wait for someone to show up, but instead hired a car and driver for a day (at a very reasonable rate of 300,000 RP) and drove into town.

Every office we visited – Immigration, Customs, Port Captain – asked to see our CAIT. So, as of mid-January 2016, it is still required.

We went to the offices in the wrong order: Immigration, Customs, Port Captain. But it worked out in the end. Every official was friendly, polite, and exceedingly helpful.

IMMIGRATION documents required:

  • Passports
  • Filled out Departure Card for each person (which they provided)
  • 1 copy of CAIT
  • 4 Crew Lists (they kept one and returned the others stamped)

Note that after they stamp your passports you will be asked to go to the shop next door to have copies made of each passport’s front page and stamped visa page. The cost is minimal, but you need to have some money.

CUSTOMS:

We had no idea what to do at Customs, but they kindly walked us through the process – even giving us a copy of a guarantor letter (in Bahasa) that we then typed into our computer, filling in the blanks. After printing it out, we had to get a 6,000 RP tax stamp (called a meterai) on the letter before returning it. These stamps are easy to get at various shops or at the post office. We got ours in town at the photo shop with the KONICA sign.

CUSTOMS documents required:

  • 1 copy of CAIT
  • 1 copy of each Passport
  • 1 copy Ship’s Papers
  • 1 copy Crew List
  • 1 copy List of Ship’s Equipment
  • Guarantor Letter (w/ 6,000RP Meterai)
  • Photos of boat (various angles of exterior plus interior)

We were unprepared because we did not know photos were required. However, since we had our computer with us, the Customs officials were kind enough to let us copy some photos onto a flashdrive and then they copied them to their computer. It would be easier to be prepared with a few photos printed out.

PORT AUTHORITY & QUARANTINE

We did not go to Quarantine as they were closed. The Port Authority’s office said they would wait to do our paperwork until we checked out as we were going to stay for nearly 8 weeks and we should visit Quarantine at that time. They did get our paperwork ready and gave it to us to bring back a few days before our departure.

PORT AUTHORITY documents required:

  • 2 copies Crew List stamped by Immigration
  • Inward Manifest (5 pages provided by Customs)
  • 1 copy of each Passport
  • 1 copy Ship’s Papers
  • 1 copy CAIT
  • Last Port Clearance

Clearing in at Belitung was a fun experience. It took a total of 4 hours but that was because it spanned lunchtime. Bring extra copies of all documents. Have a boat stamp and stamp everything (even passport copies) in front of the officials. It really helps. We have a boat stamp with name and documentation number, plus a Captain/Master stamp with a signature line. We used both liberally.

This was our experience at Belitung. Of course, it may differ at other ports. Besides, it will change soon!

Bruce Balan & Alene D. Rice
s/v Migration
Belitung, Indonesia
February 2016

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