My Business Trip to Batam

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July 7th 2010
Published: July 7th 2010
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A Typical Day

Part of my job involved travelling to & fro from Batam and exchange the latest news with our counterparts. Departing on the earliest 7.55am ferry from Harbourfront Terminal, it normally took an hour or so to reach the Batu Ampar Ferry Terminal where our office was located. After clearing the customs' formalities and paying the USD25 working visa (that's daylight robbery!), our company representative would be waiting for us at the arrivals to drive us to the office.

Visitors on vacation would never arrive at the Batu Ampar Ferry Terminal (aka HarbourBay) even though this is slowly changing. The ferry terminal have been upgraded and the nearby Harbour Bay Mall with anchor players like Carrefour is already opened for business. Instead, they would normally be shipped to the Waterfront City (Holiday Inn / Harris Resorts), Sekupang (Batam Spa Villa & the Massive Guan Yin Statute), Batam Centre (Batam Megamall where my favourite A&W Root Beer float could be found here) and Nongsapura Terminals (Batam View Resort) where all the actions are. Oh yes, the USD 25 visa on arrival would be waived if you are on vacation.

Meeting would commence at 8.30am sharp until lunchtime. Lunch would normally be served at 11am at the B House. Food is generally ok (very SFI) even though they brought back memories of my stint in SAF. Meeting would continue after lunch and we would wrap everything up by 3.30pm in the afternoon where we would dash to the ferry terminal for our ride back to Singapore.

Some of my mates would rush to the nearest convenience store and stock up on their usual keropoks. Oh yah, maybe someone would come back with yet another silly looking Ralph Lauren Polo T-shirt that is available exclusively in Batam.

For me, I longed to have some kakis where we could go for a round of pampering legitimate massage after a day's of work (its affordable too!) =)

Dollars & Sense

2-way ferry tickets: SGD 48
2-way transportation from home to Harbourfront: SGD 40
Visa on arrival: USD 25 or SGD 44 (depending on the exchange of the day & your luck)
Lunch: FOC
Total: SGD 132

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