Getting a Work Visa in Indonesia Guide

7 min read|Last Updated: March 9, 2023|

Indonesia has grown to be one of the popular destinations for work given its growing economy and welcoming culture. Beyond setting up a company in Indonesia, many have sought for jobs and are interested to live and work in Indonesia.

In order to do so, one must apply for an Indonesia work visa before entering the country. As most of the visa applications are for those who wish to enter Indonesia to work, this article will solely focus on getting a work visa in Indonesia.

What are the Different Types of Visas in Indonesia?

Every foreigner that comes to Indonesia, usually have a different type of goal in mind. Some come for a holiday, to which they would research on a visit pass to legally stay in Indonesia, other than that there are those who come for business.

For that reason, there are numerous different types of visas in Indonesia that serve different needs. Some of the visas available are:

  • Work Permit Visa
  • Visit Pass

  • Tourist Pass

  • Dependant Pass

Steps to Obtain a Work Visa in Indonesia

There are 4 main steps to secure a work visa in Indonesia.

#1 – Approval from the government and Submission of ‘Rencana Penempatan Tenaga Kerja Asing’ (RPTKA) to the Ministry of Manpower

Employers employing a foreign national must first get a formal government approval to do so before applying for a VITAS permit visa. Requesting approval either takes the form of an announcement letter (SPT), or letter from the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) indicating that an employment contract has been signed.

Additionally, the Expatriate Placement Plan, or a RPTKA is also required to be submitted to the Ministry of Manpower. When approved, this RPTKA will be used as the basis for issuing a limited stay permit (ITAS) to the foreign employee in question.

Documents Required to obtain an RPTKA 

  • RPTKA application form
  • A letter detailing the reasons for hiring a foreign national, and his/her role in the company;

  • A copy of all sponsorship’s company documents. Please note that to hire foreign worker, the company’s paid up capital must be at least IDR 1,100,000,000 per one foreign worker

  • Recommendation letter from another institution for certain type of company such as Oil and Gas; mining and transportation. This is not needed for a trading or consulting company

  • Copy of the Manpower Report (WajibLaporKetenagakerjaan – WLK), an annual report to the labour department stating the number of expats and local workers employed in the company (issued online by Ministry of Manpower)

  • Company organization structure chart

  • One Indonesian counterpart employee per expat (not required for directors and commissioners or non-resident directors/commissioners)

However, there are exceptions for companies that are employing foreign workers for certain roles that do not need to apply for a RPTKA, including;

  • Shareholders of the company’s board of directors or board of commissioners

  • Diplomatic and consular officers

  • Certain types of government work

#2 – Apply for a work permit (IMTA)

Once the RPTKA has been approved, employers are required to apply for an IMTA. To do so, they must also submit personal information about the applicant to the Ministry of Manpower. These information will be processed and approved in no longer than two working days.

This information includes their gender, nationality, place and date of birth, passport number and length of time it is valid for, their job role and how long they have worked for the company, along with certificates of education and work experience.

IMTAs are issued for a maximum period of one year. This can be extended in line with how long the RPTKA is valid for, up to a maximum period of two years.

Such information includes:

  • Gender

  • Nationality

  • Place & date of birth

  • Passport number

  • Length of time it is valid for

  • Job role

  • Duration of work with the company

  • Certificates of education

  • Work experience

IMTAs are issued for a maximum period of one year. This can be extended in line with how long the RPTKA is valid for, up to a maximum period of two years.

The documents required to obtain an IMTA comprise of:

  • The RPTKA approval form
  • Passport copy

  • Proof of an education certificate relevant to the position

  • A certificate of competence or work experience of at least five years in a position relevant to the position

  • An insurance policy issued by an insurance company incorporated in Indonesia

  • A statement from the expat agreeing to transfer his/her knowledge to Indonesian counterpart

  • Receipt of the DKP-TKA payment (US$ 100 per month or of US$1,200 per year)

  • Two coloured photographs with red background (edited photo is unacceptable)

  • Possess a Taxpayer Identity Number (TIN/NPWP) and have already registered in the National Social Security System (BPJS) if you have worked in Indonesia more than 6 months

# 3 – Apply for a Limited Stay Visa and Permit

The Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) will need to issue a letter of recommendation to the Department of Immigration, notifying it that it has issued VITAS to the recommended foreign employee.

Under the new regulations, applicants may concurrently apply for an ITAS at any nearby Indonesian embassy.

The relevant Indonesian diplomatic mission will issue the VITAS and a letter approving the issuance of the ITAS within two working days of receiving a completed application form.

Furthermore, foreign workers will be granted a multiple re-entry permit, which will be valid for the same length of time as their ITAS.

An ITAS allows expatriates in Indonesia to legally take up employment, earn his remuneration and open a bank account. It also gives one the right to stay without having to leave the country on a regular basis and enables them to obtain permanent residency status after three years.

The overall cost to the employer of obtaining an ITAS is roughly between US$1,000 and US$1,200.

Documents required by employer to obtain an ITAS:

A copy of RPTKA Copy of the passport with validity of at least 18 months;
A copy of the PIC’s ID (KTP) of the sponsor Copy of curriculum vitae stamped by the company and signed by the director on a stamp
A copy of the ID (KTP) of a local employee working for the same company; Copy of university certificate or highest education degree in English or Bahasa, stamped by the company and signed by the director on a stamp
All of sponsorship’s company documents Work certificate with minimum 5 years of experience
Manpower Report (WLK) Health insurance
Blank letterhead of the company Photographs
Company stamp

# 4 –  Apply for a KITAS Card and Blue Foreigner’s Registration Book

After the ITAS has been obtained, foreign workers can apply for a KITAS Card and Blue Foreigners Registration Book, which is used to record their immigration status.

Both will grant permit for a foreigner for a stay up to two years and may be extended for up to two years each time, up to a maximum total of six years.

Alternatives to Working for a Company in Indonesia

Another route to live and work in Indonesia is to start your own company. This will provide you flexibility in applying and renewing your work visa as and when required.

The requirements for setting up a company in Indonesia is straightforward. However, one potential challenge is that if you are a foreign business owner, you might struggle to communicate and complete your documents as most are in Bahasa Indonesia.


Come down to our office or get in touch virtually for an incorporation & work visa assessment.


How long does it takes to obtain a work visa?2023-03-09T10:42:00+08:00

The entire process is expected to take 5 days if the complete set of required documents is submitted.  

Is Indonesia a good place to work ?2023-03-09T10:40:13+08:00

Indonesia has the biggest economy in South East Asia, this means that there is potential in the economic growth. Thus, Indonesia has a wide range of goods and services along with better standards of living.  

In the city of Jakarta and Bali, there is a large expat community as it is popular amongst tourists and travellers alike.  

What is the penalty of working in Indonesia without a Work Visa?2023-03-09T10:39:16+08:00

The foreign individual who is working without a permit would be subjected to a IDR 500 Billion fine and a imprisonment of 5 years indicated in the Indonesian Immigration Law. On the other hand, an employer would also be subjected to a fine of IDR 36 Billion.

Is there a maximum time a work visa can be renewed?2023-03-09T10:38:44+08:00

Yes. For KITAS, the Visa for Temporary Residency Permit, it is renewable every year for a maximum of 5 years.

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