Indonesia as an expat destination

Published:  9 May at 6 PM
Want to get involved? Become a Featured Expat and take our interview.
Become a Local Expert and contribute articles.
Get in touch today!
For expats with a sense of adventure looking for a decidedly different destination, Indonesia is far more than just Bali, Papua and Jakarta, but care should be taken when travelling with limited knowledge of the archipelago.

Arriving in Jakarta gives the first taste of Indonesia to expats looking to find a haven outside the usual haunts. Many residents in the bustling city speak English, so finding your feet is relatively easy. However, once you’ve headed into the hinterlands, communication can become anything between difficult and impossible, especially when dealing with local authorities and service providers.

Many village communities are still without internet connectivity or even electricity, making keeping in touch with friends and family at home tricky at best. ATMs are rare, as the vast majority of transactions are cash only. Roads in remoter areas are poorly maintained, although rental motorbikes are available from $5 per day to around $25 for a week. Haggling for a cheaper price is acceptable, especially if you’re planning on using a motorbike taxi to get around until you’re settled.

In spite of reports to the contrary, the archipelago doesn’t suffer from high levels of crime. Even so, it’s best to stay alert, as pickpocketing and minor thefts do occur, especially in tourist hubs. If you’re planning to explore Papua and West Papua provinces with a view to staying, you’ll need a permit from Jakarta’s national police headquarters as violence due to political tensions is common. Central Sulawesi, Aceh and Maluka are also best avoided.

Making sure you’ve private health insurance is a good idea as dengue fever and malaria are rife in a number of provinces, with cholera and typhoid not yet totally eradicated. Getting the recommended vaccinations should take care of this type of health risk. One thing you can’t protect yourself from is the range of natural disasters caused by the archipelago’s site on the volcanic Ring of Fire.

Indonesia’s religious and social diversity is one of the most fascinating in the world, with well over a thousand individual cultures, all of which have their own traditions. This and the fabled beauty of the landscape draw huge numbers of visitors and an increasing number of expats wanting to live and work in this incredible country. Most expatriates stay in and around the cities or head for Bali, with teaching English a favourite occupation.
Like this news?

Comments » No published comments just yet for this article...

Feel free to have your say on this item. Go on... be the first!

Tell us Your Thoughts On This Piece:

Your Name *
Email * (not published, needs verification one time only)
  • Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • RSS feed
  • Facebook

Latest Headlines

News Links

News Archive