Best Time To Visit Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars
Are you wondering what is the best time to visit Jakarta? There are several factors to consider before planning your trip:

- Weather in Jakarta: What are the best and worst seasons?
- When are public holidays in Jakarta? How do they affect the city?
- Is it OK to visit Jakarta during Ramadan?
- At what time of the year can you get the cheapest prices on flights and hotels?

If you don't have want to read the whole article, here is a short answer: The best time to visit Jakarta is during the "dry" seasons from May to October. Within this period, it is best to avoid Ramadan (in May in 2017, in April-May in 2018). To get the best prices on plane tickets and hotels, the months of April-May-October-November are the most interesting. Weekends are nicer as you have less traffic jams. It is also better if you want to party and the hotels are cheaper.

For more details, please read the long answer below:

Weather in Jakarta
Unlike in Europe, you will not experience huge weather variations in Jakarta. Average daily temperatures are usually between 29°C and 35°C (84°F and 95°F). It is hot, especially because of the humidity, but I've always found Singapore or Bangkok were much worse.

Temperatures get slightly cooler at night or very early in the morning, or after a massive rainfall.  It does not change a lot though: During the 12 years I lived in Jakarta, I have never worn a jacket or a sweater even once!

While the temperatures are rather stable all year long, there is a dry season and a wet season. From my observations, the worst of the wet season goes from mid-December to February. You can expect that there will be rain every day during these months. This is when all the recent major floods in Jakarta happened (2007, 2013, 2015). November, March and April can also be wet, but it is more random. 

The dry season in Jakarta is never completely dry. Even in August or July, you may have a few storms once in a while. Generally speaking though, you have less rain from May to October and this is the best time of the year to visit Jakarta.

Summary:
December, January, February: Avoid Jakarta if possible
November, March, April: You can visit Jakarta but it is likely that there will be showers from time to time.
May, June, July, August, September, October: Occasional showers, but overall a good time to travel to Jakarta

Public Holidays in Jakarta
Indonesians have approximately 12 days of public holidays + 12 more days of paid leave. In general, Muslims will use their holiday the week after the end of Ramadan, Christians will use them for Christmas, and Hindus will use them to celebrate Kuningan and Galungan (good to know if you are traveling to Bali).

Some public holiday dates are fixed such as New Year (January 1st), Christmas (December 25th) or Independence Day (August 17th). Others are changing  every year, for instance Idul Fitri, Chinese New Year, Good Friday, Waisak Day or Idul Adha. You can check the updated schedule easily by just typing on Google: "Public Holiday Indonesia".

In Jakarta, the consequence of public holidays are a massive exodus of population, especially during Lebaran (the week after Ramadan) and for Christmas/New Year.

As a traveler, it is a recommended time to visit Jakarta. It is more easy to get around in the city and you may feel the air is less polluted. Hotels and incoming flights are often cheaper also. The only problem is that some of the museums may be closed on public holidays.

Ramadan in Jakarta
Ramadan happens approximately every 11 months in Indonesia (and the rest of the Muslim world). In 2017, it will be in May and in 2018 in May-June. 

It is possible to visit Jakarta during that time. You are allowed to eat during the day, even in public, and all shops and museums are normally open. If you are not familiar with the city, you might not notice the change.

Still, unless you are particularly interested with the religious aspect of Indonesia, I think it is best to come at another time. There is clearly less energy around and people are more tired. Personally, I'm also embarrassed to eat outside by myself. Nightclubs and bars become very quiet and you may need to hide if you want a beer.

Another issue with ramadan is that you may get stuck in the "mudik" migration. Just before Idul Fitri, the last day of fasting, millions of Indonesians go back to their villages so the traffic on the roads is terrible. In 2016, there was a 3 days traffic jam in which 12 people died. There is also a surge in price for train and plane tickets. Things get back to normal around 10 days after the end of ramadan.

When To Travel Cheap to Jakarta
The biggest fluctuations for Jakarta hotels is caused by business travelers who generally come from Monday to Friday. For this reason, you will normally get a lower price if you stay in Jakarta on the weekend. You may not get a discount on flight tickets though as many Jakartans come back home during that time. If possible, you should try to arrive on Friday morning and leave on Monday afternoon to avoid the biggest rush.

Holidays in your home country may also affect the price of your plane ticket. If you are European, flights to Asia are always more expensive during Christmas and summer. Conversely, March, April, May, October and November are the cheapest months to travel.

Finally, as I mentioned above, hotel prices are lower in Jakarta when there is a local public holiday because the population tends to leave the city.

Do you need more help about your travel plans to Jakarta? You can leave your question in the comment form below and I'll do my best to answer you. For more information you may also read my article: Where to Stay in Jakarta? Best Areas for Tourists and Best Things To Do in Jakarta.

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