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Hiring an Indonesian helper vs Filipino helper (maid) in Malaysia 2024

Updated: May 3

If you're looking to hire a domestic helper (maid) for the first time, you may be considering hiring either from Indonesia or the Philippines. Here are some of the differences to take note of.


Most Filipinos speak Tagalog as a first language and English as a second language. Generally, most Filipino helpers do speak English, with different competencies. This is because English is prioritised in education in the Philippines, and many candidates have also either worked in office jobs, or attend college.

Indonesian helpers on the other hand, are more comfortable speaking Indonesian. Very few Indonesian helpers speak English. Most can understand basic words in English, but will have a difficult time picking up English unless they were prior employed in a job that required English.

So if you're hiring for English speaking skills, choosing a Filipino helper will be better.


Filipinos are predominantly Catholic. There are minority Muslim Filipinos too from the South of the Philippines. Indonesians are majority Muslim. Indonesia is the largest Muslim country in the world. There are also Christian Indonesian workers from Kalimantan, Central Java and Sumatra. Therefore, most workers from the Philippines will be Catholic, while most Indonesians will be Muslim.


Kindly take note that our opinions on culture is very broad and should be taken with a pinch of salt. Generally, we find that Filipino helpers may be able to work more independently, while Indonesian helpers may require more supervision. Although this is not always true. Workers capabilities are associated with individual factors as well, such as work experience or education level.

Contract differences



Contract Term

2 years

2 years

Basic Salary

RM1500/ monthly

RM1800/ monthly

Rest Day Entitlement

1 rest day a week

1 rest day a week

Overtime pay

RM86.54/ day

RM70/ day

Annual Leave

16 days in 2 years

30 days in 2 years

Bonus Entitlement

1 month's pay at completion of contract

Not stated in contract

Hiring a domestic helper is a very personal decision. Religion, culture and language factors should be considered carefully as the domestic helper will be working in your household. If hiring a domestic helper with a different religion from your own, it is important to be respectful of the helper's religious restrictions and culture.

It is very important that the household manager is also able to communicate with the domestic helper for effective management and cooperation. Difficulties in communication is one of the biggest frustrations for the employment relationship.

Apart from religion, culture and language, it's also helpful to ascertain that the helper is also suited to your job scope. Hiring for attitude and training for skills is always a good rule to go by, when deciding on the right candidate!

Our website and its contents are provided for general information purposes only and nothing on this website or in its contents is intended to provide professional advice. Please contact us at or +6082-295175 for more information.

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