Frequently Asked Questions

If you have never had the pleasure, allow us to put your mind at rest with these answers to the most frequently asked questions about dive liveaboards.

Do I need a visa for Indonesia?

Most countries now receive a free visa on arrival. You can check if you are eligible here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visa_policy_of_Indonesia

 

If you will stay longer than 30 days you can obtain visa on arrival for USD $35 which can then be extended for another 60 days.

Is my Passport valid for travel to Indonesia?

Make sure your passport is in good order, has minimum 2 empty pages, valid for at least 6 months and that you are able to enter Indonesia. Check with your local Indonesia Embassy if unsure.

At what time can I arrive and depart?

  • Bali Departures: Boarding time at Benoa Passenger Pier at Benoa Harbour Bali is between 13:00-15:00 hours for our 16:00 hour departure. Final cruise departure time is subject to guest arrival times. Please liaise with Mermaid Liveaboards if your flight times cannot fit this schedule. Transfers from/to the airport or hotels in the south are free of charge. From destinations in central and northern Bali, there is a small charge. Please refer to the price list.
  • Guests arriving before 12 noon on departure day will be transferred to Mermaid Liveaboards guest lounge at All 4 Diving Bali at Sanur Beach where you can leave your luggage in safety till boarding transfer at 14:00 hours. After meeting the friendly crew at All 4 Diving you can relax on the beach, enjoy a massage, and go sight-seeing or shopping till 14:00 hours when you will be transferred to the vessel.
  • Bali Transfer Times:
    12:30 – Nusa Dua, Ullawatu, Canggu, Kerobokan
    13:00 Jimbaran, Seminyak
    13:30 Kuta Beach, Legian
    14:00 Sanur Beach
    11:00 Tulamben
    12:00 Candi Desa, Padangbai, Ubud
    – The time is to be advised for other locations in Bali
    – If you are making your own way to the port – please let us know at least 2 weeks prior to the cruise. Boarding time for “own transport” guests is 13:00-14:00 hours, please.
  • Maumere Flores Transfer Times:
    We will meet all flights and bring you straight to the vessel on cruise departure day or from your hotel by approx. 12 noon. Guests are recommended to arrive one day prior, to enjoy the beauty of the surrounding area and to be sure you can make your cruise connection. Why not visit the Three Colour Lakes in the craters of Kelimutu volcano! Please contact us on [email protected] to assist you with hotel, flight, and transfers.
  • Lembeh – Manado Transfer Times:
    This cruise does not focus on Lembeh so it is a great idea to combine a Lembeh land based dive trip with your cruise for the best of the best! We will meet you at the airport or your hotel in Manado City area by 12 pm to transfer to the vessel on cruise departure date. Or if you are staying in Lembeh, we will coordinate the best method to collect you and advise. If you arrive early why not dive Bunaken or Bangka islands or Lembeh or take a highland tour to visit local flower market and lunch in a restaurant located above Tondano Lake. Feel free to contact us at [email protected] for any assistance. Transfers from/to the airport and within Manado city are free of charge. Price on application for other locations.
  • Ambon Transfer Times:
    We will coordinate with you for your arrival or departure transferring you from/to the airport or from/to your hotel within the Ambon city limits.
  • Sorong Raja Ampat Transfer Times:
    Sorong Raja Ampat Transfer Times: Transfers: Please note guests will be collected from their hotels at 12 noon for transfer to the boat. Guests flying in the same day as boat departure days will be collected from the airport and taken directly to the boat. However, we encourage guests to arrive the day prior. This is a good safety buffer for delays/luggage issues. There are several reasonable hotels in Sorong plus there are some wonderful island retreats around and about that you may wish to stay at before or after your cruise. We are happy to assist with ground transport, accommodations, resort stays/local diving, airfares etc. Please contact [email protected]

Can you book our domestic flights?

Yes we can! We only add a nominal service fee to cover admin fees. There are a number of operators who offer domestic flights in Indonesia: Garuda Indonesia, Sriwijaya, Batik Air and Lion Air.

Do I have to pay for excess baggage on domestic flights?

If your checked baggage exceeds the luggage allowance then you will have to pay for excess baggage. You can do this at check-in and usually the cost is only EURO 2-5 per extra kilo.

What is the minimum level of certification that I need to be able to join?

Everyone is welcome on board, no matter what level your certification or number of dives.

What is the minimum number of dives that I need to be able to join?

Everyone is welcome on board, no matter what level your certification or number of dives.

What is the ratio for dive groups on board?

Our ratio is 4 divers per dive master.

How many dives are included on my trip?

It depends on the route you choose. Please check your specific itinerary in our itineraries section that you can access from the Home page.

What diver certification level is needed for diving in Indonesia?

Everyone is welcome on board, no matter what level your certification. Dive groups and site selection will be chosen to meet your safety, comfort and diving ability – and is subject to the discretion of the Cruise Director. Our professional dive crew will take you on the easy route or to another site if you don’t like currents. If you are up for it, we’ll take you right into it for all the action the site offers ! You may wish to bring a reef hook for some dive sites or buy one on board.

Can I get qualified on board during my trip?

