We had some guests do a day trip to Gili Air today. Despsite the warnings I had given them and I had explained the cost for the public boat is Rp8,000 and the charter Rp155,000 they ended up paying Rp700,000 for a charter. They had difficulty finding the ticket office as it seems it is now in the new building and there are no signs even in Indonesian. They guys that sold them the charter were very aggressive and insisted they were the official government ticket office, showing what they said were government stamps etc. Intimidated and with limited time they ended up paying it. Once on Gili Air they could see the correct prices.
These guests loved Gili Air and plan to go back to stay in September - but they will be travelling by fast boat from Bali to avoid the dramas they went through today.
Don't these guys realise that they are driving tourists to bypass Bangsal and losing more business? These guests also plan on making a review and posting photos of the two guys in question!