Flights to Jakarta land at the Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta International Airport located in Tangerang, Banten. It has three terminals. Domestic flights arrive at Terminal 1, International flights come in at Terminal 2, and low-cost carriers that offer cheap flights to Jakarta serve at Terminal 3.
Even if there are no information counters at the airport, tourists arriving on flights to Jakarta can get useful information at the Jakarta tourism website. The Jakarta Airport Hotel is conveniently accessible via the second level of the airport lobby.
Free shuttle busses run from one terminal to another, but they don't come regularly. It is better to ride a taxi if you are catching a flight.
Going around Jakarta by train is an experience, as the railway cars can be very crowded. Trains from key cities arrive during late afternoon or early evening. Air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned trains are available. Meals are also served on board.
There are numerous bus lines operating in Jakarta. Busses are recommended for travellers who know at least conversational Indonesian. The Transjakarta Busway is a rapid bus system.
Even if you know how to drive, for first-time tourists on Jakarta flights it is better to take a taxi than rent a car. Jakarta traffic is heavy, especially during rainy days. However, you should only ride in taxi cabs with running metres.
Complete the Jakarta experience by riding a bajaj. These are small orange scooters fitted with a passenger carriage at the back that can take you to your destination fast. Another interesting local transportation option is the ojek, or motorcycle taxi.
Visit the Presidential Palace for free at the weekend or visit Indonesia's National Museum, also located in Jakarta. Take time to go inside the historical structures such as the Gedung Proklamasi, which was the site where Indonesia gained their Independence, or the Lubang Buaya where the Indonesian Communist Party met its fate.
Museums and theatre also abound in Jakarta. Get a dose of Indonesian culture in Teman Mini Indonesia Indah, featuring all of the 30 provinces. Be mesmerized by the batik collections at the Textile Museum. Another must-see is the Wayang or the Traditional Indonesian Puppet Museum.
Jakarta has many shopping malls with high-end boutiques. With the money you saved on your cheap airfare to Jakarta, you can experience retail therapy at the Plaza Indonesia, Plaza Senavan, Grand Indonesian, Pondok Indah Mall, and many more. Bargain prices are available in wholesale shopping centers or at markets like the WTC, Pasar Baru, and at the Tanah Abang. Antique shops in Jakarta are also teeming with traditional handicrafts, batik, and pottery.
Sample the best Indonesian dishes such as the sop iga sapi, nasi ulam, kerok telor, and soto betawi in restaurants all over Jakarta. The sidewalks are also bustling with food carts selling seafood and other local treats.