IMEI stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity or with simple words the unique number of your mobile device. Every officially produced phone has it.
The Indonesian government has decided to impose such measures on phones coming from abroad to Indonesia since October 2020 to battle against the illegal phone trade in Indonesia. The Government created this online system where all phones must be registered to be discoverable by local mobile operators. This automatically means that all phones coming from outside of the country must be registered with the Indonesian Customs. If you wish your device to operate in Indonesia it is advisable for you to register it unless you plan to buy a new phone from Indonesia. In that case you are safe to go.
You will do this after your quarantine as this is the policy of the government. That is why, please make sure that you head to the airport on time, so you have time to go to the Customs. There is hardly any queue at the customs office, but they will give you a queue number anyway. Having filled the information beforehand is time and stress-saving. Make sure to do it.
Registering it at the airport is free of cost if your phone is under USD 500. However, based on the experience of some of our students, the customs also do not charge for more expensive phones.
If you miss to do that, you will need to do it in the place of study, but there they will not give you any discounts/ waivers for that and will count it on the whole sum. For example, your phone costs USD 500, they will count that and will ask for tax, but at the airport they will not and will give you a waiver. They have their own way of calculating it.
Tips: when the officer asks you why you are coming to Indonesia say that you are a student, and you will study at Universitas Gadjah Mada for 1/2/3 year/(s) or 6 months depending on your length of study.
Register your phone IMEI here!