Searching the Necessary

Notes by yeyette on Monday, June 2nd, 2014 under Bintan
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Two weeks before the Holy Week, I was already thinking where to go.  I definitely don’t want to stay home.  The culture in the Philippines during holy week is going to the Church.  Though far from my family, I still can stay at home watching TV the whole day but I know it will bore me to death.  So, I decided to go out somewhere far from the stressful life of Singapore.

I choose Bintan over Batam because of the nice beaches.  I searched hotels in Bintan but all are fully-booked.  Since the hotels are fully booked, I searched for a cottages or “pondok” (it’s what they called in Indonesia).  I found some but the reviews in trip-advisor  backed me out.  I didn’t lose hope.  One “pondok” style came out of the website and it arouses my interest because of a good review.  I emailed Mutiara Beach Guesthouse to reserve a cottage for 3 days.  Marc Thalmann, a Swiss owner was so fast upon replying my message that the guesthouse was fully booked during my required days.  I then asked if they accept campers and he said yes.   I only need to pay SGD8++ with free breakfast, towel usage & access to the bathroom.  He also suggested to book a taxi via Indorent as they don’t have a transportation going to their guesthouse.   He also told me that if I don’t want to book to Indorent, I might be lucky if I can find a cheaper taxi.  Taxi will be SGD65 for roundtrip.  Fair enough, I told myself.  Now, hotel is settled, nope, camping place is settled and it excites me more.  My next step will be buying a tent & a ferry ticket.  By the way, I asked Mr. Thalmann if it always rains in Trikora (the location of Mutiara is a stretch of Trikora Beach) and he said everyday is summer.

I checked Bintan Resort Ferry & it will costs me SGD90 for roundtrip.  I didn’t booked yet, I have to find another way to book cheaper than their price.  I found holiday city’s website, check it out,  I clicked it and tried to book and the price? Only SGD72!  I saved SGD23!  Fair enough? Yes!  It’s a good savings.  I booked it immediately and now my next mission is to find a tent.  I searched and even asked to my local friends where can I buy a tent and the internet and my colleagues has the same answer, go to “Beach Road”.

I went there after office, the 3rd floor of the Hawker Center.  There’s a lot of small stalls selling military accessories.  An auntie sells camping accessories & her tent only cost SGD24 but it was not waterproof.  I know I don’t need a waterproof then but to be safe in case it will rain (you cannot predict nature), I need a waterproof.  I only bought from her a sleeping bag for 15-25temp for only SGD18.00.  NOTE:  These stores don’t accept card or NETS.  You only have to pay cash.

The next day, I searched a tent and found one at  There are lots of tents to choose from.  I choose from the “Aleyong” shop which is a blue waterproof sportext tent and it was SGD73+SGD6 for delivery.  As per shop’s policy, it will be 3-5 days delivery. I bought at Tuesday evening and arrived at Saturday morning.  It was a good buy because the tent was automatic and it was 3-4 man.  Just pull the string on top and it will automatically locked and you are set to sleep.

Imagine if I booked the cottage for 3 days.  Let’s say I booked the cheapest one, which is SGD40 (standard with shared bathroom outside, the most expensive is SGD60 with own bathroom and facing the sea).  So, SGD40 x 3 days = SGD120.00++ (10% service charge + 11% tax) = around SGD150 plus your food and daily activities.  Okay, let’s compute again how much I saved after I check out, haha.

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