Immigration to Indonesia

Living and Working in Indonesia

Komodo Dragons of indonesiaRepublic of Indonesia, commonly popular as Indonesia is a county in Oceania and between the Indian and Pacific Ocean. Indonesia is having more than seventeen thousand islands. Some of them are Bali, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Java, some part of Borneo and New Guinea. Indonesia is largest archipelagic state in the world. Indonesia is bordered with Papua New Guinea, East Timor and eastern Side of Malaysia. It also shares maritime borders with Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, The Philippines, Palau, Australia and Andaman and Nicobar Islands (India). Indonesia is one of the most populous country and most populous Muslim majority country in the world. And moreover, Java is the densely populated island and is home to more than half of the Indonesian population. Although, despite its large population and populated areas, Indonesia has volcanoes, waterfalls, including, vast areas of wilderness that supports one of the world’s highest levels of biodiversity. Here you will experience the sunny weather, golden and white beaches, turquoise waters and monuments. Jakarta is the capital and the largest city situated in the northwest of Java Island. Indonesia is famous for its beautiful pottery, ironwork and mosaics. Indonesian culture has Arabian and European cultural influences. It is also  famous for its ancient architecture, blue coasts, and marketplaces. You can see and buy colorful jewelry, ceramics and metal lanterns here.

Indonesia is a good place to live as it has islands, mountains, beaches, big cities and small villages; a little something for every kind of people. Indonesia is good for adventure enthusiasts and these adventures are known to change people’s lives. Indonesia is famous for Bali, a magical Island popular amongst foreigners. Expats who immigrate to Indonesia are not always sure what to expect from this country, but they are unfailingly and pleasantly surprised by the unique blend of people and cultures, and its small eminently diverse landscape. Indonesia is an Islamic state and its constitution it guarantees you the freedom of thought, expression and assembly as well as freedom to practice your own religion and traditions.  Jakarta is the place where most of the foreigners can be seen. People speak English especially in the tourist places and near the coastal areas.  You can find a job here easily as it is a tourist destination. However, it will be difficult to work in Indonesia without having international professional contacts. There are several international companies who are in continuous search of deserving candidates all year round. Indonesia is undoubtedly one of the top places to visit and immigrate in 2024. 

Traveling information

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Travelling to Indonesia is possible by sea or by flight depending on the place you are travelling from. It has re-opened its borders for expats with valid visa. No restrictions are imposed on visitors currently. It is suggested to take a travel insurance to cover the medical and other expenses that may occur. Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport has now re-opened and a visa on arrival has been resumed for certain nationality citizens. For all the other nationalities, the B211 Tourism Visit Visas are also available for stays of upto six months. In Indonesia there are several means of transport like public buses, trains, cars and commercial flights. Indonesian International Airport has connections with various European cities and other big cities in African Continent. Traveling by road is also possible as Indonesia shares border with Papua New Guinea and Malaysia. Traveling around Indonesia by two ways is feasible by boat and by car. Always carry a copy of your passport and visa. Best way to travel here is by air. Many airlines operates continuous services to the different destinations all over the world. 

Documents Required for visa on arrival

  • Passport with six-month validity
  • Passport with at least one blank page
  • Confirmed return ticket
  • Proof of sufficient funds to meet the expenses
  • Proof of vaccination is required.

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How to Immigrate to Indonesia  

If you are planning your visit to Indonesia, then you need a valid passport and a visa, unless you come from a visa free country as citizens of many countries are able to travel to Indonesia without any visa. Most of the countries are allowed a visa exempt stay up to 30 days in Indonesia. Thailand, Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Laos and Myanmar, etc., do not need a visa to visit to Tunisia for their stay up to 30 days. This is a safe country but travelling here needs more attentiveness than other countries.

Travel regulations can change without notice to the public, so it is recommended to you that before you travel, check the current regulation with Travel Exploration or the Indonesian Embassy. If your stay is getting longer, then you will need to apply for an extension visa with the immigration Office. Visas on arrival (VOA) are valid for thirty to sixty days. Visa B211A is perfect for the persons willing to stay in this country for more than sixty days. This visa can be extended twice, each time for the same time period. Which means you can stay for total six months (180 days). 

