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Living in Jakarta, Indonesia:
Tips for Moving and Visiting

29 local experts

If you've been wondering what it's like to live in or visit Jakarta, the Crowdsourced Explorer community can help. We asked 29 people living in Jakarta what someone who is considering moving to or visiting there should know. Here are their pros and cons, tips, and advice:

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29 comments on “Jakarta”

If you’re moving to Jakarta, you should always wear a mask when outdoors. The epic smog is second to none. In fact if you google it, Jakarta is the #1 most polluted city in the world. So I suggest an even better idea; don’t move to Jakarta if you love your lungs.

It’s very hot all the time, 30 degrees. The air quality is poor. Otherwise great city, affordable help, very child-friendly!

If you’re moving to Jakarta, you have to be ready for the traffic and pollution but know that these don’t define your experience if you are prepared. Chose your location and travel times smartly and you will find the Jakarta is a cosmopolitan and comfortable place to live.

Jakarta is the largest city in Indonesia and same as with any other big city, traffic jams are common although manageable. Apartment rent is affordable for expatriates looking for cheaper options, you can search for a guest house (in Indonesia we call it “kost-kost an”).

Muhammad Ihsan, says: 2023

Jakarta is all about the commute, once you figure out what works for you, it can be a vibrant and exciting place to live.

Jakarta is the capital city and the largest city in Indonesia. All varieties of Indonesian cuisine have a presence in Jakarta. The local cuisine is Betawi cuisine, which reflects various foreign culinary traditions. Betawi cuisine is heavily influenced by Malay-Chinese Peranakan cuisine, Sundanese and Javanese cuisine, which is also influenced by Indian, Arabic and European cuisines.

Annisa, says: 2020

Jakarta is the capital of Indonesia, considered as the center of everything. Business, yes. Showbiz, yes. Government, yes. Since the local pop culture does embrace my beloved city as a place that turns poor people into rich, it drives many people from other province (like states in U. S) to come to Jakarta to pursue their Indonesian Dreams. As city that slightly larger than Singapore, Jakarta is way too crowded. It is a home for approximately 10 million people. Ten million. That’s double the size of entire Singapore’s population.

See, Jakarta technically has a very few things that can count as “historic” or “beautiful” or “touristy”. There is an Art Deco train station. There is an old drawing bridge. People may mention the old colonial quarter, the fish market, and the Chinese temple. You can see all this in half a day, but if you miss it it’s just as fine. Nothing you cannot have thrice as good elsewhere.

Jakarta is hard to access. Where cities like Bangkok or Singapore open up to the tourist, Jakarta closes. If you do not know people on the ground or are super unlucky, you will end up in a backpacker trap somewhere on Jalan Jaksa; if you are very lucky in Kemang. Foods are the best for Jakartans, and never bored.

In my city a lot of things to do I live in Jakarta to be precise in Indonesia. In Jakarta, there are many historical monuments and skyscrapers. In Jakarta there is also a monument that has become the iconic city of Jakarta, namely Monas. In Jakarta there are also many historical museums.

Andreas, says: 2020

Jakarta is the capital of Indonesia. Jakarta is a big city as a business center; in here, jobs are open to foreign nationals and Indonesian citizens. However, if you want to move to Jakarta, stop dreaming of seeing natural scenery, because what is in Jakarta is only multi-story buildings.

Jakarta is known nationwide as the center of commerce, entertainment, and education. With numerous districts boasting tall skyscrapers and high-end apartments, Jakarta offers high living expenses compared to all the other cities in Indonesia. Many people move to Jakarta, however, and it remains a center of intercultural interaction, with those from different heritage working and living together peacefully in this capital city of Indonesia.

Most importantly the should know how to speak Indonesian, at least in beginner level. In Jakarta, some of people understand English but not all of them understand how to speak in English. That’s the reason why being able to speak in Indonesian is sort of important.

Ronald, says: 2020

She/he should consider that Jakarta is a city of insane traffic. No matter what time the day starts, traffic is everyone’s nightmare. Starting the day early in the morning doesn’t guarantee you are safe from traffic. Even after office hours, traffic is becoming more unbelievable. Moving to a big city like Jakarta is challenging, especially traffic.

Arthanta, says: 2020

Demographically, population growth in the city has always increased annually. It’s caused by the centralization of Indonesia where lots of jobs are targeted by migrants from various regions in Indonesia. Besides, many international events are held in this city year-around. Hence, not only the native people but also foreign visitors came to see them.

Andriek, says: 2020

The city is massive, it was a Dutch colony and we can see lot of its influence in the city’s architecture. Traffic in Jakarta is really bad and one needs to consider that before traveling to one place to another within the city. The petrol price in Jakarta is very cheap.

