Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi Commuter Line

The smell of holiday is here said some of my friends. Well, everybody has their holiday plans. I have my days correcting essays… hahaha. I think I will start with short distance, non-tiring journey after 6 months surgery. I still need to see places and I get bored with malls.

Let’s start with the history of Commuter Line in Jabodetabek (Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi). PT. KAI is the administrator of the railway company in Indonesia. All of that transformed into something different in the year 2011, PT KAI began a revolution that altered the train network system. We had trains that traveled from point to point before that year, but none were integrated. Ignasius Jonan, the president director of PT. KAI from 2009 to 2014, committed to making train as the number one transport in Indonesia. Some lines were reduced and no more express services, all lines were integrated so we could go from Bekasi to Serpong without leaving the train station. Two types of train, air-conditioned and non air-conditioned, were the only ones that continued to be used. In 2012, the platforms in a station was sterilised from street vendor. This caused a little trouble at first, people who usually sell food and drinks in platforms protested during the sterilisation. Train stations became clean and more organised. In July, 2013 the economy class trains were discontinued. Commuter Line is the only service throughout the train network in Jabodetabek. Public transportation has to be more accessible for all level of people.

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Commuter Line Route

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My journey began in one weekend nearing the end of 2016. It was on a weekend so the train was not as full as it is in working days. I started my journey from Rawabuntu station. I first knew about Rawabuntu around 4 years ago, the station was not easy to access. There was only one way from the bridge main road, and it involved a very steep stairs which very slippery during rainy season. The other way you have to walk farther until you get under the bridge. Now it is much better. The Rawabuntu station is not a transit station, it is small, however it has a parking lot and 2 mini markets. There are two ways yo can enter the station from the main road. One from the main road of the bridge, and another is the one under the bridge. Both ways are accesible, no more steep stairs from the bridge to the station.

The first thing I do was leaving my car in the space provided by the commuter line. It is usually full of cars, which are left by office workers on their way to work, during weekdays, but in weekends the number of cars are reduced significantly.  I used the Mandiri e-money as an electronic ticket so I did not have to buy one in the counter. I tapped my card and entered the railway station. There were only two platforms, one to Jakarta and the other to Maja. I took the one to Tanah Abang, which is a transit station to Bogor. The train ride was around 40 minutes from, and it was a weekend so the train was not full, some seats were still empty. That situation changed in Sudimara and Jurangmangu, a lot of people aboard the train and seats became full.

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It is a weekend so there were a lot of children, they were all excited and anxious to get to the destination. “When do we go out mom” I heard the girl next to me kept asking her mom. “Two more stops.” said the mother. “I want to watch the TV.” She said while pointing at a TV screen in the train.

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I arrived in Tanah Abang, and I had to take the train to Bogor (the Yellow Line). The station was quite organized, but it was under construction and some areas of the platform was closed. I had no trouble getting in out. The only thing I found difficult during my transit was the stairs. Some platforms had stairs in between, and the stairs to go up to the station was rather steep. Normal people without mobility problems may not have difficulty, but I did at that time.  It is more convenient in smaller stations because stairs were only an issue when you get in or out of the station but not on platforms. After changing the train into the yellow line CL, the journey to Bogor began. The journey took 1,5 hours. The train made lot of stops, and in big station the stops were longer. We had to wait from the line was empty before it could stop.

Bogor station! At last I arrived at my destination. The area outside the station was barricade with fences. One way to keep out pedestrian crossing at a not designated crossing. The only way to cross is by walking a little far from the station following the barricade pavement, or closer by crossing the bridge. Not a choice for me, I am not a fan of stairs in my current condition. Maybe next time when I am better. I took the long road heading to Bogor Palace. I stopped at Taman Topi, get some lunch before I continued my journey.

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Well I have to get back before evening, because my cat was groomed in th epet store I would leave it stranded there overnight. He is a very sensitive cat and do not like stranger. I used the same way back. Walking along the barricade pavement until the station entry.  I had one confusing thing at the way home. I tapped my card and did not notice that the entry was on the right of the tap machine not left. I was wondering why I could not get in. My husband was trying to tell me that I have to go to right and I did not get it. Stupid me!

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Altogether my train ride was Rp. 9,000,00 from Rawabuntu to Bogor, so it was Rp. 18.000,00 round trip. The parking was Rp. 13.000,00 for around 6 hours. All paid with Mandiri e-money. One portion soto mie, durian ice cream, and asinan to take home. It was a nice round trip from Rawabuntu to Bogor. Next time, Jakarta Kota or Bekasi.

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