Business Aviation Planning Tips: Bali, Indonesia for APEC Leader’s Week
APEC Leader’s Week and CEO Summit 2013 is hosted by Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and takes place October 5-8 on the island of Bali, Indonesia. In anticipation of increased general aviation traffic, the airport will have in effect restrictive Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs). For most operators, this will mean a drop-and-go at Denpasar (WADD), with the aircraft repositioned for overnight parking. It is highly recommended to begin setting up landing permits, aircraft parking, hotel accommodations and local transport without delay.
The following is an overview of what you need to know:
1. WADD is primary airport for this event
WADD is a 24-hour Airport of Entry (AOE); however, there will be periodic airport closures during APEC Leader’s Week. No overnight parking will be available October 4-10, and ground turnarounds are limited to 45 and 90 minutes for domestic and international flights, respectively. Airport closures will be in effect – for all except APEC support flights – October 6, 0200-1200Z; October 8, 0500-1200Z; and October 8, 2300Z, to October 9, 0600Z. All airport closures are notated in the NOTAMs for this airport. At this time, no airport slots or Prior Permissions Required (PPRs) are needed for travel into and out of this location. Note that most available alternate airports for this event are between 164 and 515 nautical miles (NM) from WADD.
2. Security considerations for WADD
There will be heightened airport security in place during this event. While WADD maintains 24-hour security, operators are permitted to arrange additional airside security. Passengers, crew and baggage must pass through two security checks when entering the departure terminal and prior to boarding the aircraft. All airport staff are required to wear uniforms and badges. Note that there are no cameras at WADD to monitor aircraft parking areas. We recommend you request a security briefing package from your 3rd-party provider in advance.
3. Indonesian landing permits are needed
Landing permits are required for all private non-revenue and charter (non-scheduled commercial) operations to Indonesia. To arrange a landing permit, seven business days’ notice is recommended, as three different departments are involved in approving permits – the Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of Security and Defense and Civil Aviation (DGAC). Approvals must be obtained by the first two entities before the landing permit request is submitted to DGAC. Short-notice landing permits may be possible with a minimum of four business days’ lead time, but that is on a case-by-case basis and is at discretion of the Department of Defense and DGAC. Please note that government offices do not process landing permits during holidays or weekends (Saturday-Sunday), so it’s best to request Indonesian landing permits in advance.
4. Landing permit documentation requirements
No specific documents are needed for Indonesian landing permits. All permit applications should include crew/passenger information, purpose of flight and a local business contact.
5. Be aware of permit validity and permit revision policies
Indonesian landing permits are valid for the schedule given plus seven days. If there’s a revision to the date/time within the seven-day validity, only a notification is required. Any changes to the schedule (outside of the validity period) or airports of operation (including origin and final destination from/to Indonesia), will require a new approval.
6. Customs, Immigration and Quarantine clearance considerations
Normal Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) clearance takes place within the main terminal at WADD. There’s no general aviation terminal at this airport. Onboard CIQ clearance is possible with prior arrangement for diplomatic flights and attendees at presidential or VVIP levels.
7. CIQ documentation requirements
Complete passenger information must be provided to customs. All passports must have at least six months’ remaining validity at time of arrival. This policy is strictly enforced. All passengers must complete immigration and customs declaration forms upon arrival as well. Visas are required for both passengers and crew and can be obtained on arrival. Maximum stay with a visa on arrival is 30 days.
8. Available alternates to WADD
Several alternate airports are available for repositioning – including Surabaya (WARR), Balikpapan (WALL), Jakarta Halim (WIHH) and Sultan Hasanuddin Intl (WAAA). As many aircraft will be repositioning to these alternates, it’s best to confirm aircraft parking as early as possible. WARR is the closest practical parking alternate. Note that WAAA mandates a PPR in order to make the airfield an AOE. All alternate airports, including WARR and WIHH, offer full aircraft support services, but always check in advance to ensure services are available. Larger airport locations have multiple 4- and 5-star hotel availability, including major international chains.
9. Alternate airport considerations
At WADD, and all available alternates, CIQ clearance is via the main terminal, unless special VVIP clearance has been arranged in advance. Aviation fuel is available at these locations, but 24 hours’ notification is required.
10. Cabotage restrictions to consider within Indonesia
Note that Indonesian citizens may not travel outside the country onboard non-Indonesian registered aircraft unless they’ve travelled into the country aboard that aircraft.
11. Hotel considerations
There are numerous hotels, including 4- and 5-star international chains or boutiques, to choose from in the Nusa Dua and surrounding areas, but please note that hotels do tend to sell out during major events. There may also be sold-out situations at alternate airport locations. On a side note, please be aware that petty crime and pickpocket risks do exist in Bali and Indonesia. Resort areas typically have an augmented and adequate security presence, including guarded gate entrances with car inspection points.
12. Local transport considerations
Pre-paid transport (car with driver) is recommended for crew transport during this event period, and it’s best to specify English-speaking drivers. Public taxis may be a viable option for crew transport, but it’s best to have your ground handler or hotel make those arrangements. Avoid rental vehicles, unless you’re very familiar with the region. Also, always consider additional travel time to account for Bali’s frequent high traffic.
13. Practice cultural sensitivity
Indonesia is primarily a Muslim country. The island of Bali is an exception, with 83.5% of the population adhering to Balinese Hinduism. Bali is a popular tourist and honeymoon destination, and the locals here are used to foreign travelers in the main resort and shopping areas. In rural areas of Indonesia, prayers usually take place five times a day and are sometimes broadcast on loudspeakers in the streets. Prayer traditions are not as obvious in tourist areas. Indonesia, in general, is conservative, so it’s advisable to dress and act modestly to avoid any unwanted attention.
If you’re planning to attend APEC Leader’s Week in Bali, it is best to begin working on landing permits and hotel accommodations without delay. Please be sure to take into consideration closure times (referenced in NOTAMs), aircraft parking restrictions at WADD and how that may impact your operation. Also take note that although October is a "dry season," the occasional afternoon rainstorms are expected, so be prepared.
If you have any questions about this article or if you would like assistance in planning a business aviation trip to Indonesia, contact me at email@example.com.