ANGKOT is an acronym for “Angkutan Kota,” which means city transportation (Indonesians love acronyms and abbreviations). Most cities in Indonesia have Angkots.  Angkots are like a mini-van that has seating in the rear along the sides…all facing each other.  The vans will seat 12-18 people :^).  Often you will see 4 people in the front seats (driver included), and 12 or more in the back.  The side door is where you get on and off, and it is never closed.  Some people will sit or stand at the door, if there is no room to enter.

Below is a video we made of riding an angkot.

When you want to get on the Angkot you stand alongside the road with your right hand out, palm down, and motion with your fingers for the driver to stop.  You then squeeze in through the side door, say your greetings to the people sitting next to you and enjoy the ride.  To get off you call out “kiri Pak.” Which literally means “left Sir.” This tells the driver to pull over to the LEFT side of the road so you can get off.  To get off the angkot in Jambi, and in a few other cities, you rap on the ceiling with your knuckles.

You pay for the trip after you leave the Angkot. You step up to the passenger door (on the left side of the vehicle), and hand the driver your money.  The cost for a 3-mile trip is around 20-40 cents (US).

Jambi has a simple Angkot route system.  There is a white, red, blue, yellow, and green, and they each go in a different direction from the terminal, which is located at the center of town.

In large cities, like Bandung, there is an elaborate system of Angkot routes that intersect each other.  To go from one end of the city to the other you will have to get on and off a number of different Angkots as their routes intersect each other.  You can find the routes for the city of Bandung at this address.