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Thread: How to Import a Pet into Indonesia

  1. #1

    Default How to Import a Pet into Indonesia

    I found this forum when I was searching for how to bring my cat back to Indonesia and it was much more informative than any other online source, so here's an outline of how to move with a pet to Indonesia as my way of giving back.

    This might not be relevant for everyone. I flew in July 2012 with a cat from Vancouver, Canada to Jakarta. From what I've read here, the process seems pretty similar for cats and dogs. It might be different for other, less common animals, but I wouldn't know much about that. Also, there are some Canada-specific steps.

    A little about our situation... At first we only wanted to fly back to Jakarta to attend a wedding, but one depressingly rainy and cold Vancouver afternoon we decided to move on a whim. With a flight booked in two months, we had to rush through all the moving preparations. When we took the cat to the vet for the first check-up, we only had 1 1/2 months to go. It was enough time, but only barely.


    Here's how I would do it differently, step by step, if I could go back in time:


    1. As soon as you decide you're moving to Indonesia:

    -Contact JakPetz or Groovy Pets (agents). Get a quote on how much it would cost for them to take care of the paperwork in Indonesia. I asked both and JakPetz gave me a much lower quote than Groovy, so I went with them. Expect to pay 7.5 juta to 10 juta for this service. I know this seems like a lot, but it's a necessary expense. There's no way I could maneuver myself through the confusing Indonesian pet import system, and I'm Indonesian. For the price, they prepare an import permit for you, take care of the paperwork once you arrive in Indonesia and drive your pet to your home at the end of the quarantine period (there's an option to forgo quarantine, too). When my cat got home, she was clean and freshly bathed, although there was a lot of matted fur, but that's to be expected with a longhair cat.

    -Get a copy of the Health Certificate form. In Canada, you can download this from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency website. If you're not in Canada, ask JakPetz/Groovy Pets which government body issues the Health Certificate in your country.

    -Do your research before booking if you want your pet to fly as comfortably as possible. I didn't have the chance to find out a whole lot about this because we booked the tickets before we decided to move, so we were stuck with China Airlines. Contact various airlines to find out how they handle animal travel. For small animals, with certain airlines, you may be able to have your pet travel in the cabin with you. A forum member brought his cat from the US to Indonesia this way on Delta and it cost him $200. I flew on China airlines and paid $160 for the cat to fly as excess luggage. I was told some airlines like KLM allow you to see your pet at the transiting airport.
    Make sure your pet carrier complies with airline regulations.
    Also check with the airlines whether the country where you will transit requires an animal transit permit. We transited at Taiwan and had to get a permit. It was free and fairly easy to get over the Internet.


    2. At least two to three months before departure (we did this 1 1/2 months before departure and just only made it):

    -Bring the pet to your vet. Your pet will have to be vaccinated against rabies and some other diseases as required by the Indonesian government. Again, JakPetz or Groovy Pets should be able to explain which vaccinations are required.


    3. One month after the first vet visit:

    -Bring the pet to the vet again to get a blood sample for the rabies titre test (this cost me roughly $300). If you're in North America, the lab that will conduct the bloodwork is likely to be K-State University. The blood sample will probably be sent to the Kansas and sent back to your vet once the result is in. This will take roughly 3-4 weeks. If you're in a hurry like I was, you can contact the lab and order an expedited test for an extra $150 they will try (but not guarantee) completion within 2 weeks. The test result will be sent to the vet's office.


    4. At least two weeks before departure:

    -Make a payment to the pet import agent. This is our deadline with Jakpetz. Other agents might have different deadlines.

    -Request an Indonesian import permit from your agent.


    4. Within five days of departure:

    -Visit the vet one last time for the final check-up. Bring the Health Certificate form with you, as the vet has to fill the first few sections of it in. Collect the rabies test result now if you haven't done so.

    -Visit an official government vet and get his/her signature on the Health Certificate form that your vet partially filled. Also bring any other documents required to export the animal (ie. rabies titre test result, import permit from Indonesia, vaccination certificate, etc. Check with your government agency which documents they want.) In Canada, you need to go to your nearest Canadian Food Inspection Agency office. You don't have to bring the animal with you.


    5. Arriving in Jakarta:

    -Make your way through immigration and baggage claim. Meet the pet import agent and pass all your pet's documents to him. He will go to the quarantine facilities and take care of the paperwork there. You can go visit the quarantine facilities with him; the process will take about 1 hour.

    -After two weeks, your agent will contact you to notify you that the quarantine period is over and that they're delivering your pet to your address.


    Hope this helps someone! Suggestions, additional information welcome I'll gladly edit this post to make this guide clearer.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by indonomad View Post
    Contact JakPetz or Groovy Pets (agents). Get a quote on how much it would cost for them to take care of the paperwork in Indonesia. I asked both and JakPetz gave me a much lower quote than Groovy, so I went with them. Expect to pay 7.5 juta to 10 juta for this service. I know this seems like a lot, but it's a necessary expense. There's no way I could maneuver myself through the confusing Indonesian pet import system, and I'm Indonesian. For the price, they prepare an import permit for you, take care of the paperwork once you arrive in Indonesia and drive your pet to your home at the end of the quarantine period (there's an option to forgo quarantine, too).
    This is similar to the KITAS story; it's perfectly possible to do it by yourself without an agent (yes, I did it), but you need to visit some governmental organizations and drive around quite a lot. Also, you need someone with you who speaks the language. If you're not in Indonesia before you import the pet, it will be very difficult.