Alifia, says: 2020

Jakarta is pretty crowded and messy here but you will find the beautiful charm of Jakarta that you can’t find anywhere else. The people are very welcoming and humble. Jakarta has various foods you’ve probably never tasted before.

Arthanta, says: 2020

To someone who considered moving to jakarta, please think twice. Why? First, there are traffic jams everywhere inside the city. Living in this kind of situation will make you think twice or thrice, because it is so stressing to the point where you could be angry with just minor things. Second, air pollution. Air pollution’s scale in Jakarta is in dangerous level, which can cause several lungs problem if they were try to walk without masks in the city.

Jakarta is a large, sprawling city. It is one of the most polluted cities in the world, and to foreigners who are unused to the tropical climate, the heat and humidity may cause a couple of torturous months. Jakarta’s residents has come from all over Indonesia, and they will certainly give you a very broad and deep insight into the vibrant and diverse culture that thrums within its streets.

One thing they should know is if they can handle spice, during my travels to various countries around the world, I’ve learned that their spice are usually comparatively mundane so anyone who isn’t used to spice should learn to avoid the tell-tale signs of spicy food here. Another thing they should know is some form of the Indonesian language, although some Indonesians can indeed speak in English, they are in the minority as most aren’t fluent in it. Finally, you should get used to riding cars, usually, locations are not within walking distance and the infrastructure for walking isn’t exactly up to par nor safe when traveling alone especially at night.

Imelda, says: 2020

Jakarta is a very busy city therefore has a lot of traffic regardless of the time of the day. due to the high volume of vehicles, air quality is not good at all. Being said, as most Asian cities, Jakarta is one of the friendliest city, especially to tourists and newcomers.

Moumita, says: 2020

Jakarta is the capital of Indonesia. It has so many place visited, such as Monumen Nasional (Monas), and so many big shopping places (Grand Indonesia, Central Park, etc). Besides of that reason, Indonesian people are kind to other people. don’t be afraid, we are welcoming the foreigners.

Istifham, says: 2020

Jakarta is a well developed city in Indonesia. You can find numerous amount of skyscraper and easily meet new people here and around. The people here are very kind and generous, they will help you with everything that you need. The living cost here is also cheap as we are at Southeast Asia. Last but not least, there are different kinds of public transportation that can help you everyday, from day to night.

Many people from any other parts of Indonesia come to Jakarta to seek job opportunity. you should prepare with traffic jam. But it’s all right, many entertaining industry are here. Cinema, Mall, Cafe and Shopping Mall are ready to entertain you.

Ruzika, says: 2020

Since Jakarta now already become modern City, and many opportunities born here. Business is growing here and it’s attract people from around the world and the city more cross cultural now with touch of Indonesian culture. With many skyscrapers and malls, Jakarta is unique and chic city. Jakarta is Mecca of Mall, with more than 20 malls around Jakarta, makes it heaven of shopping.

Reynie, says: 2020

Jakarta is quite a dense city as a result the most important thing to know is traffic can get horrendous. you need to have a lot of patience. it is a wonderful city in the amazing country called Indonesia. The people are really friendly and caring, they love to help and are very polite.

Hansen, says: 2020

Jakarta is crowded and has a bad traffic jam in certain hours during the working days. On the other side, it is the biggest city in Indonesia and has a lot of attractions such as Malls. Hanging around in malls really helps due to hot weather and high humidity in tropical countries especially Jakarta.

It’s very hot during the day. In Jakarta, you can find street foods mostly everywhere. Traffic jams here are frequent; it’s very common that people are late for meetings.

Brandon, says: 2020

Jakarta is a very big city and very crowded. There are always traffic jams in the street daily and every hours in some areas and pollution also. if someone want to move to my city is better to compare first with other cities in my country or compare first with other countries.

Jakarta is a city that never sleeps. You can find almost anything in this vast and busy city from bars, cafes, traditional markets, shopping malls, to beggars begging for food in traffic lights. Although the public transportation system is poorly managed, however, you can easily commute with the famous online “ojek”. Despite the hustle and bustle Jakarta offers, it is still a good place and feel how the Jakartans have to survive traffic jam during working hours and how they spend their weekends, hanging out with their friends.

Annisa, says: 2020

Jakarta is the capital of the Republic of Indonesia. Jakarta is a huge, sprawling metropolis, home to over 10 million people with diverse ethnic group backgrounds from all over Indonesia. If you move to Jakarta you’ll likely be introduced to Jakarta’s infamous traffic jam. it can literally take hours to go a few measly kilometers in this city.

Syaiful, says: 2020

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