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FAQs

NEWS

THE CORONAVIRUS AND EVERYTHING TO SEA TRIPS: WHAT’S THE LATEST NEWS?

Everything To Sea takes global health events seriously.  We are carefully monitoring the Coronavirus situation.  Our primary sources are the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  A general overview of their positions is on the well-respected travel website Fodors.com.

We’ve had to cancel a number of departures in 2020 but successfully resumed running trips in September of the same year.  In 2021, we are planning to embark with all of our sailings.

We have Covid FAQs which address issues around pandemic measures undertaken by our staff and crew, measures on the parts of our travelers, booking trips, and trip date changes. You can find them here.

We recognize that the Coronavirus is a rapidly changing situation, and we will update this FAQ as we deem necessary.

What’s been Happening in the News with Indonesia’s Gay Accommodations?

In mid-January 2020, a gay guesthouse on Bali was shut down for their style of promotion of the accommodation. This became news in some media, but most Indonesians were not surprised. To understand why, it may help to learn a bit about the culture:

Indonesia is a country where same-sex activity is legal in all regions of the country, except for one province known as Aceh, which is 3,500 kilometers/2,200 miles away from where we sail. In fact, the country of Indonesia tolerates the LGBT lifestyle quite well – as long as it’s not blatant. To some Westerners this may seem discriminatory, but it’s worthwhile to note that Indonesians don’t want to see obvious displays of heterosexual behaviour, either. For example, guys and girls will not kiss in public.

Blatantly advertising accommodations as “gay” – and including imagery that is seen as overtly suggestive in this culture – can raise eyebrows. Discretion is the solution, in a country like this.

The Bali Tourism Board clarified their stance on January 17, 2020: “Gays are born with such characteristics and we should not blame them because it is natural… as long as it does not violate the accepted order and as long as it does not violate existing laws and regulations, [the gay lifestyle] will not be prohibited.”

Everything To Sea knows well the waters we sail in, and we also know the culture well. This website is unavailable in Indonesia, and hence, there is no advertising within the archipelago. We want to respect the country of Indonesia. It may be interesting to note that, unlike the guesthouses recently in the news, Everything To Sea is a foreign (US-based) company.

In summary, Indonesia is a country where LGBT rights are still challenged. And yet, it remains safe for gay travellers.

We do not anticipate any issues for LGBT people on our trips.

ARE COVID VACCINES BEING DISPERSED IN THE COUNTRY?

Yes. Vaccines arrived in Indonesia in December 2020. The governor of Bali was amongst the first to get one. The nationwide vaccination program against COVID was launched in the first part of January 2021, and its initial goal is to immunize 70% of the island’s population.  Because Indonesia is a culture of strong compliance, optimism for herd immunity occurring sooner than later is high in this part of the world.

TRIP DETAILS

WHERE IS FLORES, EXACTLY?

Flores is in the country of Indonesia, a sprawling nation comprised of over 17,000 islands. You’ve probably heard of some – like Bali, Sumatra, and Java. The island of Flores is 700 kilometers from Bali.

HOW MUCH TIME DOES IT TAKE TO GET TO LABUAN BAJO, ON THE ISLAND OF FLORES (THE DEPARTURE POINT FOR THE SHIP)?

Of course, that depends upon where your travel is originating. A range of reasonable flight times (including time in transit) is listed below, for flights into Bali or Jakarta:

Western Europe, 15 – 18 hours

USA, 21 – 27 hours

East Asia, 2 – 5 hours

Australia, 3 – 6 hours

• From Bali, Labuan Bajo is an additional 45 minute plane ride to the east.
• From Jakarta, Labuan Bajo is an additional 2.5 hour plane ride.
• Airport codes: Bali “DPS”; Jakarta “CGK”; Labuan Bajo “LBJ”.

HOW DO I GET TO THE ISLAND OF FLORES? HOW DO I MEET UP WITH YOU GUYS?

• There are many ways to fly into the country of Indonesia, for example through islands like Java, Sumatra, Sulawesi, or Bali. We recommend Bali for several reasons: it’s very proficient in handling travelers arriving from all over the world, it’s got great proximity to the island of Flores, and it has several daily flight departures between the two islands. Moreover, a lot of guys like to spend some time in Bali, too – see “CAN I EXTEND MY TRIP?” under the Booking FAQs. A roundtrip flight from Bali to Flores is fairly cheap.

A decent alternative would be to fly into Jakarta, on the island of Java. Sometimes airfare prices are significantly lower to Jakarta than Bali. And a roundtrip flight from Jakarta to Flores is not much more than from Bali.