Documents required for B211A visa are mentioned below: 

  • Visa Application form completed and duly signed
  • Passport valid for 12 minimum months
  • Receipt of onward flight or flight bookings (tickets)
  • Funds of 2000 USD (not in the case for all visa agencies)
  • Proof of Vaccination

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Citizens and nationals of Indonesia are called Indonesians. There are approx thirteen hundred ethnicities in this country, making it a multicultural archipelagic nation with a diversity of languages, cultural and religious beliefs. Most of the population is native Indonesians while others are from foreign origin, like Arab, Chinese, Indian and Indos. As a Muslim, they have modest clothing etiquettes. Covering legs and shoulders is considered as a good clothing sense unlike many countries. These people are regarded as being superstitious and mystical and appreciate farce humor. Also they are considered as one of the most conservative people in Southeast Asia. Muslim values and Asian values about family, as well as social conduct have a prominent position in their lives. Their traditional culture promotes the need to live in harmony. There are many different varieties of customs, music, food, traditional colorful dresses and art in their culture. Music, Cinema, Theatre, Dance, Literature, etc, they are active in every field. They have different sides of their personality too, like they are friendly and have strong values. They have a sense of community. Projection of anger, shouting, rude looks, hands on hips, slamming of doors, etc in front of others, are all considered as offensive behavior. Use your right hand for hand shake or receiving or giving gifts to anyone. Female tourists are not required to cover their heads only local women cover.

Unemployment rate

The unemployment rate in Indonesia was 6.49% in the third quarter of the year 2021, and then it fell down to 5.86% in the third quarter of year 2022, amid further improvement in local covid-19 pandemic. The number of jobless persons decreased by 0.68 million to 7.4 million. At the same time, the number of employed was increased by 3.24% to 135.3 million, especially in agriculture, manufacturing, construction, food accommodation and beverages. In the mean time, the workman force participation rate got up to 68.63% from 67.80% a year earlier. Unemployment rate is the share of labor force that is without work but available for and seeking employment. Jobless rate in this country is low due to the rising economic activity. Many new job opportunities are created; hence the jobless rate is decreasing with a good pace. 

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Economy of  Indonesia

The economy of Indonesia is largest in Southeast Asia and is considered as one of the emerging market economies. This is a middle income country and is a member of the G20, which is also classified as a newly industrialized country. This nation is depended on domestic market and government budget spending, with state own enterprises. The administration of prices of a range of basic goods like rice and electricity, also plays an important role in Indonesia’s market economy. Economy here is fairly, stable economy with continuous growth over the past few years. Growth of the economy is depended on oil, petrochemicals, food processing, petroleum, steel and tourism industry. GDP rank of Indonesia is 17th in nominal GDP and 7th in (PPP) in the year 2022. The freedom score of this nation’s economy is 64.4 percent which makes it the 63rd freest economy in the 2022 year index. The service sector contributes for more than half of the GDP. Industry sector contributes additional quarter, which includes services like mining, tourism, and manufacturing. The sectors that recorded the highest growth are the tourism, telecoms and textile sectors. Main Industries are palm oil, coal, petroleum, liquefied gas, vehicle, electronics, transportation, machinery, tourism, textiles, footwear, seafood, beverage, smelting, etc. Goods exported by Indonesia are Metal, Plastics, textiles products, Automobiles, machinery, Transportation products, Wooden products, Industrial equipments, etc. Export partners are China, USA, Japan, India, ASEAN, Hong Kong, South Korea, European Union. 

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Renting and buying of real estates for foreigners 


Foreigners get vast options of accommodation in Indonesia. Expats working with an international company must ask their employer for assistance. Renting a property is mostly preferable by the expats in this country. Plenty of property for rent is available in this country. Finding the accommodation according to your taste and need requires effort. There are several properties you will find online as many residential properties are displayed on the property portals for rent in Indonesia.

