Shekels Yes, Rupiah No

Last updated: September 29, 2014
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Mau Ke Mana cannot provide quotes in Rupiah.

Indonesian flight and train tickets have fares in Rupiah, so why doesn’t Mau Ke Mana offer fares in Rupiah too?

The short answer is MKM cannot because Paypal – our preferred payment method – doesn’t offer it.

Paypal accepts payment in 20 currencies:
Foreign Currency Cash

  • ฿: Thai Baht
  • $: U.S., Australian, Canadian, Hong Kong, New Taiwan, New Zealand, Singapore Dollars
  • €: Euro
  • fr: Swiss Francs
  • Ft: Hungarian Forint
  • Kč: Czech Koruna
  • kr: Danish, Norwegian Krone, Swedish Krona
  • Mex$: Mexican Peso
  • PhP: Phillipine Peso
  • £: British Pounds Sterling
  • ₽: Russian Ruble
  • ₪: Israeli New Shekel
  • zł: Polish Zloty

but unfortunately Indonesian Rupiah (IDR or Rp) isn’t one of them.

Why Not?
The author was surprised to discover that Paypal’s choice of currencies is not only about the country’s population size, GDP or wealth. Paypal can only offer payment in currencies where government allow the free movement of currency and exchange across borders.

Singapore Dollars
New Zealand Dollars
Swiss Francs
Chinese Yuan
Indian Rupees
Indonesian Rupiah

As a result, some currencies you would expect to be available aren’t, and vice versa. Payment in some currencies – e.g. Malaysian Ringgit, Brazilian Reals, Turkish Lira – is only available to that country’s residents.

Israeli New Shekels Banknotes

Funnily enough, Paypal payment in Israeli New Shekels is possible even in Indonesia, a country that – like Malaysia and most Muslim countries – only recognises/has diplomatic regulations with Palestine and not Israel. Indonesia even returned aid from Israel after the 2004 Tsunami.

What about other payment methods? Some offer a greater choice of currencies, but are unsuitable for other reasons.

Benefits Of NOT Paying in Rupiah
It’s not all bad news; there are also some positives.

  1. You can save money
    Payment in one’s “home” currency is cheaper overall, because the credit card company does not charge fees for currency conversion.
  2. No nasty surprises on the credit card statement
    If you pay in your home currency, you know what the final figure will be. But if you are paying in a foreign currency, you don’t know how much extra you will pay in fees and currency conversion. It can be more than expected.
  3. IDR Banknotes
  4. Less confusion
    The Indonesian Rupiah is new to many people – especially visitors and banknotes have a lot of zeroes on them. By using a currency they know, clients can be satisfied they are not getting conned.
To finish, on the right is a list of current Indonesian Rupiah exchange rates, regularly updated. For first-timers, the currencies are:

  • US Dollars
  • Singapore Dollars
  • Euros
  • Australian Dollars
  • Danish Krone
  • Swedish Krona
  • Canadian Dollars
  • Swiss Francs
  • New Zealand Dollars
  • British Pounds Sterling
  • Hong Kong Dollars
  • Japanese Yen
  • Saudi Arabian Riyals
  • Chinese Yuan

Unfortunately, no exchange rate for Israeli New Shekels is provided.

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