Unlike some other countries, getting connected to internet on your mobile devices for short term tourists like me can be pretty challenging. Firstly, there is limited documentation on how to establish mobile data services using an Indonesia prepaid card. For my latest trip, I have managed to be data connected using Telkomsel pre-paid data card.
Here is a quick guide:
1. Buy a Telkomsel IDR5000 valued sim card. This can purchased from any little shop including shops that rent motorbikes, independent convenience stores (not Circle K though), mobile shops etc.
2. The sim cards can be pre-activated by the sim card seller. The sim card is valid for only a limited period.
3. A Simpati 5000 sim card should cost IDR25,000 and includes IDR5000 credit.Charges for local SMS costs IDR100 and overseas SMS costs IDR600. Receiving overseas calls is FREE.
4. If you need more than IDR5000 credit, you can ask the shop owner to help you top up the sim card. It is usual for the store owner to charge some fee above the regular prepaid card price – between IDR2000-5000.
5. Insert the sim card into your own cell phone. You should be on Telkomsel network.
6. Dial *888# <dial/send/call> to check your remaining credit before you leave the shop, to ensure that the seller has topped up as promised.
7. Go to your SMS inbox and create a new message. Text “3G” (without quotes) to 3636 to enable 3G. You will get a confirmation message in Bahasa Indonesia, basically saying that 3G has been enabled. You should now see the 3G logo on your phone.
8. Text “flash on 10K” (without quotes) to 3636 to enable data and purchase a 15MB data block for IDR10,000.
There are larger data blocks (e.g. 125MB data block for IDR50,000), keep typing “flash on XXK” to check the various sizes. Each time, you will receive a confirmation SMS in Bahasa Indonesia, translated- “You’ll buy the 15MB package for RP.10000 (valid for 7 days). Type FLASH<space>YA to continue. Wait for a confirmation SMS.”
9. Respond “flash ya” (without quotes) to confirm your purchase.
You will get a confirmation SMS in Bahasa IndonesiaType FLASH<space>INFO send to 3636 for the status of your package.”
10.To setup on other devices (for iPhone it is automatic) –
Profile Name: Telkomsel Internet
Dial Up: * 99 #
Enjoy your trip!
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