    Some more remarks:

    Quarantine is always necessary and home quarantine does not exist. It does 'exist' when someone bribes the official. On the quote of the agents they even state: for this item you will not get a receipt. That's also why the officials prefer you use an agent; they have a very lucrative agreement between them.

    There are two major steps: obtaining an import permit and customs & quarantine clearance. The health certificate you need before obtaining the import permit, is not the same as the one within 5 days of the transport. The first one can be from a 'normal' vet (they have multi-language forms for that), the latter should be a more general one from the ministry in your country. Many countries don't have them and 'make them on the fly' (i.e. you tell them what to put in).

    Rabies testing at laboratory in Europe is approx. 50 Euro per pet. The sending of the samples to the certified lab and receiving of the results is done by the vet and takes approx. 3 days. Only rabies is important btw; there is no legal requirement for any other test (but the vet would be incompetent if he provides a health certificate without vaccination records).

    The Quarantine does not take good care of your animal. So do expect to go there to feed and groom them.

    If airlines allow pets in the cabin, the normally have a maximum per flight (I wish that was the case for babies). In business class there are no pets allowed, in coach normally two for the whole cabin.

    When arriving with pets, you might have to pay import duties.

  3. #3

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    We just did it, or rather are in the process, and it is ending up pretty expensive. At the end of the day, it was pretty much impossible to really dicipher it all enough for us to go it alone without an agent on both sides (Singapore and Jakarta) and the implied threat that if anything went wrong with the process, there is a risk of the animal being destroyed tipped us towards paying the money.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1w View Post
    We just did it, or rather are in the process, and it is ending up pretty expensive. At the end of the day, it was pretty much impossible to really dicipher it all enough for us to go it alone without an agent on both sides (Singapore and Jakarta) and the implied threat that if anything went wrong with the process, there is a risk of the animal being destroyed tipped us towards paying the money.
    Hmm, it's a shame; you were probably close enough to 'come over' two times and to fix the administration beforehand...

    I guess in many ex-pat cases the company provides funds in the moving budget but those who don't really get screwed (700-1000 per animal; just for checking and copying some documents, filling in some forms and driving around Jakarta).


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    Quote Originally Posted by jstar View Post
    I guess in many ex-pat cases the company provides funds in the moving budget but those who don't really get screwed (700-1000 per animal; just for checking and copying some documents, filling in some forms and driving around Jakarta).
    That is 100% correct that the service is way overpriced. At least when importing the pet in Indonesia, you have the choice of using or not using an agent. In OZ, there is no choice, you must use an export agent and it is really expensive. When we transported our cat from Perth to Jakarta, it ended up costing us more than $2,000.

    The other aspect which is quite daunting for expats is what Dave1w mentioned. Animal welfare in Indonesia can be much much improved and the horror stories don't help in giving expats the confidence to tackle the process themselves in fear that something might go wrong, that there is a misunderstanding or just too much bribing going on. Groovy and Jakpetz are well aware of that. To me as long as they keep providing a top notch service, I don't mind.

  6. #6

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    Great post, thanks indonomad. This is very useful info for anyone considering importing pets into Indonesia. We went through all the steps you mention with our dog. The only thing I would add is concerning choosing airlines. I was told NOT to go with Asian airlines but with European ones, as they are more used to handling dogs with care (not sure about American ones, since we flew in from Europe). And of course, the fewer number of stop-overs, the better. Call all airlines beforehand to make sure how your pet will be handled after you check him in, and what will happen during transit.

    And indeed the agents are very expensive but worth the price, I think... we had to pay for it out of our pocket but I did not want to compromise with our dog!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by blanca View Post
    And indeed the agents are very expensive but worth the price, I think... we had to pay for it out of our pocket but I did not want to compromise with our dog!
    Neither did we with our 7 cats and i got so sick and tired of explaining to everyone we knew (both friends & family) WHY we did it........ And we too had to explain to the authors and the agent here that our babies are not for resale, they're old and are a part of the household!!

    We travel as 'a package', either all or nothing! ;-)

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtml888 View Post
    Neither did we with our 7 cats and i got so sick and tired of explaining to everyone we knew (both friends & family) WHY we did it........ And we too had to explain to the authors and the agent here that our babies are not for resale, they're old and are a part of the household!!

    We travel as 'a package', either all or nothing! ;-)
    Hats off to you, mtml888! Will be relocating our 3 pets to Jakarta very soon.

  9. #9

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    [QUOTE=indonomad;264841

    -Bring the pet to your vet. Your pet will have to be vaccinated against rabies and some other diseases as required by the Indonesian government. Again, JakPetz or Groovy Pets should be able to explain which vaccinations are required.

    Hope this helps someone! Suggestions, additional information welcome — I'll gladly edit this post to make this guide clearer.[/QUOTE]

    Hi Indonomad

    Many -many thanks for the info. Just as I was about to panic in anticipation off all the running around with the 3 pets!

    I wonder though if they require a fresh rabies test? Our cats have been vaccinated against rabies this year with the dog's vaccination valid till 2014.

    Would you know that?

    Thanks and all the best
    Maria

  10. #10
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    Hi Maria,

    Are you using Jakpetz?

    They kinda do 'require' a rabies test BUT we didn't provide one and they kinda 'pass it off' as done, you know what i mean? ;-)

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