Airlines like Nam Air, Wings Air or Sriwijaya fly 2 till 3 times a day from Bali to Labuan Bajo. Usually from the Morning till the late afternoon. Some websites you could use to check travel are: Skyscanner.comBooking.com and Kayak.com

Airport codes: Bali “DPS”; Jakarta “CGK”; Labuan Bajo “LBJ”.

• One day before the ship sails, you’ll fly into the airport of Labuan Bajo on the island of Flores. We’ll meet you in the airport and bring you to your hotel.

• The next day, we’ll pick you up from your hotel, early in the morning. Because of this, all travelers must come in the day before our departure, and stay in a Labuan Bajo hotel. Recommendations for accommodations are sent in our pre-departure materials.

 

WHEN DOES THE TRIP END ON THE LAST DAY?

The voyage finishes after breakfast on the last day of the trip. You are responsible for making your onward travel airline flight plans. Plan your flight out from Flores to leave no earlier than 12 pm. Latest departures out are usually until 6 pm on any given day. From the hotel to the airport by car typically takes 10 minutes, and our hotel will provide transport for you. It’s a small, efficient airport. We recommend you’re there 45-60 minutes before your flight.

WHAT ARE THE MEALS LIKE?

• We offer a mix of local dishes and Western meals. Local dishes are mostly noodle and rice-based, with fresh vegetables and meat or fish. It’s a good opportunity to try new foods and new flavors – think coconut milk, tofu and tempe, peanut sauces, and even hot chilis, if you desire. Western foods are European or American-based. Our cook is skilled at changing menus so that there’s variety for your taste buds. We provide three meals a day, and there’s always enough food for everyone. Plus, you should expect fresh Juice-of-the-Day, and island fruits available, all the time. And of course – coffee, tea, and water. Forget about junk food: imagine eating healthy, delicious, fresh food, for the entire time you’re on the boat!

• Don’t forget that we also include alcoholic drinks, so you may enjoy beer, wine, or cocktails as you like.

• While we can’t cater to specific diets, should you have certain food preferences or needs, we’re happy to try and accommodate such.

HOW MUCH MONEY WILL I NEED ON THE TRIP?

Not much. We’ve aimed to make things all-inclusive on the boat, so that while you’re free of clothes, you’re also free of costs.

• You’ll come in one day before the ship sails. Most hotels in town will range from US$40 – $90 for the night.

• If you want to pick up a souvenir (like a carved Komodo dragon sculpture), or buy various sundries in the town of Labuan Bajo on your first night pre-sail, you should budget for that. Most people would have a hard time spending more than $30 or $40 for such, but obviously there are more expensive works of art that can be had, too.

• The only other thing to anticipate as a cost is tips – but only if you desire to give any to the crew. Suggested range of tips that a person could give for the whole crew – $50 – $90.

WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING?

Bring comfortable shoes for walking or trekking, if you’d like to explore any of the islands on foot. Waterproof sunscreen. A hat, and sunglasses, if you like. And a swimsuit for when we’re near others – although we’ll have baskets on the ship with sarongs to grab, for a quick cover-up, should another boat pass by.

Payment on the islands is mostly on a cash basis – so make sure you bring enough cash in Rupiah – the local currency (See HOW MUCH MONEY WILL I NEED ON THE TRIP, in FAQ section above.)

Overall, pack lightly – you won’t be needing many changes of clothes! Either soft or hard luggage is fine.

A comprehensive recommended clothing list will be sent to you, in our Pre-Departure Materials.

ACCOMMODATIONS

DO I GET MY OWN BED? CAN I HAVE MY OWN BEDROOM?

• Yes, you’ll get your own bed – unless you’re traveling with another guy and want to share it with him.

• Rooms are shared amongst guys, with either two or three men to a cabin.

• Some cabins on The StandardPlus Boat have double beds and single beds in the same room.  In that case, the double bed can be reserved, for an additional fee.

• If you prefer to have privacy as a single traveler, you may book a private room.

• Private room and Reserved bed costs are shown on Boat Overviews, and also on our Booking page.

WHAT DOES “SHARED ROOM/UNRESERVED ROOM” REALLY MEAN?

This means that you’d be willing to share a cabin with another traveler, or perhaps even two other guys.  The “unreserved” part means that you wouldn’t know what cabin you’ll get until you’d arrive on the ship.

WHAT DOES “1 PERSON, SHARED ROOM, RESERVED DOUBLE BED” REALLY MEAN?

