Lombok Indonesia, a Sister Island of Bali
Lombok basically has two seasons - wet and dry. The wet season generally occurs from November through to February, with heavy monsoon rainfall and cloud. During this time it can be quite humid but still hot. The dry season from March to October can still experience rain but is generally fine, clear and hot with average temperatures around 28"C. Around August and September it can also be quite breezy. The best months for good surf are June, July and August.
The population of Lombok is madeup largely of Sasaks of Malayan origin, though there are Chinese in this the populated area around Mataram, some Balinese in the west, and some Sumbawanese in the east.Agriculture is far and away the dominating business, with paddy rice, soybeans, tubers, peanuts (groundnuts), tobacco, coconuts, and vegetables the chief crops.The central lowland strip of the island, between the two elevated coastal areas, is the centre of settlement and rice cultivation. Mataram, the provincial capital, is the largest city.The chief port is Lembar, on the western coast.
Tipping is relatively fresh in Lombok. All large hotels and eating houses will automatically add a service charge of between five & ten percent to your bill which is quite sufficient. Smaller restaurants generally do not add up anything extra but considering that the waiter's wage may well be less than $1.00 a day - a tip of 5 - 10 percent is very much appreciated.
There are no Visas required for Australian passport holders to move into Indonesia, however your passport must have a minimum of six months validity from the date of entrance into Republic of Indonesia. For passengers of other nationalities its best to check your visa requirements from the nearest Indonesian consulate.
The unit of currency throughout Indonesia is the Rupiah (Rp). Currently the exchange rate is approximately Rp.9.000 for $1 American and Rp 8.900 for $1 Australian dollar on the island of Lombok. Higher rates are available in Bali. However as the Rupiah has still not stabilized and rates may vary greatly.
The national language is Bahasa Indonesia and various dialects are also spoken throughout Indonesia. English is taught as a second language in all schools. English is widely spoken in most tourist areas and generally wherever you travel no matter how remote, someone can be found who speaks English. There is usually no shortage of locals wanting to try out their English skills.
Indonesians works mostly in the morning to avoid heat of the day. If you intended to go to a government office, arrive between 08 AM and 11:30 AM. These timings also apply to banks and private businesses.