Lease agreements are made directly with the owner. Property close to the beach is pricey. Prices in the major cities are comparatively higher than the rural areas. Take along an Indonesian friend or adviser to look through the contract to ensure a clear understanding of the agreement. 


Technically it is illegal for foreigners to own land in Indonesia. They can purchase a house or apartment without owning the land it is built on, but this is quite difficult process. Still there are many have become owners in the country. Buying a property is permitted by the government for the expats. The only thing is the estate transaction should be properly sanctioned through the government. Agreement approved by the Indonesian government gives expats the property rights.  Foreigners can own Bali property with 30 years lease agreements with twenty year extensions. Long term lease is also an option to own a property in this country.

While buying a property, prices may vary, if the property is in the city centre or is in outskirts, its size, near the coastline or in the middle of the country, etc. Apart from the house price you will also need to pay the agency fees, notary and lawyer’s fee, acquisition fee, registration fee, etc. 

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The climate in Indonesia is fairly tropical. The warm waters ensures that temperature here remains constant with the coastal areas averaging 28°C and the mountains, inland areas with 26°C with higher regions 23°C. Temperature varies a little from season to season. Here you will experience relatively minor change in the length of daylight hours from one season to another. The main variable of climate is rainfall, and humidity level goes from 70% to 90%. There are only two seasons in Indonesia Rainy and Dry. 

Rainy Season: This season dwells from the month of November to March. However, global warming has made these seasons less predictable. 

Dry Season: This season starts from the month of April and ends in the month of October. 

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The official language of Indonesia is Indonesian or bahasa Indonesia. This language is the standardized version of Malay, which has being used in the multilingual Indonesian archipelago for more than century. This is the fourth most populous country in the world and more than 90% inhabitants speaks Indonesian, making it one of the most widely spoken language in the world. There are more than 700 local languages in Indonesian islands like Sundanese, Toba Batak, Tetun, Javanese, etc. Malay as the source of Indonesian is mother tongue of ethnic Malay who lives along the eastern coastal area of Sumatra. Indonesians are bilingual and some are multilingual. They also speak English as a second language in most of the Indonesia. English is spoken in the capital city Jakarta and most of the tourist places, as English speaking foreigners can be seen all year round. Foreign languages spoken by the immigrants as well as the population are Italian, Dutch, etc. Indonesian Sign Language, which is also called BISINDO or SIBI  is also used by many deaf and mute Indonesia. 

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Traffic congestion is day by day growing problem in Indonesia, especially in the capital city Jakarta, due to its overcrowded population. The increasing numbers of the vehicles on the road is the main reason of the traffic issue. Safety awareness is low in this country. Buses and trucks are overloaded on the roads. Most roads outside urban areas are of single lane in each direction, making it dangerous to drive. Rush hours are from 7.00 am to 9.00 am in the morning and 4.00 pm to 6.00 pm in the evening. Driving in here is not easy, as some people may think as the roads are little dangerous, scary and a bit too much to handle. But the roads are quite smooth, some are very new and some are still under construction. Driving on the highways or on the rural areas is safe but if you drive in big cities like Jakarta, it can be tricky sometimes. Most of the roads are in good condition but a few roads are chaotic, have large potholes and bumpy surfaces. There are people who are not orderly on the roads at all, so be attentive while walking, driving or riding a bicycle. Here you can rent a car here with a driver. Foreigners can drive in this country with valid International Driving Permit (IDP), especially while renting a car or driving legally. Legal age to drive in Indonesia is 17 years. According to the traffic rules, traffic runs on the left hand side of the road. 

Documents needed as a foreigner

  • Driver’s age should be of 17 years or above
  • Vehicle’s registration papers
  • Insurance copy
  • Driver’s license (International Driving Permit)

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The Rupiah (Rp) or (IDR) is the official monetary currency of Indonesia. This is issued and controlled by the Bank of Indonesia. One Rupiah is subdivided in 100 sen. However, high inflation has rendered all coins and banknotes denominated in sen obsolete.