This means that you’d be willing to share a cabin with another traveler, but the ship has two beds in that cabin:  a narrower one (single) and a wider one (double).  The option here would allow you to reserve the wider, double bed for yourself.  

WHAT ARE THE TOILET FACILITIES LIKE?

In olden days, the bathroom on a ship was called the Head, because it was all the way in the front. You’d be sitting outside, literally next to the figurehead, and you’d relieve yourself directly into the sea. In that case, well… Everyone Could See.

The facilities on our ships are quite different. All cabins have private bathrooms equipped with toilets, sinks, and hot water showers.

The bathrooms on The Deluxe Boat are one notch up – more sumptuous, if you will – with stone sinks, larger spaces, and beautiful woodwork.

WILL THERE BE CELL RECEPTION AND INTERNET ACCESS?

• Cell reception varies like on any body of water. Overall, the country has a very strong telecommunications network. You may want to arrange an international calling plan that best suits your needs, with your cell phone provider before you leave. Alternatively, you can buy a SIM card in Indonesia (they’re cheap and easy to obtain), and use a local number for calls.

• The boat is equipped with Wifi. Although internet access can occasionally go down in this part of the world, it usually comes back up rather quickly. Having said that, there is one particularly isolated spot on our trips where we will lose reception for about a day.

IS THERE ELECTRIC POWER IN CABINS, FOR CHARGING PHONES AND OTHER DEVICES?

Yes. You will be able to charge devices like phones, computers, iPads, and other devices – and even things like cameras and CPAP machines. Beds have small table areas for holding all of these items. Our boat cabins are outfitted with Type F plugs. These are the same plugs found in much of Europe:  carrying 220 volts, they take two pins, and are grounded. We have adapters we can lend you, however with some devices a currency converter may be necessary – you should check compatibility and bring your own converter if needed.

BOOKING

HOW DO I MAKE A RESERVATION

Online reservations are available 24/7. Simply go to the right side of the menu bar and click the Book Now button. Follow the prompts, and you’ll be “on board.”

Your Payment Options:

  • A deposit of $200 will secure your spot. Later, 50% of the balance will be due (270 days before departure). And the remaining balance will be due 180 days before you sail.
  • Alternatively, you can make your payment in full now.
  • Consider if you’d like a Private or Reserved Room – if so, select that on the Booking Form.
  • Enter any coupon code on the form, if applicable. The Coupon Code section is located just above the Credit Card section.
  • If any add-ons are desired – on the island of Bali or Flores – we’ll be in touch to design the sort of experience you want, and will bill you separately for such. Please list in Comments section, what sort of add-ons you’d like – including possible locations, activities interested in, sites, etc.

If you feel this sounds like a great experience, we strongly recommend you book soon, since space on each departure is limited to twelve men. Should you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us – we’ll do all we can to help your future be naked!
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A Note to Travel Agents:

  • Please enter the traveler’s name under My Name, and traveler’s email address under My Email.
  • Be sure to list your Travel Agent code in the Coupon Codes section, located just below credit card section.
  • List the name, email address of the travel agency , all additional traveler’s names and email addresses in Comments section.
  • Your agent email address will receive a confirmation email regarding agency payment. Other cost/payment details will also be sent to your agent email.
  • Pre-departure trip information will be sent to client’s email addresses, and you will be copied on those messages.
  • If you are a travel agency that is not registered with us, send an email to Hello@EverythingToSea.com and request “Travel Agent Information”.

CAN I EXTEND MY TRIP?

Definitely. We can suggest a few add-on experiences that are our personal favorites:
• Spend time in Bali, either before or after the sailing trip. Length and activities can be tailored to your desire. People commonly spend anywhere from a few days to three weeks on the Island of the Gods. Activities can include yoga, surfing, visiting the LGBT neighborhood known as Seminyak, learning about the arts and culture, or delving into the spiritual elements offered on the island.

• Scuba diving excursions are available from the islands of Flores, Lombok, or Bali. We can help arrange various lengths and locales, so please talk to us about these.

• We can arrange a local LGBT-friendly guide and/or driver for you.

WHAT TRAVEL DOCUMENTS DO I NEED? AND WHAT ABOUT VISAS?

Perhaps you heard that Indonesia is closed. Rest assured, conditions and situations have changed many times over the last 14 months. As of now, we’re still running trips. Please send us an email at hello@EverythingToSea.com for the latest visa regulations. We’ll get back to you within 24 hours. 

