Living as an expatriate in a foreign country is certainly not easy. There are different things to confront, some of which could show to be stumbling blocks, like bureaucracy, cultural differences, and local habits and, in particular, communicating.
Even though some Indonesian workers understand and speak Basic English, it would be better to learn and understand Bahasa Indonesia, particularly when you deal with locals in your work on a daily basis.
Begin with basic phrases, like “selamat pagi” (good morning), “terima kasih” (thank you), “maaf” (sorry) and “tolong” (please help), and how to request for directions and about prices, etc.
Here are some habits to master the Indonesian language.
Bahasa Indonesia is believed to be an easy language to learn, and you can just learn it by yourself. You can purchase a dictionary or do-it-yourself books at major bookstores in Jakarta, like Gramedia or Kinokuniya. If going to a bookstore is too time-consuming or costly, you could learn by accessing websites like Westhill Consulting Career and Employment, Australia.
Take a course
Joining in a class is helpful, since a course teaches not only how to speak Indonesian but then again they can also teach you about Indonesian culture, which will give you more self-reliance when chatting with Indonesians. This is likewise a great help so that you will be able to avoid deceit or scam.
A sample school you can enroll to is AIM for English is one place that offers classes for expatriates. The institution is located at Jl. Padang 5C, Manggarai, South Jakarta, phone (021) 8385238, email firstname.lastname@example.org
There is also the Jakarta Communication Club at Jl. Cipaku II 27, Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta, phone: (021) 7203966, (021) 72791829 or visit jccindonesia.com for more info.
Broaden your horizons
Connect to social clubs that you’re interested in or meet up with local friends after work to increase your network and exercise your Indonesian.
Read local publications or watch local TV programs to keep well-informed of current local issues, which will correspondingly help you learn and practice more.