The paper currency is in eight denominations which are:

Rp1,000, Rp2,000, Rp5,000, Rp10,000, Rp20,000, Rp50,000, Rp100,000 and Rp75,000 (commemorative).

Coins are available in the following denominations:

Rp500, Rp1,000, Rp100, and Rp200. The bill of Rp75,000 and coins of Rp100 & Rp200.

The coins of Rp100 & Rp200 are rarely used nowadays, howevery are still legal and in circulation. Other than Indonesia, the Rupiah also has an unofficial user country, which is  Timor-Leste. Indonesia has also introduced the digital Rupiah in the year 2022.

Payment Transaction

In Indonesia payment methods like cash, cards or online payment are widely accepted. Cash is the easiest payment method which is used by more than 90% population of its population. The e-commerce business is blooming significantly in recent years in Indonesia. Digital wallets and interbank transfers are some of the online methods to transfer money used here.

Other popular modes includes Domestic cards, international credit cards, and debit cards. Payment system has transformed over the time with the advanced technology, so many ways to make and receive payments online like QR codes, e-wallets, credit cards, PayLater, and Direct Debit are being used.  The other popular online method used is,  over the counter payment (OTC), and QRIS. 

List of online payment methods in Indonesia: 

  • Bank Transfer
  • e-Wallet
  • PayLater
  • Direct Debit
  • QR Codes
  • QRIS/OTC         

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Cost of living of Indonesia

According to a survey Indonesia is comparatively cheaper country in the Asian Continent and cost of living here is less than forty ninety percent of countries in the world. Big places like Jakarta, Bali, Java are expensive than rural areas. Average living cost in Indonesia also depends upon your lifestyle or your current situation, like whether you are working or a student. Cost of living varies from city to city and also if you are staying alone or with your family.         

The average monthly expense for a single person is approximately Rp 33,903,420. And the approx monthly expense will rise if you want to move along with your family of four people will be Rp17,695,000. The cost of food is cheaper compared to housing or dining. If you are staying in a city where you can go by bicycle or by walking to your university or office or live in a city with a good public transport system, then your cost of living will be much lower.

Monthly rent will cost more in the main city than the rent in rural areas. Expense will also be low if you need smaller accommodation, than the bigger one.

Here are some products mentioned below, so that you will get a clear idea of the cost of living: 



Amount in (Rupiah) (Rp)


Whole Fat Milk

1 lit



12 (a dozen)



1 Kg (2 lb.)



500 grams (1 lb)


Dining (Lunch)

Full meal


Fast food meal




2 loaf



8 mbps (1 month)


Cleaning help



Public transport ticket




Short visit


Movie Tickets

For 2


Utilities (heating, gas, electricity)

1 month, 2 people in (900 sqft) flat


Utilities (heating, gas, electricity)

1 month, 1 people in  (450 sqft) flat


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Apartment Rent

In many Indonesian cities renting a one bedroom apartment, in the city centre will cost around as much as a two bedroom apartment outside the city center or near coastal areas. If your stay is for short term then there are many sites on the internet to help you get your accommodation. In Indonesia getting an accommodation is challenging so asking your colleagues, friends, shopkeepers or waiters in the nearby café or restaurants will be helpful. People also put As you sign boards of ‘To let’  on the houses to be given on rent which you can approach. While talking to the landlord or to the real estate agent take along your Indonesian speaking friend with you so that the conversation will be understood clearly as many Indonesians are fluent in English.

A big place like Jakarta has the expensive apartments followed by Bali and Serene Queen in this country. Fully furnished one bedroom apartment in the city centre will cost you approx Rp8,190,490 and same apartment, outside city will cost approx Rp3,724,350. A furnished studio apartment of 2 to 3 bedrooms in the city centre will cost you approx Rp16,292,300 and outside the city it will cost you approx Rp8,256,100. After visiting on the below given link you will get the ideas of the cost of monthly rent. Property showing websites also mentions prices below so that you can choose according to your need and comfort. 