You’ll definitely need a valid passport that doesn’t expire for at least five months after your trip date. And, you’ll need to have a valid return airline ticket.

Ever since the Coronavirus, visa regulations have changed – and will continue to do so.  Therefore, we send details on the latest requirements to our travelers about six weeks out from their trip date. 

• To give you a general idea:  As of this writing, Indonesia is issuing e-Visas, and the processing time can take one to two weeks. 

• When on the plane, a flight attendant will give you a customs form to fill out, which you’ll turn in as you exit the airport on arrival. It will ask you to list an address for where you’ll be staying; you should list the hotel you’ll be in on your first night.

WHAT ABOUT TRAVEL INSURANCE?

We recommend you take out comprehensive travel insurance before your trip begins, covering cancellation, coronavirus cancellation, medical expenses including repatriation, loss or damage to baggage and personal belongings, money and public liability. In this age of COVID, a policy which includes “Cancel For Any Reason” coverage could be useful, too. Although we are not endorsing any particular company, one well-respected and reliable provider offering insurance with “Cancel For Any Reason” coverage is Trawick International: https://www.trawickinternational.com. Should you want other suggestions for travel insurance, feel free to contact us via email at hello@EverythingToSea.com

IS IT SAFE TO GIVE MY CREDIT CARD DETAILS ON YOUR BOOKING FORM?

To ensure that your credit cards and personal information are kept as secure as possible, we use up-to-date Secure Sockets Layer technology (SSL). This is the most secure method of transferring sensitive data over the Internet. We also use the payment platform Stripe. Considered the number one credit card payment processor, it is the new standard in online payments. Stripe handles billions of dollars every year for businesses around the world.

HOW CAN I CHANGE MY DEPARTURE DATE?

Change of departure requests must be sent via email, to hello@EverythingToSea.com. Rebookings can be made for any departure date on our calendar that still has availability. The date of your email determines the change of departure fee:

  • Changing dates 181 days or more before departure will result in a +$600 administrative fee.
  • Changing dates 61-180 days before departure will result in a +$800 administrative fee.
  • Changing dates 60-15 days before departure will result in a +$1,000 administrative fee.

We are unable to accept date change requests that are less than 15 days before departure.

WHAT’S YOUR CANCELLATION POLICY?

Cancellation requests must be sent via email, to hello@EverythingToSea.com. The date of your email determines the cancellation fee:

$200 deposit is non-refundable.

  • 241 days or more before departure: 100% of trip cost returned, minus $200 deposit.
  • 151-240 days before departure: 60% of trip cost returned, minus $200 deposit.
  • 61-150 days before departure: 30% of trip cost returned, minus $200 deposit.
  • 60 days or less before departure: 0% of trip cost returned.

Before canceling a trip, you may want to consider changing your departure date. See “HOW CAN I CHANGE MY DEPARTURE DATE?” in the BOOKING section of these FAQs.

WHAT ABOUT BOOKING IN THE TIME OF COVID?

You may have several questions around COVID, with regards to booking an Everything To Sea experience. Our policies for changing departure dates and refunds for trips differ based upon various scenarios.  We aim to be most transparent, so you can be best informed.  We strive for a balance which includes our traveler’s situations and Everything To Sea’s commitments to local contractors, while continuing to run trips amongst an evolving situation.

Please visit this page for some of the most frequently asked questions around the pandemic.  Don’t hesitate to contact us if there’s anything you’re not clear about, or if you have other questions not answered here.

PERSONAL CONCERNS

WHO COMES ON THESE VOYAGES?

Men. All kinds of men.

We welcome men of all ages… men of all orientations: gay, straight, bisexual, questioning… men of all shapes and sizes… and men of all nationalities. We welcome men who are nudists, as well as men who like to keep their clothes on. We welcome men who like to look at naked bodies, and men who like to be looked at.

This is an experience of men coming together in camaraderie, to be on a boat cruising around islands in the buff (and at times, clothed, too) – to experience a greater sense of freedom than what they normally encounter in everyday life. We know that guys from every decade have something to contribute, to form an amazing voyage. From muscles and flesh and eye-candy, to knowledge and experience and depth, to humor and positive attitude, it’s our firm belief that every man is interesting on some level. Indeed, different backgrounds and life experiences are what makes each of our trips unique, and we hope that everyone – from recent college graduates to grandfathers – will join us for these memorable experiences.

DO I HAVE TO BE NAKED?

No. We’re running clothing-optional trips.

