The currency of Indonesia, rupiah, has a long history that stretch back to colonial period. In Batam as well as in any city throught out Indonesia, due to periods of uncertain economy and high inflation, the currency has been re-valued for several times. The Riau islands and the Indonesian half of New Guinea (Irian Barat) had their own variants of the rupiah in the past, but these were subsumed into the national rupiah in 1964 and 1971 respectively

The name “rupiah” is loaned from the Hindustani word rupiyaa (روپیہ, रुपया), ultimately from Sanskrit rupya (रूप्य; wrought silver). Informally, Indonesians also use the word “perak” (‘silver’ in Indonesian) in referring to rupiah during the colonial age though..


The Indonesia’s rupiah or internationally recognized with IDR, is printed and regulated aheres to ISO 4217. The code list is used in banking and business globally. In many countries the ISO codes for the more common currencies are so well known publicly that exchange rates published in newspapers or posted in banks use only these to delineate the different currencies, instead of translated currency names or ambiguous currency symbols. ISO 4217 codes are used on airline tickets and international train tickets to remove any ambiguity about the price.

Ok enough about the boring stuff, in Indonesia you should recognize the value of each notes not only by its numerical value also by its pictures. The Indonesian heroes were imprinted on each notes. The handsome heroes wearing traditional hats means that they are the mid range. You definately see many of the mid-range traditional heroes bills were used by many to pay parking, bus fares to foods in reasonably priced warung and makan places.

The top bills were marked by having pictures of heroes who wears the dark hat which named songkok. The hat also known as peci or kopiah cap were only worn by the elites, hence you might wanna be cautious to use it. FYI the dark hats are traditional attire for formal ocassions which are widely worn in Indonesia, Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, the southern Philippines and southern Thailand. The handsome guys with no hats which are imprinted in Rp.20.000 bills and Rp. 1000 were actually a reminder for anyone who have it to stay calm and composed.

However, you may see another the fierce looking heroes who is wielding a dagger or machete on the Rp.1000 notes. The handsome guy with moustache pictured on Rp.1000 is a national hero named Kapitan Pattimura. He inspires many Indonesian to keep on working harder to earn the bigger bills. He also reminds you to stay alert as your money can only buy you 5 pcs of candies.

Are you excited about how to use the Indonesia paper money? Do Inquire us to plan your holiday and share your thoughts in the comments section below!


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