Application of Visas and Kitas
It is an intriguing question! Extending my visa or Kitas, can I do it myself? The answer is an undisputed and unchallenged yes. In this article we inform about the process, we note the role of an agent so at the end you can answer, yes I do it myself’ or I conveniently use a reassuring formalities agent’.
As most used by expats – the place to be for this article is the Immigration Office Class I at South Jakarta on Jalan Mampang (Warung Buncit), to be precise the 3rd Floor, almost exclusively used for handling the applications of expats and foreign visitors.
Be advised that you can have your visa extended anywhere in Indonesia, but the permit is limited to the Immigration Office of the area where you live.
Known and respected for their friendly and cooperating the Immigration Office South Jakarta is used to deal with Expats and understands their less patient character. To be clear, the expat or foreign visitor normally goes to Kanim Jaksel:
- To extend their visa on arrival; one time for another 60 days
- To extend their visit visa single entry; 4 times 30 days each
- To convert the Vitas (limited stay visa) to a Kitas
- To obtain the travel permit (Merp)
- To extend their Kitas and Merp; for another 6 months or one year
- To convert their Kitas to a Kitap
- To have their new passport registered and stamped with the correct visa/permit
- To have their new born registered, obtain it a green card or even an Indonesian passport
No, the visitors facing issues often don’t understand the culture of the Indonesian government servants; ‘We like to help you, but if you get angry we need some extra time to understand your anger’. So anger works counterproductive.
To give the expat a clear picture of how an Immigration Office works we explain the way most Immigration offices throughout Indonesia operate, though Immigration Offices which are not so frequently visited by foreigners, might have different processes. We also stipulate the different approach when a formalities agent is used.
The process of Kitas application (new and extension) and the extension of a VISIT VISA and the VOA
1. After entering the busy building (don’t go by car, parking is always full!) go to the third floor. Take a number and queue for your turn at the right (counters 5, 6 for visas and 2-4 for permits) information counter. (Note: The formalities agent can just submit the application no matter his number)
2. While waiting fill out the form and prepare the documents. Be sure you have all the right documents with you (Agents have already filled out the forms upfront).
3. After your number is called (in general two or three hours of waiting) you submit the documents and the counter clerk will check the completeness of the documents. You can take a seat and wait for the result or come back the next day to hear the result. If okay, you can go and inform for the next step after one or two days (The checking of the application submitted by agents happens immediately).
4. If the documents are complete, correct and accepted, the counter will do the data entry and send the documents to the ‘Infokim’ (for Visa) or ‘Statuskim’ (for Kitas) department to have all the documents scanned for system entry.
5. If the application is not okay, the visitor will be informed and he can correct any omissions. If he didn’t want to wait, and comes back the next day, he runs the risk of needing to come back for a third time with the correct document. And off course, this person will need to take a number again and wait.
6. After the documents are scanned and entered into the system, the application will go to ‘Wasdakim’ (controlling department) for checking the authenticity of the documents. At Wasdakim, the documents stay one or two days.
7. After checking is done at Wasdakim, the documents go to the ‘Forsakim’ department. There, the payment of dues are prepared. The visitor has to inform with Immigration to check his status. If already at Forsakim he can pay. If not he has to come back again the next day. This is a main ‘anger’ moment, because the expat might come for nothing. Better to wait an extra day or so, to avoid a unsuccessful trip. Be advised that you have to take a number again and queue again (Note: The agent goes directly to Forsakim and pays).
8. If he hears he can pay, the visitor needs to go to another counter for the actual payment. He has to queue (once more!) to get a number for the payment process. This constant queuing drives some expats bananas. But an application needs different processes, and it is also promising that your application has reached the next level and is being handled.
The process to get your VOA or single visit visa extended costs about IDR.250,000 if you do it all yourself. Otherwise, it costs IDR.1,350,000, depending which agent you use. The process to get your new Kitas or extension at Kanim costs IDR.2,055,000 if you do it all yourself and about IDR.4,500,000 if you use an agent.
9. After payment is done, the expat has to face another queue and take a number for the Biometric Data session (photo, fingerprints and signature). If the visitor uses an agent, he will be informed when to come to Kanim and he is out again in 15 minutes. This is one of the big advantages of using a formalities agent! You only need to come once. The disadvantage, however, is the cost for the agent. The old proverb ‘time is money’, is topical again once more. You have to find your own balance in this.
10. After the results of the bio data session have been incorporated in the system, the Kitas or visa extension can be collected at counters 7-8, but only on average 3 to 4 days after the biometric data session. (Agents can shorten this waiting period).
In upcoming articles we will describe the process of the KITAP at the respective Immigration levels, the IMTA at Manpower and the Civil registrations with City Halls and neighbourhood heads.