Regarding clothing-optional: We know that no matter how “free” a man is, we all have room for growth: any one of us can experience an even greater sense of freedom. That can be in our minds, or with our bodies, and yes, even with our clothes. If that means, for you, just having an extra button opened on your shirt, then do that – it’s a valid step. Perhaps for another guy, it’s about feeling free enough to go shirtless – or showing off that speedo. And for some guys, it’ll mean being completely naked, feeling most comfortable that way. We’re all about personal freedom, without any pressure to do what others are doing.

Although we want men to experience nudity as they like, we also aim to respect the local culture. Should another boat come within our proximity, or should we approach a jetty, we ask that all guys cover up – with either shorts, a swimsuit, or a sarong.

AM I EXPECTED TO HELP WITH THE SAILING?

Actually, we don’t expect you to do anything. If you want to recline in the sun, or chat with the other guys, or keep your eyes peeled for Komodo dragons or flying fish or other wildlife – that’s totally up to you. Many guys won’t be at all interested in sailing, and that’s fine. Bottom line: it’s your own unique adventure; we want you to choose whatever you want to do. However, if you are interested in sailing, our crew will be happy to integrate you in the ways of anchoring, tying a knot, hoisting the sails, or anything else nautical.

WILL I GET SEASICK?

While we can’t give you a 100% “no” on this, it’s quite rare for a person to get seasick in this part of the world, on this sort of vessel. Partly due to the size and structure of the boat, and mostly due to the calm waters. We sail around a collection of scattered islands. They create a natural barrier that breaks down the rough waters from the Indian Ocean in the south and the Flores Sea in the north. The result is that we’re moving in relatively tranquil waters.Having said that, it’s been theorized that seasickness can even come from… worrying about seasickness. So if it’s a concern of yours now, it might be wise to bring some motion sickness medicine with you. It’s small enough to carry along, and you’ll have peace of mind. You’ll probably end up bringing it home with you – which would actually be a good thing, right?

CAN I HAVE SEX ON THE BOAT?

The short answer is: “Yes”. We know that being naked with your partner or someone you’ve just met can be exciting and erotic. And that sometimes leads to a desire to do more than talk.

Remember, though, that our native crew are working on the ship. They have jobs to do – and that doesn’t include sex work. Also, occasionally we might pass another boat. We aim to respect the local culture, which much like your own culture, doesn’t show sexual activity in public. For these reasons, we ask you to be discreet and use your cabins for play, during the day.

Our boat is constructed with two upper decks. At night, they create a cozy environment to let men do “what men do” when they’re naked together. Moreover, if any cabin ends up being free of guests, we’ll turn it into a sort of “lounge” for guys.

Fun? Sure. Discreet? Sure. Bottom line? We want you to enjoy yourself as much as possible, while respecting others.

IS HOMOSEXUALITY ILLEGAL IN INDONESIA?

No. Sex between consenting adults (18 years of age) of the same sex or gender is not criminalized in the Indonesian Penal Code.

There are two regional exceptions in this vast island nation (it spans 5,120 kilometers from the island of Sumatra to the island of New Guinea). In the province of Aceh, in the northwest tip of Sumatra, same sex behavior is criminalized for Muslim men. There are also penalties for same sex behavior in Palembang, South Sumatra.

As a result, many Sumatran gay men leave their families and move 4,000 kilometers east, to the island of Bali (Flores and the other islands we visit – mostly uninhabited – are even further still.) We’re 45 minutes east of Bali – and a world away from Sumatra.

It’s interesting to note that there are some LGBT people in the national media, and Indonesia’s government – a relatively moderate and tolerant Muslim nation – has allowed a discreet LGBT community to exist. In recent years, the LGBT community in Indonesia has steadily become more visible, organizing public events and being politically active.

DO I NEED ANY VACCINES? IS IT EASY TO GET MEDICATION THERE?

No vaccinations are currently compulsory for entry into Indonesia. If you require regular medication, be sure to have enough of it before your trip departs, as all medicine may not be available.

WHAT ABOUT DISCRETION? WHAT ABOUT MY PERSONAL INFORMATION?

We will not, in any circumstances, share your personal information with other individuals or organizations without your permission, including public organizations, corporations or individuals, except when applicable by law. This pertains to any data that you’ve transmitted to us electronically, and any verbal information that you’ve chosen to share with us. And of course, before ever using images in promotional materials, we’ll seek your permission – and honor your decision.

HAVE A QUESTION NOT LISTED ABOVE?

Just email us at hello@EverythingToSea.com

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