Getting to Gili Trawangan is simple. You get a range of options, from public ferries to stylish private charters for the deep pocketed voyager. Most travellers get their Gili fast boat tickets from travel agents in Kuta before transferring through Padang Bai.
The Gilis are becoming such a popular island destination that they barely feel the pinch of the low season. This means that accommodation during high season fills up fast, especially the budget and mid-range options.
Organise your accommodation before you get there, or you might find yourself with no other option than to blow your budget and cut your island time short.
Can’t wait to go to Gili Trawangan from Bali?
Airplane - Flight to Lombok
Flights from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) to the new Lombok International Airport or ‘Bandara Internasional Lombok’ (LOP) normally take half an hour. Current flights are serviced by two major international airline companies, namely Garuda Indonesia and PT Lion Mentari Airlines, otherwise known as Lion Air.
There are low cost airlines such as Lion Air where price is around 30USD. For around 15 USD more you can fly with Garuda Indonesia, the national airline of Indonesia, who in 2013, were elected to be in the top 10 best airlines.
Taxis and charter transfers are available from Lombok International Airport, with reputable Blue Bird Taxisthat can take you up to Bangsal on a 2.5-hour ride for around IDR 350,000 (USD 26). Roads on the Lombok mainland are fairly quiet, making your overland transfers swift and comfortable. From Bangsal, a half-hour boat ride will then get you to the Gilis.
The low-budget way. The public ferry from Padang Bai to Lombok departs every hour on the hour, but it’s painfully slow.
The crossing from Padang Bai to Lembar, Lombok only costs about 40,000 Rupiah, but takes about 4 ½ hours. The public ferry is used almost exclusively by locals and runs hourly (24 hours a day). For an additional fee, you can also rent a private cabin.
Then it’s another slow public ferry from Lombok to the Gilis and waiting in between, so the total trip will take over 8 hours. If it’s worth the hassle to you, then go for it.