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Visas for Indonesia

Vexed by visas?

Popular visa types: Tourist and Visa on arrival

The two most popular visas for Indonesia with foreign tourists are the 30-day visa on arrival and the tourist visa.

Over 60 nationalities are eligible for visa on arrival which is good for 30-days. This visa is now available in two distinct and different flavours (free or paid) depending on your nationality.

Indonesian free visa on arrival
This visa is currently available to 45 nationalities (see below) and is available at arrival at nine entry ports across Indonesia (also see below). Importantly, this visa cannot be extended -- meaning if you are planning on staying longer than 30 days in Indonesia, and you are eligible for the free visa, you will need to apply for a visa before you arrive in Indonesia. This visa is also only available at a very limited selection of entry points into Indonesia. Basically it is great if you're on a short trip to Bali or Batam, otherwise, not so much.

Indonesian paid visa on arrival
This visa is available to most other nationalities, costs US$35 and can be extended for another month (or longer depending on a myriad of random factors). Other currencies are accepted for the visa, but the exchange rate is dire, so you're better off to use greenbacks.

Important!
What has not been clear is if it is permissible for say a British citizen (who is eligible for the free visa), to decide they actually want to buy the $35 visa (so that they can extend it). Until this is clarified, you're better off to get a tourist visa (see below) before arrival in Indonesia.

Free tourist visa eligibility
The following nationalities are eligible for the free 30-day visa on arrival (list via Bali Discovery).

Africa
Morocco
South Africa

Asia
Brunei Darussalam
Burma (Myanmar)
Cambodia
China
Hong Kong
Japan
Laos
Macau
Malaysia
Philippines
Singapore
South Korea
Thailand
Vietnam

Australasia
New Zealand

Europe
Austria
Belgium
Czechoslovakia
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Great Britain
Hungary
Italy
Norway
Poland
Spain
Switzerland
Russia
Sweden
The Netherlands

Middle East
Bahrain
Kuwait
Oman
Qatar
U.A.E.

North America
Canada
Mexico
USA

South America
Chile
Ecuador
Peru

Free visa on arrival is available at ONLY via following ports of entry (list via Bali Discovery):

Air
Bali: Ngurah Rai Airport
Batam: Hang Nadim Airport
Jakarta: Soekarno-Hatta Airport
Medan: Kualu Namu Airport
Surabaya: Juanda Airport

Sea
Batam: Sekupang port and Batam Centre port
Bintan: Sri Bintan port
Riau: Tanjung Uban port

The paid visa on arrival is available at most popular international airports (for example, Jakarta, Bali, Medan, Padang, Palembang, Surabaya, Yogyakarta, Mataram and Kupang) and also at many seaports which accept international visitors.

Smaller crossings may only accept payment in US dollars while other more popular arrival points may accept multiple currencies, or, as in the case of Bali, accept credit cards. Just don't expect the best exchange rate in town!


The Tourist Visa is available at most Indonesian embassies and consulates and is valid for either one month or two months. Not all Indonesian diplomatic missions will issue the two month version.

Costs and processing time varies tremendously depending on the overseas mission, but prices are generally most competitive at missions within Southeast Asia. Contact your closest Indonesian embassy for pricing details - the Indonesian Embassy in Washington has a solid list.

Extensions

The Indonesian visa on arrival can (in theory) be extended for an additional 30-day period for an extra US$35. We suggest this be done at a popular immigration centre, for example Bali, as in less touristic centres you may be turned away.

The two month tourist visa cannot *legally* be extended. Some visa agents, especially in Bali and Jakarta, offer to extend these visas, but what they actually do is convert it into a different type of visa called a social visa (which can then be extended for up to six months total stay). A social visa requires a sponsor (which the visa agent will often arrange for an additional fee). In practise the end result is you get a longer stay in country, but what you're actually getting is a different visa. There is an interesting conversation on the Travelfish forum regarding Indonesian visa extensions (note, it is a little confusing!)

Validity issues

The main issue facing tourists is that the paid tourist visa on arrival can only be extended once and the free visa on arrival cannot be extended at all. If you're looking at a longer stay in Indonesia, plan your trip so that you'll be near an international post two months in, so you can fly out to get a new visa then return and carry on.

Overstays

While it isn't a big deal to overstay a visa in Indonesia, it does get expensive very quickly. The base fine is 300,000 rupiah per day of overstay.

Things to watch out for

The main consideration is to try and plan your trip so that any visa extension issues will be happening at a heavily touristed point. Bali, halfway along the archipelago is the logical spot should you plan on spending a month to the west then a month to the north or east.

Departure tax

There is a departure tax of 200,000 rupiah from Indonesian international airports, though this is mostly incorporated into the ticket price now. The charge is levied on any passenger holding a ticket out of the country, even in the case of young children sitting on their parent's lap.



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