Yes we offer a wide range of PADI courses on board. Click here to see our prices and make sure to specify what course you are planning to do during your trip to make sure we have all the necessary materials.

Is there Nitrox on board?

Yes we have Nitrox in both Mermaids. Click here to see our Nitrox prices.

Do you have 15lt / 100cf dive tanks on board?

Yes we have 4 larger dive tanks on each Mermaid and they are FREE of charge.

Can I dive with J valve or DIN valve?

We have a mix of J valves and DIN valves on board as well as DIN adaptors to suit all types of regulators.

Can I rent dive equipment on board?

Yes we have enough dive equipment for rent on each boat. Click here to see our price list.

What is the temperature of the ocean during my trip?

The water temperature varies according to the route you choose. In general, the water temperatures are as follows:

 

Komodo North – 27-30 degrees Celsius

Komodo South – 21-27 degrees Celsius

Raja Ampat – 27-30 degrees Celsius

Maumere – 27-30 degrees Celsius

Alor – 21-28 degrees Celsius

Banda Sea/Ring of Fire/Forgotten Islands – 27-30 degrees Celsius

Lembeh – 25-29 degrees Celsius

Halmahera – 27-30 degrees Celsius

 

Please note this is just a guideline and water temperatures can vary.

What wetsuit should I bring?

  • Bali-Komodo-Bali:
    The Flores Sea with its usually clear blue waters and great visibility has water temperatures of approx. 26-28 degrees Celsius (northern dive locations) with most guests comfortable in a 3-5mm long. The Sumba Sea (southern dive locations) has an average temperature of approx. 24 degrees Celsius – the awesome diving lets you forget about the cooler waters! Think about a 5mm long possibly adding a vest or renting a shorty to go over the top if you feel the cold. Hood, gloves and booties are strongly recommended for these cooler waters. The Alor region can also share some surprisingly cool waters like Komodo so a thicker suit is recommended and we have rentals available on board.
  • Raja Ampat/Misool area:
    The water temperature around the 4 Kings of Raja Ampat and Misool area is 28-30 degrees Celsius year round. We recommend a 3 mm long wetsuit. If you get chilly, maybe a vest for under your suit.
  • Biodiversity Special:
    Water temperatures will range between 26-30 degrees Celsius. We have a selection of long and short wetsuits on board which you can rent if you are cold or change into if you are too warm in your suit.

What Luggage and what should I bring?

All luggage will be taken on board.
For Komodo cruise only: if you have large bags you do not need on the trip, please arrange to leave at your hotel if possible or at Mermaid Liveaboards office in Sanur.
Other items you may need on board are bathing suits, shorts, t-shirts, sunscreen, mosquito repellant and a light weight jacket or sweater. Good walking shoes for your time in Komodo National Park and for hiking to view points and also walking through the jungles in search of the wondrous Bird of Paradise in Raja Ampat (Trainers are fine – slip on sandals not recommended).

Does every diver has to dive with a personal dive computer?

Yes, due to the regulations of Indonesia every diver must dive with a personal dive computer. If you do not own a dive computer you can rent one from us, click here to see our rental equipment prices.

Does Mermaid Liveaboards have camera stations?

Yes, both Mermaids have camera tables and areas specific for cameras only as well as camera rinse tanks.

What is the electricity power throughout the Mermaid boats?

220 volts is standard throughout the boat. 110v adapters are available. Please ask the Tour Leader on boarding if you are not sure what to use. We have a few adapters on board.

What are the electric plugs throughout the Mermaid boats?

The cabins can handle both the following plug types:

 

 

How is the food going to be during my trip?

Our Indonesian chef is excellent, preparing a variety of Indonesian, Western and Vegetarian dishes. Please advise any special meal requirements on the guest information form. Meals are buffet so there is always plenty of choice.

Is there any alcohol for sale on board?

Yes, we have a selection of Australian and Chilean wines and local beer Bintang. Beer is EURO 3 per can and wine is EURO 30 per bottle.

 

Note we do not have liquor on board. If you prefer you can bring your own. Indonesia allows only 1 litre of alcohol per person to be brought into the country.

Are there any park fees for my trip?

Marine park fees vary depending on the cruise itinerary. Mermaid I National park/port fees for Komodo/Alor cruises €200. Raja Ampat cruises €200. Mermaid II National park/port fees for Komodo cruises €175. Raja Ampat cruises €200. Mandatory fees are set by the government authorities and are subject to change.

Do I have to pay any extras on board?

We have an onboard ship shop where you can purchase merchandise.

How can I pay my extras on board during my trip?

You can pay all onboard costs in € Euros, $ USD or Indonesian Rupiah. We also accept Credit card payments with Visa and Mastercard.

What is included and excluded on my trip?

Inclusions: Transfers from/to airport at the free of charge points, all meals & snacks, coffee, tea, hot chocolate, soft drinks and drinking water, tanks, weights, weight belts and diving with experienced Dive masters/Instructors.

 

Exclusions: Transfers outside of the free of charge zones, National park/port fees. Fuel Surcharges if applicable. Nitrox fills, rental equipment, onboard courses, dive insurance (Mandatory), massages, souvenirs, alcoholic beverages.