For more info visit:


In Indonesia paying income tax is compulsory. If you have lived here for more than six months within a year then your income will be taxes with a progressive rate. Income tax is paid by most individuals through monthly withheld by employers. Tax has an important part in Indonesia’s economy. Taxes are imposed and managed by the Ministry of Finance (Indonesia). Personal income tax in Indonesia is from 0% to about 35%. Resident and non-resident both are subjected to pay income tax. Residents can be identified as they are domiciled in Indonesia, completed stay for about six months and resided during a tax year. Non-resident taxpayers are who do not fit into the resident taxpayer’s criteria. Non-resident taxpayers do not have to register for an Indonesian tax ID number (NPWP). They need not to file their individual income tax. Tax is only imposed in case if they have Indonesian sourced income.

Value added tax (VAT) is mandatory on the every purchase of goods in this country. Property tax is calculated by the municipalities and is applied annually to the taxpayers at the beginning of the year. Rental income tax for non residents in this country is imposed in a flat rate of 20% of gross income. Corporate tax is mandatory on the income and profits of corporation, public institutions and other legal entities. Carbon tax is a new tax levied from July 2022 as a part of Indonesia’s tax reform. This tax is imposed on carbon emission that has negative impact on the environment. 

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There are numerous public and private institutions in Indonesia. Jakarta, its capital is the biggest center for culture and education. Jakarta provides accommodation for the vast majority of international students in its institutions and permits foreigners to enjoy the serenity of the country and everything it offers. Indonesia has high level of educational system with affordable rates. All over the country, there are thirty public universities and thousands of private universities; however the cost of tuition of every semester is high for international students. It costs around three to six thousand euro per semester in this country and vary according to the degree or course the student is applying to. This nation does not allow international students to work while they are studying. Although some universities offer scholarship aid and grants to those are not financially sound. It is suggested to confirm your eligibility by giving a visit to the institution for further details on scholarships and grants. An international student must get a student visa called VITAS (Visa application). This can be exchanged for another visa called KITAS at the time of entry into the country. VITAS is a temporary visa or temporary permit, given to you before your arrival in Indonesia. After arrival, go to the immigration office with VITAS within a month to exchange and receive KITAS (temporary residence permit). 

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Health Insurance  

Indonesian healthcare system is very much up to date but still requires major changes. In rural areas extra attention is needed like quality of care and availability of affordable treatment. Jakarta is home to some of the best public medical facilities though. Foreigners can get access to the public and specialist hospitals but are not included in certain government healthcare schemes. Visiting public hospital means either you need to pay or your international health insurance covers you at a particular medical facility. Healthcare system have two parts – public and private insurance. Government mandated insurance schemes came as a temporary for many because of the low premium cost. Citizens with serious healthcare issues are given access to the strain of the nation’s healthcare facilities. Insufficient and poor medical facilities in remote areas are pushing expats and citizens in quality healthcare at the major cities. These areas and the public sector do not match the urban facilities. As a result most foreigners prefer to get a private health insurance. Working expats can obtain comprehensive health insurance through their employers. The cost of healthcare is expensive for expats. Although the prices are high, expats bear the expenses due to the facilities that most medical centers offer. The waiting time is short, and the visits to the doctor are not time consuming. 

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Indonesia, an island country with volcanoes, waterfalls, forests, several sunset spots, better environment and provides one of the best education in the world. This nation is famous for its adventure, colorful markets, history, beautiful houses and monuments and food. This place is known to change people’s lives. Bali is the magical island, became popular after Julia Roberts gave a visit to eat, pray and love. Other than this Bali is genuinely enchanting and most famous than the country itself. There are less complex laws regarding tax rate band and it is possible to live a low cost life. This nation has better ecosystem and quite pace of life. Indonesia is a place where people come for work, study and tourism; so this is a good place to get work. People are sensible and respect each other’s privacy, so it is also expected from tourists to respect their culture and behave accordingly, especially when it comes to clothing. Nightlife is lively and colorful and there are many options like lounges and bars. The city Jakarta has embassy, consulates, and one of the best educational institutions. Indonesia has many things and views to offer, which makes this country popular amongst most of the foreigners.

Moving to Indonesia

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Translation of the documents

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