Frequently Asked Questions
Here is a list of questions which have often been asked of the Maluku Divers Reservation team over the course of the years operating the resort;
Will anyone meet me at the airport?
Maluku Divers can assist with all necessary domestic vehicle transfers to and from hotels close to Denpasar airport. When arranged in advance, Maluku Divers can have a driver waiting to meet any diver from their international flight, ready to transfer them direct to the hotel. For a small additional fee of $40 per person, Maluku Divers can arrange a VIP treatment service on arrival at the International airport of Bali. This meet and greet service involves assistance from representatives at the airport, taking care of the diver’s Visa on Arrival, without any long queues.
What money should I bring?
Indonesia has ATM machines in all major cities, Ambon is no exception and there are several machines at the domestic airport close to the resort. If divers want to bring currency it is recommended to either bring Indonesian Rupiah or US$ and Euro currency which can be accepted at the resort. If divers wish to exchange foreign currency for Rupiah, it is recommended that currency exchange is conducted in Bali or in Jakarta, as in more remote locations the exchange rate is generally less favourable. Divers bringing USD are advised to bring high value bank notes – $100 – which will give a better exchange rate. It is important not to bring USD notes older than 2003. Traveller’s cheques are NOT accepted at Maluku Divers.
What airport taxes must I pay?
Visitors to Indonesia will need $35 USD during the Visa on Arrival process at the immigration department in whichever International Airport they enter Indonesia. When leaving Indonesia an airport tax of 200,000 Rp will be requested in cash, this must be exact local currency.
At the Resort
Is there Wifi at the resort?
Maluku Divers does have an internet connection and Wifi in the restaurant and lounge areas of the resort. The signal is, however, a little unreliable and isn’t always running at fullstrength and sometimes it disconnects completely. Usually in the early morning, the signal is sufficient to check emails and websites before heading out for a day of diving, but it’s rarely strong enough to upload image files. Patience is certainly required.
Can I drink the water?
It is not advisable to drink the tap water in Ambon or any hotel in Indonesia. The fresh water is sourced from local wells. The resort housekeeping team will provide an ample supply of bottled aqua drinking water and recommend that divers drink at least two litres of water a day to prevent dehydration. In order to minimise the resort’s plastic use, divers are encouraged to refill these bottles from water container in the restaurant.
Is Malaria a problem?
Malaria does exist in Ambon, however Ambon does not have what would be described as a problem with the disease. None of the Maluku Divers crew have suffered Malaria since we opened in 2004. From experience over several years in many areas of Indonesia, Malaria is more confined to the urban areas of a region, so the village setting is not a problem area. The resort offers repellent and coils for guests and fogs the property if mosquitoes become too prevalent. It is advises that divers are aware of peak periods of activity, mainly at dusk, and use adequate protection at this time. A strong repellent with DEET is generally sufficient.
Obviously there is no guarantee, and as with Bali, Sulawesi, Java or any other area in Indonesia there is a small risk of contracting this, or another mosquito borne disease. If pushed for a binding comment, Maluku Divers would recommend discussing the situation with your doctor and taking their advice.
What presents can I bring for local villagers?
Maluku Divers is located about 100 metres from a local school, which is often visited to meet the kids who will gladly practise their English. Children love books, crayons and pencils. Try to limit plastic packaging since Ambon, like many parts of Indonesia, does not have proper waste management. Another option is travel with some old clothes; give them away to the locals during village visits, for the return journey, the empty space can be stocked up with souvenirs of Indonesia thus solving any luggage space problems!
Are there clothing issues to consider?
In the tropics; temperatures vary between 22 and 38 degrees Celsius. Sometimes it gets a little chilly in the evening. It can be nice to have a sweater to put on after a long night dive.
What is included in the price?
In the standard package, the price will include shared accommodation, three meals each day as well as tea, coffee and drinking water. On the dive side, the package includes tanks and weights.
What is not included in the price?
Visa On Arrival $35 per person. Alcoholic drinks. Souvenirs. Gratuities for the crew. Equipment rental. Domestic Airport taxes (Rp30,000 per person) Airport tax when leaving Indonesia (Rp200,000 per person).
How do I pay for extras at the resort?
US$, Euro or Rupiah Currency can be used to settle for nitrox fills, additional dives, drinks and souvenirs at the resort. Currency in bad condition is often rejected by the Indonesian banks, or subject to lower rates of exchange. This is particularly so with US$, if divers plan to bring quantities of these notes, it is requested they are dated after the year 2003, or more preferably they would be crispy clean US$ 100 bills.
Payment can also be settled with Visa or Mastercard, there is a 3% fee for Mastercard and 3.5% for AMEX. The resort accounting team will take copies of the diver’s credit card, passport, and ask the diver to sign a transaction slip and also an authorization letter to complete the transaction. These steps minimize the possibilities for the fraudulent use of credit cards in Indonesia.
How do I tip the crew?
Gratuities can be made with both currency or credit card and are gratefully received by the resort team. Tips are shared equally amongst every member of the resort team.
Dive Related Questions
What thickness wetsuit will I need?
Water temperature in Ambon waters can be anywhere between 25 and 30 degrees Celsius, but usually the water temperatures are a pleasant 27 – 29 degrees. This may sound warm and some divers do choose to wear a rashguard or a shorty rather than full wetsuit protection. However long dives can drop a diver’s body core temperature so depending on a diver’s ability to resist cold water Maluku Divers usually recommend a 3mm wetsuit.
Shall I bring a dive hood?
In Ambon temperatures rarely get cold enough that hoods are required, however it depends on the individual divers tolerance to cold.
Is there NITROX at Maluku Divers?
Yes, there is nitrox at the resort, usually fills are 32%. Maluku Divers operates a blended nitrox system at the resort and individual tank fills are $8. Divers are encouraged to follow safety standards and analyze each tank prior to diving.