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Moving House

Moving to Indonesia

Truck loadingOrganizing your moving arrangements for an international move is just one of a myriad of tasks that you need to complete before you hop on the airplane! Closing bank accounts, making arrangements for sale/rental of your residence, getting visas organized, finalizing work issues, getting medical checkups and immunizations, saying goodbye to family and friends, etc. Nonetheless, organizing the moving of your family’s possession is an important process and, which, if conducted successfully, will greatly assist you and your family to get settled into Indonesia. Here are some important tips on organizing your move.

Pre-move Survey

The survey is the opportunity for a salesperson to visit your home to estimate the size of your move and determine any special service requirements - this service should be free with all moving companies. It is best to start the pre-move survey walking room by room with the sales person indicating which items are to be moved. Also, when showing a survey consultant around your home prior to getting the quote, remember to show all your household items, including those stored under beds, in high cupboards and in a storeroom or garage. Take a moment to review the survey list from each moving company that provides you with a quotation.

Quotation and Confirmation

The selection process is, of course, very important. As well as making comparisons on price, it is important to consider the service quality each company is capable of providing. Above all, the moving company needs to understand that moving is a physical process, and their primary objective is to get your valued possessions to your new home safely. If in doubt about the quality of the moving companies that you have met with, perhaps you should check to see which of them have received FIDI-FAIM certification. FIDI-FAIM certification is the only internationally recognized quality standard specifically for the moving industry and is subject to regular independent audits. Visit www.fidi-faim.com to look up (by country) which movers in your location have achieved this certification.

Insurance Cover

Moving companies will quote the insurance cost as a percentage of your goods’ value. As each shipment’s value differs, you will need to complete a valued insurance inventory representing replacement cost at destination. You will normally be supplied with a proposal form breaking down items to be insured into various categories. Usually this is done room by room with separate sections for such items as electrical components, clothing, china and glassware. The completed insurance form should be provided to the moving company before packing, to ensure that you are properly covered. Insurance cover extends to loss or damage in transit. Also find out whether the insurance includes cover against mold and mildew, pairs and sets coverage and mechanical or electrical breakdown. Some companies will charge additional fees for these special covers. You should also check to see whether there is a deductible/excess applicable to any claim.

Packing & Loading

packing houseThe relocation provider you have chosen should carefully wrap all furniture items, listen closely to your requests and have a supervisor in charge of the packing process. They should number all items being moved, check the quantity at both origin and destination and ask for your signature for verification. Reputable relocation companies are happy to pack each and every item, however if you like to sort or pack personal things yourself, then they should oblige and arrange delivery of boxes in advance. Should you choose to do any self-packing, check with the moving company on the insurance rulings, as most will not cover items that are packed by the owner.

packing boxes with hangersPrior to the movers arriving, pack your personal documents (e.g. Birth and marriage certificates, bank records, insurance records, wills), medical records, driver’s licenses, flight tickets, passports and other valuables in a safe location. You should also back up your computer and remove the toner cartridge from your printer before the move.

If it is not possible for you to be present throughout the packing and loading, you should arrange for a representative (e.g., domestic helper, friend, colleague or relative) to be present and ideally you should make arrangements for your children to be looked after by a friend or colleague during the packing and delivery.

Don’t forget to double-check each room after packing to ensure nothing has been left behind.

If your goods require storage before being shipped, you should also request an inspection of the movers' warehouse to ensure that your valued possessions will be secure and safe.


Upon arrival, the crew should unpack all the cartons and place the goods as instructed by you.  As your taste for placement will be different to the crew, it is a good idea to let them know the basic positioning of your furniture. All furniture items should then be unwrapped and set up where you specify, packing debris should be cleared away and all items accounted for before the delivery truck departs. Most companies will return for the used cartons at a later date if there are some boxes that you want to unpack at a slower pace.

Although delivery of items locally can be arranged so that the major items such as beds can be picked up and delivered in the same day for sleeping in, it may be more comfortable and less stressful to arrange a night’s stay in a hotel.

unpackingAlso, some movers can arrange for a handyman to help hang up pictures and mirrors and to patch up holes in the wall at the old residence. Be sure to check with the mover whether they can provide this service.

And finally, remember to be a little flexible when arranging your delivery in Indonesia - as loading and delivery should be avoided at all costs when it is raining - and as you will find out, it rains a lot here in certain months.

And don’t forget to send change of address notices to the post office, magazine subscriptions, insurance company, bank, tax office, etc.

Customs Regulations for Indonesia: Please note that foreigners (excluding diplomatic staff) are only able to import their household effects into Indonesia if they are able to provide (i) Original Passport with visa (issued by Indonesian Embassy/consulate prior to arrival into Indonesia); (ii) Original Residency Permits (KITAS) - must be valid for 12 months and (iii) Original Work Permit - must be valid for 12 months. These documents usually take between two to six weeks to obtain after your arrival in Indonesia. You should ensure that your moving company sends your shipment for arrival in Indonesia to coincide when these documents will be issued to you.

Also remember:

Contributor: Santa Fe


    10 Aug 09 00:27

THANKS for this posting - helpful info.

SOS call: i'm moving to Jakarta in September and need to find a good place to live! any good tips...positive experiences with a housing agent? other ways to know where...how... to find a good place?

any help appreciated! thanks

  okusi   10 Aug 09 07:52

there is no real system of housing agents in indonesia. nearly everything to do with buying and rentnig of houses is done through informal channels. it would be best if you just came here and booked into a reasonably cheap hotel for a month, then start looking around yourself. go to areas where you think you would lke to live and look for "dikontrakan" (for rent) signs. or, look in the newspapers (eg, Kompas) for places to rent. most rental agreements here are done on a yearly or two yearly basis. meaning, you have to pay a year in advance, or more. don't be surprised; this is normal.

    10 Dec 10 02:18

I am wanting to move to indonesia for long stay about 2 years ,i would like to find work there also ,i am a british citizen living in u.k at moment ,also want to know best safe place to live as i am female travelling alone ,hope you can give me information on where i start and what to do ,i would be very happy with anything you could tell me ,thank you .

    10 Dec 10 15:19

Please stay at our place CHIC QUARTER at Kemang South Jakarta,

Chic Quarter is modern ‘resort feel’ home that offers the outmost in privacy, luxury, comfort and security, ideal for short/long term guest. Our location is very close to Jakarta Outer Ring Road (JORR/TB Simatupang) and nearby to major shopping malls, international school, world class medical facilities and public transportation corridors. Our vicinity is completed with, 24 hours CCTV security system, TV Cable, Free unlimited internet access, Swimming pool, Lounge, Furniture, Refrigerator, Water heater, Air conditioner, Balcony, House Cleaning and changing linen.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us at email: rooms.chicquarter@yahoo.com, phone: +62 21 7815162, +95375061, +28848328 for more information or visit us at Jl. Ampera Raya No. 19, Kemang Jakarta Selatan.

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