Living in Indonesia

Advice for British people living in Indonesia, including information on health, education, benefits, residence requirements and more.


This guide sets out essential information for British nationals residing in Indonesia, including advice on health, education, benefits and residence requirements. We cannot provide guidance on general lifestyle enquiries apart from the information and links listed below. See our information on what the Embassy can and cannot do for British nationals. This information supplements the travel advice for Indonesia.


Medical care and access to fully equipped hospitals varies greatly across Indonesia, especially outside of the main tourist areas of Jakarta and Bali. Healthcare is not provided free of charge in Indonesia and medical bills can be high.

There is no reciprocal National Health Service agreement in Indonesia and medical costs are to be borne by the individual. It is essential that you ensure that comprehensive travel insurance is taken out before you travel. Make sure that your policy provides for the following:

  • an air ambulance, in case you need to be flown home or to a third country for treatment

  • full medical cover (bills can be very expensive)

  • bringing the body home, in the event of a death

  • bringing your family home, in the event of your illness or injury

If you need emergency medical assistance, you can attend any medical clinic, Hospital Emergency Room or dial 118 for an ambulance.


The Indonesian government, through the Ministry of Education and Culture, provides free education at public schools for Indonesian citizens up to the age of 15. For more information on Indonesian education system, please refer to the Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture.

Employment, Entry and Residence Requirements

All foreign nationals wishing to work and live in Indonesia are required to have a relevant work permit issued by the Indonesian Ministry of Man Power and a KITAS (Temporary Staying Permit) issued by Indonesian Immigration. Using a visa with the wrong category for working in Indonesia, or overstaying your visa, can lead to prosecution, potentially resulting in detention and deportation at your own expense.

For detailed information on visa and KITAS requirements please contact the Indonesian Embassy in the country in which you are residing or refer to the Indonesian Immigration Authority.


The Indonesian government does not provide benefits to foreign nationals.

For information on UK benefits, please visit our benefits if you are abroad site.

If you are considering moving or retiring abroad, please visit our moving or retiring abroad site.

Driving licences and Vehicles

You must obtain a local driving licence to drive in Indonesia or apply for an international driving licence from the Indonesian Motor Association (Ikatan Motor Indonesia).


If you are travelling to Indonesia with Scottish Sterling bank notes, you may wish to check which banks in Indonesia accept Scottish bank notes.

If you wish to open a local bank account, you may be asked to show your passport and your KITAS.

Individuals are responsible for reporting their own tax liabilities.

Guidance on bringing medication into Indonesia

Indonesian Customs authorities allow you to bring in medication for your personal use provided it is a reasonable amount and is accompanied by the prescription from your doctor.

Property and property disputes

The Indonesian Land and Property policy now allows foreign nationals to own land or property in Indonesia. For more information on this please consult a lawyer in Indonesia.

Social ethics and traditions

Please refer to our travel advice for further information.

Leaving Indonesia

If you are a KITAS holder please ensure that you have an Exit/Re-entry Permit from Indonesian immigration.

If you are a KITAS holder and you are leaving for good, you must have an Exit Permit Only stamp in your passport. For more information on this, please refer to the Indonesian Immigration Authority.


This information is provided as a general guide and is based upon information provided to the embassy by the relevant local authorities and may be subject to change at any time with little or no notice. The FCO and the British Embassy will not be liable for any inaccuracies in this information. British nationals wishing to obtain any further information must contact the relevant local authority.

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Published 26 July 2013
Last updated 25 May 2016 + show all updates
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