Three in five Indonesians have considered moving abroad
October 25th, 2019, Kim Ho

Three in five Indonesians have considered moving abroad

Japan the most popular destination for migration

Ever sought greener pastures abroad? You’re not alone, latest YouGov research shows that three in five (63%) of Indonesians have considered moving abroad.

Over a third (36%) have not thought about leaving Indonesia, and 2% are currently living abroad. Younger Indonesians (those aged 18 to 24) are much more likely to consider living abroad than older Indonesians (aged 55 and above) (71% vs. 30%). Similarly, women are more likely to think about living abroad than men (69% vs. 58%).

One in six (16%) Indonesians have lived abroad, which is defined as living outside of Indonesia for more than three months. While three in ten (29%) of Upper 1 SES Indonesians have lived abroad, this drops to one in eight (12%) of Middle 1 SES, and less than one in ten (9%) of Lower 1 SES.

For those thinking of living abroad, three in ten (32%) see themselves doing so in the next five years. Over a quarter (28%) intend to in the next 6 to 10 years, one in seven (14%) in the next 11 to 20 years and one in twenty (6%) in the next 21 years or more. The remaining one in five (20%) are unsure when they will leave the country.

The most popular region to migrate to amongst Indonesians is Europe (42%). This is followed by Asia (41%), America (11%), Oceania (3%) and Africa (1%). Though Europe is the most popular region, the country that Indonesians most want to move to is Japan (14%). This is followed by Germany (9%), Singapore (7%), the United Kingdom (7%) and the United States (6%). Men are more likely than women to want to move to Saudi Arabia than women (5% vs. 2%), where women are much more likely to want to move to South Korea than men (9% vs. 2%).

Of all the reasons to move abroad, the most common is for a better quality of life (63%). Other reasons include better public services (56%), personal reasons (46%), better job opportunities (46%) and greater wealth / affluence (36%).


Some Indonesians have taken it one step further, for those thinking of moving abroad, a third (33%) having actively taken steps in the past six months to move abroad. Those aged 25 to 34 are the most likely to have actively taken steps, with almost two in five (38%) having done so.

Jake Gammon, Head of Omnibus APAC at YouGov Omnibus commented: “As the world becomes increasing globalised, many Indonesians are now seeking opportunities abroad. Migration seems particularly on the minds of young women, for a multitude of reasons. It’ll be interesting to see if these thoughts turn into actions in the coming years.”

***Results based on 1,289 Indonesians surveyed on YouGov Omnibus