Recently I went for a trip (on vacation) to one of those wonderfully scenic offshore Indonesian islands (which are also known for squeezing every last dollar out of you). I was already near enough to the region on another trip, and I thought why not break down the expenses on this trip and bring it up as a trial run for other people who are considering the same thing when they do their sample expense report.

I'll pretty much list down that which I had spent and whether or not they were worth it. Basically I was in the area on business, and it turned out one of our group really wanted to head down to the island to see what it was like. We took a taxi ride to the ferry which cost $8.60, which isn't really something you are likely to be able to claim but I suppose for the convenience of not lugging a travel bag along it was worth it in the end still.

We were planning for a short sideway trip that would be 3 days and 2 nights. Well at the ferry terminal we spent about $50 to take a short trip across waters to the island. Well and that was a few hours spent idling and eating sea spray until the little sea craft finally docked and we got off but had to spend about half an hour waiting for the queue to subside since it seemed a lot of people just wanted to go the place at that particular hour of the day.

After some waiting we managed to get out into the open and wait for the designated shuttle, feeling not too great with the wait I went and popped open some drinks and snacks from the snack shop which cost me $6, something which I doubt I can claim either. But I was expecting to pay a higher price than usual just like airport food is usually more overpriced, so are some ferry terminals.

With that and another about an hour of waiting we finally had a small little bus arrive that was only just slightly big enough to house everyone who was waiting there. After a tight squeeze and a 15 minute journey we finally reached the place. Now here we had to fork out about 120 dollars per person for the 3 days and 2 nights stay and that was a decent prize for a resort. This might be claimable though, from an allocated holiday or vacation fund. That said if you were there on business you can be expected to have your accommodation expenses covered for you.

We chilled at the pool for a while, again after a rather long walk since it was out of the way. The scenery at the end of the walkway was pretty wonderful, and we managed to see the sun set over the sea, or ocean, I am not too sure which one it was and geography is certainly very very far from my strong suit. That said it could have been far better, as I certainly felt that tourism had done a number on the authenticity of the place. My friend found the people genuine, but I felt quite a bit of the policies indicated otherwise.

And with nightfall the first night ended without any further expenditure. The next day, quite a bit of hiccups occurred as we found out that the events we had lined up no longer existed. Quite a short shelf life some of the businesses here had.

Well that was a bit disappointing but we moved on and went go karting for 15 minutes at a dollar per minute. Rather fun but quite a fee! Their dirt track for the go karts was in a euphemism unregulated, and had pretty fun bends. Thankfully there wasn't any F1 race kart driver wanna be to be aggressive jerks on the dirt paths to make insurance policies a must have.

Settled down for lunch at a rather hefty price of $15 which couldn't really be said to be worth the price but at least it did its job in filling the stomach. If I had to pin down one particular item that was overpriced then it could only have been the drink. But I guess it had to do in part with their monopoly over the area and the types of food and drinks you could expect to obtain. They sure do a great job of squeezing every single cent out of tourists like you would do an orange for juice. Then again I know another country better at squeezing out money, except from its own people.

But quibbling so much detracts from the travel time I had. We went for a much more fun wakeboarding session after that at comparable prices, and cost 25 for 2 hours. A rare price to match. That passed by well and we went off to a local shopping mall after that, which finally had a few spurts of regular indonesian prices for once in a desert of jacked up tourist traps! Spent a well worth $8 on a meal there before incurring a few more dollars expenses from random events.

And that was it for the night. The next day due to a lack of time, I ordered in room service which was pretty intriguing considering that it was more of a resort or a chalet style accommodation than a hotel. But there it was and while the food took quite a while to come it was the best I had on the island from the moment I stepped foot onto it until I left. Wondering if I could charge it I placed it down as $11 anyway. As you can tell by all the prices so far, things weren't cheap on an island made for tourists!

And with that we hurriedly made it down to the ferry terminal to get back on with the rest of our lives. Approximate cost of the trip: about 90 a day to make up 270. Was it worth it? Mainly as an experience, but I sure wouldn't go there again. Time to file off my expense report sample I guess.