Cheapest Ways of Making Money Transfers to Indonesia

What will this guide cover?

money transfers to indonesiaMaking money transfers to Indonesia from New Zealand can be difficult.

You might be transferring money for business or you might be transferring to family or friends. Whatever your reasons, you’ll want to find the best option and you might be feeling overwhelmed with all the choices you have.

We know that every transfer is important, as is getting the best value for your money; so luckily for you we’ve put together a simplified version of the options we think are best in terms of convenience, ease and value.

For a quick comparison table of exchange rates and fees, click here.

This guide will cover reasons why you might transfer money and the recommended methods, as well as your general options to transfer money to Indonesia:

  • Personal transfer – sending money to family or friends in Indonesia
  • Business transfer
  • Buying or selling a property in Indonesia
  • Studying Overseas
  • General costs of sending money to Indonesia
  • Your options to send money to Indonesia
  • Information you’ll need for the transfer
  • General information

Transferring money to Thailand? Read our cost-effective guide here.

Making a trip to Indonesia? Gain some useful budgeting and money saving tips here.

Personal transfer from New Zealand to Indonesia

You can set up a personal transfer from New Zealand to Indonesia through a number of methods:

  1. Use your bank: Not all banks will support Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) but will accept currency transfers to and from Indonesia. They will, however, charge you a high international transfer fee, as well as an uncompetitive exchange rate, but it is an option.
  2. Use money transfer companies: These companies will offer you a better exchange rate and lower fees. Here are some providers that transfer money from New Zealand to Indonesia:

All companies have similarities and offer competitive rates, but our recommendation is OFX for great exchange rates between NZD to IDR.

Business transfer from New Zealand to Indonesia

If your business is transferring money between New Zealand and Indonesia, there are two critical things you must consider when finding the best option:

  1. The exchange rate margin: This is the difference between the wholesale exchange rate ( and the rate you will get.
  2. Business products they offer such as forward exchange contracts, foreign currency accounts and limit orders.

You can use any of the money transfer companies listed above if you wish. Our choice for business transfers to Indonesia are HiFX– their exchange rates and zero fee structure will allow you to maximise your overseas receipts or payments. They also offer Foreign Currency Accounts; helpful if you would like to hold the funds a foreign currency and exchange them at a favourable time.

Buying or selling property in Indonesia

If you are looking to buy a property in Indonesia, or have sold your property in Indonesia and needing to send the money back to New Zealand, we recommend that you look for a provider that has a strong presence in both countries. This will give you local support either side, as well as the flexibility you may need leading up to the settlement.

Our choice would be TorFX for property settlement transfers, as you (the customer) are assigned a local account manager that will be licensed in New Zealand and have a strong global support network to guide you when needed.

Studying overseas

As much as we would like them to, tuition fees aren’t getting any cheaper. Annual payments to universities or other education providers, along with all other expenses, can really add up abroad. As these payments can be large, you need to know the best method of payment before moving your funds.

  • For larger payments, you should be keeping a keen eye on the exchange rate you’re getting as this will largely affect the amount of money you will get in the foreign currency at the end.
  • For smaller payments, you should keep an eye on the transfer fees.

There are many methods of transferring funds abroad, but we would use HiFX as they are great for saving on those hefty costs when paying for bills.

General costs for sending money to Indonesia

Calculating the costs can be difficult, as nearly all fees, charges and exchange rates are dependent on how much are you sending, the method of sending and method of receiving. The most common fees are as follows:

  1. A transfer fee
  2. Exchange rate margin: the difference you pay between the wholesale exchange rate on and the rate you will actually get
  3. Bank fees: The fees that your bank will charge for sending the money to the correct account overseas.
  4. Receiving bank fees: The fees the receiving bank will charge you for converting into the correct currency.

Your options to send money to Indonesia

There are various methods of sending money to Indonesia:

Via your bank

Using your bank is an easy and quick way to transfer fees and can normally send the money successfully within 3-5 business days depending on your bank. Generally, banks will have uncompetitive exchange rates which make them unattractive if you’re sending large amounts of money abroad.

Check with your bank and research the fees and exchange rates based on the amount you plan to send over.


Paypal is a convenient and highly popular way of transferring money abroad, and by far the quickest with transfers being completed within minutes (dependent on the type of transfer). It is great for smaller amounts (under $1000NZD) as although the exchange rate is equal to those of banks, the fees are slightly less. It’s particularly handy if you are paying from your own Paypal account directly into another Paypal account.

A money transfer company

There are an overwhelming amount of money transfer companies out there – some older but trustworthy, and others newly emerging in the technological, app-age. In general, these companies are your best option when transferring larger amounts of money (anything between $1000 – $1,000,000NZD). Different companies will have various minimum and maximums set, and the transfer itself will usually take around 1 business day longer than banks or Paypal.

You will need to create an account with the company before sending the money – you can do this online:

  • Register your details on the website – you will likely need I.D handy
  • Account needs to then be approved, and you’ll get your login details
  • Enter the bank details of where you are sending the money i.e. the ‘Beneficiary’ or ‘Recipient’
  • You will get a quote based on the fees and exchange rate for sending the money
  • If you are happy, confirm the details including the given rate.

Information you’ll need for the transfer

You’ll need the details of the bank account you are sending the money to i.e. the Beneficiary or Recipient details. These details will be:

  • Account name of your Recipient
  • Their address
  • Their SWIFT code

SWIFT codes

The Swift codes for the biggest banks in Indonesia:

Bank Mandiri : BMRIIDJA

Bank Rakyat Indonesia : BRINIDJAXXX

The Bank Central Asia : CENAIDJA

Bank CIMB Niaga Indonesia : BNIAIDJA

General Information

There are pros and cons to every method of payment you choose. Paypal and money transfer companies like Western Union (who offer cash pick-up) are your fastest options, with transfers being completed within minutes. Paypal will not offer a competitive exchange rate, like Western Union, but it is arguably a lot more convenient. Banks will take 1-2 business days and other money transfers companies will take roughly 2-3 business days.

Do check the details of your chosen method, as all will have their own restrictions, fees and charges. Banks and Paypal will not have a minimum amount, but most money transfer companies will so do check before you send.

Case Study

Michael and his wife Sophie own a holiday home in Bali, Indonesia. They fly there up to three times a year from Auckland to spend a few weeks at a time there.

Michael always insisted on withdrawing cash and carrying it around with them, but Sophie knew there must be a cheaper way, as they were getting charged large amounts of fees for withdrawing money with their New Zealand debit cards whilst out there. Sophie did some research and found out that with their circumstances and regular visits, sending money to a local account in Indonesia would be a lot more affordable than withdrawing cash. Sophie set up a bank account in Bali next time they were over there, and now all Michael needs to do is transfer funds from NZD-IDR via his bank before each visit. A lot of money, time and hassle saved!

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