Mobile Reception and Wi-Fi in Indonesia

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Mobile Reception and Wi-Fi in Indonesia


Indonesia is well developed in terms of communication networks. The most covered area of networks is Jakarta and Bali, due to their being the busiest cities and most visited by tourist from outside Indonesia. Free Wi-Fi also provided in some cafes or restaurants and most international airports. Hotels in Indonesia are rather generous with Wi-Fi as most rooms provide complimentary Internet access. In star-rated hotels, the connection is of a decent speed – fast enough compared to the local average.

You can also find hotspot in big cities, but it often involves quite a time consuming registration process. However, in most rural areas such as Labuan Bajo and Sumba, the coverage gets thinner and only a few provider still has strong signal.


What mobile provider has the widest coverage in Indonesia?

The strongest provider that covers most of Indonesia’s area is Telkomsel. It can reach places like Derawan Island, East Kalimantan, Flores, Sumba, and Papua. Other networks hardly receive any signal in those areas, except for Telkomsel.

It has proofed to be the best mobile network provider, whether by locals or tourists. The price itself is not too high. But that doesn’t mean the other provider is bad or way far different than Telkomsel, it’s just they don’t cover much areas as Telkomsel does.

Besides Telkomsel, there are alternative providers you can buy, such as XL and Tri (can be recognized as the logo “3”). For XL, it is cheaper than Telkomsel, and easier to top up your credit via its apps, but sometimes the 4G network is not as strong as Telkomsel. Tri on the other hand, is the weakest of them, but has a way lot cheaper price, worth to try if you just want to make a few phone calls.

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How to acquire pre-paid sim card?

You can acquire sim cards at airports or convenience store, where some operator have shops. You can also find it at street-side vendors that sell sim cards at cheap price, from as low as $2-3. Most seller can help you setting up the card and other technical process.

After you bought the sim card, you will get local phone number along with enough credit for a few minute phone call, and text messages. We require you buy the more advanced package, that has a starting price of IDR 50.000-IDR 60.000, because it include a month’s worth of mobile data and also more convenient to make phone calls.



Wi-Fi Coverage in Indonesia

If you don’t have the time to buy some mobile sim cards, there is always free Wi-Fi spots in Indonesia, you just need to go to a restaurant, hotel or cafe and ask for its free wifi login details. Internet connection is fairly easy to spot in tourist areas, as well as major cities. However, like abovementioned, most star-rated hotels and international airports provide it.

Places which located at the edges of Indonesia or too far from major cities kind of have hit and miss Wi-Fi connection. Sometimes when the weather is at its worst (storm, windy, or rain), the signal might get too weak to just simply browse.


Our Recommendations

So, for sim cards, we highly recommend that you buy Telkomsel, which covers more area and have the strongest signal throughout Indonesia.

This is Telkomsel card in which you can find at street shop, mall, or official vendor: Simpati (IDR 10.000,- without internet package). Of course, you will get default credit amount and your local number.

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But, if you want to get full potential of the cards, you should also buy the internet package at the place you bought them or via mobile activation.

See the Telkomsel monthly 4G package (30 days) as known as TAU Package below:
TAU Lite 10GB – IDR 60.000,-
TAU Medium 30GB – IDR 70.000,-
TAU Heavy 45GB – IDR 125.000,-
TAU Extreme 60GB – IDR 210.000,-


To activate the TAU Package, you can follow the steps as below:

  1. Insert your sim card to your android phone
  2. In your phone, call 4444 and register your local number
  3. After finish the registration, activate the package by dialing this UMB number *363*13#
  4. To check your quota, you can dial *888# or SMS with the following format: TAU (space) info to 3636

We hope that this help gives you insight about mobile reception in Indonesia : )