Are there any land excursions during my trip?

Yes, on every trip that we offer there is an opportunity to visit a village, viewpoints or a beach. We recommend you to bring closed shoes to do viewpoints walks or villages visits.

Can I sleep on board if I do back to back trips?

No, during the days in between trips there is so much to do that all the crew will be extremely busy and restocking the boat for your next trip.

Do I need Insurance?

You need 2 types of insurance when planning your dive holiday 1) Diving insurance is strongly recommended due to the high cost for you should you have a diving accident and require hospitalization and/or hyperbaric chamber care. Please contact www.diversalertnetwork.org to check which Dan area can cover you. Click on About Dan for links to all the Dan organizations around the world. 2) General travel/cancellation insurance. There are several companies around the world that can assist and one we can suggest is www.worldnomads.com for reliable and professional service recommended by The Lonely Planet.

Please note: If you are unable to make your dive trip and the date has passed our cancellation terms and conditions we are very sorry but regardless of the circumstances we cannot refund or transfer you to another date.

What Medical Assistance is there?

We cruise to remote areas: however, we are prepared to handle most accident or medical emergencies. Mermaid’s management team is available 24 hours a day via our satellite communications to expedite tried and tested emergency evacuation plans to the nearest recompression chamber and/or hospital in Bali or Makassar or the nearest available chamber. Our dive crews are first aid trained and we have an extensive first aid kit on board plus loads of emergency oxygen. Please bring any of your own medications that you may need. You can help as well by making sure you are in good condition for diving – prevention is always better than cure. Please remember to dive safely and to make sure your Dan Diver’s Alert Network or other dive insurance is up to date.
Guests over the age of 75 are required to provide medical clearance to dive, assessed within 1 month prior to the set cancellation terms if any refund will be required.

  • Malaria: Raja Ampat area
    There is malaria in the region for the Raja Ampat cruise – this area is around the equator and we recommend you discuss this with your doctor. Certainly when we walk in the jungle early mornings you will need to cover up well and also use mosquito repellant. We have a supply on board but suggest you bring your preferred brands. And from the Raja Ampat Tourism Association: Papua is a malaria area and you are advised to take precautions and follow the advice from your local health centre. Note that the medication Lariam has limited effectiveness in this area due to a resistant strain of Malaria and is not recommended. Alternatives could be Malarone or doxicycline.
  • Malaria – Komodo area
    Generally speaking basic precautions such as covering at dawn/dusk and using mosquito repellant for land tours is satisfactory. If you are in doubt whatsoever, please liaise with your doctor.

What are the terms & conditions of the company?

Please click here to see our terms & conditions.

What is a good Crew Tips/Gratuity?

Our Boat and Dive Crews will try very hard to deliver a high level of service, safety and professionalism tempered with lots of fun to optimize your holiday. Many of our guests use 5-10% of the cruise price as a tipping guideline. Tipping is voluntary and most appreciated!

Can I be contacted while on board?

Both our vessels are equipped with state of the art satellite phone systems. The numbers are Mermaid I – IDD code +870 773 185 631 and for Mermaid II IDD code + 882 167 606 0453. Guests can keep in touch with families and loved ones at many points throughout their cruises via mobile phone and the Tour Leader will advise when signal is available. For added security, please note the satellite number and share with families and friends as the phones are on 24/7. Incoming calls and outgoing calls are available for a nominal fee of euros €3 per minute. If there is any difficulty getting through, please don’t hesitate to call our Hotline Number English +62 81 337 778 077 and Indonesian + 62 811 386 940 and we will assist you

What is the policy regarding Children on board Mermaid Liveaboards?

We welcome children aged 8 years and older on Mermaid Liveaboards. Diving child 10 years or older – pays full diver price. Non diving child 10 years or older – pays full non diver rate. Child 8/9 years  – non diving – pays 50% of diver rate if sharing with 2 parents/guardians. Child 9/8 years and under – non diving – pays full non diver rate if sharing with only 1 parent/guardian. Parents/guardians have to be with the child at all times. If both parents want to dive and the child remains on board, we will hire an additional  crew – at euros 50 per day x total number of cruise days – at the parent’s cost to supervise the child’s activities only while the parents/guardians are in the water. Please note this service is available for Komodo and subject to confirmation for Raja Ampat and other areas. Please also note a minimum of 4 weeks’ notice is required to arrange this service. In case of Full Boat charter – guest’s age is up to the organizer of the charter but supervision conditions are as per the above.

Does Mermaid Liveaboards have special offers and guest loyalty programmes?

Please contact [email protected] to find out about any last minute offers, special programmes and repeat guest discounts for direct guests.

I want to dive and visit and see and do…

There is loads of excellent diving in and around your holiday destination as well. Mola Mola season in Bali is mainly from August to early October but starts as early as June – plan at least 2 days for Nusa Penida for a chance to see these magnificent creatures. Contact your agent for special Liveaboard + local diving/accommodation packages. Detail how many days/diving days you would like and what class accommodation, and our Travel Team will recommend and arrange a hassle free package to suit you [email protected]iveaboards.com