International travel for business in Indonesia requires a business visa, an official document granted by the Immigration Office in Indonesia, as a permission to visit Indonesia for business purposes.
Although the process of applying a business visa is relatively simple as compared to the application of a stay permit, the process of issuing an Indonesian business visa can be opaque, time-consuming, and costly if not properly handled. On top of that, a lot of confusion has occurred due to different types of business visa.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the type of business visa you can apply, and keep yourself updated from time to time, in case of the change of regulations. This article provides useful guidance that you need to know about the business visa in Indonesia.
WHAT IS A BUSINESS VISA IN INDONESIA?
A business visa in Indonesia is to enable foreigners or expatriates visiting Indonesia to carry out regular business activities, for examples participating in a seminar or conference.
According to Article 38 of the Immigration: A business visit visa is a visa granted to foreigners, who is going to travel into Indonesia for the performance or participation of the following such as: government tasks; social or cultural, educational activities; tourism; business or family affairs; continued travelling to another country.
Despite the name, during your visit in Indonesia on a business visa does not allow you to take up employment or receive any compensation in monetary form, in exchange for the activities that you have participated.
WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH A BUSINESS VISA IN INDONESIA?
Activities you can perform via a business visit visa include:
- Social activities
- Tourism or any tourism-related activities
- Family visits
- Art and culture
- Government tasks
- Sports of non-commercial
- Training, study, or course for short duration
- Tasks that are of emergency
- Collaboration in foreign marketing for Indonesia providing guidance, counseling, and training
- Journalistic reporting
- Film production of non-commercial
- Business negotiation
- Purchase of goods
- Seminar, conference, or lecture participation
- International fairs and exhibitions participation
- Subsidiaries’ auditing, inspection, or production quality control in Indonesia for up to one month
- Foreigners and expatriates’ competence trial
TYPES OF BUSINESS VISA IN INDONESIA
There are, in general, three types of visa you can apply when you intend to visit Indonesia for business purposes.
Visit Visa on Arrival (VOA)
A VOA is the way to go if you only go on a business trip in Indonesia for less than 30 days. You can extend your VOA for another 30 days only once at the Immigration Office in Indonesia. Your passport must have at least 6 months of validation and a proof of return ticket is required.
An invitation letter from the inviting organization for the purpose of a business trip is highly recommended.
The maximum length stay for single entry business visa is 60 days, it is especially useful for a visitor who wants to stay longer for business purposes. It should be applied at an Indonesian Embassy abroad. Extension of single entry business visa is possible by applying at the Immigration Authorities in Indonesia, for up to five times.
Here’s the drawback for a single entry visa: if you leave Indonesia when your single entry visa is expired, the extension becomes impossible and you are required to apply for a new visa.
Multiple Entry Business Visa
This visa is valid for up to 12 months and issued upon authorization of the Immigration Office in Indonesia. You can enter and leave Indonesia multiple times (unlimited) at will during the 12 months. You will, however, still need to leave Indonesia at regular intervals–a maximum 60 days is allowed for each stay in Indonesia.
To reiterate, even with multiple entry business visa, it does not allow you to work in Indonesia with an income. It only allows you to explore business possibilities, or discuss business in Indonesia, with invitations from the local companies.
It is highly suggested that the foreigner’s counterpart in Indonesia apply locally on his or her behalf. With the written approval of business via from the Immigration Authority, the applicant will then apply the issuance of visa by submitting the required documents.
FREE EXEMPTION VISA – WHAT IS IT?
In an effort of boosting tourism that contributes tremendously to the local economy in Indonesia, as of March 2016, 169 countries have been granted free entry to Indonesia. Foreigners from those countries can now enter Indonesia with zero fee. This free visa exemption is only valid for 30 days, without the possibility of extension and conversion into other types of permits.
However, again, don’t let the FREE visa confuse you! A free exemption visa is not allowed to be used for any sort of business activities—at all. Serious penalty will be enforced for breaking the rule.
If you are visiting Indonesia for a business event, even if it is less than 30 days, please request a VOA instead. There are, however, 15 countries allowed to facilitate the free exemption visa for tourism, business, government, or social cultural visits—Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Philippines, Chile, Morocco, Peru, Vietnam, Ecuador, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Hong Kong, and Macau.
Here’s the link to the website of Ministry of Law and Human Rights of Indonesia, to see if your country qualifies for a free visa exemption.
CAN YOU APPLY A BUSINESS VISA ON YOUR OWN?
You could—as of March 1, 2015, the updated website at the Indonesia Immigration department for online application allows a daily applicant of 600 people. When this quota is reach, the system will be automatically closed and you will have to wait until the following day. However, it is currently available in Indonesia language, and the system is unstable from time to time.
HOW TO APPLY FOR A BUSINESS VISA IN INDONESIA?
Indonesia is renowned for having ambiguous and tedious visa application process at times. That’s why some foreigners might find that daunting in fear of the application being turned down and left disappointed.
Through our years of experience and local domain knowledge by helping companies with the visa application process for nationalities from all over the world, we now simplify its entire life cycle for your convenience.
- Contact Cekindo if you meet the requirements and eligible for a business visa
- Submit required documents along with application forms to us for the process of visa invitation
- Cekindo sends out a telex to the designated Indonesian embassy abroad on your behalf
- Convert the invitation into a business visa by visiting the embassy on your own
- Business visa issuance
Remember, be meticulous and don’t leave out any important information and documents!
- Visa application form (filled and signed)
- Passport with minimum validity of 6 months
- Passport size photograph (color)
- Evidence of sufficient funds to cover applicant’s cost while staying in Indonesia (a minimum fund of US$1,500)
- A supporting letter from the applicant’s company
- A supporting letter from the applicant’s sponsor
- Copy of written approval document from the Immigration Office in Jakarta, Indonesia for business visit exceeding 60 days
- For attending a conference or a seminar, a letter of invitation with detailed agenda
It takes 5-7 working days to process a business visa. If you don’t have a sponsor, Cekindo can act as your sponsor.
Please also note that there nationalities which included in restricted countries for multiple entry visas application, which are: Afghanistan, Guinea, Israel, North Korea, Cameroon, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, and Somalia.
BUSINESS VISA APPLICATION WITH CEKINDO
Get in touch with Cekindo now to help you secure your business visa for a successful entry to Indonesia.
A complete range of visa and permit solutions that fit your corporate needs are also available at Cekindo.