Thinking of planning a trip to Indonesia? Make sure your travel dollar goes further by using the most cost efficient methods in this guide on Indonesia travel money tips.
Bali, Indonesia is a well-known vacation hotspot and the country as a whole is becoming increasingly important for business travelers.
Indonesia is a vast country, and while your credit and debit card will work in major cities and tourist spots they won’t work everywhere.
Purchasing Indonesian Rupiah for Travel
Exchange rates and fees will be different at each bank or currency exchange outlet so make sure to compare before you buy your travel money for Indonesia.
To compare currencies, click here.
Indonesia Travel Money Tips.
How Much Money Should You Bring to Indonesia?
The national currency of Indonesia is the Rupiah (Rp). Due to the high (numerical) value of the Indonesian Rupiah, it’s important to be careful with your math when figuring out the cost of things.
Having some cash in your back pocket is always a good idea in the event you run into a merchant who won’t accept cards. So, how much should you actually bring?
Backpackers and Corporate executives are likely going to have wildly different budgets, so how much really depends on you. Here are some guidelines:
|DAILY BUDGET (Bali)||Low (500.000 Rp)||Mid (500.000 – 2.000.000 Rp)||High (2.000.000 Rp >)|
200.000 Rp per night
|Standard Hotel Room
400.000 – 1.000.000 Rp per night
|Resort / 5 star hotel
from 2.000.000 Rp per night
100.000 Rp per person
350.000 Rp per person
20.000 Rp (125cc)
55.000 Rp (Denpasar Airport to Kuta)
|Car rental (Volkswagen Passat)
$700.000 Rp a day
*All prices are estimated in Indonesian Rupiahs
Things You Should Know About Currency Exchange
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Travel Card VS Debit Card or Credit Card
In Indonesia using a variety of payment methods might be your best bet. Using a prepaid travel card supplemented by a debit card is a reasonable approach. But be sure to have a cash reserve in case anything goes wrong with the cards.
The benefits and drawbacks of using a travel card in Indonesia are:
- Security (no need to carry large sums of cash)
- Fixed exchange rate (when you load your card, not subject to local vendors)
- Loading all (or most) of your travel funds onto a prepaid card runs the risk of you being stranded in places that don’t recognize them, thus strapped for cash.
- Not many cards allow you to load Indonesian Rupiah onto them.
Using a Credit Card in Indonesia
Credit cards can be great for paying big ticket items such as accommodations, and some have the bonus of providing travel insurance. Be aware of foreign transaction fees and whether or not your card charges them though. Also, read the fine print and take advantage of any interest-free periods when you return home and must pay them off.
Should you use Traveler’s Checks in Indonesia?
Not as common as they once were, travelers checks still offer some real benefits when it comes to travel money. The ID check required is great from a security perspective and if lost or stolen they’re not hard to replace.
Using a debit card in Indonesia
Want to avoid interest charges altogether? Using an ATM card and paying for things directly is one solution.
You will still be facing costs on ATM fees and the conversion fees associated with using your dollars for Indonesian purchases. Keep tabs on these fees and make sure they don’t eat into your travel fund.
Using a Visa or Mastercard debit card in Indonesia is pretty easy, but it’s always good to have backup cash on you, especially if you roam into rural areas.
For the most up-to-date information on how to get travel money for Indonesia, feel free to talk to one of our experts at The Currency Shop.